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1 person found this helpful  

Microsoft Forever

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

I have been working at Microsoft

Pros

Microsoft is a place where you can literally spend an entire career at, doing different things, growing and changing in accordance with what you want at any given time. Want to work on servers? Microsoft has it. Want to work on portable media players or console games? Microsoft has that too! Search, databases, communication, operating systems, distributed technologies, office productivity, hardware innovations, you name it - if it's software, someone at Microsoft is probably doing it! And if no one is doing it, you can start your own Startup at the Microsoft Greenhouse project. And that's only the technology side. You can change your career path - e.g. from a technical maverick to a marketing wizard - with Microsoft's full support and encouragement. Training is part of the culture. Microsoft offers relocation opportunities, which means that if you want to live in another country for a few years you can do that without leaving your workplace. There's even a program that will send you to China for 6 months if you're interested. When life changes for you and you want to slow down a bit, there are even part-time programs. And if you read until here, you probably noticed that I did not mention the Microsoft recruiting mantra of “come and build software that will change the world”. That may be true, but for me it’s all about the company and more importantly the people that work there. Most of the folks you’ll meet at Microsoft are nice, passionate, honest folks that are just a pleasure to work with. I have looked at jobs outside of Microsoft several times, and have not yet found anything that made me want to jump ship.

Cons

Much like how the moss in Seattle can easily take over an entire lawn, if you are not careful, Microsoft will take over your life. Work is really addictive, and people tend to work very long hours, work from home, work at night and over the weekend, and let work fill up most of their lives. It’s hardly ever the case that a manager would ask you to stay late and work on something – you’ll do it yourself, because you are passionate about the things you are building. This is a very hard habit to break and you need to be able to set strong, clear boundaries for yourself so that you do not sink it too deep.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

No advice, really. I think they are doing a good job, and as long as they keep sane, keep listening to the folks that work for them, and keep to the Microsoft values, everything would be just fine.

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Approves of CEO

8350 Other Employee Reviews for Microsoft (View Most Recent)

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    ok.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • 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

    Pros

    Greate company to work for.

    Cons

    Cost of housing in Seattle area

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    grow the company organicaly and build leaders from with

    Recommends
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    What it's like to work for Microsoft, outside Redmond.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Marketing Communications Manager in Mountain View, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Marketing Communications Manager in Mountain View, CA (US)

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Microsoft takes great care of its employees. I feel that they invest a lot in their employees, from training to funding/empowering your projects, and they have set up frameworks to make sure your manager supports your career development. The 100% free health care/dental/vision benefits completely remove stress from that area of your life.

    Cons

    The biggest downside of working for Microsoft, but outside Redmond headquarters, is the poor brand reputation among everyone outside Microsoft, especially in Silicon Valley. They are not known for creating great consumer services, so they are not well liked when compared to other consumer-centric companies. That cuts into the pride I have in working for Microsoft - only the employees inside learn what a great company it is. That might be fine when you live in the Seattle area where Microsoft dominates, but it's pretty hard in the field when everyone favors your competitors.
    Because Microsoft is such a large company, you may feel that you don't have as much control of your projects as you would have in a smaller company. They have a team and a framework or template for everything, so sometimes it feels like you can just turn off your brain and use all the resources they have set up.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you're going to do consumer services, do them right - stop releasing junk that just erodes Microsoft brand value. Don't pat yourself on the back for how many users you got just by coasting on the Microsoft/MSN brands. Go for the smart silicon valley users by actually building a superior consumer service (based on consumer needs, not feature lists) - this will take a complete reinvention of the services from the ground up, instead of tacking on new features to old code bases, frankenstein-style.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
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