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Google Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Work life balance is often mentioned but rarely (in 282 reviews)

  • Sometimes you feel you are very alone in this big company (in 241 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "There is such a thing as a free lunch after all."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Planning Scheduling in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Planning Scheduling in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Free breakfast, lunch and dinner. Google is not a conventional company, and we don’t intend to become one. True, we share attributes with the world’s most successful organizations – a focus on innovation and smart business practices comes to mind – but even as we continue to grow, we’re committed to retaining a small-company feel. At Google, we know that every employee has something important to say, and that every employee is integral to our success. We provide individually-tailored compensation packages that can be comprised of competitive salary, bonus, and equity components, along with the opportunity to earn further financial bonuses and rewards.

    Cons

    Google has offices around the globe, from Bangalore to Zurich, but regardless of where we are, we nurture an invigorating, positive environment by hiring talented, local people who share our commitment to creating search perfection and want to have a great time doing it. Googlers thrive in small, focused teams and high-energy environments, believe in the ability of technology to change the world, and are as passionate about their lives as they are about their work.
    Lend a helping hand. With millions of visitors every month, Google has become an essential part of everyday life - like a good friend - connecting people with the information they need to live great lives.
     Life is beautiful. Being a part of something that matters and working on products in which you can believe is remarkably fulfilling.
    Appreciation is the best motivation, so we’ve created a fun and inspiring workspace you’ll be glad to be a part of, including on-site doctor and dentist; massage and yoga; professional development opportunities; shoreline running trails; and plenty of snacks to get you through the day.
    Work and play are not mutually exclusive. It is possible to code and pass the puck at the same time

    Advice to Management

    * Know what interests you about Google and why you've applied.
        * Familiarize yourself with Google's products and services here (you may be asked both business related questions). Research our competitors.
        * If you are interviewing for a software engineering or technical role, be ready to answer high-level technical questions on data-structures and algorithms. We would like you to code up your answers on boards with our engineers.
        * Familiarize yourself with the job description you are interested in.
        * If you are interviewing for a software engineering role then you may first want to visit the website www.topcoder.com. Please launch the 'Arena' widget and go to the practice rooms where you can solve problems in the first and second division.
        * Ensure you can substantiate anything your CV says - for instance, if you list Java or Haskell as your key programming language, questions about this are fair game and may be asked of you.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Still a good company, but may not be the best anymore"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineering in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Software Engineering in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Cutting-edge technology, famous brand, good food. The good weather here in mountain view, ca is also a good reason. If you are tired with the free food here, go get some decent dinners in the Castro street nearby. You can also learn a lot from tech talks, open days, the moma, and the code tree itself. Google's code base may not be the biggest, but its quality is the best in the world.

    Cons

    it is a good place for college graduates but may not be good for ambitious people. The decision to quit is difficult because of the perks, the good food, and the admires from people around you when they know you are a googler. But there is a reason for so many talent people to leave this company ...

    Advice to Management

    Fifty engineers under one manager? No doubt many googlers complaint not getting fair reviews.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to start your career"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate, Online Sales & Operations in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Associate, Online Sales & Operations in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    It was a great place to be working for straight out of college. When you start work there they really take the time to make sure that you're trained properly so that you don't feel like a fish out of water like at other companies. Benefits can't be beat. Besides the free lunches, fantastic 401k, etc, you get large bonuses fairly often. Co-workers were intelligent and great to work with for the most part. I also had a great relationship with my manager and thought I was treated fairly, but it can vary widely at Google. All in all, there's few better places to start off for a young college grad.

    Cons

    As a non-engineer, your starting pay is pretty low. It's made up through bonuses and other compensation methods, but when I went to another company, it was harder to negotiate a higher pay due to my low base pay at Google. It's also starting to become a big company, so you have layers of middle management who are just a couple of years out of college and don't have the experience to manage people well. Most were great workers, but many don't understand that there's a large difference between doing your own work well and making sure that others do their work well through your guidance.

    Advice to Management

    Figure out constant new ways to empower employees to take risks.


  4. "come for the perks, stay for the challenge"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Web Developer in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Web Developer in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    great perks.. the food at the cafeteria kept me up all night long
    the best and brightest engineers. Most people I am working with are very well-rounded, I feel I could learn a lot from most of them. I can contribute to products which are used by millions of people every day. I enjoy analyzing challenging problems and finding a cost effective solution. Flexible hours and relaxing working environments (including all the perks such as free meals.

    Cons

    When you start work there they really take the time to make sure that you're trained properly so that you don't feel like a fish out of water like at other companies. The free lunches, great 401k, etc, you get large bonuses that can make the difference in a long day

    Advice to Management

    stay active in the life of a project


  5. "Best company I've worked at that hasn't gone under."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Technical Writer in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Technical Writer in Mountain View, CA
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The projects are interesting. There are interesting data sets to explore. There are cool tools to use, along with infrastructure for puttnig together new tools. The people are great--when you meet a "dud" at Google, it tends to stick in your memory since the duds are so rare. It's satisfying to work on a service that's helped so many people. The food is great; chefs are treated like rock stars and rightly so. The company has income; this is a pleasant change after working at other software development companies.

    Cons

    The bottom-up management style means that some good ideas with uncharismatic boosters get buried.

    Advice to Management

    Don't screw it up.


  6. "Google is still the best company to work for"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer II in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer II in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    1. Incredibly smart engineers. Most Googlers I am working with are very well-rounded, I feel I could learn a lot from most of them.
    2. Big impact. I can contribute to products which are used by millions of people every day.
    3. Deal with challenging problems.
    4. Flexible hours and relaxing working environments (including all the perks such as free meal and message)

    Cons

    1. Not perfectly fair promotion process
    2. Give too much opportunities to low performers (i.e. take too long time to eject low performers)
    3. The company size is getting too big.
    4. Salary is relatively low compared to other top software companies.

    Advice to Management

    1. Eject low performers.
    2. Pay less attention to school ranking in the hiring process
    3. Make promotion process fair.


  7. "stock options underwater"

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

    Pros

    extraordinary co-employees, some of the most brilliant people on the planet. knowledge is enormous all around you. embraces a keep it simple philosophy in making products instead of a bloated overloaded features product.

    Cons

    no management, no growth, no understanding of what you're working on and how it fits into the big picture, working on minute feature areas, working on features that generate no revenue, having to play the political game to move up the ladder

    Advice to Management

    get back to the days of making a great product for users rather than doing what seems politically advantageous

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Good place, could be better"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    It's a great place to work as a programmer. The tasks we work on are mostly interesting and challenging, and the breadth at which your work will be applied is nearly unparalleled, certainly in the online business. The people are fun and smart.

    Cons

    The people are very smart. If you're used to being a hot shot, you may not be any more. If you're looking for the startup atmosphere, well, don't, because it's gone. You will still have more autonomy than a lot of other companies, but you will not have complete control over the project you work on.

    Advice to Management

    Stop with the communism, please. Why is it that you always assume we can do things better than others. Outsource some of our benefits and return the savings to us in salaries.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Engineer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    the benefits, especially the food and fluid hours, are great. so is the fact that everyone around you is incredibly smart.

    Cons

    i think google is expanding too quickly, and that they are letting in too many people who don't meet the standards. for example, i knew an employee who claimed that they didn't have any code to show for the past several months of work because their computer's hard drives crash, yet everyone knows that no one stores code on their own computer... there are version control repositories.additionally, i know great people who have not been hired for random reasons. such as failing an interview which required coding in C over the phone...

    Advice to Management

    recruiting


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Google is actually as good as advertised."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - AdSense Representative in New York, NY
    Current Employee - AdSense Representative in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Thanks for setting up this site Glassdoor.

    Google is an industry leader in many endeavors and often finds itself listened to by competitors and partners alike. I hope that does not come off as overly confident, it's a wonderful place to work. Our management and product teams are thoughtful about all of our projects.

    Google enjoys a solid reputation among consumers, something that is difficult to achieve, and we lead the internet industry in consumer satisfaction. It makes me proud to say I work for a company that is so highly regarded by our partners, competitors and the general public.

    We are a company that provides innovative answers to today and tomorrow's questions. Our technology is more powerful than our competition and we continue to add new services to our already robust product suite. We leave the end users satisfied and our partners happy that we're looking out for their best interests.

    There are other great reasons to work for Google, yes there is free lunch but that is just one piece to the puzzle. It's generally the overall trust that the company has in it's employees and the respect that the employees show for the company. Management has decided not to put a cap on sick days and trusts that employees want to come to work, which we do. We want to work on the products that will change the way that people access and consume information. We want to speak to clients, collaborate with them and work with them to change the world... that's the attitude I have going into work every day for the last three years and that's a really good feeling. The best part is, Google is enabling this attitude.

    Cons

    As Google has grown larger over the last few years, it has hired tremendous managers, adding new layers to our corporate hierarchy. The company has hired the "best of breed" from many industries, allowing Google to take advantage of the extensive networks created by those individuals. These individuals are fantastic - team players, industry visionaries, thought leaders - truly an amazing set up people with whom to surround yourself.

    That is how I would describe the average Google employee and what they bring to the table. Not necessarily a downside. The level of mutual respect and admiration is very high here. We are all cooperative (... or should I say cooperatively competitive) as we believe it brings out the best in us and pushes us to succeed. With levels of achievement levels so high, it is difficult to see people who do succeed but who are not the Michael Phelps of their respective field.

    Advice to Management

    The company is well situated to take advantage of future technological advancements and I'm thankful for the opportunity to work for a company that is on the cutting edge of virtually every technology available. Keep up the good work.