Microsoft Reviews in Seattle, WA | Glassdoor

Microsoft Seattle Reviews

Updated February 20, 2019
7,736 reviews

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Seattle, WA Area

4.1
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7,736 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  • "Outdated review system which is anything but fair" (in 530 reviews)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. "Great work culture"

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

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

    Pros

    The work culture helps learn a lot and grow into a great engineer. There is a good growth mindset.

    Cons

    Need to understand the politics and be self driven about career growth in terms of ladder.


  2. Helpful (1466)

    "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.

  3. "A great company to work for"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Redmond, WA
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    - great people
    - fun and challenging work
    - leadership
    - benefits

    Cons

    - limited opportunities to learn non-Microsoft technologies


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Great company - you will be busy"

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

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

    Pros

    Employees are empowered to make good choices

    Cons

    The company under Satya is going in the right direction but there are still groups with dysfunctional leaders.


  5. "Have a very good work and life balance"

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

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

    Pros

    Work life balance is very good.

    Cons

    Sometimes the user is not happy with project.


  6. "Great company"

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

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

    Pros

    Fair work environment, diverse culture, and great benefits

    Cons

    Long hours and legacy products


  7. "Great place to work"

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

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Culture to continue improving personally and as a company

    Cons

    Big company, can at times feel disconnected.

  8. "great company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Bellevue, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Cutting edge technology, good growth if in a good team.

    Cons

    Old team has some politics that blocks the company's future growth

    Advice to Management

    Hold deep technology, invest in the future


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Something For Everyone"

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

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

    Pros

    Microsoft being as large as it is feels like a company of companies. There seems to be something for every interest, be it solving enterprise problems (Azure, Dynamics, ...), into consumer products (Xbox, Surface, Mixer, ...), e-commerce, research, education, etc.

    This also applies to organization sizes and work style (e.g. startup-y, more structured, etc).

    Cons

    Some organizations are nicer to work in/with than others. It is worth asking about micro-culture details when joining to see how they align with your likes.


  10. "Promotes managers who behave like Trump"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Contractor - Program Manager in Redmond, WA
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Nice campus and reasonably-priced cafeterias. There's a great "diversity" movement that seems to be trying to take root, although decades too late perhaps. Hopefully things will change, but given the history of Microsoft's consistent tolerance for bad behavior and cronyism, we may not see it in our lifetimes. Many employees start off as nice, decent people there.

    Cons

    Microsoft tends to promote people into team managers who have no experience in the area they are managing. The result is often bullying behavior where they take credit for the knowledge they gain from subordinates (especially experienced contractors) and then look for opportunities to humiliate them in public using projection of their own habits and lack of ability in order to discredit those who understand the role. These same managers are often very low in productivity. The distribution of work is extremely unbalanced - members of a team can put in great effort with high productivity while the manager and other senior members can be extremely lazy with low capacity for years.

    Advice to Management

    The culture is toxic even in engineering orgs where politics should not win out over quality of work and contribution. The only people who don't think so lost their moral compass long ago by staying at Microsoft too long.


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