Panasas Reviews | Glassdoor

Panasas Reviews

Updated April 5, 2017
46 reviews

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3.7
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Faye Pairman
34 Ratings

46 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "All of the Benefits and Energy of a Startup, but with the Maturity of an 18-year-old Tech Company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Architect in Pittsburgh, PA
    Current Employee - Software Architect in Pittsburgh, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    I accepted a full-time Software Engineer position at Panasas in 2014 as I was completing my Ph.D. focused on Solid State Storage and Distributed File Systems. At that time I had simultaneous offers from Amazon, Micron, and Intel, and did substantial research on and spent time with those teams to make the best choice for my first (non-intern) Engineering job. While those larger names made compelling offers and interesting research and development was going on at those places, I decided on Panasas (and my very happily spent 2.5 years since joining have validated this decision) for the following reasons:

    1. Work on Things that Matter: I wanted to join a small group or company that had the energy and sense of urgency of a startup; I was wholly disinterested in joining a group that was sailing on a sea of cash in a big company doing nothing of particular import. I want my contributions to both be necessary and impactful, and I have been able to design and deliver software in my role since joining that has had notable impact on our customers.

    2. Meritocracy; not Ageitocracy: I desired an environment that rewarded folks based on intellect and contribution, not merely how many years you've spent heating a desk chair wearing a "Software Engineer" badge. Here at Panasas, if you come in and are eager and intelligent you will be recognized and rewarded. Having entered (and maintained) those traits, in the short 2.5 years I've been here I've sought and been given leadership roles on two major projects that are already shaping the company's future. Additionally, I've received promotion to Software Architect, a position that generally is not offered to persons with my (years of) experience in large companies simply because the bean-counters cannot justify it on paper. In short, at Panasas, meritocracy reigns.

    3. Mature Software Life-Cycle: I wasn't ready to jump into a full-blown start-up because they tend to lack the development, testing, and product infrastructure to enable me to get both broad and deep experience with a full software life-cycle. Panasas particularly has a rich assortment of testing and simulation tools that have been developed over the last decade that make rapid engineering significantly easier. While imperfect, having started my own company during my Ph.D. I recognize just how powerful the tools we have at our disposal are in terms of maximizing productivity compared to starting from scratch.

    4. A Tightly-Knit Team: I wanted to work with a group of engineers and managers you can both dig in and work long hours with to finish a project as well as kick back and have a beer with when it's all said and done. Both of these have occurred and I've made lasting friendships already here.

    5. Competitive Compensation: It would be facetious of me to say compensation wasn't on my mind, especially as my first job and having attractive offers from the likes of Intel, Amazon, and Micron. Panasas provided a highly competitive offer, competed (and won) with counter-offers against those companies, and has since stood firm by that commitment to keep me with continuing compensation adjustments.

    Cons

    Panasas is not a great choice for you if you fall into any of these groups:

    1. The Coaster: You expect to join with years of software engineering experience and just coast, committing a thing or two every so often. Just as eagerness and intellect are rapidly rewarded, sloth and ignorance are also recognized and equally rapidly dealt with.

    2. Refactor Everything Bro: You cannot cope with a mature software development infrastructure. By "mature" I use both senses of the term. There are definitely some crusty clanks from our 18-year tenure we all would like to change, but they simply don't provide a good value proposition to our small company to do so at this time. One has to have both the capacity to judge the difference and the willpower to work with them despite their rust.

    3. The Grass was Greener Guy: You enjoy spending most of your time waxing philosophical about how X, Y, and Z were so much better at Initech where you worked before than they are here. See #2, but if the value-prop is high, we're a place where most of the time you'll get the go-ahead to just go ahead and fix it. If you prefer to just moan about it day after day instead of fixing or coping with it, Panasas is probably not a good fit.

    4. The 4-Walled Cuber: You don't like working with people on projects or are aggressively anti-social. While we're all weird (we're Software Engineers for glob's sake) the important thing is that we can collaborate effectively on projects. Don't mistake this for "have lots of meetings" -- that is definitely not our mantra. It means have an effective team meeting once a week and be able to collaborate on pointed issues on a day-to-day basis, rather than building your own wheel, getting and staying stuck on an issue for an entire week without reaching out to another for help, or using your own coding style that differs from everybody "just because." This is a small company and there's a lot of solo work to be done, but the skills to collaborate effectively, especially on the big projects, is crucial.

    If you feel you don't fall into any of the above groups (or you're committed to escaping those habits) Panasas will be an awesome place to work. However, I've seen folks who did fall into one or more groups above, and they didn't have a particularly great time.

    Advice to Management

    We're on a much better track than a few years ago; continue your commitment to the medium- and long-term projects as they are extremely value-rich and Panasas is going to be something truly special in a short time.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Promising company"

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

    I have been working at Panasas full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Some of the best engineers I have worked with. Has a small, but very talented engineering team. Great workplace culture. Offers salary and benefits comparable to some of the larger companies. Although there have been difficult times in the company over the last two years, they managed to turn it around and they are now
    ready to expand their already big customer base.

    Cons

    Need to hire even more engineers and advertise our product more. We have some big customers people are unaware of.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work


  3. Helpful (1)

    "High quality team, products and customers"

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

    I have been working at Panasas full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Having been here for a year, I am impressed with the high calibre of the dedicated team, the quality of the product as evidenced by the top tier customers that entrust their core assets to the Panasas products, and vision the company has for its future.

    Cons

    None really to speak of.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up!


  4. Helpful (1)

    "marketing vp"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing in Sunnyvale, CA
    Current Employee - Marketing in Sunnyvale, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Panasas full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Panasas is a technology leader with a highly differentiated product and an awesome list of the most progressive companies in the world as customers.

    Cons

    Panasaas is run as a lean organization where trade-offs and priorities are dynamic. The workload can be heavy but satisfying.

    Advice to Management

    Stay focused on what's important to drive growth and success. Don't get confused by nay-sayers and shiny objects many times referred to as trends.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Great Company, People & Roster of Customers"

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

    I have been working at Panasas full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Small company, nimble & open to new ideas, smart people. Most importantly, best colleagues I have ever worked with. The company went through a wrenching battle between VC & Private Equity to gain control. Now with private equity its a leaner, more ROI driven company. World class names in their client portfolio. Robust roadmap.

    Cons

    More branding and awareness to bring forth the great work being done at the product level and great customers being onboarded

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the transparency


  6. Helpful (7)

    "Horrible experience"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Former Employee in Fremont, CA
    Former Employee - Former Employee in Fremont, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Panasas (More than a year)

    Pros

    Small company environment and some good employees

    Cons

    Company has no future due to horrible management


  7. "Good company but struggling"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The people! Wonderful co-workers. Friendly atmosphere.

    Cons

    Using outdated software methodologies and tools. Want to update but its difficult and happening very slowly

    Advice to Management

    Put thought and effort into modernizing the tools and the development process


  8. "Hard, but Has Potential"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Configuration/Release Engineer in Pittsburgh, PA
    Current Employee - Configuration/Release Engineer in Pittsburgh, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The company has a very strong position with its technology.
    After coming under new ownership and restructuring in 2016, it is also much more financially balanced.
    The current engineers and engineering managers are excellent, co-workers are some of the best people I know.
    In 2016, people are taking more risks, and the company feels like it is finally moving forward.
    The time off increasing every year for 10 years is great.

    Cons

    The work can be very heavy at times.
    Needs more investment in ditching more legacy infrastructure, and ways to lower the cost of testing and producing the product.
    Due to the large amount of responsibility, it can be easy to move up quickly, but very hard to move horizontally career-wise.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to replace legacy test and product infrastructure, even when it seems risky or costly.
    Find ways to make it easier to train people to switch tracks within the company.
    Improve the 401(k) options, add generous matching.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "One of most horrible experiences in my life"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Panasas (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Some best engineers I ever seen

    Cons

    Some (now gone) dishonest managers.
    Horrible communication
    HR and CEO is a major failure
    All intellectual property being sold, the money spent on who-knows-what
    Layoffs, layoffs, layoffs

    Advice to Management

    Few years ago it would be: "Lay off the CEO"
    Now the company cannot be salvaged - they have no intellectual property left.
    Probably the best advice would be: "be honest, at last - and look back at the shame you did!"


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Engineering"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Solutions Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA
    Former Employee - Solutions Engineer in Sunnyvale, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Long standing customers still holding the company together even though the product lost its market advantage years ago.

    Cons

    Talent loss, outdated hardware design, more competitive options in HPC now than just a few years ago.

    Advice to Management

    Re-focus on HPC and the market share you once had. Scale out customers do not benefit from a parallel file system.


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