Microsoft Reviews

Updated 21 October 2014
Updated 21 October 2014
8,385 Reviews
3.8
8,385 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
1,100 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Really good work-life balance compared to other tech companies of the same caliber (in 820 reviews)

  • You will get the opportunity to work with smart people solving real world problems (in 964 reviews)


Cons
  • Work life balance is not good in some places but it really depends on your role (in 537 reviews)

  • Review system that pushes people to look out for themselves instead of being team focused (in 395 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    A great place to work

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

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    Loads of opportunity in lots of different areas at Microsoft, you just have to want it bad enough. Great culture, they live their values and appreciate diversity.

    Cons

    Microsoft has lost their way in a number of areas and are being outplayed by more nimble competitors. This can be frustrating.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be more flexible and agile when taking new initiatives to market, instead of needing umpteen levels of approval. More local sign-off rather than waiting for head office.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Great Company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in North Sydney
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in North Sydney

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Excellent work life balance
    Excellent resources & technology
    Great pay for contractors
    Great benefits for full-time staff
    Great partys !

    Cons

    Hard to get an FTE position
    Pay could be better for FTE
    No benefits, annual leave for contractors but the pay is great

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire more FTEs and less contractors

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Stable, safe place to work - pity about the middle management bickering and senior management lack of imagination

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

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Very stable work environment where you can find a niche and develop over a long period. The level of stress and intensity of work can to some extent be as high or low as you personally choose.

    Cons

    Poor senior management and a middle management that constantly infights, jockeys for position and bickers. Part of your job as a non-manager is to avoid being tangled in this infighting.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get over yourselves. Stop making kneejerk reactions to competitive fads - instead focus on delighting customers, innovation and real investment in customer success. Ballmer is no strategic leader - he's a sales leader and without Gates is unable to articulate a vision for the future of Microsoft.

    Recommends
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great place to work under the right team

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

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    great pay and benefits and depending on the team, hours

    Cons

    easy to get lost in the sea of people

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    make sure to keep the community and camaraderie in teams

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Awesome Place to Work!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Enterprise Account Manager in North Sydney
    Current Employee - Enterprise Account Manager in North Sydney

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Pros

    Great benefits, definite growth potential, and the people are second to none. I've made a lot of lifelong friends here. It was one of the best experiences I've had yet!

    Cons

    Due to the sheer size of Microsoft there is a bit of bureaucracy you have to negotiate, however things do get accomplished and change does happen just a bit slower than most would like. Other than that it’s a hell of a place to work! Two thumbs up!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the good work!

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Very political place to work

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

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    Microsoft Australia in 2006-2007 had some great opportunity for making money, as it was an emerging market that hadn't been tapped at all. Customers were just glad they had someone to talk to. Really enjoyed the customers I worked with and built relationships with.

    Cons

    Most of sales management had no experience in actually selling and had just been promoted from another group to run sales. I found my manager to be more of a hinderance in the sales cycel rather than an asset. Sales managers spend their time crunching numbers and manipulating spreadsheets and don't actually spend any time in the field selling or helping their reps.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire some people from outside Microsoft to be in management. Continuing to hire people from within just perpetuates an already incestuous environment.

    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    The best and the worst place to work

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

    I worked at Microsoft

    Pros

    Access to a lot of information and good knowledge sharing - you can learn a lot and develop yourself. You also get to work with a lot of smart and diverse people.

    Cons

    Probably the most selfish place to work - backstabbing, politics, and everyone climbing over each other to stand out from the rest. The company is bloated, with too many managers, so you know the competition is fierce. You are not rewarded for performance but for how you play the politics. For such a "stand out" company they are incredibly disfunctional and inefficient - it is little wonder the software is bloated and troublesome - it is a direct reflection of the organisation.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    About 50% of the management, at all levels, should quit. Stand aside and allow more competent people to take on the challenges. And if you do decide to stay - get rid of the empire building, remove the barriers to allowing groups to work effectively with each other.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 378 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 (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.

  10. 5 people found this helpful  

    Lots of opportunity, interesting projects, smart, motivated people

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

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

    Pros

    One of the best things about Microsoft is that you are working with smart, motivated people all the time. You will find great challenges and be inspired by your peers on a daily basis. I'm always growing and learning. This can be untrue in certain teams, but in general I've found this to be true for most of the teams I've worked with.

    Loads of opportunity to try new things. I've worked on many different products and gained experience in multiple roles. You can truly change your career while staying in the comfort of the same company.

    Cons

    Politics becomes a part of your everyday pretty quickly as you move up in the company. There is a lot of overhead to get sign off on changes and move forward with something new. They want to be agile, but this is the biggest obstacle in actually being good at it.

    There is a lot of pressure for moving up. This is a good thing in a lot of respects, but can be stressful if you find yourself on a competitive team where moving up is difficult, or if you want to coast for a while career wise and focus on other aspects of life. It's not the place you can just do good work and not worry about promotions. If you're not moving up, you are eventually moving out.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The best managers I've had were also great mentors. If every employee must drive their own career, I think every manager should be able to provide the tools and advice to know how to do that effectively based on personal goals. I find this far more valuable than just project status.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Exciting place for young professionals to build their career

    • 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 (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    - A lot of support for young college hires to gain experience and get your foot into the career
    - Culture is changing. Satya is really getting our culture direction is the right direction

    Cons

    - People don't believe in us.. frustrating to see it in the media
    - PMs...... too many of them doing mindless / useless features for their own job security
    - MSIT absolutely sucks

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think management is going on the right direction - removing stupid "processes"

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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