Illumina

  www.illumina.com
  www.illumina.com

Illumina Reviews

Updated 28 November 2014
Updated 28 November 2014
155 Reviews
4.0
155 Reviews
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Illumina CEO Jay Flatley
Jay Flatley
113 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Fast paced, well well-thought our solutions/processes (in 15 reviews)

  • You get to work with a lot of smart people, and the amenities of the new campus are great (in 14 reviews)


Cons
  • No work/life balance, challenging to get ahead with all the great people (in 19 reviews)

  • No work life balance, getting more bureaucratic (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Intern

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern
    Former Employee - Intern

    I worked at Illumina full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Friendly people
    Good company atmosphere
    Great company social events

    Cons

    In the middle of nowhere

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great company to work for.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research and Development
    Current Employee - Research and Development

    I have been working at Illumina full-time

    Pros

    It is an extremely successful business with highly skilled and driven employees. Great opportunities to learn from some of the best in the industry. The benefits are top notch but the pay is average which has in part been compensated for by the great stock performance recently.

    Cons

    There is a lack of career paths outside the headquarter but this seems to happen in other companies as well. It is difficult to get promoted from within so try to join at a high level. Sometimes overlapping or competing projects at different sites.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Streamline communication between the different offices, provide clear career paths and guidance for employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3. 3 people found this helpful  

    The experience still haunts me sometimes.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Not Applicable in Cambridge, East of England, England
    Former Employee - Not Applicable in Cambridge, East of England, England

    I worked at Illumina full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    It is a progressive company which issue shares to tie you into your role. So you can see how much effort you put in to how the company grows. In this respect, it gives you a sense of achievement overall. It is also one of those "life time opportunity" to be within a technologically forefront company. When I left university, I aspired to be in such a company. I came into this company mid-way through my career. There was a semi-friendly culture, but it conflicts with one's loyalty as the organisational chart kept changing.

    Cons

    The turnover rate was quite high. As I joined after the merger, and there was a period of respect between all colleagues, until you start to see individuals being taken out of the running. Then some kind of culling occurred for some reason. I was also caught up in the political organisational changes, such that I felt very marginalised, and also disrespected. I also realised that my contribution within those long email chains, often advices or trialed and tested solutions that came from years of experience from my side, was then taken as some kind of new ideas or achievement on the US side. It often were from the sales team who were more aggressive and came across as running the company to be honest ! It really was about US HQ, and no actual understanding of contribution on the Europe side at all. People got more annoyed as their contributions were not acknowledged and skillsets were stripped away. Or rather, "copied" away. It is one thing if you made clear who was in a project and who was not. But when the boundaries are so undefined, then yes, it seems almost like setting up the employee to fail.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I like you to know that, you managed to take away some of the very well respected managers who grew the original small companies before the big merger. That was a very big mistake. You potentially had some of the very wise and solid professionals who stood strong in this industry and ensured the security of the company, and you let this be mismanaged away by some very disrespectful and arrogant, and untrained under mid-30s professionals. Some of approaches used were even unlawful !

    I was surprised to find out that another colleague also took out a loan to supplement actual business trips to sell the products, and we are still in debt due to this. The salary was unjustified. Looking back in hindsight on Glassdoor here allowed me to see how naive some of us were in reality. You did not even look after the basics right. Allowing employees the most basic tools, without impacting their own personal and financial statuses.

    Also, you overworked your operations staff such that, I saw one woman fainting because of meeting your quarterly goals. Please ask yourself whether you are a true ethical company or not. Because if you were, then the ethical aspect starts on the inside, and that also mean following the employment laws ! Working under a set number of hours and no more, and bringing in health and safety laws too without burning out your own employees. Instead of perfecting some of the needed basics to keep employee happy and healthy in a steady way, the emphasis were put on the bottomline.

    I would also check the ethics and the professionalism of some of your senior IT managers. As I understand that a few of them joined and migrated from another bio-tech company. Yet, I saw one male manager who was absolutely unprofessional and harassed a young intern verbally, such to a high extent that, he rechallenged him back with a knife ! This was during a company meal,on an off site support trip. What kind of people are you hiring ? This is not the kind of company that I want to work for. And yes, this same high level Director just saw Jay as a face of the company and no more. Well, at least I believed in science, and I believe in what Jay say ! There is a huge difference between those who are from science backgrounds and believe in the company to those who just want the prestige and the title or the money.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Excellent scientific challenges

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bioinformatics Scientist
    Former Employee - Bioinformatics Scientist

    I worked at Illumina full-time

    Pros

    cutting-edge research organisation, very nice work culture with decent socialising events for employees. Perks include: free gym membership, healthcare, stock options

    Cons

    limited movement/advancement within organisation. Scientific progress is possible, but organisational improvement is hard. Possibly the side-effect of an organisation grown to global dominance. They have a habit for taking researchers straight from PhD studies and paying them little more than a postdoc salary.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Small company, large aspirations, life changing potential

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Cambridge, East of England, England

    I have been working at Illumina full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Being involved in a revolution of genetic analysis & understanding. An industry on the cusp of a human revolution. A leader in the industry.

    Cons

    Work / Life balance can be challenging at times. Growing pains of a small company becoming an enterprise but well understood and being dealt with.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good work-life balance but limited upward mobility

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bioinformatics Scientist II in San Diego, CA (US)
    Former Employee - Bioinformatics Scientist II in San Diego, CA (US)

    I worked at Illumina full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Upper management listen to complaints and act
    Good benefits and employee services
    Almost all employees have 9-5 schedule

    Cons

    More than average internal politics
    Upward mobility limited so no incentive to work harder
    Big and slightly disorganized, particularly due to absorbing recent acquisitions

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great IAspire internship experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Process Engineer in San Diego, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Process Engineer in San Diego, CA (US)

    I have been working at Illumina full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    IAspire internship experience gives me a good opportunity to look inside the company, know illumina's culture and pruducts, work with many smart people. The program have a few activities such as talking with senior leader, strength finder, Mock interview, outreach activity which are all well designed for us. I highly recommend the IAspire internship program.

    Cons

    Not a con, but a hard thing is the pace here is really really fast. Every one is very busy every day, you need to have a good adaptbility skill as well as good communication and team working skill to "survive" at illumina, which is a "beneficial challenge" to students.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Recent new hire, enviable onboarding process & great company culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA (US)

    I have been working at Illumina full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    From the moment I first made contact with Illumina, I have been greatly impressed with the company's ability to deliver... the hiring process was straightforward and streamlined, the Talent Acquisition team expertly managed and communicated important details from start to finish. This is very much a company of the future, and Illumina seems to doing everything it can to stay in the lead.

    Cons

    Illumina has enjoyed tremendous success in the past few years and is experiencing rapid growth and transformation as it builds its organization and operations to scale for continued expansion. Things are changing quickly and deeply, this is probably not the best place for those seeking permanence. But for the rest of us, thougm this is an exciting place to be at the moment.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10.  

    iAspire Intern 2014

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Illumina as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Illumina is an excellent company with a genuine drive to be on the forefront of clinical genomics. My internship program was an immensely useful and productive learning experience. The teams work fast-paced, interns and full time employees both work closely together and receive immediate feedback. The HR team is extremely friendly, easily approachable and as new interns, I was systematically reviewed for feedback during each step of our internship program. The highlight of the iAspire Program is the highly supportive HR team which organized multiple career-development related workshops that were relevant and highly useful. I greatly enjoyed this first industry experience and would gladly recommend this internship program and Illumina for all future employees.

    Cons

    It will be great to have more opportunities to meet senior leaders in your departments. We usually worked closely with/amongst our own teams, with minimal interaction with heads/members of other teams.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Great Company with Great People, a place where you want to be!!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA (US)

    I have been working at Illumina full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Illumina is a great company to work for. Very innovative and fast paced environment, one can feel the energy in the environment as soon you enter the facility. It is fast paced and relaxed at the same time. One can find people sitting outside and working while enjoying the great campus. Illumina hires very highly educated smart people, nowhere in one place I have seen so many Phds people working together at the same time. Company has a great vision and wants to make a difference in the field of personal medicine which is such a noble field to work in.

    Employees are very motivated to do their best and they get rewarded too for their hard work. It’s not just work and work, people also get time to participate in sports and other activities on the campus itself. Company has a really great campus it feels like a university with amazing facilities. Illumina really cares about the employees and has very transparent and open working culture. Every month they conduct meetings business unit wise to share progress towards goals. It help the employees better understand their role in Illumina's vision. HR people are also very supportive and always willing to help. After my joining I had lot of questions as I was new to many of the new benefits, the HR and Benefits people were very helpful and always had time and patience to answer my each any eveery questions, really appreciated that a lot. They not only conduct employee surveys but also share the results with employees!! I have never ever seen that in any other company.

    Company also has a very good infrastructure you submit the request and you get what you need to get your job done. They believe in work hard and party hard philosophy. My team is really nice and everyone is always willing to help each other. My manager is very sharp and techy. Always guides and motivates us to do things in a better way and despite his busy schedule he finds time to talk with each of us and work with us on regular basis. He is very understanding and supportive too. Right after joining my son was born and needed to be away from office he supported me immensely it was indeed a great help at the time. He believes in getting work done instead of micromanagement, it helps a lot. It has been a great opportunity to be at Illumina and be part of the latest innovations going on in the field of Genome Sequencing while working with the latest cutting edge technologies.

    The interview process is very rigorous and thorough so prepare well. I applied on the company’s website after seeing the ad on LinkedIn. Few days later I got a phone interview scheduled directly with the hiring manager. After a week later I was scheduled for a phone interview with the HR following which they decided me to call onsite.
    Onsite interview was half a day interview including a coding test on the system at the end. During one on one interview with team member as well be prepared for writing pseudo code on the white board. It is also worthwhile mentioning that Illumina is generous enough to offer breakfast, lunch and even travel cost to attend the interview. Though I didn't use it as I live in San Diego itself. But before even I attended the interview I had a very positive outlook towards the company that how much they care about even the candidate, sometime small gestures goes a long way.

    I will definitely recommend Illumina to anyone who wants to learn, grow and challenge themselves and be part of something so big.

    Cons

    Nothing really to add so far everything have been positive.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the tempo and we shall achieve great success. One small comment I have noticed new processes being implemented. Processes are good but management needs to keep these processes also so that there are not too many and lengthy processes as they can become a bottleneck. I have seen this happening in many big companies.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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