Zynga Reviews

Updated April 21, 2015
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Employee Reviews

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  1. Mismanagement, too many levels of upper execs with too many opinions interfering with product.

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Free food, complimentary gym, other perks.

    Cons

    Management, producer to game developer ratio is insane, definitive example of too many cooks in the kitchen.

    Advice to Management

    You don't need 4 managers per employee.

  2. Good people, bad culture.

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time (Less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Analytical skills are honed, especially for optimizing growth. People work hard and there is a no nonsense culture.

    Cons

    Long hours and on call weekends, team members change quickly because of churn, and company is very money-minded instead of product-minded.

  3. Wasn't always a great job, but they're a great employer

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    Two meals were catered every day, and special care was taken to accommodate anyone's dietary restrictions.

    I worked in a room full of very experienced game developers from all walks of the industry, including a few legends from my childhood.

    For the most part, everyone was friendly, helpful, and invested in helping you succeed. Even when the whole team is stuck in the office because your update keeps failing QA at midnight, they come to you to see how they can help, rather than complaining.

    Zynga offers unlimited/untracked PTO for vacations and sick leave. Their official vacation policy was "You should probably take some." In an industry notorious for working developers to death, Zynga producers were known for pulling people aside and telling them to go away for a week or two for a vacation. And if a producer asks you to stay late to finish something, they'll sometimes offer you a day or two off in exchange. The whole office basically shuts down from before christmas through the new year.

    Cons

    Not a lot of original IP or creativity, in some aspects of their games. Also, the product managers are making game design decisions based solely on market statistics.

    Advice to Management

    Try to keep on top of bonuses and and leveling up for your teams.

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  5. fresh college guys

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

    I have been working at Zynga

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    free food and free snacks

    Cons

    it's full of fresh college guys who know nothing

  6. Helpful (1)

    They paid me well to make products I wasn't too proud to be working on.

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    It was good pay, and most of the people I interacted with were nice. They did their best, most of the time, to put me on projects that suited my tastes, in theme, anyway.

    Cons

    They seemed slow and reluctant to change, preferring to stick to old product models that appeared to be losing their popularity, while canceling new and different products that I thought had great potential, before giving them a chance,

    Too focused on whether they thought a game was good at "addicting" players rather than on making them want to play because it was a good, fun game.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the people who are in the trenches, who know what good games are, and listen less to the accountants. Good games will make money for the long run. Games excessively focused on and motivated by making money may do so in the short term, but not in the long term.

  7. Too many rock stars ruin the work.

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Cutting edge technology, or at least it was.

    Cons

    Not everyone wants to live at their job.
    long, long hours, poor pay, too much good old boy poLititz and a "merit" system based more on who can climb over the real worker bees and take credit

    Advice to Management

    Stop with everyone is a CEO BS. Too often the loudest people get heard even though they are often the least knowledgeable. Find your experst and who are your real strategic thinkers and listen to them, not the 1st year programmer who writes code that's bloated and bad. Listen to those who have experience in community management and not to some producer who thinks the game is his. It's not, it belongs to the players and stop trying to tell your users what you want them to want and listen to what they are telling you.

  8. Great learning experience

    Former Intern - (Software Developer) in Bangalore (India)
    Former Intern - (Software Developer) in Bangalore (India)

    I worked at Zynga as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Friendly atmosphere
    Helpful team members
    Encouragement to think of your own ideas

    Cons

    None that I faced during my internship

  9. Helpful (1)

    Lack of true leadership, fun during the good times.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director, Product Management in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Director, Product Management in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Zynga

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great workplace perks at HQ, fun environment, bring your dog to work, dynamic industry.

    Cons

    Lack of vision and leadership (original CEO & management team was still there) beyond its initial success. People believed their own hype and didn't invest properly in the future (i.e. mobile) before it was too late. Internal studios didn't work well together. Short term rewards and thinking meant no industry leadership beyond initial successes on Facebook.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in the future in terms of product strategy, values, and people.

  10. Great in some ways, lacking in others

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    - Exceptionally open culture
    - Great data infrastructure
    - Lots of smart people and a hip office make for a fun work environment
    - Good career growth and mobility

    Cons

    - Tough place to get groundbreaking products off ground
    - Hampered by early success in some ways as it's hard for new ideas to start from the ground up
    - Work/life balance can be difficult to achieve, but varies by group
    - Lots of "best practices" make the company slower than before

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on the "fun" part of game design and be careful with making the place too bureaucratic as it may sap creativity and innovation.

  11. Helpful (1)

    Sr. software engineer (build & release)

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    fun workplace; pure start-up culture; new technologies

    Cons

    no care to employee
    no work/life balance

    Advice to Management

    leave if you can

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