Microsoft - Regret I spent years of my life there | Glassdoor
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"Regret I spent years of my life there"

Star Star Star Star Star
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Former Employee - Software Development Engineer II in Redmond, WA
Former Employee - Software Development Engineer II in Redmond, WA
Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

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

Pros

- To some people outside the "circle", they would respect you for being a Microsoft employee, especially in other countries.
- H1B sponsorship
- Smart, competitive people around you. A lot to learn from peers and managers

Cons

- A company past its creativity curve. Only tiny portion of the projects are interesting, and people will fight for you. If you newly join the company, you will spend quite some time doing the out-dated technologies.
- "Factory", "assembly line" style process: this company is smart enough to "streamline-lize" its software development into something similar to Ford's assembly line. Working in that procedure gives you a strong feeling that you are one replaceable piece on it.
- Management tries to get "most mileage" out of you: the management will try to make you work hard, overtime (while not explicitly say so to leave "evidence". One time I saw the manager explicitly wrote "do more with less", meaning getting more done with less people, in his commitment. Another time I heard the management using "get enough mileage out of people". They would make aggressive planning, use progress tracking software, status report meetings to force you into work over time. Not only that, during work it's highly intense, I had to make sure the previous scheduled tasks are made progress, and timely respond to boss' emails of ad-hoc tasks. Sometimes I need to switch between 5 desktop servers to run different tasks to get my assignments done. Looking back, every year there made me age 3-4 years.
- Selfish culture. It boosted a culture that everybody try to strive to get what's within his own boundary done. And the company values the winner from internal competition (as the company is so big, upper management doesn't have time to judge who's right, so the simplest way I guess, is to see who's won out). From lower level, that means the peers just don't collaborate, but undermine each other. From bigger teams perspective, it's the fight between partners, and result in endless re-orgs.
- Information control. The mid-management gives exactly information that you need to work on your piece of work. You don't know next reorg, you don't know the direction of the project.
- "Precision Question Answering". There's this poisonous "communication tool" within Microsoft called "Precision Question Answering", it essentially trains people into using robotic-style conversations, so that the management can get the important information in the fastest way, and peers can challenge each other to fix logic errors in the details, at the cost of enjoying human-like collaboration between colleagues.
- Compensation is terribly below the industry average level.

Other Employee Reviews for Microsoft

  1. "Rewarding work, excellent pay, work-life balance, and advancement opportunities"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time

    Pros

    Microsoft offers the opportunity to work on the forefront of new technologies, dogfood Microsoft products, and visibly impact users on a global scale. Generally, management is good from top to bottom, and pay, benefits, and work-life balance are excellent. As long as you are meeting and exceeding expectations, you go home when you are satisfied with your day's work. There is a clear, incremental advancement path unlike some other big 4 companies. Possibly most importantly, Microsoft is on the rise and beginning to innovate at a high rate.

    Cons

    Your specific vision may not always align with the company's goals. There is no free food.


  2. "Colorful."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Xbox One Representative in Ann Arbor, MI
    Former Employee - Xbox One Representative in Ann Arbor, MI
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Microsoft part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Training is outstanding, surrounded by great intelligent people. Like a vacation, employee's are all treated like guests. Definitely a Fortune 100 company you want on your resume.

    Cons

    Jumpy relationships with major partners. When you walk into a BestBuy in uniform, the staff already have an opinion of you based on their opinions and experiences with the company previously. Sometimes, this isn't the best and said staff can make it very difficult to do your job.

    Advice to Management

    Don't be so quick to throw away seasonal staff. Quite a few, if not most have left for Microsoft's competitors who are open to harness said abilities. Just because a promotion has ended, doesn't mean the connection with the staff should as-well.

There are newer employer reviews for Microsoft
There are newer employer reviews for Microsoft

See Most Recent

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