Altera Reviews

Updated August 29, 2014
Updated August 29, 2014
279 Reviews

3.3
279 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Altera Chairman, President, and CEO John P. Daane
John P. Daane
182 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Average work load and work life balance as a design engineer (in 28 reviews)

  • You have the opportunity to work on interesting, cutting edge technology (in 12 reviews)


Cons
  • Still you can not have work/life balance (in 8 reviews)

  • Not much options for career advancement (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Ambitious with all the right ideas

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Altera full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Exciting work, great development opportunities

    Cons

    Execution mishaps, disorganized, poor rigor

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    enjoyed working there

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Jose, CA

    I worked at Altera full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    good people to work with

    Cons

    not very good from management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    respect people working for them

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 3 people found this helpful  

    A power unit within a much larger FPGA company is an odd mix

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Hampton, NJ
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Hampton, NJ

    I have been working at Altera full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Enpirion was acquired by Altera, which at least brought some stability. Some of the perks are better at Altera, but being a satellite office, we don't get any of the benefits of other offices, like access to a good gym, reduced lunch prices, 30th anniversary parties etc.

    Cons

    Since Enpirion has been acquired, the direction of the Enpirion unit still has not been made clear. The top positions in the power business units are being filled with acquaintances of Altera's existing upper management. I think it pays to know people within this company. Trying to get something from other groups within Altera is a struggle. It appears as though Altera has a huge layer of bureaucracy at all levels. Is there career advancement? Great question that has never been answered. Lastly, since Enpirion has been acquired there have been layoffs at other existing Altera sites. Layoffs coupled with a poor earning reports have left people wondering if that will happen here next.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get on the ball and let the business unit know what is going on. People who were going to be retained have already left. Six months in and there are no more answers today then there were on day 1.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Good FPGA company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Member of Technical Staff  in  San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Member of Technical Staff in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Altera full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Good tech, good products and good working environment.

    Cons

    Still need to innovate many to catch up leader.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 4 people found this helpful  

    The company is in a troubled phase

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager  in  San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Altera full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Nice environment/location in Silicon Valley.
    There are pockets of intelligent people.
    Nice market segment with few competitors.

    Cons

    Upper and middle management are very detached. Also not motivated or hard working.
    Recent products are less cost competitive and technically deficient versus the competition.
    In general, the Altera workforce lacks enthusiasm and aggressiveness.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Very few people in upper and middle management have the enthusiasm, strength or courage to do a bit of extra work on their own in order to turn Altera around. Management needs to lead by example.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 6 people found this helpful  

    Circling the drain

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Engineering Manager  in  San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Engineering Manager in San Jose, CA

    I worked at Altera full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Compensation package was great.
    FPGAs are a great niche of the semiconductor market to be in. Product life-cycle is long, and margins are high. The basic concepts are more than 20 years old, you just have to execute . Which brings us to...

    Cons

    Execution of the silicon fabric is sub-par. A very large group of engineers simply can't get a chip out the door. Altera's main competitor is using that to increase their market share. A recent across-the-board-regardless-of-contribution layoff has pushed morale even lower than previously.
    "Sphere of influence" concepts are used to deny promotions selectively, while keeping VP's with 25 engineers, directors with 3 engineers etc. on the payroll.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on execution. Manage low performers and toxic employees out. Be honest with engineers about the market challenges, and stop the "We're just about to take over the world" speeches.
    Apply organizational structures uniformly and fairly.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    Great for learning and getting exposed to many different aspects in the field

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Advanced Design Engineer  in  San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Advanced Design Engineer in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Altera full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Every aspect of computer science and electrical engineering present at the company...lots of room to explore different fields subjects...Fairly relaxed environment, will be around for a long time (job security)...friendly employees and management

    Cons

    Such complex products are designed to work, not necessarily optimized to be elegant or efficient..some quality issues....also, very corporate, slow to move up/around

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on quality and documentation for products, as you currently are

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Altera - should you choose this company to work?

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Altera full-time

    Pros

    Leader in programmable logic innovation. Company should have a bright future with 14 nm devices in future, with no reasonably competitive Xilinx product. Management encourages innovation. Good friendly environment. It was great to work until recession hit. Still not too bad. You'll have an opportunity to work on cutting edge technologies at Altera. Pay scale is also competitive.

    Cons

    Company trying to extract maximum energy out of their employees. Hopefully, it will get better with improving economy. Bonus may be hard to come by. You have to competitively perform better than most of your peers worldwide to get bonuses. New products have suffered due to too much work and overworked employees. It should get better with improving economy.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    It was fun and you get a lot of opportunity to learn

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Intern  in  San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Intern in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Altera as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    people, good pay, good environment

    Cons

    nothing is bad about working here

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 8 people found this helpful  

    Politics, broken, poor management, poor benefits, high stress culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Management

    I worked at Altera full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Interesting products and technology niche

    Cons

    Ranking system, systemic political culture with gross favoritism and micromanagement, ageism, most employees have little participation in benefits or company growth, culture is pushing toward more risk with repercussions of failures becoming hot potatoes in the wild political and subjective ranking culture, generally poor management

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Resign - the current management has gradually dragged the company down. This has become a finance and HR driven company, the CEO has said repeatedly that it's all about shareholders 1st 2nd and 3rd (i.e. not employees or customers). And that narrow philosophy is not serving the shareholders. Stop turning out good people just because their career growth is limited by internal politics and slow growth in San Jose.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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