Microsoft Reviews in Bellevue, WA

Updated August 28, 2014
Updated August 28, 2014
7,969 Reviews

3.8
7,969 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
807 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Really good work-life balance compared to other tech companies of the same caliber (in 688 reviews)

  • Tons of super smart people working for the right reasons - to make a difference (in 893 reviews)


Cons
  • And there are times when the workload may impede on your work-life balance (in 476 reviews)

  • The previous stack rank review system encourage a behavior that was very much individualist (in 369 reviews)

More Highlights

228 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Love working here

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Success Manager  in  Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Customer Success Manager in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft as a contractor for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Great opportunities to hold a satisfying job that also provides a very comfortable living. Dependent upon the role you have it can be very dynamic and always present new challenges, allowing growth in your work. The number of creative and intelligent people who are very active outside of work is another plus. The company, management and coworkers are extremely supportive of outside interests people have and it offers a very hands-off approach to your work, allowing you to get projects done without someone peering over your shoulder. Cross-team and organizational collaboration is very common and helps in networking and simply maintaining a social environment.

    Cons

    Most teams offer little training to the role itself and it is often your fellow colleagues who will provide the most help getting you onboarded. Can be easy to get pigeon holed into a role so there are times when you may need to take a chance to break out and expand your skill sets to advance. Even so, self-improvement is very much supported here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To upper management - give more support to your lower level managers so they have more time for their employees. Managers and workers alike are stretched too thin to fully support our projects and customer. Align divisions better so collaboration increases. Too often one division will make a change that adversely affects another, and while they want competition, collaboration is also a form of motivation and creativity.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    I have been in various business roles in 10+ years including customer service, manager of teams, and project management.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Business Project Manager  in  Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Business Project Manager in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Overall package of benefits (connector bus/bus pass, salary, bonuses, flex schedule, vacation, holidays, med/dental, prime card, gym membership discount, tuition reimbursement, charity/giving matching 1:1, 401k, ESPP, etc.) is AMAZING.
    Ability for personal & professional growth - ex. ability to find new roles or just new project opportunities within the company or same division or even in current role. Training & possibility for assistance toward certification exams.
    The people - For the most part, I have greatly enjoyed working with my partners and peers. I have been part of some amazing teams (high performing, high morale).

    Cons

    Like any big company there are teams that are not enjoyable to work with/in - poor leadership, poor team morale, no clear direction - so just do your homework about how the manager manages for success, what the state is of team morale (WHI - workplace health index), etc.
    Work-life balance - In the early days I found this very hard to manage but I learned to own this and was very effective at generally staying within a 40-45 hr work week --- except in key peak business times where I would very willingly put in more time as needed. You have to be able to manage your time effectively and push-back BEFORE you are too over-committed / overwhelmed. More people need to learn how to say "no" (nicely) and educate against competing priorities & resource constraints. The business is very fast-paced and very rarely will you have someone else who can effectively ensure there is balance - so you need to do it for yourself. Managers (good ones at least) will work with you on this balance as they don't want you overwhelmed either at the risk of poor quality, missing deliverables, or lack of "white space" to come up with needed solutions.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    As acquisitions take place, please immediately bring in training on management excellence to new leaders. Keep up the great work on driving toward management excellence with existing staff.
    Better alignment across big projects to avoid a lot of work getting started and then put on hold because another big initiative is being started. Sometimes that happens and is okay to take advantage of sudden new market opportunities but most times it has just been a new "idea" or new "executive" trying to make their mark. Keep focused on items already committed to and underway.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Microsoft is a good company but there is a lot of instability in marketing

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Marketing Operations Manager  in  Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Marketing Operations Manager in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    good salary. Lots of perks.

    Cons

    I've worked here 8 months and been part of 2 reorganizations. Bosses change, roles change, reporting changes.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    People need a sense that the thing they are building and put in charge of will actually mean something. If the company re-orgs every 6 months nobody will really invest in anything they do.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great place to do Internship

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

    I have been working at Microsoft as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    - While many people thought Microsoft environment is not very friendly for new employee, I found it very friendly and full of new opportunities to explore.
    - They took very good care of Interns by providing subsidizing housing and car rental, plus many exciting events.
    - I was working with the Bing section, and there are many unexplored areas in Bing which can be a great opportunity to make significant contributions.

    Cons

    - In comparison with companies such as Google, there are way less PhDs in the staff which sometimes make it harder to introduce radical research ideas.
    - The company went to a massive lay-off when I was there. Although that obviously don't affect interns, if you are considering Microsoft for a full-time position, there are risks that one of these lay-off waves hit you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Have better collaboration with researchers in MSR. Microsoft is lucky to have such brilliant scholars as part of MSR and if their creativity can be managed well, they can make huge contributions to the company.
    - Start more active programs of Fellowships for grad students, same as Google and Facebook, to enhance the picture of company and attract better talents.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Well rounded, and very gracious to interns.

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

    I have been working at Microsoft as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    So much free stuff! From free beer Friday, free t-shirts from events seemingly weekly, free soft drink everywhere, free gift at the end plus free event, and chances to win even more, they do a lot to give away stuff for you. Working environment was great. My team happened to be older, but all very nice people willing to help me and wanting me to succeed. I felt very valued and wanted even though the work I did wasn't necessarily the team's top priority. Great pay and moving/housing stipend for the summer.

    Cons

    As a company, the time off policy is pretty strict for interns. My manager was very lax however, so I can't personally complain. Your mileage may very however. This could be a pro as well depending on your stance, but there were a lot of very talented employees that wanted to move up, so I'd imagine climbing the latter would be tougher than at some companies. Can be very intimidating, but almost everyone you work with is very smart, so the work environment is very productive.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increasing the time off policy officially would be nice so it didn't feel as awkward when talking to my manager. Even just two or three days would be more than enough for an intern in all likelihood.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Great company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer (SDE) II  in  Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer (SDE) II in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Very motivated people to work it. You can expect to find people with high integrity and people who respect each other, and be very professional. There are so many aspects to the business, a person can experience almost every industry by just moving from one team to another within the company.

    Cons

    Microsoft is a really big company and one does face different kind of challenges than other companies. One of them mainly is collaboration. Also, there could be one too many org-changes in the leadership. Training is adequate but sometimes there is not enough experimentation.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in experimentation. The feature velocity is high and it needs to be, but we as a company should also focus on innovation and that is not achievable when Devs are not given the chance to experiment enouch.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Great Company to work for while really taking your skills to the next level

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer (SDE) II  in  Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer (SDE) II in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    You will see really motivated people who will motivate you to push yourself. Will learn many new things, and really the learning never ends. You will notice that people who work here are people with high integrity and know how to treat another person with respect and are thorough professionals.

    Cons

    A company of the size of Microsoft has very different challenges. One of the biggest challenge is collaboration to get your work done. Also, it is very hard to not write code that has been already written. Also, there are one too many re-orgs at the leadership level.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Decent place to work

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

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    1. Benefits
    2. Can always find good and interesting work to do with some efforts

    Cons

    1. Less innovation
    2. Ppl should define their own career path

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Slow changing organizational behavior and culture

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

    I worked at Microsoft full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Microsoft still possess a strong brain trusts in all areas of technologies (hardware, software, middleware, methods, and intellectual properties). You encounter many strong minded software engineers and program managers and if you can get their trust, you could learn about the choices made based on the project context and tribal knowledge. The official company ideal is right "change the world" and provide values to its customers. The benefits are competitive and better than most other high tech companies.

    Cons

    At the local level, the tone is set by existing network of old bodies and the grand company vision and value system break down. It seems the focus changed from external customers into the internal players and a chess game between many divisions competing against each other for resources and talents. Hence, the collaboration and the knowledge sharing suffered. Therefore, many great ideas are not expressed freely, since it would change the status quo. Another element of immaturity is the tolerance of bad behaviors to rally the team toward a deadline or P0 issue. Despite the official renouncement of stack ranging by Microsoft, the management still live by old management style and type X practice. It is time to adopt a 21st century leadership style.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Walk the talk and execute from top to down a new leadership style.
    Reward knowledge sharing and collaboration among teams.
    Provide formal training to middle managers and senior executive to adopt a 21st century leadership style.
    Break the "balkanization" of teams' formation along the ethnic dimension and adopt an american style of democratic system "one america" with many faces.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    Disappointing, a lot of ambition with no execution

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

    I worked at Microsoft full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Lots of areas to dabble in, good campus, annual company meetings are lots of fun.

    Cons

    A 'no'-driven culture: have to prove a lot before one can experiment or try something, vs a 'yes'-driven culture that invites experimentation and risks until deemed the wrong thing to do.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus, reward teamwork not just individual contributions

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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