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Leveling off

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

I have been working at Microsoft

Pros

Work on products that are used by hundreds of millions of people.
Enough product diversity that you can work on a wide variety of projects.
Still many smart people.
Best research lab in the world.

Cons

Political
Favors fast follower strategy over innovation
Flat stock price for 7 years, no chance of making money at lower levels, which causes focus on promotions rather than focus on custmers and product success.
Nepotism at high levels.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Get a new CEO.
Carly Fiorina was fired from HP for making one big mistake. What is Steve Ballmer still doing there? Operating systems (Vista),entertainment (Zune, Media Center), mobile (WM 6, Kin, tablet?), internet (MSN). Microsoft also has terrible (yet over-powered) people in marketing despite (or because of) Ballmer's background in marketing.

Doesn't Recommend
Disapproves of CEO

8174 Other Employee Reviews for Microsoft (View Most Recent)

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    A review of a 20 months contract as a v- at microsoft

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    *) Microsoft has a lot of money, so we always got to play with latest technologies.
    *) With a few minor exceptions every one is extremely respectful.
    *) People are very helpful, which provides ample opportunity to learn new skills and expand your knowledge.
    *) Always something to do.
    *) Compensation is very good.
    *) Contractors/Vendors are welcomed to most social events and gatherings.
    *) Although a very fast-paced workplace, you are always allowed to work at your own pace.

    Cons

    *) Microsoft has a policy of training new managers by placing contractors under them. After all, a full time employee can complain, file an official review, go to HR and so on. As a contractor your recourse is very limited, and you dont get reassigned, you either walk away, or get fired. In my case I had a very inexperienced person with no management experience. That made the work environment very difficult.
    *) As a contractor you are often reminded of your place on the food chain.
    *) Although not personally, but a coworker sitting right next to me received an email from a manager telling him that it wasnt his place to learn new skills as he was hired to perform a specific job and if he has extra time to learn, he should either get back to work, or go home.
    *) My payrate was cut by instituting a 'sitting fee' and i was refused to be allowed to work from home, that meant I lost nearly 4$ per hour. Manager was inflexible, and after 20 months refused to consider consider a salary review.
    *) Higher up the food chain, Microsoft is a very political place, and as a contractor you will sometimes be used as a scapegoat. The typical thing is to publicly send a 'blame' letter, and to almost privately immediately apologize for losing temper via internal chat.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is a strong culture of 'blue badge' - 'orange badge' at Microsoft, and while it's not as bad as black discrimination, it's a very adverse environment overall. This mentality clearly stems from the upper management of the company and is openly displayed by some people in the workplace. This needs to stop.

    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    I loved the experience.

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

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    I enjoyed my experience, learned a lot from the PLC of Office 2010. Really have a great set of best practices there that I will take with me where ever I go. Overall, was a great experience and made some great friends that I still keep in touch with. I really don't know whether I would go back though.

    Cons

    To many hurdles to overcome and they should start building a startup that competes directly with its flagship products, that way, they have the advantage of starting from scratch. The aren't very creative anymore.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    thank you for a wonderful experience. I can't wait to see them and I think it's great that other big names have joined the competition: google, apple, facebook and amazon.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
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