Microsoft
3.6 of 5 7,025 reviews
www.microsoft.com Redmond, WA 5000+ Employees

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269 people found this helpful  

Thoughts after 10 years....

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Redmond, WA

I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years

Pros1. If you love tech, this is a great place. No doubt you'll talk tech (mostly the MSFT stack) from enterprise to consumer - from PCs to phones to Xboxes - from datacenter to desktop.

2. What were GREAT benefits are now VERY GOOD (took a small step down) but still probably better than you'll find at 99% of large corporations. If you've got family - the value of the benefits is even higher. 401k match is nice.

3. Even with it's struggles MSFT is still a cash printing machine. This means if you can keep your nose clean and do reasonable work, you can have a stable job, pay your bills, feed your family, and not worry (too much) about layoffs. The stock you own likely won't tank, but probably won't go up much either. You'll get a bonus each year and some stock. It's a decent life if you aren't looking to light the world on fire.

ConsBrand on Your Resume: After many years of losing market share and struggling to be at the front end of innovation and the fact that there's 90,000 employees, don't think MSFT is necessarily going to be attractive on your resume to more agile and smaller companies.

Managing Your Career: Make you say this out loud so it registers - 90,000 employees work there. Double that for vendors. It is VERY hard to "stand out" and move up in the company. Don't expect your manager to be much of an advocate or enabler to help you meet your career goals - they are basically trying to survive the stack rank every year too. Not familiar with the stack rank? Check out the 2012 Vanity Fair article called "Microsoft's Lost Decade".

Advice to Senior ManagementI'll type it here - but I don't they are listening...
1. Help proven talent move laterally in the company for new opportunities.
2. Kill/evolve the stack rank. Here's basically how it's viewed:. 30% of the company gets 1s and 2s - and they are happy. 50% get 3s and that basically feels like getting a "C" in school. This sucks for talented people when a multitude of UNCONTROLLABLE conditions keep you from getting into 1 or 2 range. The 20% getting anything below a 3 are walking dead. In summary, 70% of the company walk away from the review cycle feeling like crap. This is no good.

After 10 years, I'm leaving - it's just a matter of time until I find the right opportunity. I need to find a company spends 90% of it's time building technology experiences, as opposed to 90% of its time building PowerPoints. And I expect to refuse the exit interview - because if you really cared what I thought, you wouldn't ask me after I decided to leave.

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1 person found this helpful  

Awesome career experience

Senior Software Development Engineer In Test Lead (Current Employee)
Seattle, WA

I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 3 years


Pros: Very impactful to global software and impacting everyone in the world in software that you've made and design and sell. It really allows you to… Cons: Large company is complex and you need to navigate your way through. You are only limited by your imagination. It really takes time to build… Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company… More

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Perfect place to work at

Principal Software Development Engineer (Current Employee)
Redmond, WA

I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years


Pros: At Microsoft, you get to work on cutting edge technologies and compensation is more than satisfactory. Maintaining a work-life balance is completely possible. Time off… Cons: If you are aiming to become a multimillionaire fast, Microsoft is not the place to work at. (OTOH if you've actually matured into a multi-dimensional… Advice to Senior Management: Know your engineers. Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company… More

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