Guidewire

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Guidewire – Why Work For Us?

Join the Guidewire Team!

Thanks for your interest! We're pleased that you're thinking of investing your time and energy with us. At Guidewire, a combination of humane working conditions, an excellent market opportunity, a rational and meritocratic company culture, quality products, and a long history of careful hiring have allowed us to create an enviable work environment. Take your time and look around – the more that you understand about us, the more we think you'll like what you see.

At Guidewire, we understand the benefit of having people invested in the success of the company for the long haul, and we're committed to creating an environment that keeps people here.

An Exceptional Opportunity

There's a Silicon Valley saying, "If you can see the bandwagon, it's too late to hop on." In 2001, when we started the company, we realized that one of the biggest industries in the world had been largely ignored by software companies. That was odd, because insurance is a critical, recession-proof industry in any modern economy. Without insurance, people don't buy houses or drive cars, and businesses don't hire new employees. As a result, the worldwide property and casualty insurance industry brings in around $1.3 trillion in insurance premiums every year – and spends about $50 billion of that on information technology. Yet despite this, insurers were getting abysmal value for their money. The backbone of almost any insurance company – selling policies, billing customers, and paying claims – relies on aging, archaic mainframe or client/server systems.

So, we set out to provide modern replacements for these systems. These are extraordinarily complex pieces of software that handle billions of dollars worth of financial transactions. Despite early predictions from people who thought that insurance companies would never buy from a startup company, Guidewire has become the #1 developer of modern insurance software applications. We are the clear global leader in claims systems: since 2004, we have won more deals than any competitor, beating out companies like Accenture and SAP. More recently, we have rapidly been acquiring customers with our newly introduced policy and billing systems. No other company that serves our industry can match our ability to use modern technology to solve complex business problems, no other company is in a position to offer an integrated suite of applications, and none has our track record of making customers successful and happy. As a result, we are well-positioned to become the favored system provider of choice for an entire industry. We nurture long-term relationships with our customers, leading to excellent financial stability for our company.

It's remarkable, if you think about it: companies all around the world that handle billions dollars worth of business a year trust us to manage their most critical business functions. These aren't lightweight peripheral systems – they are the core, mission-critical applications that the majority of employees use all day, every day. Guidewire was only founded in 2001, so how did we do this? How did we become a successful global company, winning these deals over our larger competitors, and how do we manage to deliver these complex applications to large and demanding customers?

We have a number of advantages:

  • First, we had the good fortune to start Guidewire at a time when Silicon Valley was filled with the rubble of the great 2001 tech bust. We had the opportunity to build slowly and to hire carefully. We used our time wisely to build a team of all-stars; they know and attract others of the same caliber. Our people simply outperform other teams.
  • Second, we use agile development approaches and test-driven development. This lets us build higher-quality products in less time. We get to spend more time writing software, and less time fixing bugs and dealing with customer issues. We continue to pioneer the use of these techniques at large scale, both internally in development, and out in the field at our customer sites. To give you a sense of the scale of our investment in this area, we now have on the order of 100,000 automated tests protecting the quality of our products.
  • Third, we've developed an unbroken track record of successful implementation projects (because of a combination of solid product and skilled implementation). Since every implementation is a bet-the-company, bet-your-career decision for our customers, this track record is an invaluable competitive asset.
  • Fourth, we apply unique technology that our competitors can't match: a highly customizable and upgradable metadata-driven data model and UI platform; a built-in integration layer that lets us connect cleanly to all kinds of legacy systems; a huge variety of sophisticated business features; and a completely modern architecture designed from the ground up for testability and scalability. We are a sophisticated technology company bringing advanced approaches to an underserved industry.

The Guidewire team is very proud of the reputation we have earned in the industry. We take great pride in the products we build and the manner in which we operate as a company and on an individual level.

We live and operate by three basic principles. These are the same principles upon which Guidewire was founded and they remain at the heart of all we do today:

  • We value integrity in everything that we do: truthful relationships with customers, prospective customers, partners, investors, and each other.
  • We are dedicated to rationality: communicating through clear arguments, building excellent quality products, and making decisions carefully on the basis of factual evidence.
  • We prize collegiality: working together as professional equals, with a minimum of hierarchy.

 

Click here for an extended look at Guidewire's Values and Practices. 

 

If you like what you see, come and talk to us. We have an idea about what makes a happy life for employees: meaningful work, quality products, sound business strategy, ultra-competent colleagues, and plenty of freedom to innovate and create. But it's easy to say nice things on a website. We invite you to really find out the truth for yourself. Most of our job offers are accepted, so we're pretty confident that you'll like what you see! If you interview at Guidewire, we will treat you with respect and courtesy, and we will also attempt to create, in the interview, as realistic a work experience as possible. We want to learn about you, of course, but we also want you to see what it would be like to work with us.

 


 

 

 

 

 

If you like what you see, come and talk to us. We have an idea about what makes a happy life for employees: meaningful work, quality products, sound business strategy, ultra-competent colleagues, and plenty of freedom to innovate and create. But it's easy to say nice things on a website. We invite you to really find out the truth for yourself. Most of our job offers are accepted, so we're pretty confident that you'll like what you see! If you interview at Guidewire, we will treat you with respect and courtesy, and we will also attempt to create, in the interview, as realistic a work experience as possible. We want to learn about you, of course, but we also want you to see what it would be like to work with us.

Guidewire Reviews

332 Reviews
4.5
332 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Guidewire CEO Marcus Ryu
Marcus Ryu
275 Ratings
  • 3 people found this helpful  

    Amazing company. A darling. But feel bad for Marcus

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Product Manager in Foster City, CA
    Former Employee - Product Manager in Foster City, CA

    I worked at Guidewire full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Look at all the positives mentioned in all the reviews and just believe them. This is the company that gave me hope about Silicon Valley. I would work again for the founders and a few other leaders (Ken, Marcus, Dan) in a heartbeat. Just crazy good.

    I have been privvy to some of the strategy discussions. Amazing clarity of thought, no turf warfare or political agenda and just swift decisions.

    Cons

    While I have seen a good deal of positive people I have also encountered a few rare pockets of negativity first-hand. Be prepared to see 2-4% bad apples. You will kiss lot more prince/ princess than frogs, metaphorically.

    I have also seen a sense of entitlement among some old-timers. I have seen people working 6-7 hours a day. I have also seen old timers (geniuses) who get a sheer mountain of work done in single 8 hour window - almost 2-3 times as that of others. The average works out fine. But it is perplexing when you see people arriving at 10, taking 60-90 minute lunch breaks and leave at 5:30.... and the entire management cadre thinks that everyone is holding themselves accountable. And if you want to talk about it, tread carefully - this is a very sensitive topic. If you bring this up prepared to get yelled at by several people, including a few senior leaders.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There are three challenges that GWRE needs to overcome:

    1. Managers and Culture:
    All successful software companies reach a certain stage where development velocity slows down - it rises out of maintenance load and aged code. Unless the team is full of refactoring ninjas, most of it is unavoidable.

    But slow down due to cultural aspect is dangerous. Eight years ago, people held each other accountable for highest levels of quality and productivity. The leads were fundamentally coders too and they inspired others by example by being productive and set a high bar for quality. Now there are a great # of "managers" who are not motivated to push the team (through inspiration, not whipping) and getting things done, but rather they are satisfiers / status quo preservers - they are paid to just ensure that everyone is happy and things are moving along fine. Risk taking and aggressive goal setting has gone out of window.

    2. Technology:
    GWRE's technology platform needs a new life. Everyone recognizes this. Don't get me wrong... this is still by far the best technology that the insurance industry has ever seen or will see in the next 10 years. The company is a full light year ahead of the nearest competitor. But it is still lagging behind in some areas. Areas like data management is way behind -uses technology invented in 1998. Meanwhile, the rest of the world (sans insurance) has moved on to schema-less data manipulation, billion row march, probabilistic learning engines. Mere grass root innovation is not sufficient. The company must turn a book. One must look at existing inhouse technology like the way the founding 6 looked at legacy systems and come up with a vision and execute. Anything that is on-the-margin (and created with a defensible in front of board) will not cut it.

    3. Still driven by founding CEO's energy:
    Except for one other person.... there are no clear internal leaders that can and want to run the company after Marcus. Marcus is incredible. Everyone admires his rare combination of wisdom, humility and candor/ presence of mind. Those are large shoes for people to fill in for anyone. But if Marcus were to leave (after all the man must have worked more than an average soviet gulag worker) the board would have to bring someone external. This may not be a bad thing. But I get a sense that some of the other leaders are held in place by Marcus's charisma.

    I want nothing but positive and great outcome for this absolute gem of a company.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

Guidewire Interviews

Updated Feb 25, 2015
Updated Feb 25, 2015

Interview Experience

Interview Experience

50%
20%
30%

Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview

41%
29%
13%

Interview Difficulty

3.2
Average

Interview Difficulty

Hard

Average

Easy
  1.  

    Software Engineering Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Anonymous Employee
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university – interviewed at Guidewire.

    Interview Details

    Applied at the career fair, and was had to do a relatively simple coding challenge on the back of my resume, which I completed. Was later emailed that they'd like to interview me on campus. After chatting for a bit, the two engineers interviewing me had me do a couple coding problems on a computer that all built off of each other. I solved all of them, perhaps taking a bit longer on the last one than I should have. I was later emailed that I had positive reviews from my interview and they were still deciding. The next week they emailed me that they couldn't offer me a position, but they encouraged me to apply again and had added my name to people they were interested in for the future. Being a sophomore, I can't have too many complaints.

    Interview Questions
    • First writing a method that generated license plate numbers by taking certain formatted strings and converting certain numbers into letters. Next, a method that used that method to check if certain strings were valid license plates. Finally, writing a method that generated all possible correctly formatted license plates. Was also asked about hypothetical ways to improve solutions although they told me not to worry too much about efficiency.   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

Guidewire Awards & Accolades

Something missing? Add an award
Employees' Choice 50 Best Places to Work (#6), Glassdoor, 2014
Best Places to Work in the Bay Area, The San Francisco Business Times and Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 2013
The 25 Best Tech Companies To Work For (#2), Business Insider, 2013
"Strong Positive" Rating, Gartner MarketScope for North American Property and Casualty Insurance, 2013
The Rave Award, Tech Decisions Magazine, 2011
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Additional Info

Website www.guidewire.com
Headquarters Foster City, CA
Size 1000 to 5000 Employees
Founded 2001
Type Company - Public (GWRE)
Industry Information Technology
Revenue $100 to $500 million (USD) per year
Competitors Accenture

We aspire to be different - more honest, more dedicated to customers, more committed to quality.

Guidewire provides flexible, core systems that span the entire Property & Casualty insurance lifecycle. We invest more in P/C core system engineering than any other company—more than 800 persons-years to date. The work is complicated. We build extremely flexible solutions that... More

Mission: To build software products that transform the global P&C insurance industry – and to ensure that every customer succeeds in the journey.

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