Illumina Reviews in Cambridge, East of England, England | Glassdoor

Illumina Cambridge Reviews

Updated April 10, 2017
11 reviews

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Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)

4.1
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Illumina President & CEO Francis deSouza
Francis deSouza
3 Ratings

11 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Pretty good flexibility in our work helps with work life balance (in 22 reviews)

  • Innovative and fast paced environment (in 45 reviews)

Cons
  • Work life balance is always a concern (in 50 reviews)

  • Fast paced environment with constant changing of directions on priorities (in 20 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Interesting and fun place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Current Employee - Director in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Director in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Interdisciplinary team work
    Innovative science and technology development
    Great and highly motivated people to work with
    Fast-paced and results driven

    Cons

    Increasingly a big company
    Information flow across the organisation can be poor


  2. "Great vision, sometimes confused execution"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Marketing Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Senior Marketing Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Ground breaking technology output, great people, opportunities

    Cons

    Good at products but much less good at process, no clarity on progression and moderate focus on development only

    Advice to Management

    Need to sort out informatics and deliver in time with competition


  3. "Very fast moving"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great and smart people, plenty of training and social activities, no micro management

    Cons

    Lack of training implementation and direction - it is often assumed that the employees know how to proceed themselves. The company is growing so fast that there is often miscommunication or lack of it between the teams.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the great work but do not forget the basics of teaching how to do things


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  5. "Illumina Ltd - Granta site"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    fast-paced - always something new
    perfect for employees who love change
    exciting technology and applications - mission of the company is inspiring
    looking forward to full clinical engagement

    Cons

    working tools and process are not adequate to size of company and efficiency of work
    too many manual steps - time-consuming and prone to error
    clinical transformation seems to stall
    lack of investment for better processes

    Advice to Management

    give us better tools for the job
    keep good work of good communication by upper management

    Illumina Response

    Apr 17, 2017 – HR

    Thank you for taking the time to share your experience, and how we can continue to improve! We’re glad to hear that you find the fast pace and constant change exciting, and feel an inspiring ... More


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Good company, slow career development"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The company has large global impact and its products serve a good cause: to improve human health. The base salary and benefits are good. The employees are talented and mostly humble and polite.

    Cons

    Most projects require communication across sites that on the two sides of the Atlantic and this can be challenging. Career development can be slow.

    Advice to Management

    Mostly good work so far. But with the quick expansion comes also more responsibility to keep everyone motivated and make them feel that they are useful for the company's mission.


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Middle managers can be bad"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Bioinformatics Scientist in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Bioinformatics Scientist in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great company with great products, dominates the marketshare and salary conditions are good.

    Cons

    The company is suffering from growing pains: promoting bad managers simply because of growth causes them not to perform and affect the work of their direct workers.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of underperforming middle managers, allow people to promote or move laterally to other groups.


  8. "Thrilling and exciting place to work!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Executive Territory Account Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Executive Territory Account Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Privilege to be a part of revolutionizing healthcare forever

    Cons

    Long hours, growth pains, lack of communication between departments


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Very open, enterprising and challenging"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - H R in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Contractor - H R in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Illumina as a contractor (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Very successful organisation making strides to improve people's lives. Good group of international colleagues. everyone is willing to work together.

    Cons

    Lots of change means there is something of a feeling of chaos which isn't always good for the best quality work.

    Advice to Management

    Our colleagues in the US need to remember that we are a global company not a US company!


  10. Helpful (9)

    "The experience still haunts me sometimes."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Not Applicable in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Not Applicable in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    It is a progressive company which issue shares to tie you into your role. So you can see how much effort you put in to how the company grows. In this respect, it gives you a sense of achievement overall. It is also one of those "life time opportunity" to be within a technologically forefront company. When I left university, I aspired to be in such a company. I came into this company mid-way through my career. There was a semi-friendly culture, but it conflicts with one's loyalty as the organisational chart kept changing.

    Cons

    The turnover rate was quite high. As I joined after the merger, and there was a period of respect between all colleagues, until you start to see individuals being taken out of the running. Then some kind of culling occurred for some reason. I was also caught up in the political organisational changes, such that I felt very marginalised, and also disrespected. I also realised that my contribution within those long email chains, often advices or trialed and tested solutions that came from years of experience from my side, was then taken as some kind of new ideas or achievement on the US side. It often were from the sales team who were more aggressive and came across as running the company to be honest ! It really was about US HQ, and no actual understanding of contribution on the Europe side at all. People got more annoyed as their contributions were not acknowledged and skillsets were stripped away. Or rather, "copied" away. It is one thing if you made clear who was in a project and who was not. But when the boundaries are so undefined, then yes, it seems almost like setting up the employee to fail.

    Advice to Management

    I like you to know that, you managed to take away some of the very well respected managers who grew the original small companies before the big merger. That was a very big mistake. You potentially had some of the very wise and solid professionals who stood strong in this industry and ensured the security of the company, and you let this be mismanaged away by some very disrespectful and arrogant, and untrained under mid-30s professionals. Some of approaches used were even unlawful !

    I was surprised to find out that another colleague also took out a loan to supplement actual business trips to sell the products, and we are still in debt due to this. The salary was unjustified. Looking back in hindsight on Glassdoor here allowed me to see how naive some of us were in reality. You did not even look after the basics right. Allowing employees the most basic tools, without impacting their own personal and financial statuses.

    Also, you overworked your operations staff such that, I saw one woman fainting because of meeting your quarterly goals. Please ask yourself whether you are a true ethical company or not. Because if you were, then the ethical aspect starts on the inside, and that also mean following the employment laws ! Working under a set number of hours and no more, and bringing in health and safety laws too without burning out your own employees. Instead of perfecting some of the needed basics to keep employee happy and healthy in a steady way, the emphasis were put on the bottomline.

    I would also check the ethics and the professionalism of some of your senior IT managers. As I understand that a few of them joined and migrated from another bio-tech company. Yet, I saw one male manager who was absolutely unprofessional and harassed a young intern verbally, such to a high extent that, he rechallenged him back with a knife ! This was during a company meal,on an off site support trip. What kind of people are you hiring ? This is not the kind of company that I want to work for. And yes, this same high level Director just saw Jay as a face of the company and no more. Well, at least I believed in science, and I believe in what Jay say ! There is a huge difference between those who are from science backgrounds and believe in the company to those who just want the prestige and the title or the money.


  11. "Small company, large aspirations, life changing potential"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Being involved in a revolution of genetic analysis & understanding. An industry on the cusp of a human revolution. A leader in the industry.

    Cons

    Work / Life balance can be challenging at times. Growing pains of a small company becoming an enterprise but well understood and being dealt with.


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