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Helpful (3)

Cog in the Wheel

  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Former Contractor - Technical Editor in Seattle, WA
Former Contractor - Technical Editor in Seattle, WA

I worked at Microsoft as a contractor (More than 8 years)

Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook
Disapproves of CEO
Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

Pros

- Availability of many jobs, locations, and projects - Interesting colleagues - Interesting technology - Great cafeterias, nice grounds - Perceived as a high-status company - The company is not likely to go under - Some projects are cutting-edge and exciting - Flex hours and support of remote work

Cons

- Overuse of contracting dynamic - Extreme hierarchy rift between contractors and perm employees - Once a contractor, always a contractor - Sexist; it's much harder for women to get jobs there than men, and they tend to be relegated to communications, support, and other "soft" areas; they tend to be contractors; they tend not to be offered perm positions; they make less than men in equivalent positions. - Ageist: Employees tend to be young and shiny - Salaries are lower than they should be, and IMO they have depressed salaries for the entire region. Great benefits used to be offered as a compensating factor for the low salaries, but the benefits are now on par with the average software company. - Massive stress to maintain "star" performance. Perm employees live in dread of their annual reviews. - Massive deadline and production stress - Endless re-orgs keep people's day-to-day lives chaotic - "Work/life balance" is a myth - The company massively oversponsors H1B visas - The biggest problem I have with Microsoft is that it used to be an exciting place to work, and now it is one of drudgery and enforced mediocrity, with employees viewed as expendable resources. I have even been referred to as "the resource" in meetings. And oh, the endless, endless meetings.

Advice to Management

Regain a focus on product quality and innovation, and genuinely value your employees. They are not all interchangeable and replaceable. You've lost your reputation as an exciting, great place to work, and that's a shame. Microsoft in the early nineties was an exciting, vibrant place filled with fascinating people, and I met the best friends of my life there. We worked insane hours but at least felt like our work was rewarding. It's a shame for a place filled with the people possessing some of the best minds in the US to become a rat wheel.

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  1. A lot of smart people, but not much getting done.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bellevue, WA

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

    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Worked with a lot of really bright people. Good benefits. They have the infrastructure to be able to accomplish a lot. Beautiful campus.

    Cons

    Too bureaucratic, too much red tape. Very difficult to get anything done, slow process. Although they have the infrastructure to accomplish a lot I don't think they ever will because of the culture. Don't utilize employees to their highest.

    Advice to Management

    Need to change culture such that they can actually accomplish BIG things. Unblock and allow for growth. Recognize strengths of each employee and maximize them.


  2. I had more creative freedom than I believe other sectors of the company have.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Editor in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Editor in Seattle, WA

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

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great, diverse, creative team. Good pay and benefits.

    Cons

    A humbling evaluation system that pits employees against each other (or used to).

    Advice to Management

    You want to be a devices and services company. But if you want to produce actual content, then respect how content is created and beef up your staff to produce and shepherd it.


There are newer employer reviews for Microsoft
There are newer employer reviews for Microsoft

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