Microsoft

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Microsoft Reviews

Updated March 1, 2015
Updated March 1, 2015
9,246 Reviews
3.7
9,246 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
1,575 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Really good work-life balance compared to other tech companies of the same caliber (in 859 reviews)

  • You will get the opportunity to work with smart people solving real world problems (in 991 reviews)


Cons
  • Work life balance is not good in some places but it really depends on your role (in 552 reviews)

  • Performance review system basically encourage competition inside the team (in 400 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Amazing opportunities, unfortunate hurdles...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - User Experience Designer in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - User Experience Designer in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    Microsoft has a lot to offer to anyone looking to learn the business of "big" software development. In my experience, the biggest benefits to working at MSFT is the networking and organizational mechanics visibility you get. I have met a ton of incredibly talented people who later on became important resources for future opportunities (within and outside of MSFT). It felt much like college to me - a time to learn a lot, meet a lot of contacts and grow as an individual. The resources and opportunities are huge at MSFT, though much of the time you realize you are a very small fish in a very large pond. Big aspirations can be squashed frequently after the reality of the organism that is MSFT becomes apparent. But again, the opportunities environmentally outweigh the unfortunate lack of ability for any one person to change the reality of what MSFT is - a giant steam ship that takes years to make a turn.

    Cons

    The layers of buerocracy and management are the biggest downsides of working at MSFT. It often felt like the job was much like the game show "Survivor," where many of your co-workers were trying to stair step over each other with every project. The culture at MSFT is built to surface the strong type-a personalities to succeed, while the less interested or mellow personalities can be stuck for a long time in unhappy roles. If your goal is to work with a team you can trust to focus on the problem at hand (instead of their own career advancement opportunities), to build truly useful and revolutionary products for people and you ike to have clear ability to affect long term direction - MSFT is most likely NOT the place for you. It is however a good place to learn a tremendous amount and move on from. Just be honest with yourself before you commit.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I would recommend to any senior manager at MSFT to quit. MSFT needs less management and more independence within its culture. Most of the manager at MSFT are not good managers, they are great individual contributors who got pushed into a management role because of the structure there. Come on MSFT, you have some of the most incredibly talented people in the world working for you...let them do their jobs!

    Recommends
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 474 people found this helpful  

    Thoughts after 10 years....

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA

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

    Pros

    1. If you love tech, this is a great place. No doubt you'll talk tech (mostly the MSFT stack) from enterprise to consumer - from PCs to phones to Xboxes - from datacenter to desktop.

    2. What were GREAT benefits are now VERY GOOD (took a small step down) but still probably better than you'll find at 99% of large corporations. If you've got family - the value of the benefits is even higher. 401k match is nice.

    3. Even with it's struggles MSFT is still a cash printing machine. This means if you can keep your nose clean and do reasonable work, you can have a stable job, pay your bills, feed your family, and not worry (too much) about layoffs. The stock you own likely won't tank, but probably won't go up much either. You'll get a bonus each year and some stock. It's a decent life if you aren't looking to light the world on fire.

    Cons

    Brand on Your Resume: After many years of losing market share and struggling to be at the front end of innovation and the fact that there's 90,000 employees, don't think MSFT is necessarily going to be attractive on your resume to more agile and smaller companies.

    Managing Your Career: Make you say this out loud so it registers - 90,000 employees work there. Double that for vendors. It is VERY hard to "stand out" and move up in the company. Don't expect your manager to be much of an advocate or enabler to help you meet your career goals - they are basically trying to survive the stack rank every year too. Not familiar with the stack rank? Check out the 2012 Vanity Fair article called "Microsoft's Lost Decade".

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I'll type it here - but I don't they are listening...
    1. Help proven talent move laterally in the company for new opportunities.
    2. Kill/evolve the stack rank. Here's basically how it's viewed:. 30% of the company gets 1s and 2s - and they are happy. 50% get 3s and that basically feels like getting a "C" in school. This sucks for talented people when a multitude of UNCONTROLLABLE conditions keep you from getting into 1 or 2 range. The 20% getting anything below a 3 are walking dead. In summary, 70% of the company walk away from the review cycle feeling like crap. This is no good.

    After 10 years, I'm leaving - it's just a matter of time until I find the right opportunity. I need to find a company spends 90% of it's time building technology experiences, as opposed to 90% of its time building PowerPoints. And I expect to refuse the exit interview - because if you really cared what I thought, you wouldn't ask me after I decided to leave.

  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    9 years later...

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

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

    Pros

    Very flexible for work styles. Good paycheck with security for the company

    Cons

    A lot has changed in the last 9 years, when I signed in our benefits were unbelievable and now they aren't that bad but it takes a lot of work to maintain the hsa plan and now I have like 4k a year of out of pocket expenses which I did not receive a pay increase for. Also if you're not at the mother ship in Redmond it's not the same experience.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Help those who help you and make sure you listen to what the field is saying. Give the field the same perks those of you who live in Washington get. Don't look at us like we are sub standard just because we don't go to the campus every day. We in the field keep the place going too, you know?

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great company

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Strategy of the new CEO is solid, confident, believable. Future of Azure and O365 is very strong. Good compensation with quota attainment.

    Cons

    Not a professional sales organization, this is a product company with much of its revenue coming from legacy products.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Many of the sales leaders are puppets, or become puppets and don't get involved in deals. This is a challenge in competitive situations where other company VP's actually give a hand.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Account Executive

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Account Executive in New York, NY

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Work life balance, benefits, growth potential, new CEO with a clear vision and desire to change the companies culture and future, manage your own business within a LARGE org., client focus

    Cons

    Silos, too many layers, field empowerment, month to month focus is unrealistic in in the old perpetual revenue model. Not a sales centric organization

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Adapt to annuity based compensation model and a relationship model, continue to remove silos

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Great engineers in emerging culture

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

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

    Pros

    good engineering practices, smart people, diverse product lines to work on

    Cons

    lot of employees are still old school, not fast enough

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to the youngsters

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  8.  

    Strong marketing culture

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

    I worked at Microsoft full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Very diverse set of opportunities across different marketing segments and disciplines; Tons of options for career path - different products, technical fields, local and global markets, etc. Some amazing talent to work alongside and learn from.

    Cons

    Very meeting driven culture; often times the politics can outweigh the ability to actually do constructive work; caught in the abyss sometimes between trying to establish (regain) a tech innovation culture and the inertia that comes with an org of the size and complexity it is.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep following new managements lead - cross platform, a focus on the customer, a culture focused on innovating away from over dependence on Windows as the mandatory platform.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  9.  

    Great place to work; large company agility

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    - Very smart people
    - Products touch every area of software (and some significant hardware)
    - Pay (in Seattle) is great against cost-of-living
    - Benefits are fantastic

    Cons

    - Large company syndrome- 100K employees doesn't move fast.
    - Very slowly converting to a more agile software mindset, but large chunks are still box-product thinkers
    - Tendency to group-think about brands, etc.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10.  

    An internship at a subdivision of Microsoft in China, pretty good experience, very collaborative

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    1. intellectually challenging
    2. actually working on something that will be used/sense of accomplishment

    Cons

    1. very challenging, sometimes if you have a bad day it can be stressful

  11.  

    Premier Field Engineer

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Great place to work for

    Cons

    very challenging and very demanding

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

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