Microsoft Reviews in Redmond, WA

Updated 22 September 2014
Updated 22 September 2014
8,108 Reviews
3.8
8,108 Reviews
Rating Trends

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
918 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Really good work-life balance compared to other tech companies of the same caliber (in 688 reviews)

  • Tons of super smart people working for the right reasons - to make a difference (in 893 reviews)


Cons
  • And there are times when the workload may impede on your work-life balance (in 476 reviews)

  • The previous stack rank review system encourage a behavior that was very much individualist (in 369 reviews)

More Highlights

3,346 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 346 people found this helpful  

    Thoughts after 10 years....

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    1. If you love tech, this is a great place. No doubt you'll talk tech (mostly the MSFT stack) from enterprise to consumer - from PCs to phones to Xboxes - from datacenter to desktop.

    2. What were GREAT benefits are now VERY GOOD (took a small step down) but still probably better than you'll find at 99% of large corporations. If you've got family - the value of the benefits is even higher. 401k match is nice.

    3. Even with it's struggles MSFT is still a cash printing machine. This means if you can keep your nose clean and do reasonable work, you can have a stable job, pay your bills, feed your family, and not worry (too much) about layoffs. The stock you own likely won't tank, but probably won't go up much either. You'll get a bonus each year and some stock. It's a decent life if you aren't looking to light the world on fire.

    Cons

    Brand on Your Resume: After many years of losing market share and struggling to be at the front end of innovation and the fact that there's 90,000 employees, don't think MSFT is necessarily going to be attractive on your resume to more agile and smaller companies.

    Managing Your Career: Make you say this out loud so it registers - 90,000 employees work there. Double that for vendors. It is VERY hard to "stand out" and move up in the company. Don't expect your manager to be much of an advocate or enabler to help you meet your career goals - they are basically trying to survive the stack rank every year too. Not familiar with the stack rank? Check out the 2012 Vanity Fair article called "Microsoft's Lost Decade".

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I'll type it here - but I don't they are listening...
    1. Help proven talent move laterally in the company for new opportunities.
    2. Kill/evolve the stack rank. Here's basically how it's viewed:. 30% of the company gets 1s and 2s - and they are happy. 50% get 3s and that basically feels like getting a "C" in school. This sucks for talented people when a multitude of UNCONTROLLABLE conditions keep you from getting into 1 or 2 range. The 20% getting anything below a 3 are walking dead. In summary, 70% of the company walk away from the review cycle feeling like crap. This is no good.

    After 10 years, I'm leaving - it's just a matter of time until I find the right opportunity. I need to find a company spends 90% of it's time building technology experiences, as opposed to 90% of its time building PowerPoints. And I expect to refuse the exit interview - because if you really cared what I thought, you wouldn't ask me after I decided to leave.

  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    A constantly evolving work environment that supports continuous growth.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Operations Engineer II  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Former Employee - Operations Engineer II in Redmond, WA (US)

    I worked at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    If you ever decide you're bored with a given technology or modality you have tons of opportunities to move around and try something new.

    Cons

    This company is becoming more political each day. More and more red tape and arrogance on the part of management is slowing the wheels of innovation.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Test manager

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Test Manager  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Former Employee - Test Manager in Redmond, WA (US)

    I worked at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Great benefits and access to tons of resources.
    Engineering teams are brilliant and fun to work with.
    Diverse set of products to work on.

    Cons

    A lot of politics, at times you don't know why the decision was made.
    Some the teams have worse corporate culture.
    The company is lethargic at times reacting to customer needs.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great company, good benefits

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET)  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Redmond, WA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    It's a nice working environment.

    Cons

    Often feels like advancement is difficult.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Smart People, Okay products

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET)  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Current Employee - Senior Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Redmond, WA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Working with smart knowledgeable is the best reason to work at Microsoft. Microsoft also has a big focus on engineering. You will learn a lot from both the people you work with and about engineering software.

    Cons

    Too much turning reports and dashboards green, and too much settling for less than best. More likely to redefine the quality bar to achieve success than to hold or change the product to meet the originally desired bug bar.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Competitive work culture with huge talented people

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET)  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Current Employee - Senior Software Development Engineer In Test (SDET) in Redmond, WA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Highly competitive environment
    Very high growth opportunity

    Cons

    Sometimes the work-life balance may get affected.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Good company but somethings can be deceiving

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer in Redmond, WA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good benefits, relatively easy to move between divisions, if you are good and luck you'll work with great people.

    Cons

    You might work with mediocre teams.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Passionate people working on a product they all believe will profoundly benefit the consumer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Industry Marketing Manager  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Former Employee - Industry Marketing Manager in Redmond, WA (US)

    I worked at Microsoft full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    I enjoyed working in an environment where everyone on the team had an immense amount of pride and dedication to the product. Very supportive management, generous salary and perks, and Microsoft has global brand recognition.

    Cons

    The stack ranking system (which is now gone). Also a necessary negative when working with any large corporation, is the amount of time required for meetings, training, and paperwork not related to the product.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Comfortably Uniique

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Manager II  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Current Employee - Program Manager II in Redmond, WA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    With the diversity in Microsoft and the ability to move across teams, disciplines and geographies is liberating. For all the hate Microsoft may get it has mostly positive, smart and understanding leaders.

    Cons

    Roles can sometimes be confusing. A program manager can end up handling too many things internally and focus very little externally. This leads to product confusion.
    Also even though its a very large company, it competes with hyper focused competitors where the leadership is crystal clear on the are and the number of people working on it may be much more.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue being open and help people understand the strategy internally. There are far too many cynical people inside the company who do not understand the strategy and this is something that is extremely harmful.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    One of the best places to work as a Software Engineer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Software Development Engineer  in  Redmond, WA (US)
    Former Employee - Senior Software Development Engineer in Redmond, WA (US)

    I worked at Microsoft full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    + People are insanely smart, some of them legendary.
    + There is virtually no limit in terms of learning opportunities, professional growth and career advancement.
    + Everyone gets own office!
    + Benefit is one of the best in the industry, period.

    Cons

    - Performance review used to be based on stack ranking and fixed curve.
    - Skill set may become irrelevant if not actively kept up with the industry.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    N/A

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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