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Cisco Systems Reviews

Updated April 30, 2017
10,713 reviews

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3.8
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Cisco Systems CEO Chuck Robbins
Chuck Robbins
1,943 Ratings

10,713 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Best work life balance in the industry (in 1715 reviews)

  • You have flexibility to work from home or a remote Cisco location (in 852 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Let's Talk - From a Cisco Culture Enthusiast's Perspective"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Marketing Program Manager in Research Triangle Park, NC
    Current Employee - Senior Marketing Program Manager in Research Triangle Park, NC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    BFPWGP or Best Freaking Place to Work, Grow and Play!
    I have been with Cisco for 11 years and I am truly excited each day because I have an opportunity to think about my current role, my opportunity to grow and most important my value to the community and believe it or not earth.
    In my role, i have learned so much about the importance of Sustainability and how WE need to sever the umbilical cord to Mother Earth. Cisco creates conscious citizens that are culturally responsible and push beyond their wildest imagination. I encourage you to find an opportunity here at Cisco, I promise you will have a lasting career. #LoveWhereYouWork.

    Cons

    There is a lack of diversity in Cisco although great strides being made. we have a ways to go. i encourage to explore more diversity at the mid level management level.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to develop and improve diversity at the mid level management level. This only enhances the diverse perspectives for our Company.

    Cisco Systems Response

    Mar 31, 2017 – Social Media Manager

    BFPWGP - you created a new acronym! Glad you feel that way - eleven years speaks that, too! You're right, diversity is key to a successful company - and I'm also seeing much more focus from Cisco in ... More


  2. Helpful (16)

    "Cisco sucks, stay away"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Boxborough, MA
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Boxborough, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Pays reasonably well...if you are not that bright, you can survive for ever in Cisco, place is full of dead weight so you'll fit right in.

    Cons

    Work is not interesting, people can be downright hostile, raises/rewards have no relation to the work you put in.

    Advice to Management

    Wake up and smell the roses...all the good employees are dissatisfied and leave, and only the dumb dead weight people stick around...so now, the whole place is full of dull people who dont care about work, and morale is superlow. Improve your rewards strategy, not just in terms of money, but also in terms of recognition.


  3. Helpful (11)

    "Hell for a Hacker"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Web Developer in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Web Developer in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Telecommuting is encouraged
    Teams are competent and unified
    Internal transfers are easy
    Code ownership is shared to relieve pressure against vacations
    Training and higher education is supported

    Cons

    Micromanagement is rampant and backed up by a culture of fear

    External tools are poorly chosen, overvalued as silver bullets, and not optimized to fit the needs of developers

    Employee evaluation system is based on an individual's reputation for working long hours, oratory skills in meetings, powerpoint skills in presentations, and popularity with upper management

    Advice of developers is disregarded by technical leads and managers, yet failure is always attributed to a lack of effort and communication among the team

    Project marketing and team size are used as leverage among management, leading to unhealthy competition between teams, code redundancy, and useless features creeping into requirement lists

    Hard work is not rewarded as much as shameless self promotion and socializing outside the office

    Deadlines and milestones are decided without any input from developers implementing the requests

    Advice to Management

    Remove political roadblocks by deferring to developers instead of a senior manager or a committee to make design decisions and technical requirements.

    End reprisals against employees who disagree with management so that pressure to give unrealistic estimates and hide issues in failing projects becomes a thing of the past.

    Reward employees with freedom to move to exciting projects rather than with bonuses


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  5. Helpful (9)

    "Image isn't everything."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Technical Leader in Durham, NC
    Current Employee - Technical Leader in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Good place to learn networking technology. Good people at the lowest ranks. Not a sweat-shop.

    Cons

    Incompetent senior management that is unbelievably short sighted. Promotions are only possible by being hand-picked by a VP who are the least qualified. The result is chains of incompetent management. Marketing is ridiculously superficial and self-serving. Development is cheap and poor quality.

    Indeed Chambers is a great CEO. He's an excellent business manager, visionary and leader. However, Chambers is a horrible technical manager and cannot make Cisco into the world-class company we should be. As proof, see the recent departure of Alan Baratz. Great technical VP who barely lasted 6 months. Stock has gone nowhere in 10 years and this is the cause.

    Advice to Management

    Stop focusing efforts on hiring cheap engineers and start looking for quality internally.


  6. Helpful (8)

    "Good company to hide, but not for innovation."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Cisco does pay a bit higher than the rest of their peers. It is a large company so being able to move around is quite easy especially if you know people in the targeted area of your choice. John Chambers is an excellent CEO and a strong leader.

    Cons

    Promotions, especially when it comes to Director level and above are difficult to come by and is more a matter of who you know versus your accomplishments. Cisco does seem a bit top-heavy in management and that also prevents one from moving up more quickly. With any large company, there seems to be "fiefdoms" of organizations that have questionable reasons for existence. In other words, sometimes you're not so sure what function that organization was created to do and what value do they bring to Cisco in the big scheme of things. It becomes less and less clear on how one's day-to-day work applies to Cisco's Top Business Priorities so at times you might feel that you're not really making much of a difference.

    Advice to Management

    Provide more mentorship to budding management talent so that they can develop the skills required for promotion.


  7. Helpful (9)

    "If you respect your self stay away from Cisco"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Marketing Manager in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Marketing Manager in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Good reputation, benefits, and flexible working location. Good vision and nice story. It's a pity that middle level management (directors and senior directors) destroy such a great company.

    Cons

    Exec management is disconnected from the rest of the company. People are not important and they treated as such. Great place to suffer as professional and descent human being!

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the people. They suffer. Correct directors and senior directors. Are the cause of people suffering and Cisco not able to move forward.


  8. Helpful (13)

    "Cisco belongs on the Disco floor."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Analyst in San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Analyst in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The only good part is the name. If you can get a job with the company and leverage its name towards moving up in your career, then that's about the best reason for working at Cisco.

    Cons

    Directors and middle managers are mostly incompetent and unable to lead or manage resources amongst them. Instead, they like to take the success of their subordinates and make it there's. So when it comes to proper recognition of work, acknowledgment of contribution, and everything you'd expect to advance in your career, you can forget about.

    Advice to Management

    There are too many chefs in the kitchen who don't belong in management. Management isn't just about managing the product. Find those who are capable of managing people and capable of being mentors instead of out there for self-fulfilling prophecies.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Caution: make sure you get the resources you need up front"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager, IBSG in San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Manager, IBSG in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Huge organization, brand identification, its possible to stay in the firm for your whole career. Sales infrastructure is the best in the industry.

    Cons

    My team was expected to deliver at SVP levels - but we didn't get the resources to make it happen. Sales however - spent money left and right on travel, communication etc- where we were bound tight.

    Advice to Management

    Give IBSG the resources to perform like the racehorses they are - and tell sales to take a cab once in awhile to save money. Restrictions on global client relationships are damaging - not supportive.


  10. Helpful (7)

    "Don't work there!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Manager in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good medical benefits, well known company.

    Cons

    Needs new management, very difficult company to work for, expectations are not realistic.
    Treat employees very badly.

    Advice to Management

    People are not perfect, nor are they robots. Take action when an employee comes to you with an issue, and get back to the employee. Employees should be your first priority, not your last priority.


  11. Helpful (8)

    "Dissatisfied with Cisco politics."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Exceptionally motivated or just lazy. People who want to do some side business with main work.

    Cons

    Too many mediocre people, who talks more and works less. Resistance to good work. Too much office politics. Nepotism.

    Advice to Management

    Think long term. Try to identify who truly works and who portrays to work.


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