Microsoft

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1 person found this helpful  

Regret I spent years of my life there

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

I worked at Microsoft full-time (more than 5 years)

Pros

- To some people outside the "circle", they would respect you for being a Microsoft employee, especially in other countries.
- H1B sponsorship
- Smart, competitive people around you. A lot to learn from peers and managers

Cons

- A company past its creativity curve. Only tiny portion of the projects are interesting, and people will fight for you. If you newly join the company, you will spend quite some time doing the out-dated technologies.
- "Factory", "assembly line" style process: this company is smart enough to "streamline-lize" its software development into something similar to Ford's assembly line. Working in that procedure gives you a strong feeling that you are one replaceable piece on it.
- Management tries to get "most mileage" out of you: the management will try to make you work hard, overtime (while not explicitly say so to leave "evidence". One time I saw the manager explicitly wrote "do more with less", meaning getting more done with less people, in his commitment. Another time I heard the management using "get enough mileage out of people". They would make aggressive planning, use progress tracking software, status report meetings to force you into work over time. Not only that, during work it's highly intense, I had to make sure the previous scheduled tasks are made progress, and timely respond to boss' emails of ad-hoc tasks. Sometimes I need to switch between 5 desktop servers to run different tasks to get my assignments done. Looking back, every year there made me age 3-4 years.
- Selfish culture. It boosted a culture that everybody try to strive to get what's within his own boundary done. And the company values the winner from internal competition (as the company is so big, upper management doesn't have time to judge who's right, so the simplest way I guess, is to see who's won out). From lower level, that means the peers just don't collaborate, but undermine each other. From bigger teams perspective, it's the fight between partners, and result in endless re-orgs.
- Information control. The mid-management gives exactly information that you need to work on your piece of work. You don't know next reorg, you don't know the direction of the project.
- "Precision Question Answering". There's this poisonous "communication tool" within Microsoft called "Precision Question Answering", it essentially trains people into using robotic-style conversations, so that the management can get the important information in the fastest way, and peers can challenge each other to fix logic errors in the details, at the cost of enjoying human-like collaboration between colleagues.
- Compensation is terribly below the industry average level.

Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

9049 Other Employee Reviews for Microsoft (View Most Recent)

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  1.  

    Good place to start career

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

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    A great place to work. Specially you can meet some very small people.

    Cons

    At this moment, the focus of company is not clear. More and more other companies and persons gave up Microsoft products.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Crippled by culture

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    The company has great benefits, a competitive salary, and generally competitive colleagues. The headquarters have some nicely designed buildings, and you get your own office, if that is your thing.

    Cons

    There's too much red tape to get anything done, the engineering tools are straight from the 90s, there is a lack of collaborative culture, and the promotion process makes your colleagues hyper competitive.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    NA

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