Cree

  www.cree.com
  www.cree.com

Cree Reviews

Updated December 8, 2014
Updated December 8, 2014
118 Reviews
2.5
118 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Cree Chairman, President, and CEO Chuck Swoboda
Chuck Swoboda
77 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Excellent and competitive benefits, including ESPP and stock options (in 7 reviews)

  • Good benefits ,3 weeks vacation to start, 401K, really good health insurance plans (in 6 reviews)


Cons
  • There's really bad work/life balance and then there's Cree (in 17 reviews)

  • No Work/Life Balance, No Career Development, Poor Managers & Senior Leaders, No Team Work or Collaboration (in 10 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Marketing

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

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

    Pros

    - Excellent and competitive benefits, including ESPP and stock options
    - Global presence and brand

    Cons

    - Lack of career development
    - Literally no work/life balance
    - Stressful/Negative environment (Throughout the entire organization.) The environment itself can be extremely mentally and physically taxing

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Your employees make a lot of sacrifices for you and for the company. There needs to be more positive energy and more focus on employee growth and career.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 5 people found this helpful  

    Career started off as a very empowering experience, but quickly turned into a toxic one.

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

    I worked at Cree

    Pros

    Great benefits, compensation package, employee stock purchase plan, excellent people with great talent

    Cons

    Employees are not considered a resource. No emphasis on people. Everyone is considered replaceable. Very data driven. No work-life balance. Cut throat environment. Leadership constantly changing. There is not a defined vision shared by the leaders. High turn-over in most areas.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on developing the great employees that work for you. At the end of the day, these are the people that help make your bottom line. Step up your employee relations, and show empathy for people. Ensure that your mission and values are shared by all management and communicated to all employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 7 people found this helpful  

    May God have mercy on your soul if you have to work at Cree.

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

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

    Pros

    Decent benefits (but don't plan on getting more than 3-4 days of PTO approved per year if you're salaried) and good job security. There are some departments that are "hidden gems" within Cree that are good to work for, but they are far and few between. You have to be hired into a good department though, so don't plan on starting off in a less desirable position and making a lateral transfer later. Requests to transfer are always denied without comment by management.

    Cons

    Whether you're a recent or upcoming graduate looking for your first engineering job, or if you're a more experienced engineer who just got laid off, let me give you some advice I wish I would have listened to: Do not work at Cree.

    Your experience will be worthless outside Cree and you will be miserable. Cree will affect your life in a very negative way. Your relationships with friends, family, and your SO will suffer, or maybe even be completely lost. Your mental and physical health will suffer. You will have to work 70-80 hours a week while being on call 24/7/365, you will be screamed at (literally) by managers who can't control their anger, you will be micromanaged to the extreme (my group had 3 2-hour long staff meeting every week, plus you were required to send out a ~8 slide update to management 7 days a week, including your days off), and you will only be paid an average salary for it.

    Unless you're at the point where you're going to starve to death, keep looking elsewhere. If you got laid off from your last job, keep milking unemployment, or if that's run out, try prostitution before you work here. As a prostitute, your clients will probably respect you more than Cree managers respect their employees. If you're an experienced engineer looking for a change, I can guarantee you Cree isn't the type of change you're looking for. If you're a new graduate desperate to get your foot in the door, look into field engineering positions at oil service companies first. You will work similar hours but for better pay and a better career path, and possibly even better working conditions.

    Most engineers with only a B.S. who start at Cree end up having to go to graduate school to get out. Cree doesn't use any statistical tools, six sigma, or lean manufacturing that are common at other companies. Most young engineers at Cree end up with 3-4 years of their life wasted doing nothing but work along with a several year block on their resume that's completely worthless.

    I'll repeat the advice I was given many times but ignored: Do. Not. Work. At. Cree.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    None.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Out of Touch

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

    I worked at Cree

    Pros

    It seems to be good in the beginning. You get an occasional T-shirt and maybe just maybe a light bulb. And if you are a good boy or girl you get to travel to Racine, go to the company cookout or Christmas party.

    Cons

    Now you have to be apart of the homeboy network in order to move up or even keep a job. Forget working hard. They don't care, or reward you. Some managers stay in there office with the door close, then when they do come out they walk by you like your trash. In meetings forget giving ideas or your opinions they will just beat you down and then put an X on you. Forget spending time with family. Everything is a priority only for it to be put on hold. Explain to me how a person can have 10 people in there team in less than a year by quitting and still keep there job?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get new managers or promote people who actually give a care. Chuck needs to get in tune with what is going on with the other sites. (Davis Drive) Never seen him the whole 3 years I worked for Cree. Get out and thank the employees instead of doing it through CreeTV. Also, some of the contractors work harder than full-timers. Listen to the employees who actually care.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 10 people found this helpful  

    Simply a job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Quality in Racine, WI
    Current Employee - Quality in Racine, WI

    I have been working at Cree full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Decent pay, nice facility and benefits are OK. They start the day you start which is not the norm but nice.

    Cons

    Long hours are expected, not much of a home life. No communication top down and that makes it hard to get anything done. My psychic network isn't always working. The stock holders matter more than the people or even the product. It's all about the dollar, which makes for a very low employee morale. Training is almost non exisistant, so job duties are not clearly defined. It's a mans world at Cree, women don't have the same advancement opportunities in all fields of operation.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    People matter, the more you run down your employees the lower morale gets. Employees are leaving daily so it makes it hard to get a workforce that can actually make the product. Communicate, communicate, communicate, what can it hurt? Give clearly defined job duties and instructions, nobody likes to work only to CYA. It's a hard place to work, it doesn't have to be.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Ok company

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

    I worked at Cree

    Pros

    They pay, management, easy work

    Cons

    Long hours, coworkers with attitudes

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Just don't hire anybody

  8.  

    Cree was a great place to work with great people. There are amazing things happening at the company.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Process Engineer in Durham, NC
    Former Employee - Process Engineer in Durham, NC

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

    Pros

    Cree takes good care of their employees. Good benefits, amazing gym on site with classes, basketball and racquetball courts, etc. Also a cafeteria on site. Management was helpful and supportive. Company is growing and part of an exciting new trend in lighting.

    Cons

    This is a manufacturing facility so it is running 24/7. You will have to work some weekends.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  9. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great potential wasted

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

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

    Pros

    Great worker level of people. Technology leader. In the position to make a difference.

    Cons

    Hi-tech business, with old tech programs, policies. Difficult to manage work-family balance. Empowerment is not a value the organization supports. More command and control.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The belief that completing a company questionnaire, sitting in 4-5 interviews, having 1 lunch and then maybe 1 dinner can result in the hiring of a rock-star, in lieu of taking a "bleeding blue" 10+ year hi potential employee, developing them and giving them a chance to succeed or fail is misguided at best, disappointing at worst. Making an "investment" in these employees would pay for itself.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 8 people found this helpful  

    What a joke...

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

    I worked at Cree full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The benefits are good and great learning experience. The operators and techs are fantastic people. They make great LEDs at the expense of employee happiness.

    Cons

    Managers are disconnected with the teams and the company is an organizational chaos. They do not seek to improve on anything that is "working". Don't get paid well for the ridiculously long hours worked. Working 55-65 hours/week are considered normal. If you want to stay physically and mentally healthy, don't work here. There will be no life outside of work either. It seems that company holidays are also not really holidays as you might be required to work during those days. Cree doesn't care about employee happiness whatsoever.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you want to grow as a company, keep employees happy. If employees are happy, the company is happy. The company might grow now, but the organizational mess will catch up eventually.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 8 people found this helpful  

    Last Resort

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

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

    Pros

    Performed well during the economic downturn, so instead of un/under-employeed I did have a job. On-site gym, cafe, xmas party, spring picnic.

    Cons

    Don't let any of the pros above fool you into going here. Managment (not just manufacturing management, ALL areas I was in FINANCE) is very much lacking. No people skills, no room for growth (salary, personally, professionally) with of course the exception of your job tasks. I stayed for about 3 years (through the recession, see PROS above) with no real increase in pay but my responsbilities grew monthly. Review process is a joke, you don't really get a job description just a "Do whatever it takes" instruction which in turn makes it easy for managment to nit-pick come review time in order to save $ on merit raises/bonuses. Also, why on earth would a C-level executive provide ANY MEANINGFUL feedback to an entry level employee during the annual review process? answer: MICROMANGEMENT; which is the name of the game here. Since leaving i've had family and friends comment that i'm an entirely new person. Understanding the longer hours if you're a revenue generating/production capacity but even in more admin related positions your manager will FIND things for you to do (NO VALUE ADDED) to make sure that you stay longer. Very little internal upward mobility in finance, and if you actually want to leave and go to another area you may get blocked from doing so (BY A C-Level employee mind you) on the basis that you need to improve in your current posiition (ABSOLUTELY no consideration as to what the employee seeks as far as job/professional growth). Now that the stock is in a downward spiral (people's vesting options are worthless, no reason to stay) you'll see plenty of jobs open here shortly. take my word for it (if possible) AND AVOID THIS PLACE LIKE EBOLA.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    They're not worried about any advice. I've been in meetings with HR where the glassdoor reviews are mentioned as having an affect on potential hires and the whole issue was blown off, "did you tell them about our strong equity comp?" was the exact reply (C-Suite again). Management is a joke and the current direction of the stock price proves it. TIME TO SWITCH IT UP, BOD.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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