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Google Reviews

These reviews contributed towards 2009's Best Places to Work recognition. See ratings and reviews for all time.
161 Reviews

4.1
161 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
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Google Co-Founder & CEO Larry Page
Larry Page
160 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great work-life balance with adequate opportunity for career development (in 105 reviews)

  • Free food, amazing people, amazing vision - almost everything about this company is a pro (in 220 reviews)


Cons
  • This is one reason why maintaining a good work-life balance can be challenging (in 100 reviews)

  • You can feel that it's a really big company now - difficult to advance & a lot of red tape (in 71 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 4 people found this helpful  

    good place to be if you can commit to a lot of hours

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Product Marketing Manager  in  Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Product Marketing Manager in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    brand recognition, benefits, entereneurship opportunities

    Cons

    not enough coaching, lack of work life balance, not a good fit for moms with young children, performance review/calliberation is determined by a select group of peers. So, if you don't have a good relationship with such people, you can get dinged...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    accomplishments/performance should not only be measured by OKRS. The employee should also be noted for what he has accomplished over a period of time to achieve those OKRs as some OKRS cannot be completed within a quarter. Also, an employee is an individual with strengths and weaknesses that are often undermined by short term goals. In particular, management feedback is not considered seriously. Having a bad manager can seriously jeopardise an employee's career and long term growth.

    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    A dream employer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer II  in  Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer II in Santa Monica, CA

    Pros

    The people, the atmosphere, and the food. All 3 of these are unlikely to be duplicated anywhere else. It is an extremely jovial and cooperative atmosphere where there are bound to be experts in any topic you may want to know about. The food is awesome as well, but this is well known.

    Cons

    Can have long hours because you don't want to disappoint high-achieving coworkers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Although it is important to keep an eye on the bottom line in these tough economic times, it is also important to keep the things that make Google Google - the camaraderie, the smart people, the food, the technology, and the vision.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    You can work your 80 hours a week whenever you want.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Director  in  Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Director in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    Smart creative dedicated colleagues; exciting and innovative work environment; open and frequent communications at every level; excellent compensation

    Cons

    Too much of a good thing. Work-life balance difficult to achieve; although, you can work your 80 hours a week whenever you want.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Time to get rid of some of the fat in your management ranks. Start with the ones that drive unproductive politics.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great place to work, but it has its problems

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    great coworkers; fun and interesting projects; perks and benefits; potential to have a positive effect on many users

    Cons

    disorganized; not many good managers; career path unclear

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    do fewer things better

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  6. 7 people found this helpful  

    Great first job for software engineers, frustrating for more senior ones.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Staff Software Engineer  in  Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Staff Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    First and foremost, smart people. Overall I'm very impressed with the level of intelligence of just about everybody I worked with.

    Second, huge datasets, huge scale, huge opportunities. Google is the place to be for working at scale, period. The tools are great and there are limitless computing resources.

    Other stuff - it's still a fun environment, flexible work hours, flexible about projects to work on.

    Cons

    Lots of flexibility on what to work on, but the downside is that management controls the launch process. It's likely that your project may not be allowed to launch without several revisions.

    Engineers used to own most product decisions, but things have shifted towards product management and upper management. Nobody seems to own broad strategic decisions - there's a strategy vacuum in many product areas.

    Compensation is good, but obviously the equity situation doesn't compare to what you'd get at a proper startup. For this reason, entrepreneurs and people with big ideas are advised to look elsewhere if they have an appetite for risk / reward.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop hiring engineering middle-managers from outside, and promote more from within. If I had been more strongly pressured to move to management about 2 years ago I'd probably still be a Googler. The engineering ladder sounds like a good idea, but in practice there is a ceiling that cannot be broken unless an engineer happens to be on the right project at the right time. When I realized this I was sorry to have spent several years not being promoted when I could have switched to the management track and learned new skills.

    Please communicate a clear and consistent strategic direction, and give us total support to execute on that strategy. Outside of search and ads, there is no agreement among the executives and other stakeholders, and this puts the product and engineering team in an impossible situation.

    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    nice place to work at

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer  in  Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    You'll have a chance to work with a lot of talent ppl

    Cons

    limited advancement opportunities .............. it used to be a better place to work but things have change a little now.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    management is lacking the leadshiper skills

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great Company; Can learn and grow as much as you like

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Strategist  in  Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Account Strategist in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    The Food! Lots of events happening on a daily basis that allow you to disconnect from work. A younger demographic that's great for singles or folks who like to make close friends with their coworkers. You can come up with and run with any ideas you think are worthwhile. Not a huge amount of red tape to change process. Very easy to get international exposure because of Google's large reach across the globe.

    Cons

    You get spoiled with all of the food and perks etc. There are a lot of folks in management that have excellent academic records but very little experience when it comes to actual business strategy or people management. This can hurt if you're looking to find a mentor with some real experience. Also, it's hard to get rewarded for simply being stellar at your core job. Reward is given to those who simply come up with projects for the sake of coming up with projects, which isn't necessarily best for Google or it's employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get some real seasoned managers at least mixed in with the fresh faced MBAs. Also, give some wiggle room when it comes to hiring. A 4.0 student from Stanford doesn't always make a better hire over someone from a less well known school, if they have the experience to prove it.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great place to work!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Product Manager  in  Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    You'll work with some of the smartest and most accomplished people in the industry. People truly believe they can change the way things are done. The ability to have your products make a huge impact on the industry. Constant innovation and change is part of the culture.

    Cons

    The company is starting to get larger, so while a lot of the entrepreneurial spirit of the original teams is still present, there is starting to be more layers of management and bureaucracy.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The culture is the most important part of the company. How do we keep the company agile and nimble while it grows in size?

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Still THE best place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer
    Current Employee - Software Engineer

    Pros

    freedom to do things you really interested: in addition to 20% time, it is also easy to change projects, and there is no manager 'manage' you all the time, you are on your own most of the time.
    good salary, bonus and benefits
    * great coworkers: very smart and nice people, and you can learn a lot from them.
    * You can sense that the management really want to treat the employees well, their target is to build a great company and serve the world, not just for profit

    Cons

    somewhat disorganized, so you may not fit if you don't know what to do without somebody telling you
    grow too fast, not all employees are as high quality as before.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    we got enough engineers now, fully use them!

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  11. 5 people found this helpful  

    cool products, fun culture, no long-term career path

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Recruiter  in  Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Recruiter in Mountain View, CA

    Pros

    Google continues to be a leader and innovator, even having become public and hit the 10 year mark. Even though the company has gotten bigger and progressively more bureaucratic (perhaps unavoidable considering its growth), I do think that at heart they really want to continue to push the envelope.

    My fellow Google employees were among the smartest and most creative people I've worked with. Probably some of the most enthusiastic too.

    Google has a lot of money, and they are able to provide their employees with a lot of perks and benefits that other companies can't afford. Also very philanthropic. (Again, they have the money, so they can afford to be.) They are extremely forward thinking, in terms of trying projects that don't directly relate to business.

    It's cool to try out new products that become part of your everyday life. GMail and Google Docs among my favorites.

    Cons

    It's ridiculously hard to get hired at Google. They place a premium value on your pedigree (education, GPA, even outside interests) rather than on your skills and ability to contribute on a practical level. A Stanford grad with a 4.0 GPA doesn't automatically make a better employee than a UC grad. Or even (gasp!) someone without a degree at all.

    There's no career path, and no career planning. I never had a good manager, much less a mentor, the entire time I was there. The people who got promoted were the ones who kissed up and knew how to play the game.

    Low salaries. I know there are a lot of perks to "make up for it," but I'd rather have the money and decide how to spend it myself. Not being a new grad fresh out of college, I didn't care about the perks.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Watch the attitude. That whole "we're Google, everybody wants to work here" mindset is getting old. Consider hiring people who aren't rocket scientists.

    Invest in your employees! You're great about giving them physical perks; now trying investing in their careers. Have a true performance management system. Really sit down with your employees and figure out their goals and career paths. Give them managers who are mentors and advocates.

    Approves of CEO

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