Cisco Systems Reviews

Updated October 20, 2014
Updated October 20, 2014
5,111 Reviews
3.6
5,111 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Cisco Systems Chairman & CEO John T. Chambers
John T. Chambers
3,579 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Cisco does a wonderful job of allowing its employees a superb work-life balance (in 619 reviews)

  • It is very flexible environment where most people can work from home if they desire (in 348 reviews)


Cons
  • No part-time options for professionals wanting work-life balance while raising a family (in 181 reviews)

  • If you want some short term real good big company experience it is a good place to be (in 164 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Best times are gone, but still a good company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Director in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Director in London, England (UK)

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The old days when stock options could make you rich are gone forever, but total package is still good, in the top 50% percentile of similar ICT companies. You can get RSU (restricted stock units) as a bonus each year.
    Networking is not as "hot" as it used to be 20 years ago, but it is still an interesting area for working, in terms of innovation and market opportunities.
    Work environment is OK, similar to other large ICT companies, not heaven and not hell, but still way better than a steel factory, although not as exciting as a startup or high tech software company.

    Cons

    Morale not great after many rounds of layoffs. The company needs a major shift to survive long term, which might be a threat or a great opportunity, depending on where you end up. Cisco was the Google of the 90s, now it looks more like IBM in the 90s. It is not an innovation leader anymore and market dominance is at risk.
    Many senior leaders are focused on politics and protecting their back, so the work environment is not as friendly and relaxed as it used to be. Some of the executives lack the vision, depth and personality. They can manage the "blah blah" in videos, but they fall short when it comes to real market understanding, technology vision and execution.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The cultural shift in the last 20 years has been dramatic and not for the better. Part of it can be explained with market dynamics and makes sense, although not pretty. Unfortunately sometimes the baby was thrown with the water, while significant dirt remained and built up.
    The values and attributes that make a leader climb the ladder need to be revised significantly. Cisco needs less pretty internal propaganda slides and more solid work and sincerity.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 9 people found this helpful  

    Decent, challenging, high pressure, job insecurity, tight deadlines

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Hardware Engineer in Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Hardware Engineer in Raleigh, NC

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Challenging work atmosphere, brand name, facilities such as gym, health care, 401k, work from home, flexible

    Cons

    Job insecurity, tight deadlines, too much policitics, very asian atmoshphere, creative ideas not really welcomed, need to work as a soldier or slave driven

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop the constant re structuing

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

    Use to be the best place to work, now horrible

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Product Sales Specialist in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Product Sales Specialist in New York, NY

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Use to be great and pretty good layoff packages

    Cons

    Use to be great. Now nothing but layoffs and promises of more layoffs. Moral has crashed and the work environment has turned super negative

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Bring back the old company

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Solid company but too many layoffs

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software QA Engineer in Research Triangle Park, NC
    Current Employee - Software QA Engineer in Research Triangle Park, NC

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good company with solid benefits and great ability to work at home or at the office. They strive for flexibility and provide the tools to make it happen.

    Cons

    Company is going through a lot of realignment and change and is choosing to accomplish this through consistent layoffs each August after the fiscal year closes. Instead of retraining they fire and bring in new younger blood. The lament that not enough people leave the company each year as their attrition rate is 3% and John Chambers would like to see it at 10%. They lose a lot of good people with this approach.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Retrain and don't just do yearly layoffs. You are making Cisco not a place people want to come too and that is not your end goal.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Dream Job

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

    I have been working at Cisco Systems as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    nice company to work with

    Cons

    lay off. They lay off about thousands of people. Must really work hard to stay

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Rapid change/restructure and moving to a high turnover model

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

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Training options are top notch, depending on the year
    Remote work is an option, with less than 5% travel
    The people working there are some of the best in the world

    Cons

    Job security is non-existent
    Organizational silos make changing positions infeasible
    Upper management is cut-throat whilst the experts have a supportive culture

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    4 years of consecutive layoffs? Reviewing on a curve? These policies strongly indicate to your employees that you're moving to a high-turnover model. You're going to lose top talent in addition to those deliberately targeted for layoffs.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Make it work

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

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Salary, engineering clout, diversity of tech.

    Cons

    risks lagging further, constant change eroding company

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Used to be a very good place to work, but things had been going downhill for a while.

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

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Competetive compensation, treats its employees well. Work-life balance is reasonably good in most BUs.

    Cons

    Increasing amount of politics at the workplace and frequent layoffs resulting in a degree of apathy and loss of morale among engineers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of the deadwood and fat in management before downsizing engineering teams.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Friendly Environment to Work At

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

    I worked at Cisco Systems as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Soft environment, convenient to take care of your family, friendly co-workers who are always ready to share, available resources for learning and working.

    Cons

    Average age of employees are a little bit high, not enough fresh blood, at least for the group I was working at.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Great opportunity at Cisco

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

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The experience to work with the best group of engineers in the world and to make equipment that send data across the world. It's an amazing opportunity.

    Cons

    There is not much to complain here. I guess the company can give more perks to spice up our days!!!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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