Bloomberg L.P. - Fulfilling - Good Work/Life Balance | Glassdoor
There are newer employer reviews for Bloomberg L.P.
There are newer employer reviews for Bloomberg L.P.

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Helpful (1)

"Fulfilling - Good Work/Life Balance"

Star Star Star Star Star
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Current Employee - Data Analyst in Princeton, NJ
Current Employee - Data Analyst in Princeton, NJ
Recommends
Approves of CEO

Pros

Bloomberg has great benefits, provides a vibrant, energetic work environment and some of the most intelligent colleagues one could hope for.

Cons

Sometimes career paths can be unclear depending on what department you work in.

Advice to Management

Additional opportunities for professional development, as well as clearer career paths, would be appreciated by many,

Other Employee Reviews for Bloomberg L.P.

  1. Helpful (25)

    "Bittersweet"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Financial Software Developer in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Financial Software Developer in New York, NY
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    - New York City (if you want a job because you want to check out the city (and it is a lovely city!) you could do worse)
    - Pay (well paid -- atleast relatively -- of course the banks have bigger bonuses and all, but me being a man of hunble means, I was more than satisfied with the money)
    - Visa/Residency (if you're looking for an 'anchor' for an h1-b, this is a good candidate)
    - Perks (Museum admissions, once a year summer party, good breakfast and snacks)
    - Slacking off (my experience seems to differ substantially from other reviewers here, but I was able to get by with what I felt was very minimal work)
    - Access to the terminal (I can't believe this isn't hyped enough -- the terminal is AWESOME ... it is the VIM of browsing platforms -- this is the one thing I miss most)
    - Humour (Most of the 'cons' below, if contemplated with sufficient distance (such as an ex-employee like myself is able to do) are office-space-esque in the sense that its so bad, its good)
    - Wisdom (corollary to the above -- if you don't know what a bad workplace is like, how can you ever appreciate a good one? And so I file this under 'necessary life experience')

    Cons

    Let me preface this by saying that if one of the 'pros' above works for you, do go ahead and work here for a while, and make up your own mind. Of course, always make sure you can leave if it doesn't work for you. I don't work there anymore, but I gave myself a year before composing this, so that I could be objective, and avoid looking vindictive.
    With that, let me begin ...

    #1 - Legacy code -- you must have heard this term thrown about casually, or in the titles of books you might have passed by -- but you will be working with legacy code that could be 10 or 20 years old. Now thats not a bad thing in itself, except that a whole lot of it was written by incompetent people (more of this in #2). I see you're not sufficiently scared yet -- I have three words for you -- "GUI in Fortran" -- if that doesn't do it for you, go ahead and send in your resume, you'll love the place.

    #2 - Incompetent people -- they're all over the place -- it could be your colleagues, your managers, sales people you interface with. Part of this, I think, has to do with the broken recruitment process - I won't necessarily blame HR, rather the seemingly ad-hoc nature of the actual interview process itself (e.g. asking textbookish "what is a singleton?" instead of "Solve problem XYZ" self-selects the kinds of people that are unwilling to learn new stuff -- add them to a bunch of old-timers who know a lot of old stuff, and you have a potent mix).
    Around the time I left, company policy removed the criteria of having a computer science degree for being hired as a developer -- read into this what you will.
    I felt this people factor made everyone excessively paranoid, since, unable to rely on reason for how things should work, they were often reduced to superstition ("don't touch that code -- copy-paste it instead and put it on a flag instead!" -- rinse and repeat, and you have spaghetti code the likes of which you cannot imagine -- unless, of course, eventually, inevitably -- you have to fix it)

    #3 - Opaque work environment -- I never had a clue why we were doing what we were doing, or why we stopped doing it and began doing something else. Mysterious communiques were occasionally delivered once a year, and then ignored in the actual work ordered throughout the year.

    #4 - Poor software principles - I was gonna lump this in with #1 or #2 but it deserves special mention since it encompasses and encourages both of them. Expect to waste days, weeks (months ?) doing monotonous work, only because people are unwilling, unable (or both) to do things differently. The excessively proprietary nature of *all* software means that not only are you forced to rely on substandard code, but also have to do without tools that are commonplace elsewhere ("What's that fancy svn/git thing ? We use RCS!" (Seriously))

    #5 - Weird billing process - at the end of each day, you're required to 'bill' time to a 'ticket'. Ok, nothing wrong with that. When I joined, I had no work for about two months -- I still had to bill time -- what's more, I saw that a couple of older employees in my team, actually *did nothing* and billed time to tickets they 'owned' for a long long time. This was quite bizarre at first, but after sufficient time, I internalized it and became a certified slacker myself.

    #6 - Top down review process (actually, top down everything) - Your manager has the first, last and only say in what your performance was. Period. (The rest -- employees sucking up to their manager, going behind their colleagues' backs to talk to managers, stabbing said backs etc. -- follows from this)

    [Caveat here: I didn't really see #3, #4 and #6 as terrible things until I moved to a different place where I had transparency, good tools and some kind of peer review, and was able to draw some contrast. I'm told that most banks are similar, and so in that respect, Bloomberg is certainly "no worse" than many places]

    Finally, I must confess to a soft spot for the place, it being my first employer, and in any large organization, no narrative can successfully capture the small details. My manager was ok with time off and sick days, and not (unlike some reviews suggest) scary, intimidating and excessively micro-managing -- but yes, I did observe (both first-hand and second-hand) other managers doing the same, and I will happily admit that I fared better than most.

    Advice to Management

    Really ? OK I'll take this seriously -- its hard to change the entire culture of an organization overnight, and in this case, I'm not sure if it would be a good idea anyway (after all, the company as a whole is doing great, and it recently expanded its subscriber base beyond the 300,000 mark) so there isn't any incentive for management to do anything.
    Unlike other reviewers then, I won't say things like "replace/retrain middle management" etc. -- it just doesn't sound practical.

    I would, however, request the initiation of some sort of feedback mechanism to "listen" to junior employees -- it is never profitable to make their lives better, or to retain replaceable personnel -- but it might help to spot any trend before it becomes a trend -- and if the rank-and-file are able to realize the difference between their work environment and a different one, and find an easy way out (a competitor? startups? some other job market change) -- there will be a trend indeed.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Good for short term development"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Software Developer in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Senior Software Developer in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    high starting pay, pantry, free health insurance, upbeat work environment, beautiful office

    Cons

    no partition/cubical in the office, hard to advance in title/pay/professional skill after working for a couple of yrs

    Advice to Management

    ok


There are newer employer reviews for Bloomberg L.P.
There are newer employer reviews for Bloomberg L.P.

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