Microsoft

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Not a place to grow your career

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Cambridge, MA
Former Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Cambridge, MA

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

Pros

Good pay/benefits
Good brand name
Ability to work on cutting edge consumer products before they are released in the market

Cons

Highly political work environment. After working for over an year, you will realize that brilliance alone won't get you through going on to the next level.

Managers highly advocate the concept of independent work rather than team work. I've had one manager asking other team members to not help me in my work so that I start working independently (really ??).

Bad performance review system - Stack ranking is fine. But there is a concept of being visible across teams. Doing well and exceeding expectations in your team isn't enough. You need to be able to impress managers in other teams to get a better rating / promotions during annual performance calibrations.

Very high turnover (in this office specifically) - Mainly due to the internal politics and the review system. The other thing is management will make you work those extra hours when people leave or when other teams lose resources. But don't expect to get rewarded for working those extra hours. Those activities do not fall in the category of being visible across other teams.

Work/life balance - Management keeps discussing about this every year during the MS Polls if the results are bad. I haven't seen any concrete steps in this direction, atleast till i worked there.

Skill set development - If you are working as an SDET, it might be a bit difficult to develop skill sets which are marketable outside. Most of the tools/technologies used are internal to microsoft and hardly any are used outside microsoft, except C# / .NET

Underskilled managers - MS needs to do some work on hiring good managers. Some of them are just there based on the amount of years spent in the company and may not be good at coaching ICs. If you get a good manager, you might be in luck and may have a better experience working here.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Put a new review system in place
Allow more easier movement across teams
Hire good managers. Teach them what team work is.

Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

8794 Other Employee Reviews for Microsoft (View Most Recent)

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  1.  

    Positive

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Free soda lots, lots of encouragement, engaging projects, many company events that were loads of fun, 2 monitors per desk, surface launch was an expecially awesome surprise for us all

    Cons

    The company is poorly percieved especially by the media. Second tier to other major tech companies like oracle, google, facebook, accenture, cisco, sun, linux, and so on and so forth etc

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Cubciles > offices

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Good Deal, Strong WL Balance

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Redmond, WA

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

    Pros

    Good work life balance (depending on the group), a good compensation deal. A renewed focus on building the product stack.

    Cons

    Stack ranking means that you're competing with your team members, which strongly inhibits teamwork.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you're serious about rewarding working with each other, you need to change the stack rank system.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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