Zynga Reviews

Updated 11 September, 2014
Updated 11 September, 2014
347 Reviews
3.0
347 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Zynga CEO Don Mattrick
Don Mattrick
90 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Free food and snacks are good and did offset some of the salary cut the pre-ipo hired took (in 52 reviews)

  • Benefits, cool office environment, in house Gym, breakfast, lunch and dinner (in 21 reviews)


Cons
  • Most employees have a very poor work-life balance, especially around holidays (in 40 reviews)

  • Low morale coupled with long hours at my studio (in 25 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Exhausting, high-pressure environment

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time

    Pros

    Challenging work, opportunities to work with large-scale analytic data, and a very fast turnaround from ideas to action. Free food & stuff if that is important to you. Fun co-workers.

    Cons

    Very, very tiring. Relentless demands on your time - late nights, weekend work, always feeling like you're behind. Pay was better than other options by say 20%, but easily worked 40% more than other positions = you're getting paid less for your time, which is your life.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Good benefits

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I have been working at Zynga full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Lots of smart co-workers.

    Good benefits.

    Company provides breakfast, lunch and dinner.

    Happy hours on Fridays.

    Management is reasonable.

    Cons

    Depending on the project teams, some teams need to work longer hours than usual.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Great resources at your disposal, but plagued with never-ending reorgs.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I have been working at Zynga full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Access to real-time data really strengthens the decision-making capabilities. Resources available to do job and perform well. A lot of flexibility given to employees. Lots of great perks (food, gym, dogs, fun building). Fun work environment in a fun building and great city location.

    Cons

    Constantly plagued with reorgs and leadership changes, impeding on team building opportunities and career growth. Bonuses aren't regular or completely transparent. Losing a bit of the work hard / play hard edge.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    We need more excitement from our new CEO.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    disrespectful and disappointing

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I worked at Zynga full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Food
    Bring your dog to work

    Cons

    - Very little accountability across all the levels. Layer after layer of bullshitting leads to one after another horrible management decisions. Lack of self-awareness of the business (or forced to jack up the numbers). If you aim for building up your integrity and expertise, this is not where you want to start your career
    - Culture of disrespect creates a hostile atmosphere. If you can't handle personal attack and finger pointing, it's better for you to stay away from zynga
    - No transparency in performance review and promotion. They throw titles at people's face when people want to leave . Thus most people there with the word "Manager" "Director in their titles don't know how to develop and lead a team at all. Ironically, this mid-management team with inflated title will not hesitate to dress their team members down in front of crowds or behind close doors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Show some respect to people's hard work and LISTEN to what people are talking about. At the end of the day, fancy office doesn't matter, the so called zynga speed doesn't matter, how many people got promoted or kicked out doesn't matter. What matters is to make ONE goddamn good game

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Sweatshopville

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

    I worked at Zynga full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    you got free t-shirts and they used to have all the snacks you could eat, but then cut back on that.

    Cons

    they claim to rely heavily on metrics, but ignore the metrics in favor of hoping real hard that things will magically get better. slow to adjust to new information, willing to manipulate and scam users, and devoid of any bold ideas.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    close up shop. prior to the new ceo coming in, they were dead in the water. stagnant. afraid. living in the past. culture of "meritocracy" didn't work because middle management stole credit for good ideas and hard work in order to keep their bonuses high, until bonuses were cut anyway.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Zynga does allow for a high level of autonomy and ownership of product.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Zynga

    Pros

    Benefits, People, Environment, Perks, Variability

    Cons

    Company is transitioning and the culture, roles and responsibilities are transitioning to more of an EA model.

  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great benefits, but lacking direction and career development

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

    I have been working at Zynga full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great benefits (medical/dental premium covered 100%, amazing food from the culinary staff, great coffee, snacks)

    Cons

    While Don Mattrick and other executives focus on hiring their friends into senior management positions, we continue to lose tons of talented employees who do the actual work on our products (engineers, PMs, designers).

    Most of the employees I know haven't received a significant title change or real salary bump in more than two years. And I don't see this changing anytime soon.

    Constant reorganizations and priority changes derail any progress teams are making. Teams are expected to be in a constant crunch mode, and we are given very little clarity on the company's priorities. Employees doing the day-to-day work are asked to do more with less—meanwhile the company continues to aggressively hire senior managers and directors who don't actually help with the production of games. This strategy does nothing but add additional layers of unnecessary bureaucracy that make our jobs even harder.

    Big decisions seem to be made on a whim, causing lots of thrash as teams scramble to comply with the executive "idea of the week" and delay progress on milestones that really matter. It seems like with every project we are reinventing the wheel with respect to the software development process. None of this process, and none of the key questions to ask during that process, should be new to anyone in management at a software company!

    Morale at the company seems to be at an all-time low. You often hear stories about Zynga's earlier years where people were excited to work hard and stay late at the office. It's just not the case now. People cheer with excitement for one another when they hear a friend found a job elsewhere.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You need to understand how much you make teams scramble on a day-to-day basis with strange requests and questions asked on a whim that pull entire teams off important work so their managers and executives can save face.

    We need more quality control and innovation in our products and in our leadership practices.

    Management needs to seriously consider the impact attrition is having on our work culture. When you see great colleagues leaving every week, it makes you really question your position.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Great place to be a PM. Terrible place for creatives.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA (US)

    I have been working at Zynga full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Great food, liberal vacation policy (if you can use it), little red tape, smart people, good location, bike and dog friendly.

    Cons

    Broken design culture, PM dominated decision making, short term focus, poor bonuses, mediocre salaries, brutal workloads, terrible team management, constant barking, high turnover, lots of politics and yes-men.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make games people will love playing and people will love making. Pay employees wages needed to live in San Francisco. Profit share more. Stop wasting your employees. Stop making copies and create something original.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Not really a good place for engineers

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate Software Engineer  in  Bangalore (India)
    Current Employee - Associate Software Engineer in Bangalore (India)

    I have been working at Zynga full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Fun Place to Work , Free Food, Good Opportunities for personal growth, you get to work on games played by thousands of players.

    Cons

    Not really a good place for engineers. Most engineers get to work on sunset games transitioned from the US with the aim of keeping the revenue stable for some time.
    Company not doing well ans has had multiple layoffs in the past

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great People, Poor Management

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

    I have been working at Zynga full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Great Benefits (food, healthcare, fitness) and great employees (the people who are actually making the games)

    Cons

    Management at the team level is sadly terrible. The group of GMs and high level managers that have remained with Zynga are still trying to use strategies from 2008 to determine how to move forward in a completely different game market.

    I have never worked for a more cliquey company in my entire career. I have watched people with little to no experience be promoted to senior and lead positions simply because they had worked with a particular manager on another project. I shouldn't have to hold a "senior" anyone's hand when using Microsoft Word or Perforce.

    Some long-term Zyngites seem oblivious to the troubles the company has had. The frequency in which I heard people brush off layoffs and other cuts in a nonchalant, casual manner was disturbing.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    When a team has three creative directors but no one to actually implement the vision then perhaps it is time to rethink the org chart.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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