Palo Alto Networks Reviews | Glassdoor

Palo Alto Networks Reviews

Updated February 13, 2019
365 reviews

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Palo Alto Networks Chief Executive Officer Nikesh Arora
Nikesh Arora
29 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Company is growing and moving so quickly there are abundant opportunities" (in 17 reviews)

  • "willingness to work with for work life balance" (in 11 reviews)

Cons
  • "Work life balance can be a challenge" (in 29 reviews)

  • "There is absolutely no work life balance" (in 13 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (8)

    "Quite simply an amazing place to work..."

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

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Plenty of opportunities to apply skillsets, and learn new ones as the company evolves its portfolio and reach.
    - Outstanding alignment across the leadership team on mission, vision, and strategy.
    - Clarity of purpose and focus at a molecular level....avoiding needless distractions.
    - Business enabling functions are there to help. If they don't have an answer for you right then and there, they will get one quickly.
    - True passion across functions to do the right thing for talent. Our Human Resources partner has been brilliant, helping the team develop comprehensive talent strategies to achieve our goals.

    Cons

    - As the company grows and scales, the willingness to abandon the old ways which may have worked in the past but won't work in the future, will be critical.
    - Working smarter and not harder, and finding balance, will become more important as the company scales.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the focus on the mission, clients, employees and partners!


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Pressure, Enablement and Getting Stuff Done"

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

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time

    Pros

    There are a lot of pros to this company - enablement and empowerment being the first and foremost. I have never felt more supported and enabled than I do at this organization. That comes with a HUGE amount of pressure, but it's a good kind of pressure. You'll be challenged in a way that will change the scope and nature of your career. You'll grow a ton in the process, and not one moment of it will be comfortable or easy. But you will be respected, treated fairly, empowered and enabled, and will get more meaningful experience.

    Cons

    Yes, there's a change in management. Yes, things are different now with new executive leadership. That's expected. And yes, the change can be really uncomfortable at times. You have to pivot pretty quickly to new priorities, and you have to feel comfortable changing to those new priorities as it relates to your work. This happens often. And it will continue to happen often. If you don't like working quickly, and changing often, it's not a great place for you.

    At the same time, we are transitioning to a larger company with new technology. As part of that, scale and process is a big focus to the company. People who love lack of process and working like a scrappy startup, same comment as above - you probably won't enjoy the transition.

    Advice to Management

    Continue coming out to meetings with employee network groups, networking with the employees in the lunch room. Change is scary - and comfort comes with relationships and familiarity.

  3. "Political"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Account Manager
    Former Employee - Account Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Palo Alto Networks full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    If you get the right territory and the right quota you can have 1 good year.

    Cons

    Management only cares about the bottom line and managing up. They would rather break up a territory than let a rep have two good years. They don’t pay for ELA’s forcing reps to sell stand alone software like traps and aperture that are sub par at best.


  4. Helpful (8)

    "Unachievable goals, lots of inspection, confusing channel messages, and too many managers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Sales in Houston, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The RSU’s and health benefits. Stronghold still on Network security by Fortinet and others are chipping away and have become a concern. Some good cloud acquisitions that still need to be solidified.

    Cons

    Most will admit it’s a tough place to work It is my understanding that fewer than half of sellers make their goal let alone exceed them. Still highly dependent on firewall business. A good amount of turnover exists in the field as well. Not sure if it’s above industry average. Many stay simply to secure the RSU’s which is what helps counteract turnover. Recent influx of middle management in particular from competitors that do little than run internal calls to ask you what you are doing and sit on other internal management calls. Lots of changes coming with partner programs which will hurt many more traditional players that are not building services capabilities especially around the cloud. Annual Reviews are a joke and they have all but stopped providing additional incentives but for the very top tier. Unnecessary internal competition amongst the channel Company ultimately wants to have customers consume many of the cloud products in particular via a marketplace rather than through resellers

    Advice to Management

    Hire more managers that have actually sold before and are not simply operations number crunchers and email forwarders that do little more than manage spreadsheets and run internal calls. The culture has changed significantly since the departure of McLaughlin and the influx of Google.


  5. Helpful (8)

    "Political. Inflexible. Many posturing managers rather than problem solvers."

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

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time

    Pros

    Good pay
    Good benefits
    Lots of on campus perks
    Fertility benefit added for 2019

    Cons

    Complete lack of project management
    An idea company, with no follow through, no tactical vision
    Work life balance is subjective based on your team
    Either people work hard, or they hardly work
    Micromanagement
    Clueless and non-engaged managers like to take credit for others' work.
    Extremely rude and degrading leaders in some areas, and this behavior is just accepted as the norm. I've actually seen 2 managers who do this get promoted.

    Advice to Management

    Trim the fat. Get leaders who empower. Quit rewarding bad behavior. Stop the leaks.


  6. Helpful (6)

    "Behind the Curve"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Beautiful new campus
    Sit/stand desks for everyone at HQ
    Decent health benefits

    Cons

    Out of touch leadership team
    ZERO ACCOUNTABILITY
    Reckless spending and irresponsible, entitled employees
    Virtually no partnership across teams
    Non-functional intranet
    20% of employees carry everyone else

    Advice to Management

    Pay attention to your turnover rate - it’s astronomically high for a reason. There is no reason to stay at PANW given other opportunities in the market.


  7. Helpful (20)

    "Mixed Bag, Ultimately Can't Compete w/ the Big Players"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Professional Services Consultant in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Professional Services Consultant in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks (More than a year)

    Pros

    (this is really more like a 2.5 rating, btw)
    -Looks good on a CV
    -Legitimately interesting and well-thought-of product
    -Smart people
    -Easy work; if you want the hardest part of your week being trying to make "sat around and did nothing 4 days this week" sound like you were somehow doing something productive, this is for you
    -Overarchingly friendly for the most part
    -Solid ESPP w/ long lookback (though might be a con now that the stock has peaked)
    -Health benefits passable (though took a hit in 2019)
    -Free firewall for personal use
    -They legitimately want to "be better", just aren't willing to invest to make it happen.

    It's a truly interesting company, with a technology that is just unseen anywhere else today. It's very likely it will be acquired by a larger security firm within the next 2 years.

    Cons

    -New executive leadership is changing culture from product/customer based to sales based. If you aren't an SE, you aren't a real person. Alpha Dudebro culture imminent.
    -Compensation WAY below industry standard
    -401k is a joke; might as well not exist (1K max match)
    -Bonuses tied to metrics beyond your control
    -"Unlimited" PTO is typical scam, constantly pushed to not leverage it except in extreme situations. Really just a cover for company to not have to pay departing employees accrued PTO.
    -High travel expectations combined with super chintzy travel policy
    -Incredibly poor training/continuing education/professional development. Even training in their own product, let alone anything that doesn't have a Palo logo on it. Frequently paid for my own training out of pocket, even if it was attending conferences Palo was sponsoring.
    -Becoming less about the people and more about analyst computations
    -If you aren't based in Santa Clara or Plano, you're like a ghost to the company
    -If you aren't based in Santa Clara or Plano, you will have ZERO "real" advancement opportunity. Ever.
    -Consultants not infrequently thrown to the wolves to save someone else's face
    -Be prepared to face some ethical dilemmas. You are going to be pressured by certain PM's to push customers into using purchased consulting hours when they are not ready to proceed or not at a stage where the hours could be effectively used, so that the metrics look better. If the customer pushes back, you are going to be encouraged to cajole them into going against their instincts and needs.
    -Even employees have limited ability to access lab resources to test or troubleshoot problems
    -Professional Services not especially valued at company. Consistently treated more as a burden than an asset by upper management
    -INCREDIBLY cheap with equipment. Do not give you the tools you need to succeed; my laptop was broken for over a year and I could not secure a replacement (had to use personal devices to do my job).

    Personal anecdote: I was pressured to take time off for medical issues (which was appreciated at first). Did so and, because my doctor was not prompt enough in filling out his paperwork for the company (beyond my control), was black-marked for "violating attendance policies" because the leave paperwork others were to complete on my behalf wasn't completed. I kept getting badgered to have someone else do paperwork, as though I had any control of the situation, they never reached out to the doctors directly. Kind of a microcosm of how things operate there these days. Decision to separate today with no finalized prospects; to put the compensation issue under a microscope, in less than an hour after electing to separate, had an offer in hand with a base salary $65,000 higher, 4 times as many RSU's, a full 5% 401k match, a 20% bonus (Palo base is 12), and a large signing bonus (Palo does not provide those). The reality here is Palo is great at finding really smart people who are coming from subpar employers (government, privately held, etc.) that don't offer typical techie benefits, which increases excitement for those people initially, but eventually the bloom falls off the rose and they start to see what they're getting isn't anything special and the vaunted culture isn't something most of us really see or experience, it was just better than the terrible situations they were coming from. So the dreamers and those who like easy only-work-20-hours-a-week gigs are the only ones who are going to stick it out, and that will be a challenge going forward as the culture of the company shifts under the near leadership (they're trying to make it Google culture without Google perks). Of the 15 people who started with me 18 months ago, to my knowledge, only 7 remain today, and 4 of those 7 have expressed a desire to leave, but are stationed in cities where there aren't many other opportunities for them.

    The harsh reality is they simply can't compete in terms of employment opportunities with any of the major tech players with solid employee relationships, or even well-funded upstarts.

    Advice to Management

    "The Marks" that you replaced had it figured out, and created an amazing company. In just a few short months, a lot of that has been chipped away, and what's standing now is just an analytics-driven cookie cutter org that places value on numbers more than technology or people. If you want a roadmap to success, I suggest going back and looking what the Marks did before you started stacking the deck with "your guys".

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Good starting point"

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

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    great place to learn and great product to learn. willingness to work with for work life balance. feed you lunch on Wednesday but is almost always Indian food.

    Cons

    starting out new can be rough with all the assessments. Training is very fast and trainer in Plano does not like to help weaker candidates. There is a lot of favoritism in getting promoted.

    Advice to Management

    Director should be more involved with promotions to keep managers from promoting favorites.


  9. "I've worked for Palo Alto Networks for almost 2 years"

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

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Best company I've ever worked for

    Culture, management, career path, compensation, incredible products, happy customers

    Cons

    Absolutely none that I can think of.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you're doing.


  10. Helpful (7)

    "Toxic environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Clara, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Clara, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Palo Alto Networks full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Beautiful campus
    - Good health benefits

    Cons

    Where should I start?
    - I would stay away if I knew the culture...
    - Lack of communication and collaboration between teams
    - Poor management with no vision or roadmap
    - Very micro managing culture
    - A lot of turnovers in the past 1-2 years and people are leaving the company
    - Very political!
    - Unlimited PTO is a joke!
    - No work/life balance
    - Managers with limited people management skills
    - Toxic environment

    Advice to Management

    Do not promote people to management level because they have been in the company longer than others. Please evaluate their management skills before promoting them.