Theranos Reviews | Glassdoor

Theranos Reviews

Updated February 28, 2017
114 reviews

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2.6
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Theranos Founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes
Elizabeth Holmes
88 Ratings

114 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Yes, the free food is plentiful and the snacks are generally healthy and abundant (in 16 reviews)

  • They provide breakfast, lunch and dinner but you are expected to work very late (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • You won't cut it here if you want to get away with doing the bare minimum, you have to be willing to work hard and work long hours (in 12 reviews)

  • work/life balance very skewed towards work (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Recruiter"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Recruiter in Palo Alto, CA
    Former Employee - Recruiter in Palo Alto, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great team to work with. Good leadership in HR and Recruiting.

    Cons

    Slow company process, flat org


  2. "R&D RECHNICIAN"

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

    I worked at Theranos full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Very happy to work at Theranos

    Cons

    I don't have any down side


  3. Helpful (17)

    "Shut down"

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

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

    Pros

    Vitriol may be fair, if you thought you were joining a company developing world-changing medical technology (that ill-defined mission, harped on about while exuding that odd, naive wonderment). I’d say my experience was positive as it was about what I’d anticipated… don’t get me wrong, I knew when I interviewed with execs that they like literally had no idea at all what they were doing. Yes, that was damned frightening for a company that had chosen to enter such heavily regulated spaces, but at the time I thought if I could get in just before the bubble got popped by regulators, this could potentially be an unparalleled opportunity (as a junior professional outright seeking unique compliance-oriented experience, indeed it was).

    Cons

    From day 1, an unnerving feeling I’d joined a cult (like an observer not yet brainwashed) that only escalated in sinister intensity until my last day. Most management served with steadfast commitment to perpetuating all the necessary pretenses and myths so as to placate execs, as the truth was always some variant of game changer/deal breaker/scientific paradigm un-re-definer. That culture almost invalidated the entire concept of logic and the related prospect of reasoning, which remained beyond the feeble grasp of most inhabitants of this carefully crafted, painfully distorted alternate reality. There was a stunning dearth of operational infrastructure and lack of core personnel competency, with no commitment (made in my time) to implementing the absolute bare minimum industry standards missing across the board. This was, understandably so, a necessary status quo management upheld in order to permit the egregious conduct that will make this company infamous (over the next few years, as heinous details emerge). I saw no convincing commitment to quality (vapid, hollow town hall buzzwords aside) or tangible progress made toward establishing core systems, and at the time I left I still could not get answers to the same very basic compliance questions.

    Advice to Management

    Don’t ever contact me ever again.


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  5. Helpful (31)

    "Gaslight Syndrome"

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

    I worked at Theranos full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    The weather is mild in Palo Alto. The new building is in a nice area to take walks and bird watch.

    Cons

    The first day on the job you start to become a victim of gaslighting.
    The three phases of gaslighting and work life at Theranos.

    The Idealization Stage: In the beginning of the relationship the narcissist showers the victim with attention, they are loving, charming, flirtatious, energetic, exciting, and great fun to be with. They appear to be so happy and interested in the relationship, and the unsuspecting victim enjoys every moment with their new charismatic partner. They love how the narcissist is so beautifully intense and how they get drunk on life, and they too want to drink this elixir with them. Intense bonding begins for the victim, and innocently, they also believe that the partner feels the same way about them, that the relationship is reciprocal, but this is the narcissist’s biggest deception.

    The Devaluation Stage: Almost overnight the narcissist becomes decisively cold and uncaring. The victim’s falls from grace is a hard one, they cannot seem to do anything right anymore; the narcissists loving words turn to criticism, everything the victim tries ends in a negative effect, and they find themselves devalued at every turn. Totally confused, the victim has no idea what is happening, and they become increasingly stressed, unhappy and depressed with the situation. The roller-coaster relationship leaves the victim in a state of constant chaos, as if always “walking on eggshells”. All their energy is directed at defending themselves, so the narcissist is not getting the positive attention that they crave; this is likely to be the time when the narcissist starts to look for a fresh provider of narcissistic supply.

    The Discarding Phase: Once this happens, the narcissist ardor for the game has dampened, in their eyes they have already won the contest, and the fun is over. By this time, the narcissist is totally indifferent to any needs or wishes that the victim may have, in effect they no longer exist in their mind. Not so for the victim, they are left confused and raw with emotion, and are eager to find solutions in order to “fix” the dying relationship. However, the narcissist resists all attempts to rescue the relationship, they will bully with silence, or if there is any kind of response, it will be brutally cold. In effect, the victim has become “worthlessly inferior” to them; they know they have drained the victim dry, that they have now outlived their usefulness, and now it is time for the narcissist to move on to the next source of supply.

    Advice to Management

    You should never work for a CEO that acted like an adult as a child. Now as an adult acts like a child.


  6. Helpful (21)

    "Are there any adults in the room?"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Culture & Values
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Palo Alto, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Palo Alto, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Compensation
    A lot of very smart and driven and kind people, thrown into a smelly swamp

    Cons

    Are there any adults in the room? There is zero direction or structure, the quality and regulatory systems and knowledge and compliance thereof is almost nil. SCARY. There is no communication or transparency even within the company, silo mentality -- in a company whose purpose is to PROVIDE INFORMATION to its clients and patients (I guess employees are not included.) It is like eighth-graders running around in a sandbox to design medical devices, and having petty and political cliques.

    Management is utterly ineffective, and those individuals who step forward to do things right, and do things at all, get no where.

    Elizabeth Holmes should have stepped aside to let someone capable run her company long ago, and it may have survived. But she has too much ego and Elizabeth Inc. will go down in a sputtering flame, at the expense of many brilliant and underappreciated and directionless employees that she doesn't give a damn about. It is a FRAUD, to investors, to the public and patients, and deeply to employees. I don't expect it will be here a year from now and I will not be on that sinking ship.

    Advice to Management

    Make it a graceful and planned shut down with respect to all who have supported you, rather than the last ones standing come to work to find the doors chained and locked.
    Because you really care about people and taking care of them, company mission, right?


  7. Helpful (21)

    "Scam, and poor management since the beginning"

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

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

    Pros

    See what other reviews say: free food, pay check, great people.

    Cons

    1. Poor decision making for the company since DAY ONE.
    2. 16 years into the history of Theranos, with ZERO product on the market, back to point number one.
    3. No revenue = no money to sustain the company.
    4. Over-hyped before the company was ready to come out, fooling investors and consumers, and giving employees false hopes to work on "revolutionary technology".
    5. Adding bunch of old technologies in one box is not revolutionary.
    6. Expanding the company too much without vision! Two rounds of mass lay off won't save the company.
    7. Getting into clinical testing industry without proper regulatory knowledge, hence the FDA and CMS sanction.
    8. Too many law suits from investors and patients. At risk of being bankrupt.
    9. The hope of getting future investors to burn their money for Theranos is slim.

    Advice to Management

    EAH would lie without a blink of her eyes, it's almost scary. Stop lying and being so fake. Honestly, I have no hope nor faith in this company at all.


  8. Helpful (18)

    "What a wild ride"

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

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

    Pros

    The people. The mission drove me to Theranos, but it's the people I work with day in and day out that keep me motivated.

    Cons

    The utter lack of transparency is inexcusable. The inability to execute project plans and non-existent ownership of failures. Low company morale. The list can go on and on.

    Advice to Management

    Can a canoe sinking in the middle of an ocean without a paddle or inkling of hope really recover?


  9. Helpful (15)

    "All Senior Executives are Horrible"

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

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

    Pros

    Free catered meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
    Pretty HQ

    Cons

    Management is very secretive and the whole company isn't cohesive as a unit .
    Company cares a lot more about public opinion than actually improving product or taking care of patients.
    No 401(k) match

    Advice to Management

    Admit to your mistakes and apologize. Be more transparent in how you will change and improve the company.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Medical transcriptionist"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Medical Transcriptionist in Phoenix, AZ
    Former Employee - Medical Transcriptionist in Phoenix, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great company, great coworkers, great managers

    Cons

    Was laid-off, management not in best of shape

    Advice to Management

    Learn how to deal with media.and press regarding mistakes in testing blood the wrong way


  11. "Operations"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Avondale, AZ
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Avondale, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    They found the right individuals for the right positions.
    Free food.
    Great company parties.
    Good pay, good PTO.

    Cons

    Hmm.. where to start? To much control with every move not allowing people to standout.

    Advice to Management

    Hopefully with the reaction of what's happened to the company there will be some positive changes in the future. I wish them well..


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