What it does: Cloud computing, digital workspace tech
Staff stats: 20,000
The good bits: Big salaries, generous benefits
The not so good bits: Lack of guidance
The VMware Australia story
Unlike some of its Palo Alto neighbours, VMware hasn’t entered the public consciousness. Nonetheless, you've almost certainly made use of its cloud infrastructure or digital workspace technology. Either directly or through one of the businesses you patronise. (Its clients include ANZ Bank, IBM, Ladbrokes, Lufthansa, Marriot International, Siemens and Vodaphone.)
The company was founded by in 1998 married couple Mendel Rosenblum and Diane Greene, in partnership with Scott Devine, Ellen Wang and Edouard Bugnion. (Bugnion later went on to found Nuova Systems, which was snapped up by Cisco).
After operating in stealth mode for a year, the company released the VMWare Workstation (an expensive but impressive hosted hypervisor that ran on x64 versions of Windows and Linux operating systems) in 1999. In 2001, it entered the server market with the (hosted) VMware GSX Server and (hostless) VMware ESX Server. In 2004, EMC (now Dell EMC) acquired the company. In 2008, VMWare began a collaboration with Cisco Systems. This resulted in products such as the Cisco Nexus 10000V (a distributed virtual software switch). VMware was also early to the cloud computing party. It launched Cloud Foundry, an open source, multi-cloud application platform as a service (PaaS), in 2012.
VMWare now produces: hypervisors; desktop, server and cloud-management software; network and security products; the application management product VMware Workspace portal and the storage and availability products VMware vSan and VMware Site Recovery Manager. The fact 99.9 per cent of the world’s population haven’t heard of any of these products doesn’t mean they are not eye-wateringly profitable. In 2016, VMware had revenues of US$7 billion.
Like many tech companies, VMware is evangelical about diversity. It declares “we celebrate our people from a wide variety of dynamic backgrounds, experiences and perspectives”. VMinclusion is the business’s diversity and inclusion initiative. It comprises a “business-led effort to attract and engage the multinational, multicultural talent critical to our globally connected business”. It facilitates ‘Power of Difference communities’ for staff who are LGBT, female, veterans or from particular ethnic backgrounds. This is done to “enhance VMware’s inclusive culture and harness the power of human difference”.
With the assistance of “leading researchers from Stanford University”, VMware educates it managers about the perils of unconscious bias. VMware also uses ‘DIALOGUE Peer Mentoring Circles’ to encourage female staff to “[grow] in their perceptions of themselves as leaders and develop stronger networks for career advancement”.
The company is committed to equal pay for equal work. Regular analysis of its compensation arrangements shows neither women nor ethnic minorities earn any less than their white male counterparts.
Not content with its internal achievements, VMware is “making bold commitments and investing in programs to expand the community of female and diverse talent in technology”.
Among other things, this means it has signed the Tech Inclusion Pledge, joined the Employers for Pay Equity Consortium and taken part in the Corporate Equality Index (which rates workplace on LGBT equality).
There is also a VMware Foundation. Its mission is to “amplify the contributions of VMware people to their causes of choice and inspire the Citizen Philanthropist in all of us”. In the last year figures are available for (2016), 85 per cent of VMware staff got involved in at least one VMware Foundation program. This resulted in 66,113 ‘service learning hours’ being donated to 7411 non-profit organisations across the globe. VMware also matches any charitable donations its employees make.
The recruitment process
While VMware offers internships at many of its offices across the world, they don’t currently appear to be available in Australia. However, there are grad roles available in VMware’s various business areas: Business Strategy and Operations; Client Support; Engineering and Technology; General and Administrative; HR; Legal; Marketing; Sales; and Services and Consulting.
You’ll need the appropriate qualifications and personality traits for the business area you are applying to work in. As a general rule, VMware prefers “bold, inventive and extraordinary individuals”. Ones who are “looking to expand their skills and build relationships with the best and brightest in the industry”. As well as use their “drive and passion to challenge the status quo and dare to make new discoveries that will create a better tomorrow for everyone”.
It appears grads are expected to keep an eye on the job board and apply for any grad position that interests them.
Possibly because the recruitment process differs from country to country and business area to business area, VMware doesn’t detail the hoops grads have to get through to get a grad position. However, the consensus appears to be that, whatever form it takes, the recruitment process is always quick and efficient. Judging by the Australian grads who’ve gone through it, it seems to be structured around a visit to an assessment centre. There may be one or two interviews (either by phone/video-conferencing or face-to-face) before or after this. Expect to be quizzed about your knowledge of the company when interviewed. You should also make sure you’ve got a solid answer prepared for the ‘Why do you want to work here?’ question.
Experiences will differ depending on business area. But all those who are offered a grad role receive: targeted learning and development; rotational experiential programs; mentorship; industry and peer networking and membership of VMware’s ‘new graduate community’.
In a 2017 Glassdoor survey, VMware came in third on the list of the highest-paying companies in the US. While the company doesn’t reveal its remuneration arrangements, it appears that in most business areas you can expect to crack the $100,000 barrier within a few years. You can then be earning $150,000 - $200,000 a few years after that if things go well. In 2016, one of VMware’s Chief Operating Officers earned a US$23 million salary (in shares and cash).
Like many tech industry employers, VMware likes to keep its staff happy and healthy. Staff benefits include: free snacks and drinks and possibly an on-site café; subsidised health insurance; an onsite gym (or free gym membership); “regular social gatherings” and “fun family cultural events”; 40 hours of volunteer leave and “generous and flexible time off programs”.
VMware employees are encouraged to engage in continuous learning and make use of ‘internal mobility programs’. These programs allow staff to “take advantage of opportunities including course work, training and conferences”, “work with different teams for skill growth” and “complete multi-month assignments to figure out what's next for you at VMware”.
If you display leadership potential you’ll be encouraged to undertake the Manager Development Program. This “is geared toward helping managers explore the potential in themselves and others” and developing a “global manager base to support the company in our next phase of growth”.
The vibe of the place
If you are fortunate enough to snaffle a VMware grad position you’ll be living the tech industry dream. Expect to be surrounded by a diverse bunch of upbeat overachievers, pulling down big money and gorging on an extensive array of perks.
You’ll also be working in a funky office designed to “break down traditional barriers of physical walls and create an environment to promote learning, teamwork and collaboration… [with] community think areas where you can spark new ideas with your peers in informal and fun settings”.
Star Rating: 4.5 stars
From the Employer:
"VMware is the leader in cloud infrastructure, business mobility and virtualization software. A pioneer in the use of virtualization and policy-driven automation technologies, VMware simplifies IT complexity across the entire data center to the virtual workplace, empowering customers with solutions in the software-defined data center to hybrid cloud computing and the mobile workspace. With 2014 revenues of $6.04 billion, VMware has more than 500,000 customers, 75,000 partners, and 19,000+ employees in 120+ locations around the world. At the core of what we do are our employees who deeply value execution, passion, integrity, customers, and community.
Start your career with VMware, and get ready to push the boundaries. You’ll join one of the many teams creating innovative solutions, solving complex problems and transforming technology as we know it.
We offer a variety of programs that will help you expand your network, gain invaluable insights, and discover your strengths and passions. Wherever your talents lay, you’ll take ownership of meaningful, big-picture projects that will become a springboard for an impactful career. We’re excited to see what you can do and will give you the chance to showcase your accomplishments with the VMware community – including some of the most influential and inspiring people in the industry.
Our innovation, the ongoing learning opportunities and the visibility we give our employees are just a few reasons why VMware is one of Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For.
So, what are you waiting for?
Start your journey today: careers.vmware.com"