Long term contractor (Former Employee) – San Francisco, CA – September 15, 2017
Awful management in many departments, ranging from simple incompetence to toxic management.
They lost the culture that made them special soon after going public. Now they are a lifeless company struggling to stay relevant and dreaming of being like their tech giant competitors.
When I started the company was about free and expensive goodies, lavish parties, and wildly varying compensation. By the time I left almost all of the major perks had gone. Not that perks are a reason to work somewhere, but in the course of a year they went from over-spending on everything, to getting increasingly stingy.
Only work here if you are just starting out. There are much better options in larger, established companies or younger startups.
Reliabiltiy / Component Engineer (Current Employee) – San Francisco, CA – July 11, 2017
A very rewarding work environment that presents an opportunity for the working professional engineer to grow and excel in the technology field of wearables. Fitbit has recently moved to new offices in downtown San Francisco that are nothing short of luxurious.
Free Food and Drinks
Not enough experience combating entrenced competition
Technical Specialist (Former Employee) – San Francisco, CA – July 9, 2017
Working at Fitbit for 3 years, I've seen some smart talented peers. The majority of non-managers were passionate about health, fitness and making customers happy.
Good: 1. Really passionate employees (below manager level) 2. Can wear workout clothes 3. Good location (Embarcadero)
Needs Improvement The issue comes with very poor management, especially when it comes to making big decisions. Common things:
1. Shipping products that aren't done
2. Say you'll patch old issues in order to ship a product, and then never address it because the previous owner of the product/feature has already moved on to the next thing that needs to be rushed out the door
3. Compensation is well below average for the area, though benefits are pretty good
4. Overall, short-term gain is prioritized with managers and above, and this hurts products in the long term
5. Career advancement is non-existent. It is an afterthought to allow employees to grow into new or more advanced roles, rather it's all about shoving a new (poorly decided) product/feature
6. Employees opinions on the product aren't taken seriously, even though PLENTY of data from departments specifically made to gather that information (Customer Support for customers, Beta testing for internal employees).
7. Talented employees looking to go into different departments, but unable to due to culture of "I only want to ship my product, I don't have time to help others." Short-sighted because it helps those teams to have newcomers that already know the ecosystem.
8. HR is poorly structured and is consistentlymore... understaffed. Has by far the most turnover, which is the last department you'd want that to happen to
9. Lots of turnover, with higher ups more concerned about backfilling rather than addressing why people are leaving in the first place
10. Because of the culture of "I only care about my immediate team's workload", cross-department teamwork is bad. This means that a feature that needs 5 departments cooperating doesn't work because no one is aligned or communicating. Many times, one team finishes implementing their portion, and shove it to the next department with no advanced warning and saying they need it done in an unrealistic amount of timeless
Poor compensation, Mismanagement across the board, poor leadership decisions, lack of employee growth
Pgm Mgmt (Current Employee) – San Francisco, CA – May 8, 2017
There are so many smart, passionate people in this company who desperately want to deliver great products and life-changing experiences for customers.
Sadly, many of those dreams are dashed by executives who are out of touch with current development cycles and brag about "wanting their cake and eating it too." Teams are overworked and have to sacrifice quality in order to meet aggressive and arbitrary deadlines set not by engineering, but by marketing.
If the company could get out of that cycle and back to its roots, it would be a fantastic place to work again.
Cool technology, great mission, really smart, fun, and interesting colleagues.
Poor management with little accountability, top-down decision making, the troubling beginnings of a boys club culture
Research (Former Employee) – San Francisco, CA – April 20, 2017
It was a great place to work until market pressure led to layoffs. The work was fast paced and exciting. The most enjoyable part of the job was the smart/hardworking fellow employees that you got to work with.
Electrical engineer (Current Employee) – San Francisco, CA. – April 11, 2017
Some smart engineers here doing some great work. Problem is management people have very little experience. Most promoted to Director and Manager because they were early employees but lack real management skills and it shows. Upper management lacks direction and clarity. People leaving weekly. Not a positive work environment anymore.
Management lacks experience. Most have 0-2 years experience and they are directors and managers.
Test Engineer (Current Employee) – San Francisco, CA – April 10, 2017
Communication across departments need work. Takes too much time to be directed to the right person to solve a simple problem or question. Questions are not always answered in a straight forward approach and waste more time. Reflects on products and impacts quality as whole.
Senior Soft Goods Product Developer (Current Employee) – San Francisco, CA – March 8, 2017
Massive growing pains, work life balance is good, espp and rsu compensation is pointless being that the stock is worth slightly more than dirt, no 401k matching, no more free lunches (not a bad thing, the food was on par to prison meals). Work there if you hate good upper management. The hardest part of working at fitbit was trying to see through your projects - they either would last so long that they became useless b/c the management would pussyfooted around making any sort of decision without holding at least 12 meetings before hand, or out of the blue with no explination your project was canned. Another issue, way to many meetings for how little work people were doing. Best of luck if you work there just make sure you keep a bug-out bag ready... this company employes to many people for the little work they need to actually do.
Manager of Training and Development (Former Employee) – San Francisco, CA – February 27, 2017
Expectation of "start-up" type hours and workload Developed Customer Service Training Program/team Opened training programs for 6 international contact centers Learned a lot about international contact center operations
Recruiter (Current Employee) – San Francisco, CA – January 30, 2017
I've been working here since they were 300 people, watching it grow has been great, working with interesting people on great challenges. Day to to day you're tackling interesting challenges, and they've been able to handle the growth well.