Cisco Systems

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1 person found this helpful  

"Welcome to the team, DZ-015"

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

I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than a year)

Pros

Dependable salary, relatively straight-forward requirements, nice folks, pretty good work life balance (almost never stayed past 6pm)

Cons

As many as 11 layers of management will separate you from the CEO. This translates to a mountain of bureaucracy, with hundreds of internal groups, some deeply removed from customers. The group I worked for went by an acronym, and no one, not even my manager who had been there for 20 years, could recount what the acronym meant or how they came to get it exactly.

Cisco seems to have an existing informal agreement with employees: we will hire you as a contractor, and one day, many years from now, you will become permanent. May be 2 years, may be 5. That's a long time for commitment in the tech sector, so it attracts folks who are willing to slog it out and are looking for long-term, safe employment.

A newer model was developing as I was leaving, which is diametrically opposed to this, was outsourcing. So after toughing it out for years and doubling-down on Cisco, you might discover that one day a foreign employee on a visa, or many, many foreign employees with visas suddenly appear. It's your job to train them in how to do your job. Sound scary? It sure was to the 55 year olds I worked with.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

None, you're probably doing the best you can with what you've got (a monopoly, 100k+ employees, mixed in quality, uncertain future). I suppose you could layoff trying to move into the consumer space.

Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook
No opinion of CEO

5769 Other Employee Reviews for Cisco Systems (View Most Recent)

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  1. 4 people found this helpful  

    Gets worse every year

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

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

    Pros

    Cisco is the market leader in most categories it operates in. It is a recognized name. Cisco is big enough that the company "could" expand into growth areas, if the management had the knowledge and foresight to choose the markets carefully. There is enough brain trust and money still on board to create the next dozen world-changing products.

    Cons

    Any company can experience only so much growth before market share and sales level off. Cisco's flat growth rate was inevitable. Yet the company still tries to bow to Wall Street, at the expense of customer and employee satisfaction. Outsourcing of software and hardware development jobs is reaching a fever pitch. Product prices are on a race to the bottom, while quality follows, but internal metrics for performance measurement have not changed in a decade. Products and product strategies have not changed significantly, despite re-org after re-org. Employees are asked to follow the same processes, and perform to the same metrics which were put in place a long time ago, when profit per employee was seven figures.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    We cannot compete with cheap Asian products that perform just as well as our current expensive products which are designed and built by the same cheap Asian ODM "partners". Putting the Cisco logo on a crummy Chinese box is not going to fool anyone. Ask Google and Microsoft and Amazon. Bring the development jobs back to the USA, with an emphasis on creating better products that are cheaper. Believe it or not, American engineers know how to design cheap PC boards. The USA engineer is not cheap, but he or she is perfectly capable of creating compelling, less expensive product designs. If our customers are unwilling or unable to pay a premium for the Cisco brand, do NOT try to fool the customer with lower quality products. Sometimes I wonder if upper management really believes the company is better off for outsourcing everything except the logo. How can the companies that we compete with be trusted to design and build our products for us? Do you really think the Chinese ODM has Cisco's best interest in mind? Absolutely not. They will drink from the teat until it's dry, and then step in to sell even more of their crap after Cisco gives up or implodes. With billions in the bank, it's not too late to do the right thing.

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

    Blue badge or bust...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Austin, TX
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Austin, TX

    I worked at Cisco Systems as a contractor (more than a year)

    Pros

    If you are a full time employee life is great but those positions are hard to come by unless you have one already.

    Cons

    There some great people working there but it is an obvious divide between contractors and full-time employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Your contracted work force is a sizable one... do all you can to keep them happy as well as you employees

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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