Ex-Google Employee, "Google Has Problems, Too!"

Ex-AdWords Report Center engineer talks about life at Google

By on April 15th, 2008 12:40 GMT
Having a job at Google is somehow like living in paradise, all the people who have ever worked for the Mountain View-based company explain. And it's probably true because starting with cafeterias or bars and ending with pool tables or all kinds of games, they're all available for free for the persons working for Google.

However, it seems like the super search giant has problems too as an ex-Google employee who refused to provide his name, published a long blog post in order to talk about life at the Mountain View company. Although he didn't disclose his name, he revealed some details about him, though: he worked as a software engineer for AdWords Report Center and, after having left Google on Friday, he'll become a co-found for a new company focused on social networking and mobile space.

Here are some interesting snippets of his long blog post:

Google is an amazing company. On the most basic level, there are all the perks, from great health benefits to free food (there are about 15 cafeterias on the Mountain View campus alone, many of which offer breakfast, lunch, and dinner), micro-kitchens with free snacks (including fresh fruit or fresh cut carrots and celery), on-campus gyms and a beach volleyball field, and more. Another great thing are the many tech talks (usually there are at least a couple every day), which feature both internal and external speakers. Then there are the various off-sites and team building events, which probably take up another good week each year. Not many companies send their employees to Disneyland for three days�c

Every engineer gets either two 24�� or one 30�� monitor, as well as a company laptop (either MacBook Pro or Thinkpad). Depending on which project you work on, you might get to work with innovative internal tools and frameworks (such as BigTable), and I have definitely developed an entirely different perspective on scale, which humbles any project I�fve worked on before.

As a recent Google employee, I would have never gotten rich there, even if the stock had doubled or tripled in price. For one thing, it is unlikely to initially be able to work in an area that one is passionate about. Many of the Google products are exciting, but unfortunately I was unable to be passionate about my particular product area.

That is not to say that there weren�ft any interesting aspects about it, and I do have a lot of respect for the team I worked with. Overall this is less of a problem later, as it is generally encouraged to switch projects every 1-2 years, but this first year makes a big difference, particularly for experienced engineers that have a good understanding of what kind of things they enjoy working on (or perhaps more importantly, don�ft enjoy working on) or what kind of environments are a good match. I feel that the hiring process should be improved to better take this into consideration, although this is admittedly a difficult logistical problem at Google�fs scale.


If you're interested, you can read the whole message here.

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