Microsoft Reviews in Redmond, WA | Glassdoor

Microsoft Redmond Reviews

Updated August 19, 2017
2,264 reviews

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Redmond, WA

4.0
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  1. Helpful (1175)

    "Thoughts after 10 years...."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA

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

    Pros

    1. If you love tech, this is a great place. No doubt you'll talk tech (mostly the MSFT stack) from enterprise to consumer - from PCs to phones to Xboxes - from datacenter to desktop.

    2. What were GREAT benefits are now VERY GOOD (took a small step down) but still probably better than you'll find at 99% of large corporations. If you've got family - the value of the benefits is even higher. 401k match is nice.

    3. Even with it's struggles MSFT is still a cash printing machine. This means if you can keep your nose clean and do reasonable work, you can have a stable job, pay your bills, feed your family, and not worry (too much) about layoffs. The stock you own likely won't tank, but probably won't go up much either. You'll get a bonus each year and some stock. It's a decent life if you aren't looking to light the world on fire.

    Cons

    Brand on Your Resume: After many years of losing market share and struggling to be at the front end of innovation and the fact that there's 90,000 employees, don't think MSFT is necessarily going to be attractive on your resume to more agile and smaller companies.

    Managing Your Career: Make you say this out loud so it registers - 90,000 employees work there. Double that for vendors. It is VERY hard to "stand out" and move up in the company. Don't expect your manager to be much of an advocate or enabler to help you meet your career goals - they are basically trying to survive the stack rank every year too. Not familiar with the stack rank? Check out the 2012 Vanity Fair article called "Microsoft's Lost Decade".

    Advice to Management

    I'll type it here - but I don't they are listening...
    1. Help proven talent move laterally in the company for new opportunities.
    2. Kill/evolve the stack rank. Here's basically how it's viewed:. 30% of the company gets 1s and 2s - and they are happy. 50% get 3s and that basically feels like getting a "C" in school. This sucks for talented people when a multitude of UNCONTROLLABLE conditions keep you from getting into 1 or 2 range. The 20% getting anything below a 3 are walking dead. In summary, 70% of the company walk away from the review cycle feeling like crap. This is no good.

    After 10 years, I'm leaving - it's just a matter of time until I find the right opportunity. I need to find a company spends 90% of it's time building technology experiences, as opposed to 90% of its time building PowerPoints. And I expect to refuse the exit interview - because if you really cared what I thought, you wouldn't ask me after I decided to leave.


  2. "Great for beginners to earn experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - MIcrosoft Explorer in Redmond, WA
    Former Intern - MIcrosoft Explorer in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Lots of benefits, a huge campus, the chance to work on products everyone in the world knows and uses, a yearly company exclusive hackathon, reasonably high salary, lots of events (boat parties/outings, the Signature event, etc)

    Cons

    Development can feel plodding, and there's a lot of red tape. It's also completely up to chance what team you end on, and in what division you end.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure all your teams are smaller and take specific feature ownership

  3. "Senior Consultant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Consultant in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Good workplace, supportive management, stock

    Cons

    Very bad work-life balance at all


  4. "Great team (ACOM). Friendly, professional, talented coworkers!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Web Developer in Redmond, WA
    Current Contractor - Web Developer in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Microsoft as a contractor (More than a year)

    Pros

    Small team. Talented professionals. Great communicators. Well-established workflow amidst the growing pains -- this can only get better with time!

    Cons

    I'm not gonna pick on Microsoft for being a large company. :)

    Advice to Management

    Continue setting milestones and be sure to surface all that tribal knowledge to build an even more fantastic team!


  5. "Terrific company, CEO and future"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Principal Program Manager Lead in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Principal Program Manager Lead in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Very smart people. Satya the CEO is a terrific people and business leader, with clear and compelling strategy & vision. Lots of opportunity for internal movement working in different groups, roles and locations globally. Microsoft is better positioned than any company for the cloud. Satya is very focused on culture and continues to move it within the company to a better place.

    Cons

    It's a big company, which brings bureaucracy at times. While the universally hated forced review curve is no longer official practice, every group I've seen still pushes managers to identify low performers and give them no rewards at annual review. Job security is less than what it use to be due to annual layoffs.

    Advice to Management

    Layoffs are part of helping evolve the company and keeping us in leadership position, however better approach would be to look for internal opportunities for these people rather than firing a few thousand and hiring a few thousand every year. I've seen some terrific people let go, which boggled the mind, while plenty of dead weight is still around.

    Increase staffing. Many groups are just too small to really compete. Perfect case study is Cortana vs. Alexa. Cortana launched well ahead of Alexa, but team was < 100 people for few years because it was part of Bing and managing to the larger P&L. Meanwhile, Amazon hired hundreds on Alexa and has much larger ecosystem and much more momentum now.


  6. "Awesome benefits, solid culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Senior Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Microsoft benefits are second-to-none and keep getting better. Competitive time off, paid leaves include generous parental leave (including foster/adoption placements!) and even caretaker leave to provide for a family member with an illness. 50% 401k match up to the maximum contribution, good health benefits, etc.

    The culture in most teams is also very welcoming of diverse opinions and contributions are rewarded well. Microsoft has one of the broadest reaches in the world in terms of number of people who use your product, so you get the chance to work on very prominent pieces of tech and do something people will recognize.

    Cons

    Big ships turn slowly. We're often first on the scene with a great idea, but so slow to execute that we're last on the scene with an actual deployment of it. You'll probably encounter this and get frustrated by it regularly. It can also be a cult of personality at times, where directives come down from "on high" that a particular direction shall be taken.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up with the great benefits (though lunches would be appreciated). Keep up on the attempts to change the culture to be more customer-centered. But the big ship needs to be able to turn more quickly.


  7. "Business Development Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Hardware Program Manager II in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Hardware Program Manager II in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Best time since the start and rapid growth of Microsoft to be working here. Great product line-up, excellent company leadership, and customer focused approach.

    Cons

    Still extremely bloated, way too much middle management. Organizing functions by centers of excellence as opposed to business units has caused some challenges (IE: All hardware reporting up through one chain, as opposed to operating as Xbox, Surface, etc...)

    Advice to Management

    Continue to remove redundant layers of management.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Principle Program Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Principal Technical Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Principal Technical Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Top talent. Really smart people. Usually only takes 1 explanation on complex subjects for teams to understand. Motivated to help. Nice work environment. Good benefits.

    Cons

    Make sure you respect the manager you are working for otherwise you may not do well at performance review time.

    Advice to Management

    Always be working on something critical and mainstream for the company and interview for those positions if you value job security. Ensure you have at least two critical accomplishments every 6 months.


  9. "Building a World Supply Chain"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Technical Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Technical Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Brilliant people, cool projects, chance to have a big impact.

    Cons

    Bad work life balance (improving). It's a business and layoffs are always an option.

    Advice to Management

    Get real about work life balance. Watch out because Amazon is going to take away your Enterprise Golden Eggs.


  10. "Microsoft Solutions Specialist"

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

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great work-life balance and good benefits
    Stock options
    Vacation package is competitive
    Great coworkers, get to work with intelligent people every day

    Cons

    Job stability - roles change every 6 months to year, and even within the same role description the KPIs and requirements may change
    Benefits package, mainly medical, took a downturn this past year

    Advice to Management

    Less reorganizations that disrupt workers' lives


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