SoftLayer

www.softlayer.com
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a great place to start your career

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Data Center Technician in Houston, TX
Current Employee - Data Center Technician in Houston, TX

I have been working at SoftLayer full-time (more than a year)

Pros

great benefits and perks, friendly and positive environment in a growing and exciting industry

Cons

the pay is on the lower end of industry standard

Advice to ManagementAdvice

the benefits package and morale boosting outings are awesome and very appreciated, but raising the overall employee pay would help us retain some of the better employees and make us a more competitive company overall

Recommends
Positive Outlook
Approves of CEO

67 Other Employee Reviews for SoftLayer (View Most Recent)

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  1. 5 people found this helpful  

    Great on the outside; disappointing on the inside

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Dallas, TX

    I worked at SoftLayer full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    * Very good benefits
    * Free snacks, beverages, scheduled lunches, and occasional on-site happy hours
    * Opportunity to work with sexy hardware in certain hands-on departments
    * Employees in business departments seem to enjoy their jobs
    * $200 bonus for writing articles for the employee blog
    * Yearly credit toward company-branded apparel and accessories
    * Relaxed Internet usage policy; fast connection (it is, after all, a datacenter)
    * Casual dress code for those who care
    * Holiday parties with open bar

    Cons

    * All technical personnel is required to subscribe to an infamous mailing list that receives hundreds of e-mails per day. Most of the traffic is irrelevant to the majority of the audience, with a large chunk of the messages coming from automated monitoring systems that are only of interest to one or two specific departments. Employees are prohibited from filtering or otherwise disregarding any of these alerts, but most people end up setting up filters under the table because—let's face it—it's the only way to get any work done.

    * All software engineers are given a cell phone that they're required to carry 24/7/365. Management usually tells interviewees about this upfront, which is good. What's not good is that people are often told they will only get calls if their own code fails, when in reality, their names may end up (sometimes without warning) on a list of "who to call at 3 AM if X breaks," where X is a random part of the system they may have absolutely nothing to do with.

    * Compensation is below average, and the company maintains a strict no-proactive-increases policy. HR tells employees right during new hire orientation that no raises will be given for tenure, and that increases are based on performance only. Seems fair, right? Well, after working at the company for a while, people usually realize that not even performance increases are given proactively, with many employees completing their yearly reviews with no mention of compensation by their managers—regardless of how highly they may have scored. Even promotions are many times given without salary increases, causing good employees to avoid promotions or return to the job market shortly after accepting one.

    * Micromanagement is prevalent in certain departments, with employees being required to (a) attend daily "stand-up" meetings (which end up becoming 30-minute, sit-down wastes of time), (b) putting together weekly reports, and (c) responding to Lumbergh-like walk-bys by managers who don't attend their own "stand-up" meetings or even read the weekly reports that their employees spend valuable time writing.

    * It's a PHP shop. While I'm not against PHP when used properly and in moderation, the codebase at SoftLayer has outgrown PHP and become very painful to maintain. SoftLayer leverages PHP's worst "features," with extensive use of magic methods and dynamic variables that no IDE is able to analyze. Developers have no choice but to turn off IDE inspections, and show-stopper bugs make it to production because somebody has mistyped the name of a method or variable.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    SoftLayer has a great product that is sometimes developed at the expense of employees. My suggestions are to:

    * restrict the alert mailing list to relevant departments only,
    * relax or at least be upfront about the actual on-call policy,
    * improve compensation and be proactive about giving raises when deserved,
    * give at least minimal yearly increases (inflation exists),
    * lose some of the red tape, and
    * do something about the architecture of the system before it becomes unmanageable.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Good job!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Systems Administrator in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Customer Systems Administrator in Dallas, TX

    I have been working at SoftLayer full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Decent benefits, and compensation package.
    Holiday Pay
    Shift Differential Pay
    Blog Bonus Pay
    Paid Time Off
    Relaxed Environment
    Open door policy to any manager and or executive. (They listen and respond to valid concerns)
    Quick 100% vesting on employer matched 401k contributions

    Cons

    Too many prior managers from the planet that seem to dislike that SoftLayer was chosen as the brand to survive post merger.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep doing what you're doing!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
There are newer employer reviews for SoftLayer

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