Synapse Product Development Reviews

Updated March 23, 2015
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4.2
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Synapse Product Development CEO and Co-Founder Ross Collins
Ross Collins
8 Ratings

24 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (3)

    The best job I ever had. Working with the best people I know!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Wonderful people (smart, nice, competent, fun, active) Variety of projects There is always something new to learn The company truly cares about the people and community. Not only in words, but more so in action.

    Cons

    Sometimes workload is high, but it is cyclical In the past the financial highs and lows would greatly impact the business, but now it is a lot more stable and the client portfolio is much more diverse

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work. Stand for the people and quality of work as always.


  2. Helpful (4)

    Exciting challenging hands-on work -as relevant to your major as you could imagine

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

    Pros

    1. Very interesting work. Take on projects that are always leading edge and have interesting challenges. Projects tend to be tight multi-disciplinary teams so you are always learning about other areas naturally. 2. Fantastic team mates. They go to great lengths to build a workforce that are fun, energetic and well rounded. Everyone has something interesting and funny to say and there are no jerks - even in the management realm.

    Cons

    1. Deadlines - can be tight and relentless. Tightly managed organization means having a bad day or getting sick will require extra work to get back on target. Its done in a nice way, but the deadlines don't move. I have never heard anyone say - should be a light week of work this week.. 2. Flexibility - highly dynamic team-centric nature of the work doesn't lead to much working from home etc. Its not forbidden - you just learn that it doesn't work well.


  3. Helpful (3)

    Great job for engineers

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    1. The work - As a contract product development company, Synapse provides the opportunity to work on a constantly changing, wide variety of products, technologies, and clients. You don't get stuck working on version 5.x of the same old product. You don't get stuck writing documents, while the coding is outsourced. If you like the nuts and bolts of designing and writing code, and like to learn new stuff, it's probably a good fit. 2. The people - Synapse has the most talented group of engineers I have ever worked with. People are friendly and there is zero politics. 3. The management - Synapse was founded with the goal of providing a great place for engineers to exercise their craft. Steered by one of the original founders, that is still the top focus of the management team. There have been ups and downs, good decisions and bad, bit I believe the motives have always been good. And along the way, I think the management team has become pretty good at managing this type of firm.

    Cons

    1. Not a place to work if you want to work your way up the "corporate ladder" as their isn't much of a ladder. Management is pretty flat, it's not a huge company and never will be. 2. Not a place to work if pay is your only criteria. The pay is not bad, but Synapse can't win bidding wars with companies like Google and you're not going to get a bunch of stock options (there is an ESOP).


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  5. Helpful (3)

    Engineer

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time

    Pros

    Great management and mentoring, exciting projects, fun and engaging colleagues, wide breadth of engineering topics to learn and apply. Overall a great company to work for.

    Cons

    Some up and down hiring and layoff cycles, but new management team seems to be much better. Upward mobility is a little difficult- there isn't much hierarchy to the company and also not much turnover.

    Advice to Management

    Don't repeat the mistakes of the past- you're doing all the right things now.


  6. Helpful (2)

    Talented engineers and motivating environment!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Open work environment encourages creativity and teamwork. I enjoy everyone I work with and learn something new every day. Something fun is always happening at Synapse.

    Cons

    Growth outside of engineering is limited.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work!


  7. Helpful (2)

    Synapse is the best Job I've ever had

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Design & Marketing Manager in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Design & Marketing Manager in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The fun environment combined with interesting projects and a culture that inspires creativity, makes Synapse a truly special place to work. I work beside some of the smartest people I've ever met, and it's not hard to find similar interests and extend friendships beyond the office. There's a widespread mentality in the office that you must take risk in order to be truly innovative. This encourages people to step beyond conventional wisdom, get creative, and try new things. Synapse is the type of place that will force you to grow; one way or another.

    Cons

    Balancing resources has always seemed to be something the company struggles with, however the leadership has put emphasis on fixing this in the last year, and it seams to be improving.


  8. Helpful (3)

    A great place to work!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    This place really supports its people, helps them to grow their careers, and listens to them. I recently told my boss I had outgrown my current role and explained what I'd like to change. My boss and HR are now both working with me to look at options and make a timeline for changes. Last year, a group of employees requested that the company create a parental leave policy, beyond the federal policy. The leadership listened and responded by enacting a policy that gives primary caregivers 3 months of fully paid leave and secondary caregivers (often dads) 4 weeks of fully paid leave. This is a much more generous policy than my friends at other firms have! Synapse in general is quite family-friendly. The summer 2014 posters who complained about lack of vision should've waited a month- we are now taking part in a company-wide effort to define strategic goals. Unlike the usual top-down decree, the leadership team here is using an inclusive process that draws on feedback from all employees. It is really exciting to work at a place where each of us are empowered to develop our careers and improve the whole company.

    Cons

    Some previous posts listed cons that were related to instability as we adjusted to sea changes from 2 of our biggest clients. Synapse is now well on it's way to recovery, has a more grounded leadership team, has developed a more diverse portfolio of clients, and is taking action to prevent making the same mistakes again. I'm glad, because it's a great place to work.

    Advice to Management

    I have a lot of confidence in the current leadership team and their inclusive approach.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Synapse Rocks!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    In every aspect of company life Synapse tries harder than any other company I have worked for. As consultants they are in a better position to build a culture of free thinking and expression. You definitely have to work hard but like nowhere I have worked before this place really seems to care for all the right reasons. There are fun things to do there, interesting projects, very good, technical, successful people (engineers, project managers and execs)

    Cons

    It's a consultancy so your customers are many times either not technically savvy and you have to spend a fair amount of time generating status and explaining designs, results and information. Or the customer thinks they are very savvy whether they are or not and try to drive technical outcomes that don't result in the best designs.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to do the great job your doing. Continue to make the hard choices to keep the business healthy. Thanks for trying so hard. Sometimes the hard part is learning to say no to customers.


  10. Helpful (2)

    Dynamic atmosphere, great colleagues

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Interesting work from some of the biggest brands/most exciting names in technology. Everyone genuinely loves coming to work each day, which is so rare and contributes to the high, infectious energy. The environment and culture facilitates open communication, across departments and levels of the organization. Work with smart people that you want to grab a beer with after work. Spontaneous nerf gun wars.

    Cons

    The past year has been a year of transition, upper management has changed hands, and many people were put into leadership positions without proper training. Historically, a lack of diversity -- though this is actively changing.


  11. Helpful (2)

    Visionless leadership team

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development (More than a year)

    Pros

    Friendly colleagues. Easy to work with..

    Cons

    Leadership lacks vision, no long term plans.

    Advice to Management

    Replace current leadership team with more business minded executives who have proven track record of driving growth and strategic planning. Current leadership team does not have strong business and marketing skill sets... Very short sighted.



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