Electronic Arts

  www.ea.com
  www.ea.com

Electronic Arts Reviews

Updated November 18, 2014
Updated November 18, 2014
821 Reviews
3.5
821 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson
Andrew Wilson
118 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Managers do try to encourage workers to maintain a decent work/life balance (in 34 reviews)

  • Nice & friendly colleagues, which made for a really nice work environment despite the Cons (in 59 reviews)


Cons
  • Some staff will struggle with achieving work/life balance if they are not careful (in 39 reviews)

  • There are long hours at times, and there are usually cuts at least once a year (in 53 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Amazing opportunity.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - QA Tester in Baton Rouge, LA
    Former Employee - QA Tester in Baton Rouge, LA

    I worked at Electronic Arts full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    There is a week of paid training. The hours are steady and there can be a lot of optional overtime. The environment is fun and casual, but remains productive and goal oriented. The sky is the limit, from basic contractor work all the way to being employed by EA directly.

    Cons

    Most start as contract work through a separate entity that works with EA. This management will sometimes force people onto the three month furlough depending on what time of the year their contract is to end.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is a serious break between the testing center in Baton Rouge and the development group in Tiburon.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    The people rock and the technology is constantly interesting.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Recruiter in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Recruiter in Redwood City, CA

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

    Pros

    With so many options here in Silicon Valley, a company needs to provide a good environment and keep you interested and engaged. EA does all of that. The number one thing keeping me here is the people. For the most part, the people here are smart, engaged, fun, and willing to take risks. That coupled with the passion for what we are doing makes for a wonderful work environment.

    In addition, EA offers wonderful benefits. The healthcare coverage is the best I have ever had. The holiday shut-down from Christmas Eve through the new year is included in the company holidays, whereas most companies "force" you to use your PTO over a shut-down period. This year they even added Pet Insurance as one of our elective benefits.

    Cons

    It is definitely a fast pace, a heavy workload, and a high bar in terms of quality expectations. The organization also goes through a lot of structural changes, which can be frustrating.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The onsite daycare is awesome. Let's do onsite dog daycare.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    A huge American game company, finally showing cohesion after 30+ years.

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

    I worked at Electronic Arts full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    - Excellent employee services (HR, EA University, policies, performance management, benefits, facilities, equipment). A good, solid, professional place to work (somewhat rare in the game industry).
    - Good pay
    - Really bright, hard-working people that care about their output. They really do. EA hires the best in the industry. This isn't always apparent to the public, who get caught up on occasional poor marketing schemes or design decisions; but if they knew how much people BLED to make these products happen, they might curb the vitriol.
    - Exceptionally strong operational and marketing orgs; best in business and EA's real secret weapon. Like the USS Enterprise, you can do anything with Scotty in the engine room.
    - Recent focus on Customer Experience, throughout all levels of the company, is bearing fruit. Such as the discontinuation of Online Pass, and the launch of EA Access. EA is moving the needle on how customers consume games in the modern era, while other companies lag.
    - Some truly great leaders at the exec level

    Cons

    - No matter how hard you work, and how well you meet your objectives, in my experience, you will never succeed. EA suffers from intense 'blame culture', which like politicians in office, causes people to spend precious time on 'CYA' measures rather than executing better at their job, resulting in a self-fulfilling prophecy of inefficiency. There was a time when this kind of internal scrutiny was needed (EA was a conglomerate of different companies all operating differently, very chaotic), but in many ways it's now time to take the old breaks off, let the professional people do their thing without all the extra micro-managing. There are many junior execs and middle management geared simply toward challenging other people's business. Useful 2 out of 10 times, distasteful 10 out of 10. Did you graduate college to work at a place that often treats you like a kindergartner?
    - In its beginnings, EA was a place where new game ideas and creativity could thrive. It's now a corporate battleship, taking monumental effort (if any) to steer it off its course of trusted franchises (Madden, Sims, Battlefield, etc). If you've got plans to get your game idea developed - there's an exceptionally low chance of that at EA, with the possible exception of casual apps. EA wants your creativity - on how to maximize profits of its existing products.
    - Some truly awful leaders at the exec level

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I believe Andrew Wilson may be taking the company in the right direction, time will tell - but so long as they stay connected and true to people that actually play games (rather than to those that just check balance sheets, or to those internal hubris swaggerers) good things are bound to happen. They call themselves Electronic Arts... they should make ART the priority as it was in the company's beginning, and let the money follow. Also, they need to build a lifelong fan base; making more non-sports products for the younger audience (E rated franchises). Video games should not be the domain solely of the M rated crowd.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Not Bad

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

    I have been working at Electronic Arts full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great Hours, Great Benefits, Great Location, No Weekends

    Cons

    Pay slightly less than average

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Great place to get started with game development

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in Redwood City, CA

    I have been working at Electronic Arts full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    You'll work with smart people who are very passionate
    Cool perks if you love gaming
    An opportunity to try and learn many different things

    Cons

    Constant layoffs
    Definitely not a place to establish a long-term career
    Lack of promotion (unless you're a rockstar among rockstars )
    Way too much micro-management

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    EA is very much a culture where marketing is in control. I would heed the warnings the late Steve Jobs once gave to old Apple.

    Manage as a united company, not as a single project.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Interesting projects and great co-workers amidst massive corporate dysfunction.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Redwood Shores, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Redwood Shores, CA

    I have been working at Electronic Arts full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    I have been very lucky to have had the privilege to work with so many intelligent, creative and passionate individuals on a wide range of projects across several studios at EA.

    Cons

    The enormous layering of middle and upper management creates a vacuum which has a tendency to destroy creativity and idea exploration on game teams. The senior level structure within EA is unfortunately more interested in the preservation of their own roles within the company than in creating really great games. Additionally, this company is extremely risk adverse and beholden to their quarterly reports which ensures that they will continue to follow the trends rather than create them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Flatten the corporate structure and trim the fat where it’s truly needed so you can get back to focusing on what's important - the games.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    No future career here

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

    I have been working at Electronic Arts full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Excellent health insurance and stock purchasing program

    Cons

    A just part of big running machine. Do not expect any respect no matter how long you have served. All result driven and constant reconstructing business structure.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop looking after yourself, start paying attention to your team. Give ownership back to devs who actually work on projects. Stop treating projects as your own personal pet projects, And please play games that you are making once in a while.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    A collection of start-up like studios, riddled with too much middle management

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

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

    Pros

    - You can work on many video games you can name, and moving from studio to studio is of moderate difficulty.
    - Vacation policy is above average.
    - Stock options are a nice perk.
    - Amazingly passionate and brilliant talent.
    - Learn domain knowledge that is rarely found in other industries.
    - Good parties when your game succeeds.

    Cons

    - Bottom-line driven development: EA senior leadership cares only about appeasing shareholders at any expense, including overruling the experts they employ on creative/technical/morale impactful decisions, which often results in an overall longterm LOSS for short-term gains.
    - Crunch time is unhealthy; 100 hour weeks are common for 6 months at a time during gold-master/crunch.
    - Review process is a dog-pony show: promotions with no merit increases, RIFs during executive bonuses, and a consistent but tiny annual bonus are commonplace, save upper-middle management or higher.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - You attract some of the most talented and passionate people in the world, and have the ability to acquire/develop virtually any IP - leverage these tools to RETAIN and better manage your talent. Lessen middle-management and employ fewer, higher quality managers.
    - Listen to the people whom you pay for input when you ask them for input more often than you do currently; I can name a few large projects that failed due to smart being people overruled by executives, who years later were proven correct and said executives removed for ineptitude.
    - Reward the little/front line people more and the management less: managers don't create video games, then enable the creation of video games.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Work from home opportunity with it's ups and downs

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Worldwide Customer Experience Representative in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Worldwide Customer Experience Representative in Austin, TX

    I worked at Electronic Arts as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    I was able to train and work from the comfort of my home office taking inbound web and phone inquiries from customers. The pay was average for the workload, and communication with managers was on a daily basis through office communicator, live meetings and web chat. If you ever needed help just ask a question in chat and you typically received it within minutes from co-workers or management. Had access to every EA published game on an employee account for free and was able to build rapport with customers and co-workers through spending time playing video games with them during time off.

    Cons

    Originally assigned to take web contacts but then moved to phones while web contacts were outsourced to India. Had issue with other centers not following protocol and giving false information to customers. Had constant issues with OMEGA and other systems sometimes having to tell customers I could not assist them at that time. EA would also not allow developers enough time to complete products QA and bug/issue fixing which caused a tremendous amount of upset customers calling in for known issues.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Would recommend uniformal training for worldwide customer experience reps, and allowing developers ample time to finish projects before launching bug ridden, issue plagued products upon customer base.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    Hostile and demeaning

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - UI/User Experience Designer in Sacramento, CA
    Former Employee - UI/User Experience Designer in Sacramento, CA

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

    Pros

    Decent benefits, and lots of alcohol. Benefits were OK, but not nearly as good as you would think based on the size of the company. Culture, real culture, was basically non-existent. The entirety of the company culture revolved around getting drunk. Lot

    Cons

    Almost everyone, nearly without exception was pretty miserable. Either they hated their job, hated their managers or were just hate filled people. Work life balance was abysmal. It was expected that people, especially those of us actually making things would gladly work 12-18 hour days and even weekend during crunch time which was pretty much all the time. Overall, management was poor, salary was well below market average, benefits were OK, culture was non-existent and the place was generally full of yes men and a few boat rockers that were often immediately removed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get some good management, we'll see how it goes from there.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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