Dolby Reviews | Glassdoor

Dolby Reviews

Updated April 25, 2017
69 reviews

Filter

Filter


2.9
Star Star Star Star Star
Rating Trends Rating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Dolby President and CEO Kevin J. Yeaman
Kevin J. Yeaman
42 Ratings

69 Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date

Pros
  • years) and new employees, a modern, fresh, work environment in San Francisco, 9/80 work schedule, ability to contribute to important initiatives (in 39 reviews)

  • The company has a true work/life balance, without sacrificing either (in 33 reviews)

Cons
  • Slow decision making with very little accountability (in 22 reviews)

  • Too many decision makers with contradictory agendas at upper management level (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (4)

    "Large company with massive organizational and technical debt."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Dolby full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Relaxed work culture. Many different projects are always going on at once, so during your time as an engineer here you'll have the opportunity to work on a lot of different kinds of projects. Competitive pay for the area. Great facilities.

    Cons

    Middle and upper management is risk-adverse and lack a clear direction. This leads to many different projects being created to pursue many different platforms that often end up reinventing and repackaging the wheel. Projects are often born as cobbled together frankensteins of other projects, leading to a lot of technical debt. Management oftentimes ignores this, instead pushing for feature creep.

    Advice to Management

    Take the time to align projects across the company, rather than focusing solely on marketable features.


  2. "Good place for a high school part time job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Guest Services in Hollywood, CA
    Former Employee - Guest Services in Hollywood, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Dolby part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good place to put your foot in the workforce door

    Cons

    Work is based on booked events, only part-time employment and it is hard to move up in the company


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Used to be good but not anymore after the recent reorg"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in China, ME
    Current Employee - Manager in China, ME
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Dolby full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Work life balance, cinema business is fun and promising. Good place to work with an international team with exposure to different culture.

    Cons

    Very centralized and US focused, slow and political. Current org won't support a long term success particularly for employees outside of the States

    Advice to Management

    Be decisive and accountable


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Great Brand, trying to grow and grow up"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Director in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Dolby (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Smart coworkers, a friendly somewhat 70's feel work culture with a mix of long term (10+ years) and new employees, a modern, fresh, work environment in San Francisco, 9/80 work schedule, ability to contribute to important initiatives.

    Cons

    Culture of consensus and entitlement to opinions without data driven recommendations hobbles positive, aligned decision making. Lack of business discipline creates chaos. Lack of consistent application of accountability and responsibility allows costly bad behavior, and makes business discipline decisions appear whimsical or illogical.

    Advice to Management

    Apply policies and procedures consistently, align and communicate throughout the organization.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Product Marketing Manager"

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

    I worked at Dolby full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Very cool people, fun product(s), extremely creative, work life balance, every other Friday off

    Cons

    Re-orgs seem to happen constantly, troubled leadership not dealt with - left to continue to cause chaos and trouble....Human Resources admitted to knowledge of certain issues, but nothing happens. Weird

    Advice to Management

    Take a good look at leadership - are we (they) really what the company needs to move forward.


  7. Helpful (5)

    "Great Company to retire from"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dolby full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great work/life balance: the only Bay Area Hi-Tech Company still offering 9/80 schedule (or alternative Friday off, only Oil and Gas industry offers that nowadays). Good benefits designed towards long-term employee retention. Very low attrition rate.

    Cons

    Company lack of decision or slow in decision. Accountability very low. Not very good at executing outside licensing business, especially hardware.

    Advice to Management

    Great Engineering company with a lot of good legacy, but extremely lack of Sales Culture. Great technology and products but Go to Market Strategy and sales team are sub-par. This may work well in licensing business but not in product or other area the company are trying to expand into.


  8. Helpful (2)

    "big and fat and looking for growth"

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

    I have been working at Dolby full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    9/80 schedule works out to every other Friday off
    get to work on wide range of interesting audio technology

    Cons

    been in turnaround or searching for growth for 4 years now
    below market compensation
    often makes uninformed gut decisions, poor data systems

    Advice to Management

    invest in better data systems to understand reporting data


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Sr. Integrated Marketing Manager"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Communications Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Communications Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Opportunity to work closely across functional teams and own the full GTM.

    Cons

    A lot of inexperienced team members

    Advice to Management

    Needed better articulation of strategic vision. Brand direction felt unfocused.


  10. Helpful (10)

    "The good and the bad"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Unquestioned industry leader. There are great things happening and interesting work to be done, if you can get yourself positioned for it. And there are good people if you know where to look for them.

    Cons

    Has been becoming more and more conventional in every negative sense in the ten years since it went public. Disappointing to see this great niche environment slowly turn into an ordinary soulless tech company, increasingly staffed by ordinary soulless (and unethical) drones. True talent is exploited, patronized, and undervalued, and it ain't cream that's rising to the top (i.e. management).

    Advice for newer employees: keep your head down, do your work well, and don't be naive. If you're looking to move up and up...good luck with that.

    Advice to Management

    Don't even think about getting rid of the 9/80 schedule,


  11. Helpful (15)

    "Nice brand, company and smart people - but out-dated culture and politics stifles growth and development"

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

    I have been working at Dolby (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - 9/80 work schedule
    - Excellent work/life balance in most teams, although some people really lean toward the life part which might explain a portion of Dolby's sluggish growth.
    - Incredibly intelligent colleagues with deep industry knowledge and critical thinking skills.
    - Many interesting and amazing products on the horizon. Being a part of those developments that could be truly game-changing is amazing if we can get them launched and launched well.
    - The promise and potential of working for a great brand.
    - Unique perk: employee screenings of first run movies in the best theater (acoustically) in the country.

    Cons

    - Out-dated culture, heavy on old-school style political maneuvering to the degree that ideas and innovation are generally stifled. If you do happen to bring something solid to the table that a more Machiavellian colleague notices, he will take it for his own and give you little to no credit and probably not fully flesh out.
    - Lack of mentoring - While you might be surrounded by great minds, you will only get to learn by osmosis even if you ask for mentoring. If you are not already at the top of your game upon hiring, you will be side-lined. There is little opportunity to learn and grow your career, despite any promise you might hold. This cultural aspect also fails to create managers who jump on teachable moments as opportunities to develop their staff and expand on ideas.
    - These same brilliant minds while "waxing poetic" in highly-intelligent and fascinating discourse and debates of critical thinking and industry expertise often get so bogged down by the political strategies of consensus based decision making that progress is slow (which in tech, spells eventual death). There are few meetings less than 90 minutes and that is often weekly.
    - Initiative is not only not encouraged or rarely rewarded, but is sometimes actively disapproved of. Honestly, it sometimes seems like one's proclivity for initiative is perceived as "making another look bad" rather than doing what needs to be done for the good of the project. Rolling up your sleeves and digging in as a team is not part of the culture here.
    - Multiply all of the above x10 if you are a woman and then some. Several women colleagues over the years have left in frustration for having no actual seat at the table and ideas repeatedly being co-opted by male team members. This is as true in the more gender-balanced population of the marketing department as it is in the heavily male-skewed engineering. department.

    Advice to Management

    Cull out the old guard and the dead-weight lounging around to shake up the culture to foster innovation, meritocracy, and the tech dominance once held by Dolby; and eliminate out-dated political maneuvering behaviors which serve egos over the success of the business . Encourage mentoring and initiative, especially of junior staff and women. The young are the future and will help Dolby be nimble in the fast-moving tech industry. Changing the furniture in the new building will not miraculously reinvent the culture to be more like Twitter, FB, or Google. Much of the above, on the other hand, will.


Showing 69 of 278 reviews
Reset Filters