Polly Pearson recently spoke a bit about GlassDoor (indirectly, via “a tech gossip rag” which used GlassDoor’s ratings to classify our satisfaction with our CEO). I’m kind of disappointed nobody else called ValleyRag out on the awful statistics of using reviews from eleven employees to determine the rating of the CEO, but whatever.
What I wanted to do was take a look at GlassDoor and the state of EMC’s corporate picture as painted by GlassDoor’s users, now that the site has been up for a week.
As of the writing of this blog entry, EMC has 40 reviews and 59 salaries (people are more willing to talk money than culture, I guess) posted. The first thing I notice is that it’s impossible to sort the reviews by anything. If I want just the positive or negative reviews, I can’t. I can’t mark a review as helpful (or unhelpful) ala Amazon, either. No way to just get the cream of the crop as far as reviews go.
Right away, this makes the site very frustrating to navigate. I’m glad this is just a beta test, because at this point it’s a pretty but nonfunctional interface. Imagine how this system scales to 500 reviews or more? Wow.
Let’s say I’m curious about EMC’s reputation as regards diversity (going back to Polly’s piece). I can’t search for the word, but since I’m dedicated to getting you the results you want I searched through all 40 reviews. The words “diverse” or “diversity” are mentioned in 4 reviews (on multiple pages since you can’t “view all” or export the full list). Twice it’s a positive, twice a negative. Hard to say what that means.
Any common themes?
- Corporate bureaucracy seems to be mentioned a lot. I have trouble imagining a big company without that, but it is a concern I share.
- Work/Life balance comes up a bit — and I’m happy to say that I know EMC is making strides here, but I understand the frustration.
- Highly skilled people will get ahead (well, I hope so).
- Everybody loves our internal training (me too!).
- People like working for a winner.
- People at non-Hopkinton sites feel left out sometimes (I imagine).
But the real story, as far as I can tell, is more like the diversity point above. The common thread is the differences. Do all these people really work for the same company?
One scathing review talks about how great the money is but how awful your life will become. Another talks about how good the work is but how we aren’t very competitive in compensation. We either have a “very fair” vacation policy or an antiquated awful one. We either value people who work remotely or hate them. We either have tons of churn in management or things are too stagnant (side story: In past 7 years, I’ve had 7 different managers just because of things changing around me, not because of my own movement. In same 7 years, an old-coworker has had just one). We either give you all the right equipment or are stingy with it. Everyone has an office (where do you work!?) versus hating living in a cubicle culture. Either it’s easy to move into management or managers are all people with 20+ years experience. We’re either a cut-throat sweatshop or a low-stress environment.
So let’s just get this out of the way. We are a big company, with lots of different cultures, and lots of different managers. Some of them are probably bad. Some of them are probably awesome. I think there’s more good than bad here, and our annual satisfaction survey results seem to say the same thing. You know what else? I have never met a manager who didn’t want to improve their own little corner of the company. Then again, I’ve never worked in sales, marketing, finance, and who knows where else. Maybe things are really awful in some places. I hope we can fix it if it is.
Some of the information, I wish I could get more details on. An intern reports that if you aren’t a shiny happy person you might not fit in. I’m trying to think of how many shiny happy EMC people I’ve met (outside of, say, VPs of Employment Brand and Strategy Engagement, no offense 😉 ). Intern, meet Storage Anarchist. That should set you up for a while.
My favorite nugget of info? One employee said that the place was so sterile it felt like a dentist’s office at times. Welcome to Corporate America. I feel your pain.