Apple 2.0

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Glassdoor's 2014 Best Places to Work: Why Apple fell to No. 35

December 11, 2013: 7:28 AM ET

A sampling of the "cons" in 717 Apple employee reviews.

Photo: Paul Sakuma, Associated Press

Apple employees. Photo: Paul Sakuma, AP

Screen Shot 2013-12-11 at 7.20.26 AMFORTUNE -- "All happy families are alike. Each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." -- Leo Tolstoy.

Apple (AAPL) is still one of the best places to work in America, according to Glassdoor's 2014 survey. But it dropped another spot in the report released Tuesday. There are now 34 U.S. companies -- and 15 tech companies -- rated higher by their workers.

A sampling of the pros and cons -- especially the cons -- submitted by current and former Apple employees draw a picture of a work environment that's exciting but not that much fun, especially in retail.

  • Creative (Apple Store): It's busy. All. The. Time.
  • Packaging Engineer: High stress, long hours, too much security.
  • Genius: Difficult to move up. Interactions with customers can be trying. Understaffed and overworked. Hours can feel long and are inconvenient to a proper work life balance.
  • Mac Specialist (Apple Store): Hard to internally grow into management. Too touchy-feely at times. Managers pulled in too many directions.
  • Specialist: Not for the lazy or faint of heart.
  • Front End Engineer: Long hours during project launches and work/life balance takes a backseat at some points.
  • Apple Solutions Consultant: You have no authority to make any real decisions but you are still required to make them.
  • Senior Network Engineer: People always watching you. There are people that want to put you down. No respect for contractors. Tough work.
  • Manager: Expect to deal with a lot of ambiguity and shift gears in the dark. Some in-between senior management are a disappointment.
  • Apple Campus Representative: Need to do it for reasons other than money.
  • Sales: If you don't like meeting high expectations to perform then this will not be the job for you.
  • Senior Hardware Engineer: With all the talent around out I found it very hard to be original.
  • Product Specialist: I wish the iPhone screens were larger.
  • Mac Specialist (Apple Store):  If you're not the type to seize every opportunity, expect to be in the same position for a long time.
  • Family Room Specialist: Their are times where the customer experience comes at a high cost to the employee experience.
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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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