Zynga

www.zynga.com

Zynga Reviews

Updated 25 January 2015
Updated 25 January 2015
380 Reviews
3.0
380 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Zynga CEO Don Mattrick
Don Mattrick
104 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Free food & stuff if that is important to you (in 57 reviews)

  • Benefits, cool office environment, in house Gym, breakfast, lunch and dinner (in 22 reviews)


Cons
  • Most employees have a very poor work-life balance, especially around holidays (in 42 reviews)

  • Low morale coupled with long hours at my studio (in 27 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    fresh college guys

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

    I have been working at Zynga

    Pros

    free food and free snacks

    Cons

    it's full of fresh college guys who know nothing

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Too many rock stars ruin the work.

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Cutting edge technology, or at least it was.

    Cons

    Not everyone wants to live at their job.
    long, long hours, poor pay, too much good old boy poLititz and a "merit" system based more on who can climb over the real worker bees and take credit

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop with everyone is a CEO BS. Too often the loudest people get heard even though they are often the least knowledgeable. Find your experst and who are your real strategic thinkers and listen to them, not the 1st year programmer who writes code that's bloated and bad. Listen to those who have experience in community management and not to some producer who thinks the game is his. It's not, it belongs to the players and stop trying to tell your users what you want them to want and listen to what they are telling you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Lack of true leadership, fun during the good times.

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

    I have been working at Zynga

    Pros

    Great workplace perks at HQ, fun environment, bring your dog to work, dynamic industry.

    Cons

    Lack of vision and leadership (original CEO & management team was still there) beyond its initial success. People believed their own hype and didn't invest properly in the future (i.e. mobile) before it was too late. Internal studios didn't work well together. Short term rewards and thinking meant no industry leadership beyond initial successes on Facebook.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in the future in terms of product strategy, values, and people.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Starving the Golden Goose

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Pros

    Lots of variety of games to work on, some GREAT people there, wonderful talent. I loved the dogs all around, it really made it fun to be there, especially during crunch time. Decent pay for the region, great free food, great teams. Clean neat environment. TEAMS were great, lots of autonomy. Very good "flex time" policies. Yes, GREAT FOOD. Nice in-house gym.

    Cons

    I have a particular sore spot with the so-called "meritocracy" shell game.

    Sure, there WERE deserving people who did over and above the call of duty, and deserved recognition, and the "level-up" was great for them. BUT.... it's easy to "level-up" if the company has an established policy of downgrading your position when you start a new project to a lesser title! I found out by accident that this had happened to me, when I noticed that my job description on my pay stub was not what I was hired for. When I questioned it, first it was described as an error that would soon be corrected. Two months later it was "wait until the end of quarter when we change all the new titles". More weeks waiting it was "sorry, that's just what it is". Then a couple months later, "sorry, that title (the one I was HIRED with!) has a higher pay scale and would need approval." HUH? My HIRED description has a higher pay scale than the downgraded one I discovered I had been labeled with? It took multiple directors standing behind me to restore my original title, and many months. And no, my pay scale was never corrected.

    And I found out that I was one of many who had discovered themselves downgraded in position when they started new projects -- but they were mostly too intimidated to speak up.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stick to your promises. Never NEVER ask an employee to give back a hiring perk / bonus / stock options! Respect the titles you hired them with. (If you needed and "bought" a Land Rover, but later you just need it to deliver newspapers door to door, you STILL OWN A LAND ROVER, you're just choosing to use it for simpler jobs. For now.)

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Great in some ways, lacking in others

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Pros

    - Exceptionally open culture
    - Great data infrastructure
    - Lots of smart people and a hip office make for a fun work environment
    - Good career growth and mobility

    Cons

    - Tough place to get groundbreaking products off ground
    - Hampered by early success in some ways as it's hard for new ideas to start from the ground up
    - Work/life balance can be difficult to achieve, but varies by group
    - Lots of "best practices" make the company slower than before

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus more on the "fun" part of game design and be careful with making the place too bureaucratic as it may sap creativity and innovation.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Didn't deliver on the promise

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Pros

    Great Benefits, cool office, great food.

    Cons

    Product strategy is broken as they cancel more games than they release. Business thinking drives too much of the new product development and they end up with uninspiring fast-follow clones that they end up cancelling. This takes a toll on the creative people that they desperately need to be inspired. A good deal of the best people I worked with here have since left.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Find the balance between business and creative ideas.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  8.  

    Decent place to work.

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

    I worked at Zynga

    Pros

    Great benefits and a strong culture, plus competitive pay.

    Cons

    Work-life balance is a struggle to maintain

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great teams, tired games

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

    I have been working at Zynga full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Compensation is good. Currently my work life balance is solid (though there were several bad months last year). I genuinely love working here; headaches and all. As soon as management chooses one path for more than a month in a row, I will raise my ratings to 5 stars.

    Cons

    Coming from mainstream gaming, the Social game creation at Zynga was a surprise. Things have changed in the last year, but when 10+ years of game design experience was overruled by a rookie MBA Product Manager, I seriously questioned my decision to join. However, my new PMs are great and respect flows both ways. The trick is getting with the good ones and avoiding the bad ones.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pick a direction and let us execute on it. Quit pivoting, please.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    enjoyed my time there

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

    I worked at Zynga as an intern (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great perks, free food, massages, acupuncture, reflexology, exciting company quarterly parties
    Fun people
    Felt like I was part of something growing

    Cons

    Your experience could vary enormously based on your role and your team, and how that fits into the company's priorities
    Many people look overworked

    No opinion of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    A company that made good on it's position to promote from within

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

    I have been working at Zynga full-time

    Pros

    You can work your way up in your own field, or even jump fields if you can prove yourself. There is a strong team feeling, and regular attempts to bring attention to people who were going the extra mile for the team. I have heard my managers making sure I have taken off enough time than be concerned with how much time I'm taking off. They want to keep their employees from burning out and make a concerted effort to encouraging a healthy work life balance as opposed to the 60+ hour weeks start ups are known for. Also, there benefits are awesome.

    Cons

    The company has changed over the years, which means you will find pockets of managers that don't follow the current direction of the company. Similarly games are often compared to the hits, so inexperienced managers try to push for hit numbers before their product is strong enough to support it.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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