Illumina Reviews | Glassdoor

Illumina Reviews

Updated July 13, 2017
411 reviews

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4.0
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Illumina President & CEO Francis deSouza
Francis deSouza
82 Ratings

411 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Pretty good flexibility in our work helps with work life balance (in 23 reviews)

  • Innovative and fast paced environment (in 48 reviews)

Cons
  • Work life balance is always a concern (in 51 reviews)

  • Illumina is fast-paced and there are many days with long hours (in 21 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Reseach Associate 2"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Associate II in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Research Associate II in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Illumina full-time

    Pros

    Everyone is incredibly friendly, smart, and approachable
    Co-workers and managers really care about your well-being
    Managers care about your career aspirations and recognize company goals is to create new innovative technology so they encourage new ideas and increased responsibility
    Hard work is recognized (within teams and company wide)
    It's clear CEO and Board members value their employees between programs offered, policies implemented, as well as interviews they give
    Company values are not just posted on the walls they are talked about on a daily basis and kept in mind with every project
    Lots of opportunities to branch out and meet other people in the company with other departments
    Lots of amenities
    Fast paced and meaningful work

    Cons

    Deadlines come quickly and priorities are constantly changing- not for someone who does not like change


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Very distasteful experence."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manufacturing Department Worker At Illumina HQ in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Manufacturing Department Worker At Illumina HQ in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Benefits package and PTO seem fair.

    Cons

    Opportunities for professional growth at Illumina.Does not happen unless someone likes you personally.
    Recognition and praise you receive when you do a good job. Is not happening they only group you together for a brow beating.
    Fairness in how promotions are given and people are treated. This is very bad, they only give out promotions based on favoritism and politics.

    Work/ life take a beating .Very political place. Toxic bosses.

    Advice to Management

    At some point insider politics and the good old boy environment will be bad for your bottom line take action now it may coast you later.

    Good place for an undercover look from the inside.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Needs to improve environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The company has some very interesting technology that is leading edge and some employees are very good to work with in a team atmosphere

    Cons

    The downside is that some employees are just looking out for themselves and is not part of a team with citing and talking behind your back when they get a chance; in addition, management needs to improve with treating employees with good ethics and understand that certain employees have families and life after work.

    Advice to Management

    Senior management would need to create a workplace that has a balanced work/life and become agents that create a work environment that promotes good ethics and healthy work atmosphere for growth.


  4. Helpful (3)

    "Horrible management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Applications Scientist in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Field Applications Scientist in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Cutting edge technology. Name brand recognition. Geographically small territories. Pay is competitive.

    Cons

    Extremely political. Lots of blame game, while not supporting field employees. No trust in employees by management. Promotion only happens for older pre-sequencing employees, regardless of performance. Customers also feel alienated by rapid product changes.

    Advice to Management

    Fire the support management. Theyve created a toxic environment.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Weird"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Systems Support Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Systems Support Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great people to work with

    Cons

    Asses are running the company into the ground.
    It will be a $ 25 stock until it goes under

    Advice to Management

    Get someone who knows how to run a business


  6. Helpful (9)

    "Joke"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    One consistent thing I have read in these reviews that is very true is that this place is very fast paced. This forces you to prioritize and will prepare you very well for any other organization (as no one lasts long here, whether it be through their own free will or the company's)

    Cons

    No respect and no work life balance. Sacrifice of weekends and evenings is consistently not just expected, but required (yes you read that correctly). Poorest quality management I have seen in all my years as a working professional, as there is zero reward for excellent work, hard work, and effort. Only the most blatant of kissing up will get you anywhere here, and it is very sad to see this go on right in front of you. This is due to the very cutthroat and often immature politics that plague this organization.

    Very blame ridden environment, with lots of blame passed between departments and not very much inter-department collaboration.

    Company often times appears to refuse to get affairs in order, with everyone scrambling at the last minute due to poor execution and bad leadership, and very unclear direction.

    Advice to Management

    Let Roche come in and take over. It would be better for your employees, customers, and the scientific community in general

    You've exploited and ruined this company, and you should be held accountable


  7. Helpful (5)

    "Lack of Collaboration"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Working with new technology and a few interesting people.
    Good personal time off system.
    Holiday events and happy hours are fantastic.

    Cons

    Recruitments, selections and promotions are based on internal political
    agenda, for example hiring friends to guarantee personal loyalty at the expense of other
    highly performing and more-qualified employees.

    Managers believe that the more people they manage and the
    bigger the budget, the higher the chance that they will be promoted. This results in raging
    battles around budgets, strategies and operations.

    There are many management layers in the organization, thus,
    hindering communication and resulting in slower execution.

    Muted level of commitment and enthusiasm teams. Even
    successful results cannot be shared and celebrated due to animosity and internal negative
    competition.

    There is a high rate of absenteeism and a high employee
    turnover rate.

    Advice to Management

    To quote Gandhi: "Be the change you want to see.” The most powerful leaders are almost
    always the role models for the change they seek. If the CEO practices bad politics, no
    amount of training or coaching will change the management team.

  8. Helpful (6)

    "Unlike any company I've ever worked for"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    The technology is awesome but even that is being tarnished by the poor quality in recent years. Initially you will be very excited and impressed with the "energy" of the company, but slowly you will realize that the energy is really chaos. You will question how you are able to work in such a crazy, disfunctional environment. It's not just a challenge to work at Illumina, it's a work triathalon that will end up breaking you down mentally and physically. This in turn will more than prepare you for any future job challenges.

    Cons

    I will never forget my time at Illumina because I have never worked for such a horrible company in my life. It was all about the bottom line and anything else such as quality, process improvements, treating folks with respect and encouraging a healthy work life balance took a back seat. I noticed that during this recession the mid and upper management that were a part of the "good ole boys and gals club" often received promotions, and executives paychecks seemed to grow an a very inflated rate while the common workers barely got a cost of living increase and saw their restricted stock plummet in value. I am only mentioning this because if the company bottom line is not doing well (there was a layoff recently), why are the executives getting a fatter paycheck and why are you building newer facilities?

    Advice to Management

    The technology needs to be taken to the next level and you need mid-managers that know what they are doing and will treat your everyday worker with respect. Probably best that you merge with another company that can help you get the technology into the healthcare setting because you certainly won't be able to do it with your current management.


  9. Helpful (11)

    "Terrible experience I will never let happen in my career again"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Ops in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Ops in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    - nice facilities
    - many capable colleagues throughout the years

    Cons

    - Career advancement is non-existent unless you play ridiculous games and are a political backstabber. Actual work performance and quality get you nowhere at this company
    - Chaotic and disorganized as a company, and they are proud of it
    - Over-rewarded executive and sales teams to the point of lewd extravagance, while all other departments struggle and are treated harshly
    - Very arrogant attitude and overall corporate culture. They act as if you are lucky to be with them, hence they get to treat you like a thing
    - World renowned terrible middle management. By terrible I mean how they treat people, their competence levels, political acuity, and overall professionalism. To say they are a joke is an understatement
    - Terrible upper management that perpetuates a horrible environment to suite their (mostly financial) needs, and not the needs of the company or employees as a whole. Working for them is a career stopper

    Advice to Management

    Your work force resents you and the terrible decisions you have made. The gross misallocation of incentives and advancement is apparent. You need to seriously mind your employees who have worked their tails off to give you a seven figure salary and reach the $1billion+ mark. You have not done this, and as a result, you have lost the vast majority of your top talent in 2011. Suites you right.


  10. Helpful (6)

    "10 Years going to Illumina to work."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manufacturing Technician III in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Manufacturing Technician III in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Illumina full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Stock given to me.
    PTO is good system.
    good benefits.
    steady job for ten years with increases first ~8 years.
    Good I cafe.

    Cons

    24/7 work non stop manufacturing.
    Very stress filled & mad people on your back.
    very political environment after 8 years as Illumina grew.
    no system of promotion to next level, all political or friendship based.
    HR provides no balance for employee grievances.

    Advice to Management

    waste of time as long as the stock is great they could care less.


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