The excellent Glassdoor site – which uses employees to rate their employers – has announced its 2018 Best Places to Work list. Notably, 11 of the 50 are tech companies, which leaves one question: who, exactly, are the best tech companies to work for in the UK?
If you’re thinking “well what a surprise”, you might actually be surprised to hear that Google only came in 13th place last year. So why do people love it now? Flexible working hours, “epic free meals” (to quote one employee) and strong healthcare and pension benefits are recurring themes.
Google doesn’t pay badly either. A senior software engineer can expect to pull in almost £90K per year.
Before I move on to the positives, here’s a superb quote from a former employee. “A real suck-up culture… I don’t think I have come across so many suck-ups in my entire career. If you want to be in a cult then this is the place for you.” But he or she still gave Facebook four stars.
So what’s so great? The phrase “fast-paced” keeps coming up in the reviews, as does the fact that employees are given the “authority to do the right thing”. They even pay interns well, with an average of £3,700 per month. I’ll take that, thanks.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff must be doing something right, as he’s the second highest rated CEO with 98% approval. Although the main European HQ is in Dublin, the London offices gain plenty of plaudits, with the usual array of snacks and wellbeing packages.
The company’s approach to charity earns gushing praise too, with its “1-1-1 model” meaning staff can give their time to charitable causes along with Salesforce donating technology – and good old cash.
Considering how tough it can be working in retail, the long flow of glowing reviews from its Apple Store staff is quite an achievement. While Apple presents something of a stony-faced, glossy exterior to the world, it seems to treat its employees with empathy and support.
“[I] feel genuinely valued and trusted with great benefits,” wrote one retail worker. “Love the high standards and being pushed to be better.” If you’re curious, pay is decent but not amazing: Apple Genius workers earned an average of £26.4K while “specialists” received just under £9 per hour.
Expect long hours if you work for Yell, but one South London employee says it’s worth it. “This is so that you are prepared for every call and understand each business fully. Making you the ‘Top Gun’ standard that Yell expect.”
Not everyone loves working for Expedia – critics call out a lack of diversity in management, a lack of career progression and a corporate, US culture – but the offices, flexible working hours and decent salaries mean it still received a strong 4.2-star rating.
“Five years ago I would have never accepted a job at Microsoft,” wrote a software engineer earlier today. “But the new company under Satya Nadella is completely changed. It’s forward-looking, focusing on cloud computing, AI, virtual reality, and quantum computing and doing really cool stuff.”
Although most ARM reviews are positive, I love this comment so much I have to include it: “The feudal system is alive and well at ARM! If you want to progress you need to either enter into a marriage of convenience, build an empire or conquer and steal someone else’s.” Now I’m tempted.
#36 Colt Technology Services
You’re probably wondering what Colt actually does: “Colt provides world-class network, voice and data centre services to businesses of all sizes around the world,” its website tells me. And it also delivers happy employees. “Great people, office & product,” writes one Shoreditch-based worker. “Leadership has improved recently too! Less Steve McClaren and more Brian Clough.” Vell, that is good news, ya?
German software company SAP “offers great opportunities to develop and grow and achieve success,” writes one employee, even if its head office location of Feltham doesn’t please its staff. Great for the airport, mind.
And our very last technology business in Glassdoor’s top 50 is GE, with many reviews mentioning all the opportunities within the company. But perhaps not one for those who like stability, with talk of restructuring and centralisation too. Fun.
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