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There are newer employer reviews for Autonomy

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Helpful (12)

A horrible place to work

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Software Engineer in Vista, CA
Former Employee - Software Engineer in Vista, CA

I worked at Autonomy

Doesn't Recommend
Disapproves of CEO
Doesn't Recommend
Disapproves of CEO

Pros

It's really hard to think of any - but to fair, if you're in the right place at the right time, you may get an interesting project to work on. Oh, and six weeks of vacation, but I'm pretty sure that's just because it was grandfathered in from the previous company that Autonomy acquired.

Cons

It would be really hard to list them all here.

Senior management is somewhere between incompetent and evil. They come from the Karl Rove/George Bush school of PR - i.e. the belief that if you tell a lie enough times it will become true. One example: The day after there were company wide layoffs in the QA department (on the order of 50 people overall), the company newsletter was sent out containing the quote "You should be proud to work at a company that has never had economic layoffs". Perhaps including the qualifier 'economic' makes it technically true, but only in the most weasel-like of ways. The dismissals were definitely *not* due to performance or other issues.

Senior management is also terrible when it comes to basic communication. If there is long-term vision or strategy for the company, they do a great job of keeping it a secret.

As far as opportunities for advancement goes, there doesn't seem to be any. Nobody in this office has gotten a raise or bonus in the past two years. There are people working for me that are producing above their pay grade and have completed projects that have led directly to large sales, but all requests for raises or bonuses have been met with a deafening silence. I could handle it if we were given a reason why the requests were denied, or maybe some constructive feedback about what senior management would like to see before granting the requests. But there is none.

Probably the most galling thing of all, and the thing that makes me most glad to be leaving, is the complete lack of commitment to producing quality software. We are being ordered, from the CEO level, to ship software that does not, for any sane definition of the word, work. It may install and launch (on a good) day, but there is no chance that it meet the customer's needs. None. The problems have been clearly communicated to the level of the CEO, but they don't care.

It makes me especially angry that the current lapses in quality can be traced directly to decisions forced upon us by senior management:
* Reducing the need for dedicated QA staffing by increasing the amount of automated testing that is done on a product is a good idea. But the rational way to achieve this is to first build up your suite of automated tests and train your engineers on how to produce testable code. Starting by simply firing your QA department and then ignoring the ensuing quality issues is just insane.
* Replacing royalty bearing libraries with internally developed code can be a smart move. But the rational way to do this is to first work on your internal library until it's quality is on par with the third party library. Providing a library that runs four times slower with accuracy levels that might have been acceptable 12 years ago and forcing us to ship with it is insane.
* Replacing royalty bearing libraries with appropriate open-source alternatives can be a smart move. But canceling all of your contracts before you've determined that the open-source alternatives can do what you need, is just insane.

I could go on. But I will stop here.

I feel sorry for companies who purchase Autonomy software expecting to receive value for the money they spend.

And I am sickened by what is being done to what was once a proud company, and to the customers we've sweat blood for over the past 10+ years.

Advice to Management

Tone down the arrogance a bit.

Communicate more. Provide actual guidance with goals, expectations, etc.

The company has had three straight quarters of record growth and profit. It is really hard to get excited about the good results when the only rewards are seeing your coworkers laid-off and yet another quarter with no raises or bonuses. Share at least a little bit of the wealth!

Allow local offices a bit more autonomy in how they run their business. What works well in Cambridge, England might not play as well in California. Set measurable goals and then reward (or not) based on whether the group meets those goals. Having butts in seats from 8am-5pm is a poor measure of how productive an office is.

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  1. Helpful (3)

    Lots of potential, but stifled by untrusting executive management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Clara, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Clara, CA

    I have been working at Autonomy

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Seemingly stable company, good benefits, and competitive pay. If you can work autonomously (no pun intended) with little input from management, you may do well.

    Cons

    Lots of turnover leads to spinning one's wheels, and lack of direction from management. Management can be very short sighted. Mike Lynch likes to have his hands in every aspect of the company, and can be very difficult and stubborn to deal with. There are no employee reviews, so forget about any kind of yearly salary adjustments. Alternative employee compensation (bonuses, stock options, etc) are also long gone. Open floor plans (no cubicle walls) makes for a very noisy and distracting work environment.

    Advice to Management

    Trust and empower your employees to make decisions.

  2. Good place to work for thick skinned employees.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Director in Boston, MA

    I have been working at Autonomy

    Approves of CEO
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Organizational committment to addressing any and all technical defects with the product
    Growing company with lots of potential
    Aggressive management who are committed to financial success

    Cons

    Customer experience is sacrificed as the cost of getting product out the door.
    Very engineering oriented company, harder for non-engineers to be recognized/respected.

    Advice to Management

    The company's reputation is questioned everyday as incomplete product offerings are released to the market. Need to fix this.

There are newer employer reviews for Autonomy
There are newer employer reviews for Autonomy

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