I worked at Altera full-time (More than 3 years)
Unique technology, higher than average profit margin in semiconductor, almost no competition except Xilinx, above average work-life balance for non-engineers. A great company if you are raising young children.
Extremely slow in making decisions because of the large/complex product, need to wait 1-2 years to see your impact to the bottom-line because of long-product development cycle. Not a company for energetic and self-driven types. It can be boring at times because thousands of people are working on a single large/complex product. Sometimes difficult to make people accountable for their work. Tons and months of meetings to make one decision.
Advice to Management
Well, now it is an advice for Intel management who is buying Altera. Make employees at Altera accountable for their work. It is very easy to hide at Altera since the product is large/complex. A couple of examples. If a block in FPGA doesn't tape on time or fails frequently at the customer, make the engineering VP/Director/Manager accountable. If the business doesn't grow in an specific target market make business units at Altera accountable by giving them P&L responsibility. Too often no one takes accountability at Altera because the product is large/complex and there is virtually no competition.
I applied online. The process took 2+ weeks. I interviewed at Altera (San Jose, CA) in September 2015.
There was a phone screening with the Technical Manager of the team for 10 minutes. He asked very simple questions on Digital Logic and a couple of puzzles. Next day, HR emailed me to schedule an onsite interview and asked my availability and after that, the interview happened two weeks later.