Riot Games - Riot's not for everyone. But for a certain type of driven professional, it's genuinely amazing. | Glassdoor
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Helpful (16)

"Riot's not for everyone. But for a certain type of driven professional, it's genuinely amazing."

StarStarStarStarStar
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Monica, CA
Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Monica, CA
Recommends
Positive Outlook
Approves of CEO

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

Pros

I could write a very long review full of positives and negatives, but will limit myself to four of each.

Positive: *Strong, clear culture* People who manage to survive the interview gauntlet know Riot's values and agree to live by them, and their commitment to the values increases as a result of an intensive onboarding program called “denewbification” and ongoing vigilance against creeping misalignment. Riot’s dedication to this topic is based on a belief that aligned people and teams have more autonomy and more inherent trust in each other. Riot is confident in its culture and doesn't water it down.

Positive: *Meritocratic ideals* I've worked at places where friendship, marriage, or genetic relationships are the primary determinant of who receives the juiciest promotions and pay increases. Riot’s not like that. The leadership works hard to make sure that delivery of exceptional results through collaborative effort is the primary factor considered in assessing someone’s contribution. Those who are accustomed to "family" style environments will have some adjusting to do.

Positive: *Prioritizes long-term business health* Elsewhere in the games industry, a few companies make deals with their investors that result in behaviors that undermine player trust. In an effort to make certain profit or revenue targets for next quarter, these companies monetize in a way makes discerning gamers gag. Riot believes and behaves in a way that puts building player trust first. This is a long-term approach that ultimately results in a healthier business that’s built to last.

Positive: *Spotless ethics* Riot conducts business cleanly and fairly. You’ll feel this when interacting with peers internally (there’s a minimum of backstabbing and other unsavory political behaviors). People who conduct themselves in a Machiavellian fashion are quickly found out and coached into the right behaviors or fired. When it comes to working with vendors and partners, the same ethics apply. This also applies to the hiring and promotions processes -- Riot's blind to gender, sexual orientation, and race, religion and politics when making hiring and promotion decisions.

Cons

Negative: *Favela-style density* We’re still nine months away from moving into our next office space, but we outgrew our current space many months ago. As a result, some people are sitting in aisle-ways and walkways, conference rooms are hard to book, private space for quiet thinking is rare, and environment-induced stress is higher than necessary. The new HQ looks like it’ll be a wonderful relief, and it cannot arrive fast enough.

Negative: *Recruiting difficulties* Our recruiting processes aren't something we’re proud of at present. Candidates report very long and drawn-out interview processes (sometimes taking many months), and hiring managers internally are often frustrated by some of the immature process and systems that we use to manage applicant pipelines. Some of these difficulties are typical of companies that have experienced hyper-growth, some of this is attributable to Riot’s extremely high hiring bar that results in a very low ratio of offers-to-applicants, and some of this is just a result of a recruiting and talent operations functions that are still lacking key leaders who can straighten things out.

Negative: *Immature middle management layer* Because of Riot’s growth, a lot of managers at Riot are first-time managers, and are making first-time management mistakes. This wouldn't be a problem if we had better training for managers and better mentorship systems that paired inexperienced managers with experienced managers to help accelerate the learning curve and minimize preventable mistakes. We’re trying to solve this problem by simultaneously hiring experienced managers (hence some complaints from current Rioters that they feel passed up for promotion) and by building out management training and mentorship systems so that we can successfully elevate more non-managers to management roles. I’m confident that we’ll eventually build a very solid management team, but the current situation is recognized to be suboptimal.

Negative: *Reputation issues* Certain aspects of how Riot operates are misunderstood by some gamers, some press, and some applicants. This is very frustrating to watch from the inside and is a job stressor for those of us who care deeply about seeing Riot recognized in a truthful fashion. Here are two common misconceptions that are particularly bothersome. These things will weigh on you and stress you out if you work at Riot:

(1) Some players doubt our motivations: perhaps because many for-profit businesses hyper-optimize for profit above all else and also because we move fast and make mistakes in execution, players sometimes attribute our decisions to a desire to put profit first. I wish we could invite groups of players in to our meetings where champions are designed, servers are configured, and decisions are made so that they could see that our teams universally put the player experience first.

(2) Some former Rioters who have taken to Glassdoor had bad experiences and believe those experiences are representative of the whole. Reading through some of the very negative reviews here, I believe that we genuinely disappointed these people (in part because of the “recruiting difficulties” and “immature middle management layer” discussed above). But I’m dismayed that these folks believe that the whole company is as bad as their narrow experience. I wish I could apologize to these people and help them understand the bigger picture at the company, because it’s distressing to see them paint the whole company with a broad brush dipped only in the small bucket of their experience.

Advice to Management

Advice to Senior Management – Keep reading these reviews. Keep looking for managers in need of coaching (and deliver that coaching!). Continue your vigilance. Your connection to the truth of what's happening “on the ground” so to speak is critical to ensuring that we move forward together and secure the future we all aspire to.

Other Employee Reviews for Riot Games

  1. "Fantastic place to work, always looking forward to get to work."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Intern in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Intern - Intern in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Riot Games as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The people and culture here is amazing. Everyone is incredibly smart, open, nice, and responsive. If people are available, they'd be happy to show you what they're working on. Being the most focused company is truly what Riot strives to be. No matter what you're working on, the player is the most important part of it. It's refreshing and great to work at a company that focuses that much on the players. It's the most rewarding and fun place I've ever worked at.

    Cons

    If you're not careful, it can be easy to spend too much time working. There are also occasionally issues with communication between teams. It takes a lot of time to make sure teams understand the communication.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "outstanding place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Riot has attracted some amazing talent. By far the best engineering team i have worked with. The company is very focused on the players. The company is very employee growth focused as well. Flexible work schedule.

    Cons

    Not many downsides in my opinion. Company has grown considerably so it does not have the start-up feel it once did. Lack of a widespread bonus plan.

There are newer employer reviews for Riot Games
There are newer employer reviews for Riot Games

See Most Recent

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