SDL Reviews | Glassdoor

SDL Reviews

Updated June 23, 2017
418 reviews

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3.4
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SDL CEO Adolfo Hernandez
Adolfo Hernandez
56 Ratings

418 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Good work/life balance and good compensation (in 34 reviews)

  • Very positive working environment (in 29 reviews)

Cons
  • Sometimes the work/life balance suffers (in 13 reviews)

  • Very long hours for not enough money - definitely not paid as well as in the industry (in 15 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (2)

    "One of the best companies I've worked at"

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

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

    Pros

    I've been working at SDL for just over 3 years. I have to say that this is one of the best places I've worked. My colleagues and job responsibilities keep me going. Since our customers are very well known brands, the expectations are high, but with the support you get from the team it is easier to meet those expectations. I am proud to be part of the content management team that so many customers rely on daily.

    I am in love with the culture we have here at SDL, its a very team oriened environment as colleagues and management have your back and work together to provide the best customer experience. We may not be a trendy startup, but we have roots and a long history that has stability.

    At SDL If you are diligent with your work like any place, growth and success will follow you. Its easy to talk to management and get your ideas and opinions out to make it better for you, your team, your product and the company.

    Cons

    It would be nice to be able to expand your knowledge with other products at SDL to help in career advancement.

    Advice to Management

    More recognition to make the employees feel appreciated.


  2. "Great Company!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Project Manager in Superior, CO
    Current Employee - Associate Project Manager in Superior, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great management support, challenging work, resources for training

    Cons

    Antiquated technology, not PMI structured


  3. Helpful (3)

    "Poor Management, No Opportunity to Learn, Lousy Pay"

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

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

    Pros

    I had a team of awesome coworkers, often flexible WFH options, and the location is nice next to the mall.

    Cons

    Management is rarely ever available! They are always "too busy" to support or listen to your concerns. Very little training is provided to management and it is apparent. Because of this, you also receive little training yet are always to blame when things go wrong. There is very little opportunity to learn new skills when you're simply never given the resources to do so. The overall pay is simply not worth the work.

    Advice to Management

    Take the time to listen! We have great ideas for how to change things for the better, but rarely get the chance to try them out. Also, be on our team! We want to do well for you when you support us along the way. I would highly recommend a proactive management model rather than reactive - your employees may even stop leaving.


  4. "Lots or opportunity to define your role"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Manager New Products in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Program Manager New Products in Seattle, WA
    Recommends

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

    Pros

    Very collaborative environment. Senior executives are easily accessible, and quite responsive

    Cons

    Internal teams very disconnected, left hand not aware of what right hand is doing. Communication style is not streamlined, and surprisingly unorganized for such a large company


  5. "Translation and Content Management Innovator"

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

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

    Pros

    SDL has gone through some significant changes in the last 5-6 years but all have been for the better of the company. Having been one of the three largest localization and content management companies for the past decade SDL has demonstrated an incredible viability of its business model and its offerings. Day to day work is interesting and never boring (at least in my case). Excellent colleagues around the world and in office. I'm excited to see where SDL ends up in 3-5 years once its current transformation takes final shape. Good work/life balance and good compensation.

    Cons

    Some of the past changes resulted in high turnover but things have been improving dramatically over the past two or so years.

    Advice to Management

    Continue with the changes you are undertaking right now.


  6. "Great place to work"

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

    I have been working at SDL (Less than a year)

    Pros

    SDL provides a great working environment. The staff is very professional and friendly at the same time. I find that the majority of the people were extremely helpful, and were driven to do their best. SDL also provides excellent benefits, including health and other insurance packages, saving plans and more, at a reasonable monthly cost. Management is smart and professional, and a great company culture is created welcoming all that want to contribute to the success of the company. It is refreshing to see how decisions are taken about expenses, such as company parties, dinners, etc. being mindful of the costs. SDL does not have a showoff culture, unlike some other workplaces.

    Cons

    More information sharing and inclusion is needed between teams and locations. SDL is working towards that goal, so that is great.

    Advice to Management

    Advertisement of new positions and recruiting internally (including management positions) across global offices.


  7. "Good and improving, but could still be better"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Program Manager in Superior, CO
    Current Employee - Associate Program Manager in Superior, CO
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    Multi-cultural office settings, high level of diversity, the people, fast pace industry

    Cons

    Management disconnect from employees. Feeling no matter how hard or well you work - it does not seem to be enough.

    Advice to Management

    Keep comments HR appropriate


  8. Helpful (3)

    "Messy"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Boulder, CO
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Boulder, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Some good people work there

    Cons

    This company is just messy. Processes are cumbersome, nothing is automated, everything depends on human accuracy -- or lack thereof! Project Managers are overworked and get burnt out quickly. The revolving door never stops!

    Advice to Management

    A happy employee is a productive employee!


  9. Helpful (6)

    "Can be good or bad, depending on where you are"

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

    I have been working at SDL (Less than a year)

    Pros

    I can honestly say that the have one of the best medical plans I've ever had, many of my colleagues outside of North America are amazing to work with, and the new executive team is far more competent than the leadership team we had before. Some of these leaders can inspire and teach skills that are difficult to find in any other place. Also, if you're looking to leave localization, this company is a good stepping stone because the technology side of the business can give you a passport to the world outside of the industry. There's a lot of change going on at this company and for the better, so the opportunities to get ahead are plenty.

    Cons

    If you happen to be stuck under the reign of terror in certain regions, be prepared for a petty, vindictive leadership culture that values sycophants over innovation and free thinking, to the point of some managers just up and quitting because of this environment. Those who ask too many questions are often blacklisted, critcized openly or behind their backs in blatant smear campaigns not based in reality, or are excluded from important conversations in an attempt to keep them from doing their jobs properly (especially if you are a senior manager that's standing in the way of getting whatever ridiculous whim granted). If you are strong leader and know your strength, you will be fine--but it's not always pleasant and at times, very frustrating.

    Advice to Management

    To grow as an organization, you need to encourage a culture of innovation and creativity that's based on solid, rational thinking and not based on trying to force fit people into roles because of their relationships. You know exactly where your issue lies and you cannot afford to ignore it any longer.

    SDL Response

    Mar 27, 2017 – Global Head of HR and Employee Experience

    Hi, thanks for your review. Our employees are our biggest strength and I agree that they are amazing to work with. I’m glad you agree that the changes we have made are to make the company better ... More


  10. Helpful (5)

    "SDL Gets Distributed Teams and SaaS Platforms"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Principal Hosting Engineer & Team Lead in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Principal Hosting Engineer & Team Lead in Los Angeles, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    outstanding support for distributed teams and flexible hours - SDL is global in its DNA, and the energy from working with teams from a wide range of locations and cultures is addictive.

    Having a team that is on multiple continents means that progress happens constantly; it also mean a more diverse team and a broader array of backgrounds and opinions.

    Being a global company means that there's always something interesting going on somewhere, and the company's outlook tends to be less dependent on the economic ups and downs of any single country (even a powerhouse like the US).

    Lots of products at varying stages of maturity, with significant R&D and dev/ops work happening in interesting fields like machine learning, neural networks for machine translation, modern SaaS platforms, etc.

    Cons

    since work progresses constantly, it can be tiring or difficult to stay up-to-the-minute with things that are happening - sometimes there can be a default 24-hour delay on anything happening if you happen to be working with people who are at a 10-12 hour offset from you.

    Because the company has such a diverse set of backgrounds (and many non-native English speakers), it can be difficult sometimes to clearly understand others (or make yourself understood). Context is very important in conversations, and that can be difficult to convey in calls or chats, especially with speakers from different cultures and backgrounds.

    The distributed nature of the company can sometimes make it frustrating to execute quickly on decisions. If you happen to be based in a remote location that's not near the company's global HQ, you may often find out about things after they happen, or about decisions after they've been made, rather than getting a chance to be involved in the discussion ahead of time.

    Advice to Management

    stay disciplined on good communication protocols and practices - avoid hallway and walkup discussions and embrace use of ChatOps; this way geographically distributed teammates are on equal footing with those who happen to be physically proximate.


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