MakeMusic! Reviews

Updated October 3, 2014
Updated October 3, 2014
6 Reviews
3.2
6 Reviews
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MakeMusic! Chief Executive Officer Karen VanDerBosch
Karen VanDerBosch
4 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Great place to work - but significantly restructuring and moving to Colorado so the future is unknown

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Eden Prairie, MN
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Eden Prairie, MN

    I have been working at MakeMusic! full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Industry leading music notation and education software. Co-workers are respectful and work well together and this has definitely improved from when I started. Many musicians that are passionate about the products and industry. Good benefits and fun employee events.

    Cons

    In the four years I've worked here there has been constant churn on the executive team and direction for MakeMusic - this company needs clarity and stability to grow. There are many great ideas but there is never enough time dedicated to really evaluating whether they work. Too many opinions on what is best - and now the company is consolidating with another business in Colorado unrelated to the music industry. I hope the passion in the workplace can continue.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Perfect job for musicians with a technical background

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

    I have been working at MakeMusic! full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    It's rewarding to work on music notation software used by professional composers, arrangers, copyists, and teachers. Finale needs to handle sophisticated composing and engraving requirements, and it's fun and challenging to make sure those sophisticated features work correctly. It's also fun working with such talented musicians across all types of musical performance. Music is all about collaboration, and the musicians working here know how to collaborate to get the job done with a minimum of conflict or office politics.

    Cons

    Too much churn in upper management, making it hard to keep product focus. Particularly true now that the office is relocating to Colorado.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take the time to solve the technical debt, but keep Finale the tool it needs to be for professional users.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    So long, Eden Prairie

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Product Development in Eden Prairie, MN
    Current Employee - Product Development in Eden Prairie, MN

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

    Pros

    Working as a team developing world class music products is quite a rush, especially if you are a musician yourself (most employees are). Company culture was generally fun and productive.

    Cons

    Management has struggled for a long time with product strategy, and now the new ownership is closing the Eden Prairie office altogether and moving to Colorado. The majority of the employees are staying behind, and this seems to be hitting development especially hard.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You're losing an awful lot of talent and it's unclear how quickly this will be rebuilt in Colorado, if ever. Ownership seems to have little if any interest in Finale even though it's a product that most composers, arrangers, etc depend upon. New management seems well intentioned but it's hard to see how they will overcome the loss of front line talent.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Nice people, interesting products, misguided leadership

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

    I worked at MakeMusic! full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Interesting products, especially if your a musician
    Nice coworkers. Generally knowledgable and helpful.
    People are passionate about their work.

    Cons

    No real long term product vision and constantly changing strategy.
    Reactionary planning leads to constant shifting of features and priorities.
    Leadership teams do not talk to products teams; features and shipping dates are often a surprise.
    A lot of talk about modernizing engineering practices though very little action. Extremely slow to change.
    Technical leadership mandates new practices randomly. Whatever the latest development fad is the new savior.
    Losing benefits. Poor planning and strategy leads to missed deadlines then developers are blamed.
    Lack of trust, low morale, new people don't stay.
    Micromanagement on the rise.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get new technical leadership with some experience building non-web software successfully. Someone who is passionate about music would be a good idea too.
    Let the passionate people at MakeMusic do their jobs.
    Open communications between departments and leadership. Tell them information is not something to be hoarded and used to protect your position.
    Recognize domain knowledge in the company and give employees power to share it. People need ownership of products to do their best work.

    As I see it, MakeMusic is still around as a company because of their passionate employees - and despite their management which mainly seems bent on protecting their turf.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  6.  

    Great people, poor management

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

    I worked at MakeMusic! full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    It's a small company with a lot of really smart and engaged people. Dress code is relaxed and the medical benefits are quite good.

    Cons

    Senior management is clueless about the music software industry. Very poor decision making over the past 2 years, which is causing the company to fall behind competitors in an increasingly competitive market. In addition, there have been a number of layoffs and departures of key personnel for reasons unknown, and costs savings would be the only outward reason as to why these knowledgeable individuals have departed against their wishes.

    Combine this with a sale to an owner who only cares about profits and it's a recipe for disaster. Customers are starting to notice these issues as well.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Clean out your management and replace them with persons knowledgeable about modern software development or at least music technology.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good Company, Great Benefits, So-so management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Customer Support Representative in Eden Prairie, MN
    Former Employee - Senior Customer Support Representative in Eden Prairie, MN

    I worked at MakeMusic! full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits package, good camaraderie with fellow employees, relaxed dress code, upper management is very accessible and friendly.

    Cons

    Low salaries, no windows in some office areas, little appreciation for self-starting and independent work, micromanagement and lack of trust from supervisors, very little positive feedback for good work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take time to solicit new ideas from employees. There is too much emphasis on the status quo, when oftentimes employees have great ideas for streamlining certain processes.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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