Synapse Product Development Reviews | Glassdoor

Synapse Product Development Reviews

Updated February 12, 2017
33 reviews

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4.5
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Synapse Product Development President Redwood Stephens
Redwood Stephens
2 Ratings

33 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Synapse is full of wonderful people, and can be a great place to work if you consider the location, work-life balance, and the company community (in 5 reviews)

  • Opportunity to learn something new everyday (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • Middle/senior management is not particularly inspiring (in 2 reviews)

  • There isn't a clear path for career growth (in 2 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (3)

    "The clearly stated goal is 'best job ever'"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development (More than a year)

    Pros

    This is -the- best job I've ever had, hands down.
    - My colleagues are smarter and more experienced than me and I am always absorbing as much as possible, yet no one ever acts superior or smug. It is a super supportive group that builds each other up.
    - Management is responsive to issues raised, actually listening to and acting on what I have to say.
    - Engineers have a voice in what projects they work on.
    - The variety of projects is wide, leaving great options for what sort of designs to dive into.
    - It's in SF, near CalTrain, AT&T park, walkable to transit, etc.
    - We do fun stuff together as an organized office event at least once a month.
    - I enjoy coming to work.
    - My contributions are valued, and I get feedback.
    - I feel fairly compensated.
    - We work with Fortune 100 companies and startups, making things that are sure bets to come to market as well as pie in the sky hopefuls.

    Cons

    - No dogs allowed in office.
    - For some engineers, the amount of client interaction might be difficult.

    Advice to Management

    Try to minimize the changes surrounding the acquisition by Cambridge Consultants!


  2. "Love working here - Best place to work!"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Synapse is filled with the smartest and most humble people I know. The work is interesting, dynamic and fast paced. It's a perfect environment for product geeks and those who want a lot of variety in their work.

    Cons

    Compensation could be better. Organization is quite flat.

  3. "Great place to work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Very nice people, management that listens and acts. Cool tech, reaching for more, cautiously.

    Cons

    Some clients cause less than ideal projects

    Advice to Management

    Increase funding and support for technical growth.


  4. "Learn it all!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Intern - Electrical Engineering Intern in Seattle, WA
    Current Intern - Electrical Engineering Intern in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Synapse has a very open culture with a truly flat-feeling structure. Interns are treated just the same as any employee and get to do very exciting work. Also, since Synapse develops products from start to finish, there are many opportunities to learn--from design to manufacturing, failure analysis to RF...! Everyone is happy to help you find a solution to your problem, wanting you to succeed.

    Cons

    The work flow varies drastically depending on the stage of your particular project. Other than that, Synapse is great.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you're doing! I love the clarity and the openness to the rest of the employees. It has been a great experience so far.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Good place to settle"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time

    Pros

    Synapse sees and works on a lot of interesting consumer products so you get exposed to a diverse set of challenges and technologies. Many of the products are things you or people you know might use, which is fun.

    The company values a 40 hour work week -- it's rare that people work more than that.

    People are generally very friendly and fun to work with.

    If you're someone who wants to cruise through the work day, make a reasonable salary, and have great work life balance Synapse is good place to be.

    Cons

    Salaries are well below market rate/there's no equity based compensation. Granted you're only working 40 hours a week so maybe on an hourly basis it's not so bad, but on an annual basis it's a big salary hit compared to working at a traditional tech company.

    There's little opportunity for career growth within the organization. Sure your title might change slightly, but in all likelihood day to day responsibilities won't.

    Middle/senior management is not particularly inspiring.

    The employee base is not diverse.

    There is a non insignificant base of employees that are culturally insensitive.

    Advice to Management

    Think about how create an organization with opportunities for career growth/advancement. Curb the animal house culture a bit.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to work"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Constant supply of new and unique projects. One month you may be designing small electronics and the next you may be designing much larger mechanisms.

    Cons

    It can be challenging to work with new customers on a regular basis, but it also keeps things new and interesting.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Great Place to Work and Learn"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    The people and the family-like community at Synapse keep me coming back day after day. We attract quite a range of interesting clients and projects, and if I don't learn something here on any given day it's my own fault. People are always willing to share their knowledge and expertise, whether conversationally or in the form of documented design guides and best practices to help in future projects. Leadership is committed to hearing the good, bad, and ugly feedback about how things are going, and mostly address those elements head-on.

    Cons

    - The culture needs a shift so that people provide one another with constructive feedback in real-time. It's a very conflict-averse culture, to its own detriment at times, particularly where people have to perform well in front of clients and partners.
    - It's great to have a stable sales pipeline and business coming in, so I can't knock that. However, the business development strategy is unclear when it comes to attracting and securing a diversity of projects - industries, capabilities, etc. This is a large team of generalists, with specialists in particular areas of common need. Generalists tend to like to see variety, so this lack of business development strategy is generating a feedback loop into employee satisfaction.

    Advice to Management

    - Give your people the tools they need to provide one another with real-time feedback, and help shepherd that cultural transition - it will take some time, but it needs a boost.
    - Develop, present, and execute a cohesive business development strategy that shows you're looking for the kind of work your people are interested in, and not the same kinds of projects over and over again.
    - Find a way to make your administrative folks a real part of the family. They are sometimes second-class citizens within the organization, yet they keep the business running in a very tangible and important way. All those who have a part in Synapse's success should be valued members of the family.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Best Place to Work!"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Community of smart, competent, and fun people
    Variety of challenging and interesting projects
    Opportunity to learn something new everyday
    Now acquired by Cambridge Consulting which opens the opportunities for even more projects and collaboration with a larger community

    Cons

    Sometimes the project schedules are tight and require additional hours of hectic work to catch up

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work!


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Every day is different"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time

    Pros

    Awesome coworkers. Tough but cool projects with a wide variety of clients. Strong focus on a family atmosphere. Lots of opportunity to learn.

    Cons

    A few people have stayed for several years and their bad habits have infiltrated the system. That's not easy to undo.

    Advice to Management

    Great momentum these days. Feels like we're on the right track. Looking forward to what's to come!


  10. Helpful (4)

    "The Best"

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

    I have been working at Synapse Product Development full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    A large portion of the Synapsters are actually friends and hang out with each other outside of the office.
    The office environment is creative and collaborative.
    The majority of the engineers are very willing to help teach younger engineers and just as willing to learn from younger engineers.

    Cons

    Many of the product design is doing the same thing that was done before.
    Small client base and small product variety.

    Advice to Management

    Branch out to find more state of the art, up and coming companies that will have interesting technologies that need to be productized.


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