SERENA Software Reviews

Updated August 14, 2014
Updated August 14, 2014
105 Reviews

3.2
105 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
(no image)
Greg Hughes
28 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • They appreciate a work life balance and family time is respected (in 10 reviews)

  • Flexible schedule - Work from home some days (in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • No salary increases for several years (in 5 reviews)

  • Upper management is clueless and does nothing to help overworked staff (in 7 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Release Engineer, intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Release Engineer  in  Hillsboro, OR
    Current Employee - Release Engineer in Hillsboro, OR

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

    Pros

    Only having labor/production experience to compare with Serena, this company has given my more than I expected from my first job out of college:

    Great work atmosphere: Huge desk, Comfortable chairs, optional standing desks, A/C, free food/snacks

    Fun people to work with, office events if your into that sort of thing include, Christmas parties, pot lucks and PS3 gaming.

    Optional working from home, helps mitigate the commute issues.

    Relaxed management style allows me the freedom to explore and develop new ideas.

    We use what we develop so I can see changes to our product beyond what I work on.

    Cons

    The commute is crazy between 4 and 6. Lucky you can rework your schedule so you can miss those times or just work from home.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great place to work if you don't have career goals

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

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

    Pros

    Best work/life balance. There is an appreciation for personal time and people are recognized by good work instead of how many hours you work. Management listens and they are considerate of new ideas and employee concerns.

    Longevity with the company is good and bad. Good because there's passion and experience but bad because there's no career advancement.

    The new CEO is great and a fresh change after several falters. The original founder still committed to success of the company long after he retired and has reinvested. Human Resources actively tries to get employees recognized at the top levels of the company. Management is committed to better cross team work.

    Cons

    New jobs are filled from the outside or from cronies inside; there is no chance to move if you don't have the golden key. There is no recognition for good management unless you report direct to Greg Hughes. Years of down sizing resulted in turf wars and self preservation so the middle layer is ignored or stifled. If you have a great team, you are not needed.

    Lots of egos means decisions are made for personal gain instead of business gain.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Appreciate your middle tier more. Recognize that great managers can appear invisible becasue they have done a good job of teaching their staff. It doesn't mean they aren't working hard or have become lazy. With no where to grow the only choice is to leave before you get laid off.

    Stay the course with focus on core and make smaller but smart investment in new technologies - don't throw everything you have at it; save some for the core that has been (and still is) keeping the lights on all these years.

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

    If you are a young tech worker, you'd run - AWAY!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Business  in  San Mateo, CA
    Former Employee - Business in San Mateo, CA

    I worked at SERENA Software full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Everybody works from home (if you like that sort of thing)

    Cons

    NO employees under 30!!!! Even if they start, they quit in less than a year.
    Full of old timers (10-30 years) who have no context of the industry today and often falter at every step
    Still working on grandpa's technology stack - mainframe, dimensions, etc.! (their DevOps spokesperson is a Mainframe guy!)
    Vocal, opinionated and often WRONG pre-sales that makes sales much harder to succeed
    Poor salaries and no benefits to speak of
    Highly political environment as old timers try to protect their turf (and their jobs)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep your current workforce extremely happy - if they quit, you won't be able to hire anybody.
    Move to an area where Serena doesn't have to compete much for talent - Kentucky, Louisiana, Utah, Ohio etc.
    Get rid of Mainframe and Dimensions - use the money to build new portfolio

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    There's a reason why they are always hiring....

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales  in  Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Sales in Portland, OR

    I worked at SERENA Software full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Sales fundamentals. Company has a long history, here in the 'Silicon Forest' [Intersolv, etc.]. Products could see new life, with growth of software development sectors.

    Cons

    Known for 'churn and burn', with inside sales team. During initial interview, the manager with very little 'real sales' experience, focused on "what was the last sales book I read" and not the numbers I had a track record of achieving. Too many chiefs.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pick 1 direction and go in it.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    More bad business decisions...

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

    I worked at SERENA Software full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Generally good people to work with except the executive leadership cannot be trusted.

    Cons

    - Ever changing product direction.
    - Employees got screwed in recent company sale
    - Continued management turnover
    - More of the old guard coming back

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Reward more than 2 people in the company

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    Possibly one of the worst places I've ever worked

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

    I worked at SERENA Software full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    If your desperate for a job, take it. Pay and benefits are not bad.

    Cons

    Company cannot decide where its value is and what market to focus on. Middle management is tyrannical and cronyism abounds.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Re-focus on core strengths and stay the course. Rid yourselves of "boss hog" type middle managers and get Agile.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great place to work

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

    I have been working at SERENA Software full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    The people is definitely one of the highlights of working at Serena. Starting at a technology company that has this level of retention was at first a concern as I figured there would be little room for career growth but this has not been the case. Opportunity presents itself and management is not adverse to promoting from within. Like most companies you have to do the job for a while before you get the promotion. Compensation is comparable to other similar companies in the Portland area and when I factor in the flexibility, great people and culture, and the ability have an impact beyond your "title" has resulted in me staying; even through the rough times of the past.

    Serena is a progressive company when it comes to Technology and new ways of building software. Our most recent release of Dimensions CM primarily came about as the result of developer innovation.

    Doug Troxel our founder reinvested into the company and Silver Lake being bought out by HGGC has stabilized much of the uncertainty about our future. In the past Serena has not been truthful about who it is. I used to tell my friends it was the biggest small company I had ever worked for, but I think we are more tactically honest today than in the past.

    Looking forward I am very encouraged and feel that overall we are headed in the right direction.

    Cons

    In the past I have felt like Serena was the guinea pig for prospective CEO's to try out new strategies and we have accelerated the loss of revenue in retreating markets to chase the pipe dream of the latest thing to come along. Two years ago I was not as optimistic, but with Greg Hughes coming on board we have refocused the company and I feel like we now have the fortitude to stick with a direction and not run off chasing squirrels. Our good results over the past few quarters have in my opinion reflected this focus.

    Like most companies politics sometimes gets in the way of what is best for the company as a whole. Empire building, resisting change, condemning the messenger for the message have all happened. It is in my opinion this has gotten better then it was 2 years ago, a lot better. Most departments I have worked in are open to new idea and more interested in improving then nitpicking about where the idea came from.

    Primarily the issues above are from the past and there has been a concerted effort by both middle and upper management to correct these. I am highly encouraged by the progress over the last year.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue the course of focusing on the vital few. Keep striving to improve our "agility"; given our size it is important that we be more responsive, provide higher levels of service, and be best in class vs trying to compete with feature/function. It is my belief that companies our size, especially in markets where there are some very large fish get ahead by being more nimble, being the best in specific areas, and focusing on customer success.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    The learning and growing opportunities are endless.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Support Engineer  in  Hillsboro, OR
    Current Employee - Support Engineer in Hillsboro, OR

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

    Pros

    Great people to work with and great products to support.

    Cons

    Everything has been great so I cannot think of anything at this time.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep investing in your people and keep trying to make Serena better.

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

    Great place to work

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

    I have been working at SERENA Software full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    The company culture is laid back and friendly. The office provides many perks and fun events. They appreciate a work life balance and family time is respected. The work load can be a lot at times, but the positive environment helps get through it!

    Cons

    The company has downsized a lot in the past few years. Our direction has changed several times and we have many leadership changes. The new CEO is amazing, so hopefully this will change!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Communication is sometimes rough from management and this could improve.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    The Complete Idiot's Guide to Destroying a Software Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Technical Support Engineer  in  Hillsboro, OR
    Current Employee - Technical Support Engineer in Hillsboro, OR

    I have been working at SERENA Software full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    There was a time when there were a lot of good reasons to work there; compensation package was good, maybe a bit above average for Portland, perks were good, health care benefit was amazing and the people were fantastic. Now on that list the only thing that remains are the amazing people and there are fewer and fewer of those everyday.

    Cons

    I could say a lot here but there are two big negatives; the first is that upper management for most of the last six or seven years has had the attention span of a hyperactive kitten with ADD amped up on coffee. Management went from pillar to post, always looking for the next shiny thing that would be the One True Path back to profitability while ignoring what the technical/engineering side of house and customers were saying. Secondly, upper management decided that moral simply did not matter. People who gave nearly a decade to that company, did everything that was ever asked of them and more, was a visible rockstar were screwed over for a bonus because they left two weeks before it was paid out.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you care about continuing to be a software company, then you have got to listen to your customers. They don't want shiny new toys that don't work, they want reliable tools that do! As a software company, you are only as good as your technical and engineering groups and that means you have to be willing to pay for talent and reward virtuosity. If you don't do that your best people will leave for greener pastures.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

Worked for SERENA Software? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.