Microsoft Reviews

Updated March 25, 2015
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3.8
9,429 Reviews
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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
1,679 Ratings

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 Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. 504 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.

  2. Good place to work but know its a big company!

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Great people, great lifestyle and great pay

    Cons

    Feels like a large company

  3. Amazing 10 years, tons of learning, great people

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director, Business Management and Planning in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Director, Business Management and Planning in Redmond, WA

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

    Pros

    Company in the middle of a reinvention, great people, great benefits

    Cons

    Still too top heavy and matrixed, needs great patience and political adeptness to succeed

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5. 2 people found this helpful

    Large and diverse - it's as good as you make it

    • 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

    Many smart people and good technology. Some groups are very creative and driven. Generally good work/life balance. If you're capable you can move up quickly and move between groups without too much trouble. Helps your career if you can take ownership of a product feature and elevate its status. Much of your career is what you make of it.

    Cons

    Like any company, some groups are subpar. Steer clear of MSIT for example. Other groups can be hyper competitive. Principal and higher level jobs require you to spend a lot of time greasing the wheels of a wide group of people because your job and promotion will be decided by that group, not just your manager.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Overhaul MSIT, break down barriers between blue badges and v dashes, work more on developing talent and collaborative working environments than perpetuating antiquated career development processes, and try to foster a more entrepreneurial environment where people have more authority (works well at Amazon, for instance)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. Great company to work for that could use some improvement.

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

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

    Pros

    I always felt challenged in my position and that my work was appreciated. I loved my team and their willingness to share tribal knowledge to all the new hires.

    Cons

    The hours and demands of the job can be taxing on your personal life. I found myself working many late nights.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Establish a structure that promotes healthy work/life balance.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. software engineer

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    good environment and respect for different cultures

    Cons

    trying to be more flexible

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  8. Good job

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Good pay for retail store

    Cons

    No room for promotion unless you move out of state

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. The greatest company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Premier Field Engineer in Alpharette, GA
    Former Employee - Premier Field Engineer in Alpharette, GA

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    You experience the ability to expand your personal as well as professional growth, in a world not where employers are task based.

    Cons

    A company of this size, streamlining processes is a challenge and remains a challenge.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Streamline processes, better support for internal process as they evolve, and better understanding of past culture in order to deal with future culture shifts.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. Great Company

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

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

    Pros

    Microsoft gives one of the greatest benefits. The company really takes a good care of it employees. The choice of product to choose and work on the in company is huge.

    Cons

    Sometimes you would be feel you are not getting the free hand to be your self and work like you may want.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Although the review structure has been revised but is still has the same bucketing concept among the managers, The management needs to train the managers about the new review system.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  11. Working at Microsoft

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Channel Executive in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Channel Executive in Redmond, WA

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

    Pros

    Microsoft is the ideal place for people who have passion for their work and the desire to make an impact—in their careers. The company goals are challenging and that makes it great in my opinion. They offer fair pay, good benefits, (They changed the medical benefits 2 years ago due the projected raising heath care costs associated with Obama Care). The employees are encouraged by the direction of the company since Satya Nadella took over for Steve Ballmer. Microsoft has become obsessed with their customers and the experiences they have with their products. Additionally, they are more open with their product categories. This is demonstrated by their recent moves to offer the Office suite of products across competitor ecosystems. Overall, I would recommend Microsoft as a great place to work.

    Cons

    Here are the trade offs to the impactful work, fair pay, benefits, and opportunity for personal growth. Culture, one of the most challenging aspects of working at Microsoft is navigating the diverse work groups to get daily duties done. 75% of the job is focused internally verses the customer. Their are a lot of smart people who think their way is the only way to crack a nut at times. It can be difficult to deal with.

    They have changed the review process in the recent future with the goal of connecting with your manager 4 times during the fiscal year. These are called connect meetings. You are asked to request feedback from peers across your organization. This is where the challenge lies when working at Microsoft. If you have a strong manager and great team your career at Microsoft will go will.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Microsoft needs to change their review process. Recently, they have tried to address the process with have 4 reviews during the year. They need to stop asking to have employees across their organization request feedback on your individual performance.This leads to feedback based in perception verses fact with no ownership of the individuals providing the feedback to be fair or even accurate. Additionally, leads to favoritism for the few and good work by others to go unnoticed.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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