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Great place to work on games with smart people

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

I have been working at Electronic Arts full-time for more than a year

Pros

Very smart people with a lot of experience making games, how could it get better?
Diverse IP over a wide variety of platforms including mobile and social.

Cons

IT and Digital projects take too long and in some cases don't suit the game teams needs.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Better project management of internal digital service projects.

Recommends
Positive Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

797 Other Employee Reviews for Electronic Arts (View Most Recent)

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  1.  

    A great opportunity at a great time in the companies history

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

    I worked at Electronic Arts full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    The second largest publisher and creator of interactive entertainment products offers a great amount of resources to projects and those creating them. The environment provided by EA is top notch with nice facilities and perks.

    Cons

    To big for their own good. Projects suffer from far to many layers of management and an over emphasis on time put in at work rather than the work accomplished. With so many people... the politics become distracting.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get back to your start up, scrappy roots!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 3 people found this helpful  

    Despite being told not to join the ranks at Tiburon by many friends and former colleagues, I did anyway -- big mistake.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Development Director  in  Orlando, FL
    Former Employee - Development Director in Orlando, FL

    I worked at Electronic Arts full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The major pro to joining EA is getting to work on AAA gaming titles at almost any studio. They own some of the biggest franchises in gaming. There are also extremely talented -- though burned out -- people working there.

    Specifically with Tiburon, you get to enjoy the nice Florida weather. The studio at Tiburon is also "nice", but I would say ranks well below many of EA's other studios in appearance and comfort. They opened up a cafe down by the lobby that also acts as a free-food house when your team is in alpha. The downside is the food there is horrible.

    If you work on a services or core team, life isn't too bad. Management in those areas are reasonable and so is the work involved. Work-life balance on those teams are tolerable. Lastly, if you put in the time and kiss enough butt, there is plenty of horizontal career growth at EA.

    Cons

    Horrible work-life balance on any game team. Be prepared, especially on Madden, to be under a constant microscope where management, especially marketing, will continually push for more features. Your project will never be within scope and when it isn't done on time, your team gets the blame.

    Management overall at the studio speaks about changing and caring for their employees' health and work-life balance but it is a charade for the most part. The issue is that most of the senior managers throughout the studio are part of "Old Tiburon" and despite the talk of change, they seem to be too entrenched in their old ways to break free.

    Most game teams are not properly staffed or segmented. As such, if you get stuck in the wrong pod like say, "Online", you will be working relentlessly throughout the cycle and then when the game launches. You're also on call as well. You'd think they'd take after a traditional software development company and create actual online service teams that are fully staffed, especially considering they have been making online-enabled games for years now.

    Lastly, the politics at the studio are horrendous. Unless you are a career butt-kisser and chummy with the right people vertical career growth is very difficult there. Many people I met knew several people who had to leave EA and come back a year later to get the position and salary they wanted and likely deserved. Also, forget about being different there, trying to improve their archaic project management processes. If you aren't part of the old machine you will not fit in with management and will likely be outed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Building a game is simply like building any complex piece of software. EA Tiburon has "implemented" Agile/SCRUM, yet does't really adhere to the rules of Agile/SCRUM or to the traditional SDLC. They have an archaic system in place for project management that prevents any real work-life balance to take place, especially with yearly product releases.

    My advice would be to completely revolutionize the way development is done. Fully embrace Agile/SCRUM and rethink what you're delivering to your customers every year. Does it really need to be a $60 packaged good? Do the research -- I'm sure you'll find that many people who have bought your games over the past 2-3 cycles do not buy it every year simply because it isn't worth the cost.

    Lastly, invest in your employees and treat them respectfully. I found many underpaid and severely unappreciated permanent and contract employees there. They were frustrated with a lack of career growth within the team and even the studio. Especially those that weren't able to or willing to put in 80+ hour weeks consistently.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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