Microsoft Reviews in Mountain View, CA | Glassdoor

Microsoft Mountain View Reviews

Updated January 17, 2019
222 reviews

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Mountain View, CA

3.8
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222 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • "Work-life balance can be a challenge" (in 1197 reviews)

  • "Outdated review system which is anything but fair" (in 530 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Awesome place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Principal Program Manager in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Principal Program Manager in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Microsoft full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Smart, high-caliber co-workers. Challenging environment. Good compensation.

    Cons

    Stressful, high-energy, tight schedules, and lots to do. Review process keeps you on the treadmill.

    Advice to Management

    Politics cannot be avoided :(


  2. "Great opportunities for young hardware engineers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Electrical Engineer II in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Electrical Engineer II in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Small yet highly talented HW engineering community: I was surrounded by exceptionally bright and capable coworkers, I learned a lot from multiple mentors.

    Exciting Hardware projects: Surface, Xbox, Hololens are all big in SVC, tons of exciting, technically challenging work to cut your teeth on.

    Good work-life balance and perks (at Silicon Valley campus) including fitness classes led by instructors, catered bfast/lunch, and dinners when staying late (depends on org).

    Travel opportunities: Redmond, international partners, China, etc.

    Good benefits: 401k matching, employee stock purchase discount, yearly fitness equipment reimbursement, PRIME card, commuter card.

    Cons

    Many, many layers of management - expect 6-9 layers of management between you and CEO - making it difficult for cultural changes to trickle down through the org.

    Because of the many layers, a lot of your day-to-day depends on your direct manager. Mitigated by ease of moving internally.

    Program manager heavy - many PM's overseeing schedule, but over the 4 years that I was there, I saw the same scheduling mistakes occur constantly.

    Redmond calls the shots. If you're at a satellite campus and want to pitch program/project ideas, you will be flying into Seattle a lot.

    Advice to Management

    If you are serious about cultural changes, make sure they do trickle down.

  3. "Circuit"

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

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

    Pros

    Good food and great coffee

    Cons

    Bad management, and poor design flow


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Market Leading, Mature Company, with Mature Company Pros and Cons"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    * Smart people
    * Good work/life balance,
    * Products used by millions
    * Mature, financially stable co. / decent pay / stock has been doing very well
    * Satya Nadella
    * Many different products to work on / lateral movement

    Cons

    * Horrible development tools/process (varies by product -- ask specifics such as "how long does it take to build, test, validate, and check in a change?")
    * Design by consensus (usually by non-designers) -- no one "owns" a product
    * Most products and all internal tools are mediocre
    * Management rewards people for short term projects and features, the people move on, leaving half-finished, orphaned work behind
    * It usually takes years to advance, so 90% of the people in control have been there for 10 - 20 years, most of them have never worked anywhere else.


  5. "Solid work environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    Former Contractor - Senior Programmer in Mountain View, CA
    Former Contractor - Senior Programmer in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends

    I worked at Microsoft as a contractor (More than a year)

    Pros

    I enjoyed my time contracting with Microsoft in the bay area. I met and got to work with some brilliant and extremely talented programmers.

    Cons

    Meetings were held regardless of necessity and there were some 'dead weight' team members who had been there for many years, and knew the minimal work they had to pretend to do to keep their jobs and keep getting raises. That put extra pressure on the rest of the team to make up for their lack of contribution.


  6. "It was great until they divested this part of their business"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineering Program Manager in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Engineering Program Manager in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Outstanding comp, benefits, and stock sharing. Yearly Stock awards that vest over 5 years are a great way to retain top talent. Other tech companies should take note...

    Cons

    Things can become bureaucratic and you can get lost if you're not a self starter and able to influence others for your cause. Rating system was overly reliant on goal commitments made early on in the review cycle.

    Advice to Management

    Basing salary merit increases on ones commitments without constantly seeing if those are in line with current business strategy can motivate in the wrong direction.


  7. "Amazing company to work for and a company with great values"

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

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Cutting edge Technology
    Global products and services
    Smart and good people

    Cons

    Process heavy
    Too many steps involved in releasing stuff

    Advice to Management

    Increase agility and reduce the compliance process

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Software Engineer"

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

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Work-life balance is one of a kind with all the benefits you are getting.

    Cons

    Stock is not an important piece in compensation, in house software, old practises


  9. "Hardware Engineer"

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

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

    Pros

    Good work-life balance and cool projects

    Cons

    Salary slightly lower then software jobs


  10. "Mechanical Engineering Internship"

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

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

    Pros

    Great culture, very cool products

    Cons

    Work can be unstructured


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