Nintendo of America

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Nintendo of America Reviews

Updated 14 August 2014
Updated 14 August 2014
75 Reviews
2.8
75 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Nintendo of America CEO Satoru Iwata
Satoru Iwata
4 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good benefits, nice amenities on campus, great employees to work beside (but not necessarily to work for) (in 7 reviews)

  • Really smart, passionate people, work life balance encouraged, a place where balancing children and work might be more easy than other places (in 4 reviews)


Cons
  • They don't hire enough associates on as full time employees (in 4 reviews)

  • Most of the hardcore players work in Product Testing (as contractors) (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    A great place to work for in IT!

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

    I have been working at Nintendo of America full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Great benefits!
    Great work/life balance(for most)
    Great coworkers and most management
    Lots of cool promotions going on all the time(it's a game company for crying out loud)!
    They own the Mariners so you always get a chance to watch a game for free!
    They're beginning to value training more and won't deny you training dollars
    For the amount of work you do or don't, you definitely get paid well compared to others. That's not to say some here work quite a bit which is a requirement based on the projects involved or because some people are workaholics(I'd say the latter is the case).

    Cons

    Communication can always be a challenge - it's a need to know basis type of place. With so many secret projects going around, it can be hard to "plan" for things when someone decides to drop you some information that might have been helpful awhile ago.
    It's getting bigger which means the culture is changing. It used to be a family type company where you would know everyone and everyone's willing to go the extra mile for you. Now it's becoming bigger which means more processes and things taking a lot longer than need be.
    Management is what it is. Some are great and others aren't. It's really a roll of the dice.
    Advancement can be very hard since it's still "small" in relative size.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    This is a hard one 'cause I understand the culture but I would communication and listening to employees some of the time might help with keeping talent and hiring new ones.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Good Company

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

    I worked at Nintendo of America full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Fantastic Campus, parking garage is great!! Volleyball, soccer field. Gym downstairs, good people.

    Cons

    Slow to keep up with current technology. i.e mobile/digital gaming.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Have an open forum with employees and share their ideas for the future of the company. Employees are the backbone of the company. Their thoughts, ideas should be heard and put in effect.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 5 people found this helpful  

    Fun company that has the best intentions, but stumbles along the way

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

    I have been working at Nintendo of America full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Benefits are good. Health insurance plans are great; normal coverage has no deductible, or better coverage has a very low deductible. There's an on-sight gym, so no more looking for parking at the Pro Club (although that's covered too if you want it). Has 401k match (though it takes 3 years to vest) and a pension plan (rare among tech companies).

    - Bonuses twice a year, up to 30% for regular employees and up to 50% for managers and higher. No stack ranking.

    - Random perks: company-wide events throughout the year (employee contests, mini E3, company picnic, etc.); above average cafeteria; employee-only Nintendo World store, but the discounts could be better (only ~25% off retail).

    - Great working environment -- causal, laid back. And in general, coworkers are very nice. Not many jerks as I've met in other companies (but there are still a few).

    - You work at Nintendo; that in of itself is pretty awesome. If you're a gamer, you'll see people who you've read about in articles just walk right down the hall or in the cafeteria. The main building is beautifully decorated with various Nintendo characters. Definitely a "wow" factor to it all -- just don't overvalue it!

    Cons

    - Compensation is decent, but definitely not as competitive as other tech companies in the area (Microsoft, Google, Amazon, etc.)

    - The NOA offices are not autonomous -- NOA reports to Japan (NCL) and it definitely shows. Since Japan pays the bills, they have a TON of say into what happens. There's a clear air of subservience among NOA employees when it comes to NCL. If you directly work with them, it's like having an additional layer of management and red tape.

    - Lack of strong engineering leadership. Many junior engineers with need of mentors, but the more experienced employees are busy with other work!

    - Very frugal with business expenses. Whether it's a $20 software license or a requisition for a new hire, everything goes under great scrutiny and process (even moreso lately due to poor sales of the Wii U right now).

    - Because of the frugality, new hires are rare and headcount is a problematic issue. People are often on multiple projects and/or shuffled around projects quite often. To contrast to a reorg at a bigger corporation, there are small changes more often as opposed to bigger changes less often.

    - The word among people who've been here for a few years is that it's next to impossible to get fired or laid off. This can be seen as a pro, but I've chosen to classify it as a con because there are quite a few people that clearly do not pull their weight or cause harm to productivity. Job advancement is tough since all the high positions are held by people who have 10, 15, or even 20+ year seniority.

    - Surprisingly few full timers who are true, dedicated gamers. Most of the hardcore players work in Product Testing (as contractors).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To NCL: Please give NOA with more responsibilities and trust.
    To NOA: Provide low performers with growth opportunities and training, or kick them out!
    To Iwata: Please understand.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Tons of change

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Service Representative
    Current Employee - Customer Service Representative

    I have been working at Nintendo of America full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    -Pretty cool to work for Nintendo.
    -Decent cafeteria.
    -Company store.
    -On sight gym, soccer field, sports courts.
    -Decent benefits.
    -Lots of nice people.

    Cons

    -Many tools don't work after software "upgrade".
    -Associate employees are largely displeased and mid-management is powerless to help. Concerns brought to higher management are disregarded.
    -Change is good, but too much change too fast has created an unstable, chaotic mood.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Improve morale immediately before all the good reps go elsewhere.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    STAY AWAY GAME TESTERS!

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

    I worked at Nintendo of America as a contractor for more than 5 years

    Pros

    It's great for someone who can handle being let go for a week or two before another project comes in and who has no financial responsibilities.

    Cons

    Management is AWFUL. Sexual harassment, blackmail, bullying, lying and manipulation and the way they treat females is just illegal.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Fire yourselves and get new blood in there that have better ethics.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Good benefits- Your experience may vary

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

    I worked at Nintendo of America full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good benefits, competitive salary, casual corporate culture, Redmond campus has nice amenities, fun products.

    Cons

    I worked in two different departments, with vastly different experiences. Your VP, Director, and Manager will go a long way in determining if you like your job. A high percentage of management has been with the company for decades, which can be viewed as good or bad, and is probably a combination of both. Company runs very lean, so be prepared to put in extra hours when it gets busier. In my experience promotions were slow in coming, but again this varies from department to department. Many IT systems we used were outdated and clunky, but they were in the middle of a painfully slow upgrade process when I left so I can't say if that has improved or not. Discounts at the company store are not as good as you'll find at Microsoft or other video game companies. Be aware that contractor positions (testing, operations, contact center) do not carry nearly the same benefits or salary as a regular NOA employee.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Find a new strategy for the Wii U before those piles of cash evaporate away.

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

    Okay company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • 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 Nintendo of America full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Good benefits. Flexible work schedule.

    Cons

    No opportunity for growth. Once you are in a role, that is where you stay.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Fun in theory

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

    I have been working at Nintendo of America full-time

    Pros

    Fun products and good people to work with and good work life balance

    Cons

    No growth opportunity, can't figure out what to change to adapt to changing consumer, LOTS of process issues

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to up the morale and not just with rah-rah speeches

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    There's a reason why people spend their entire career here.

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

    I have been working at Nintendo of America full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    AMAZING benefits, bonuses twice a year, pension plan, it's Nintendo.

    Cons

    Japanese owned company. Lots of red tape and lost in translation frustration.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to seriously cross-train departments.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Quality Assurance

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

    I worked at Nintendo of America as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Really awesome opportunities for overtime. You get to test games all day and sort of get an idea for game development life cycles. They definitely reward you for quality work and dedication to your job.

    Cons

    Sometimes feels like they will hire just about anyone for a QA position and length of a contract may not be entirely stable as a source of income.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give more opportunities for advancement and permanent positions.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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