Hundreds of contractors work on projects for Google at this anonymous office building in Bothell, Wash.

It happened at parties and first dates. “I work at Google,” I’d say, and then the impressed expression, clicking tongue, possibly an “oooh,” and I’d rush to clarify: no, those reactions were not at all appropriate. It wasn’t the Google they were thinking of — not really.

google3The Google offices in the faraway Seattle suburb of Bothell, Wash., do share some common ground with the offices people know about, in Mountain View, New York and Paris, and, more locally, the affiliates in Kirkland and Fremont. There were break rooms with massage chairs and bright, Google-colored couches; mini-kitchens stocked with snacks; and as much foosball, ping-pong, pool and video games as you needed to fill your forty-minute lunch break and two additional ten-minute breaks, if you so chose. Whimsical murals, inspired by the kitschiest Internet culture had to offer, adorned the walls of the open offices, and every conference room was named after a different Tom Cruise movie.

The message of this workplace, nestled anonymously among countless other beige buildings in Bothell’s vast North Creek office park, was clear: we were here to have fun— to work hard, as the ubiquitous rallying cry of the modern tech company goes, and play hard.

The workers in this office would probably also be in keeping with the public’s idea of what Google is all about: we were predominantly white and Asian, and, most noticeably, we were overwhelmingly, almost exclusively, young. At twenty-eight, I rounded out the older end of the bell curve of workers at the office; the vast majority of my coworkers were between 23 and 25. None of this will come as a surprise: youth is inextricably linked to the image of a company like Google, which is, in the eyes of the public, cutting-edge and innovative and ever-changing. It stands to reason that such a place would want to have on its roster only the “best and brightest,” fresh-faced recent college grads with a passion for technology and new ideas. Youth looks good for PR purposes; the image of Google as ingenue has stuck. I myself was caught up in that image, at first— it’s hard not to feel won over by an office tour that includes so many recreational activities, orientation materials layered thick with edgy humor, and the sight of a couple twenty-somethings tossing a ball back and forth over a cubicle wall.

It wasn’t until I was a few weeks into my position as a contract worker for not-quite-Google, where our paychecks came from a staffing agency and were about $400 per week short of what an actual Google employee makes, that I began to understand another crucial element of the youthful atmosphere: a young workforce is an uninformed workforce. When the magic word “Google” is slapped across one’s resume as the first entry after college, the first “real” employment, the promise of that name and the places it can take your career is just about enough to drown out the realities of working there.

Life as a Google contract worker

Here’s how it works: contract workers at the Google office in Bothell work in areas including quality assurance and data verification for Google maps and apps. These workers are paid, hired, employed and fired by two national staffing agencies, Randstad and Aerotek. The two representatives from each of these agencies, known as “the vendors,” are the people to whom you answer if you’re late or need a day off or your productivity isn’t what it should be. They are HR people, unconnected with Google processes. In fact, because of confidentiality agreements, they’re technically not allowed to know the ins and outs of what their employees are actually doing. This, coupled with their final say on who comes and goes, leads to frequent conversations like this one:

VENDOR: I had a look at your metrics this week. Your numbers are pretty low.

EMPLOYEE: Yeah, I’ve been having some trouble with the tool.

VENDOR: Is there anything in particular we can do to help you with your prod?

EMPLOYEE: Well, there’s a function in the tool that [some specific function in the tool that can lead to slowing down].

VENDOR responds with silence, and a blank stare, since they have never seen the actual tool before, or been trained on the actual tasks EMPLOYEE is doing, then reiterates the need for EMPLOYEE to get their numbers up.

Below vendors are team leads, who oversee a group of 40 to 50 employees, and below them are pod leads, each of whom is responsible for a “pod” of about ten people. An employee’s most direct supervisor, the pod lead, knows the most about their performance day-to-day, their strengths and weaknesses, their changing metrics and what they mean. It follows, then, that a pod lead’s input is sought out in discussions with vendors, particularly when dealing with an employee whose performance is suffering. Being in closest contact with the employee, they can shed the most light on what’s really happening. Often, though, this step is skipped. These outside hiring agencies have the ultimate power and the ultimate say in what happens to their employees, despite having no actual contact with them, or, indeed, any idea of what they’re actually doing.

I will say at this point, in the interest of full disclosure, that I was fired from my contract position, due to poor productivity. Google is constantly struggling in a battle of quality vs. quantity. Based on what I experienced, quality usually loses. I was told by my team lead and vendors that I had a problem maintaining quality and quantity simultaneously— that “when your numbers go up, your quality goes down.” I submit that this describes a pretty universal truth about what happens when human beings speed up while performing complex tasks—they tend to make more errors. Google knows this all too well. In fact, one day, my team received an email from Google top brass, our liaison to California (where the “real” Google is) telling us that productivity bars were being suspended until further notice, because people were going so quickly that quality was suffering. Out in the real world, users were taking to the Internet to complain about errors in our product— this kind of PR nightmare obviously trumped whatever deadline there was to get through everything rapidly.

Google higher-ups were telling us to slow down and be careful. They were yelling at pod leads for letting us get sloppy. Meanwhile, the vendors, whom Google had entrusted with the final say on hiring and firing decisions, still had nothing to go on but numbers, because the details of the processes were a mystery to them. No matter how many times it was stressed to go slow and focus on quality, these words of wisdom ultimately meant nothing to the people who held our jobs in the palms of their hands.

I should say here that there were also bars set for quality; they were handled with all the nuance we’d come to expect from our vendors. We were allowed a 5% error rate, without much leniency awarded to considerations like all errors being weighted the samegooglepull1 amount, or small sample sizes which made the task considerably more difficult (one mistake in a sample of five is a 20% error rate). Most of the time, though, quality was shoved aside in favor of productivity, because, unlike quality numbers, productivity numbers were concrete, not subjective, and couldn’t be debated or open to interpretation. The ease of dictating that employees move at a certain speed far outweighed what would surely be a more sustainable strategy of committing to delivering a quality product; this from a company whose name has become synonymous with excellence and precision.

If these sound like rigid performance standards to be held to, consider for a moment the “performance” demonstrated by the people who set them: Once every couple weeks, for example, we’d receive a strange email from one of the vendors, something foreign and official-sounding, and then, a few minutes later, a retraction: “Sorry everyone, that was only meant to go to a couple people” (These emails not intended for public consumption ranged from innocuous logistical details to less innocuous lists of employees slated to be fired). Financial incentives that employees won for good performance were often delivered late. Employee start dates were delayed, sometimes for months. Job duties were misrepresented. One coworker was promoted, then demoted, in the space of a couple weeks, when it was decided that the new position he’d been hired for would essentially be canceled. How long, I often wonder, would these employers have lasted if they were held to a 5% error rate in their own work?

You might think that in these conditions, people are being fired left and right. In fact, there is almost always a goodbye party or two each week, but mostly it’s because of people leaving voluntarily to take new jobs (last I heard, the team was struggling from a real morale problem). So is everyone else working diligently every day, using their allotted ten minute breaks for responsibly brief foosball games before returning to work briskly, at a less than 5% error rate? If you ask the employees of the Bothell office, they’d probably tell you something different.

First, they’d ask whether you were talking about someone with Randstad or Aerotek, since the two have notoriously uneven standards for their employees. Simply put: Randstad are hardasses, and Aerotek are softies. If you see someone whose numbers are consistently low week after week, and they continue to stick around, odds are they’re Aerotek. Odds are better still that they’ve made a habit of befriending the vendors. In your first week at Google Bothell, it’s likely that someone will take you aside and advise you to cozy up to your vendors, be they Aerotek or Randstad; that being chummy, stopping by to say hello unsolicited, will go a long way down the line if you should run into trouble with, say— you guessed it — your numbers. I never entertained this strategy, and found an affinity with my coworkers who seemed equally grossed out by the idea. All the vendors happened to be women; how would we feel, I wonder, if female employees were being encouraged to bat their eyelashes at the men in charge? “Haven’t we all seen Mad Men?” I thought. Don’t we understand that this is not the way a modern workplace is supposed to, well, work? If this all sounds like conspiracy theory stuff, keep in mind that the fateful “numbers” of the entire team were made public to everyone once a day; it was possible to literally watch different people being held to different standards.

An ‘anything goes’ workplace atmosphere

Most of my coworkers, I’d wager, would nod their heads eagerly while reading this article so far— that the labor practices are cockeyed is pretty clear to everyone, hence the constant trail of people leaving to find something better to do. But a workplace also has a culture to it, the moments between the work. In an environment so laden with fun and whimsy, the Google Bothell office was an “anything goes” atmosphere — unfortunately, in a workplace, anything shouldn’t go. “The job is boring,” a typical Bothell employee might say, “and the vendors are a pain, but at least it’s fun working here.” I disagree.

It wasn’t uncommon to overhear loud, raucous conversations between coworkers, which might have veered into territory that a more buttoned-up workplace would deem too sexual, or political, or personal, or just plain offensive. There was a vague, unspoken “If you have a problem, you’re free to ask the people saying the objectionable things to stop” policy. We’ve seen this logic before: a police officer must technically ask someone for permission to search his or her car, at which point that person is “free” to say no — never mind that that person might feel unempowered in the face of a law enforcement official, or not even know they have the right to refuse. If people were loudly rallying around a sexist joke in the office, it would be one offended party’s responsibility to approach a group of four or five, which might include a pod lead or two, and make an unsupported, unprecedented move to tell the lot of them that what they were doing was inappropriate and could they please stop. “Yes, officer,” we mumble, nine times out of ten, popping the trunk.

These were, keep in mind, public, out-loud conversations, in an office where “pinging” was always an option (I won’t pretend not to have had my share of off-color conversations with coworkers within the silent confines of my computer screen). If we ever had hopes of curbing the behavior, myself and who knows how many others who felt the same discomfort eventually gave up, and learned to turn up our headphones and grit our teeth or head to the bathroom when the daily round of sexual innuendo started up —I became so adept at tuning things out that I should list it as a relevant task under “Google” on my resume.

[Previously on GeekWireAn open letter to Jeff Bezos: A contract worker’s take on]

The vendors should be the HR arbiters for situations like these. My own experience in this was limited to asking once, foolishly, if there was any way to get the noise level down in the area where I worked. (I had, after all, been asked if there was anything they could do to help me with my poor numbers.) I was told that this was a “casual environment” and that the noisiness was par for the course. The youth and fun of everything left a great deal of wiggle room for the kinds of problems more regimented human resources departments are put in place to prevent. On the occasions when there was an accusation of something un-ignorable, like sexual harassment, people contacted vendors and were essentially ignored. They were told they could move their seats away from the offending parties, but no one was formally fired for those accusations. There’s a difference between fun and unsafe, and the vendors in charge of the office in Bothell erred in the wrong direction.

pull2All of these mistreatments need a young workforce to be able to continue. When those in charge were contacted about fostering a more professional work environment, or a safer one, part of the insufficient reaction undoubtedly stemmed from surprise: these kinds of requests didn’t usually happen. People were happy to be in a place with so many break rooms and such a culturally lax atmosphere. When a friend of mine went for her exit interview, one vendor was alarmed to see that she’d written that she wished there were more diversity in the office.

“Diversity?” the vendor asked, as if it were a foreign word. “You mean— literally, diversity?”

My friend patiently explained that on our team, for example, we were mostly young, and mostly white. At the word white, the vendor panicked, offering a stammered explanation that they didn’t actively recruit only white people, as if no one had ever had a discussion about diversity initiatives in a workplace before (In fact, the vendor wasn’t entirely right— the staffing agencies’ first crack at hiring always goes to references from current employees, who are offered bonuses for a successful referral. This kind of networking is one of the ways that workplaces stay homogenous, and keeps some minority groups in such low numbers in corporate offices like this one). Perhaps Google proper has standards for the diversity of its staff; since contract workers don’t really “count” as employees, those restrictions are mostly likely lifted for them.

[Editor’s Note: Google declined to comment on this piece.]

Perhaps this all sounds familiar. This, you might be saying, is the life of a contract worker (although you might be surprised to hear these tales from a company that’s so universally praised as a wonderful place to work): it’s the nature of the beast to be paid less, worked to more rigorous standards, left to fend for oneself in a laid-back office which can border on a hostile workplace. That may be true, I’d say in response, but it doesn’t make it right. There is nothing to be gained from unfair practices that push people to the limits of what they’re willing to endure from their employers. Forget for a minute the question of whether it’s ethical to treat workers this way; it’s also ineffective. In Japan, Scandinavian countries, and countless other places that are dwarfing the United States in the global marketplace, companies have ditched the Draconian idea that ruthlessness is what it takes to get ahead and are showing their employees more respect with profitable results. Anecdotally, I can say that I watched as my team hemorrhaged employees week after week, including higher-paid people in leadership positions, as the palpably poor morale drove them to seek out new jobs— a fact the outside world might find hard to believe, if all they knew of Google was its celebrated public face.

When we think about companies like Google, which are lauded as revolutionary, luxurious places to work, we must take these “lesser” offices into account to get the full picture. In our office, the vendors were generally seen as the root of our workplace evils, but it’s misplaced to let Google off the hook; after all, this was happening on their watch. Someone had to sign off on the cost-cutting decision to have outside contracting companies to come in and run the place. A company’s title can only carry so much gravitas for so long. If things continue as they are, Google will continue to lose a portion of its workforce to other companies, which make up for what they lack in caché in transparency, accountability, and fair business practices. If companies like this one don’t start treating their contract workers like they’re people as talented and worthy as their “real” employees, the phrase “I’m a contractor for Google” will no longer be met with gasps of awe, but with a pitying, “I’m sorry to hear that.”

Raphaela Weissman is a writer whose work has appeared in New York Press, L Magazine, Bookslut, the Gallatin Review, and the Euphony Journal; and an activist with Social Justice Fund Northwest. She lives in Seattle and is originally from Woodstock, New York.

Google logo photo by Melanie Phung, via Flickr.

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  • cathey

    Interesting read. I’ve had a few friends from college take on a contract role at Google’s Bothell campus. I heard all about the mediocre pay and boring work but this was some real insight. I work for big company in Seattle and we recently started hiring contract workers and it’s been the same kind of treatment.

    • Kyle Souther

      I’m a tech contractor. I worked at this Bothell office. I’d say this article is pretty accurate. Looking for a new job currently, your company is hiring contractors?

  • SeattleMike5

    This tale of woe bears some resemblance to my three contracting “opportunities” at I was disappointed at the lax oversight, the sometimes inappropriate behavior of permanent employees, and the poor treatment of contractors. Hopefully things have changed there, but I highly doubt it. In any case this article doesn’t make me want to work for Google either.

    • boop

      I’ve worked as an Amazon contractor for some time now and have never had any real problems with Amazon FTEs until this latest contract: One of the FTEs with whom I work has decided to take all her considerable angst out on me. I guess it’s what another commenter (on a different article about contract work) described as “mean girl snark”: It’s her way of letting her fellow FTEs know she’s the queen bee. Fine, I have got 3 weeks left on my contract and I’m sure I’ll never see her again. But she’s obviously not management material and I can’t help but wonder if *her* manager is aware of this. (Her manager seems quite an amicable person.)

      • SeattleMike5

        Ah…I have so many stories! Once I worked with a group of very young people updating items on the web site, and all they did was literally talk to each other all day long. Later our group manager was missing and we spotted him across the street with a case of beer. He never returned.
        Another time my younger female manager screwed up the firing of a young guy who was playing on the Internet all day. She never personally told him he was fired so he came in anyway. She found out about the mix-up while we were in the meeting to announce his departure, so she had security escort him out. He even came over to ask what was going on, but the manager just avoided him. Classy!
        Once I was assigned to do a complex project with no instructions (not usual for Amazon) at all, and only vague expectations. When I tried to politely get the manager to give more instructions he became haughty and annoyed that I had even asked.
        Eventually I sought assistance from an employee doing the same job in a different department. When my manager found out about it he was upset about that too. After he purposefully left for a conference in Las Vegas without answering my basic questions, I ended the assignment myself. Of course, I was blamed for everything.
        Finally, in a different department, a FTE was trying to show me how to do a big project on his computer, but the girl across from us wouldn’t stop playing with her dog. His ball kept rolling over into our area, and she kept saying “sorry”, but she kept doing it!
        That place amazes me sometimes. I just wanted to find a cool job with talented co-workers but I kept getting bad assignments. That’s the lot of the contractor sometimes, I guess. I’d try again, but I’m not sure I’ll have the opportunity.

  • blah

    Interesting article but not surprising or shocking. Someone has to do the grunt work and the grunt work is almost inevitably mundane, high turnover with marginally qualified workers. Keeping those workers with contracting firms allows Google and others to keep their voluntary turnover stats for real employees low, and to offer the best/real perks to their real employees. Managing those sorts of high churn jobs is also something staffing agencies do better than a company like Google. It is hard to have a recruiting/onboarding engine focused on getting the best, and another focused on filling body shop jobs. Staffing agencies are good at that and it makes the lines clear.

    It isn’t glamorous, but the jobs are onshore. Most of the Bothell work could be done in India or any number of other offshore locations.

    • Jenny

      …”The jobs are onshore” —> way to drink the koolaid! That is exactly what Google PR wants you to say. Yes, 5% of these jobs are onshore. How many employees are there in Hyderabad? Something like 5,000? I think they’ve whittled it down to around 250 at Google Bothell. They will get rid of as many of those jobs as they possibly can while still maintaining a big enough presence to keep people like you saying, “hey at least they have contractors onshore.”

      Funny thing is, the employees that do “climb the contracting rungs” and make it to team lead positions (who more than pay their dues and regularly contribute OT hours) are often selected to go train the workers in India that will eventually outsource to.

      Sad thing is, people here are commenting that this is “commonplace” and “not surprising.” OK fine, millenialls have a little bit of an entitlement syndrome going but maybe sometimes it’s worth stopping and questioning how things are going.

      • Wes

        It was pretty hilarious to have spent the last 3-4 months of my time there (before I left for a better FTE position) essentially training my eventual replacements over in Hyderabad.

        • amused

          What is even more hilarious is how a great deal of the Bothell workers’ time (especially QC) is unfortunately devoted to fixing things Hyderabad inevitably screws up. Constantly.

        • sgtdoom

          What isn’t hilarious is the type of idiotic comment like yours, heard repeatedly over the many years!
          Having been fighting jobs offshoring since around 1980, and realizing Corporate Amerika hit the critical mass point around 1999, there is really nothing hilarious about jobs offshoring or foreign visa scab workers….
          Hilarious only to the uninformed idiots out there ….

    • boop

      I’d love to know more about these ” to keep their voluntary turnover stats for real employees low” –are they made public? and if so, how?

    • sgtdoom

      That term you used, marginally qualified workers, is very disingenuous, as this article pretty much could apply to contract work at all levels!

      And does . . . .

  • owl

    Well written. Thanks for being brave and sharing this analysis. Subcontracting and shortcuts hurt us all, including the companies’ success in the end.

    • sgtdoom

      Yet this is the world so-called “liberal” (one should justifiably say, faux crat) Robert Reich extolled in his pile of drivel some years back, The Work of Nations!

  • Robert

    I’m curious about what the other big contracting houses in the Puget Sound area think of this–I had a bad experience working for a large non-profit here in the Seattle area via Filter, who also happens to be a big sponsor of GeekWire. I’m not saying that my experience was typical, but it bears a resemblance to the story above.

    Aside from the general “social” mistreatment of these workers at these institutions, there a sense of not belonging to the larger organization as a whole. “Oh, you’re just a contractor. You’re just an Orange badge. No you’re not allowed to attend an annual, local meeting/town hall/gathering/whatever with messaging from the CEO/COO because you’re not an employee. Why would it matter to you?”

    I think outsiders tend to have a rosy-eyed view of what it must be like to work for the likes of Amazon, Microsoft or with any of the other tech titans here. I would like to see more discourse (on this site and others) about it.

    • Kesh Meshi

      A friend of mine who’s an amazingly accomplished developer (he’s been working full time since before he graduated high school, and he never even bothered getting a college degree) tried his luck in the Puget Sound area about a decade ago. After a year of only being able to get underpaid contract jobs, he gave up and went back home to the San Francisco Bay Area. He now makes bank at some boutique tech company.

      I’m not sure what it is about the corporate culture in this area that someone like him couldn’t get a full time position, while he could in the Bay Area, but it really seems like something’s fundamentally broken.

    • sgtdoom

      This article relates what is a really typical mindset and behavioral pattern — don’t know if it’s just this area, but it is commonplace throughout the Puget Sound region — the moronic regardless of your performance and brillance, unless you are an official employee, you’re just another member of the riff-raff thinking???

    • Sorella Fleer

      I’ve been working as a contract worker for Microsoft for three years, and I get treated exactly the same as an FTE in my day-to-day work. Sure I don’t get all the perks, or get invited to all the parties (surprisingly many though!) but I get the same respect and recognition as my FTE colleagues.

      If I get the chance to transition to an FTE role I won’t refuse it, but I consider myself very fortunate. I get reward and perks from both Microsoft and my vendor. Next month I’m travelling to Munich for a team meeting. In November I’m travelling to England.
      I love my job.

  • feedthetroll

    In the interest of full disclosure, the author was bad at her job because she was simply bad at it. I’m sure this whine vendetta will get her a FTE position somewhere.

    • Lillian


    • sgtdoom

      My experience over many years, whether at GE, Citigroup or other major corporations, is that come layoff time, it is usually the best and brightest who get laid off, while those who attend the same church or synagogue, or attended the same schools, or somehow or other were related, were those who stayed.

      So I must agree with the author’s comments and viewpoints.

      • balls187

        Right, because companies like GE and Citigroup are nearly identical to companies like Google and Facebook…

  • Itsreallynotbad

    I work in this office, I’ll say the same thing here that I say to all of my co workers. There is no trick, they tell you bluntly before they hire you what the contract entails and that there is almost no chance for internal promotion.
    As someone who has been working QC contract jobs for the past 4 years, I will tell you that your employer does not attempt to create an illusion of a career path for you. All of those high hopes and entitlement comes from your own pride.
    While it’s not the most ideal job, it is a door opener for the next step.

    To all of those outsiders reading this I must tell you that the “numbers” are so easy to meet for most of the teams here, that I see at least 70% of the employees watching movies on their work screens all day.

    To all of those newly college grads whom I work with, and this is your first job…
    Don’t complain too much, because soon you will see what it’s like to have a job that doesn’t provide you with home cooked meals and snacks, and allows you to listen to music and catch up on Breaking Bad from your desk. Once that shit hits the fan, you will be looking back fondly on Google Bothell.

    • It’s a job

      I agree. While there is some truth in the article based on personal experiences, I hope readers are not under the impression that all employees share the same view. We are never under the illusion that we are a long term employee. The goals are not a problem for most, usually people have time to spare as the previous poster indicated.

      This is an easy job, it doesn’t require much of a background, and you get a relaxed environment. Id suggest taking this job as a stepping off point while working toward something better. That said, I’m thankful for the job I have, if I wasn’t, I wouldn’t be working here.

    • Katie

      “soon you will see what it’s like to have a job that doesn’t provide you with home cooked meals and snacks, and allows you to listen to music and catch up on Breaking Bad from your desk.”

      You mean a job that actually requires you to challenge yourself, learn new things, and accomplish something meaningful with the 40+ hours you spend on it every week?

      I worked at Google Bothell for a year and a half before moving on to a job that keeps me busy and mentally engaged enough to not have to resort to watching movies or TV to keep my sanity, and let me tell you, I don’t miss that “relaxed atmosphere” one bit.

      • katieisprettyfullofherself

        Your post holds no bearing to the discussion other than the fact that you’ve become successful; and since everybody thinks the same, we should inspire to be as mentally engaged as you are.

        The point made by the other’s here is clearly made to stress the ease of the job, compared to the struggle the author made it out to be.
        Congratulations on your success. We are all better people now having read about your triumphs of labor’s boredom.

        • guest

          What? You’re missing the point dude. This girl is not advertising that she’s successful, she’s stressing that this “relaxed” environment is mind-numbing and crazy-inducing. In fact, the kind of boredom induced by the tedious monotony of this contract work may be worse than the constant stressful haze of a more challenging job.(Like most people, I have experienced both.)

          Lots of jobs are tedious and involve some time spent time-wasting on the internet. In 2013, most of us are in front of computers most of the time. What Katie, hopes to highlight, is that some of us would like to be challenged and not spend losing brain cells for 6-7 hours/day ‘at work.’

          If you are one of those people who can handle that kind of monotony, by all means, soldier on. There’s a bouncy ball for you up at Google Bothell.

      • GaGaGaGa

        We were not forced to work here. We all filled out a job application, went through orientation & an interviewing process. After reviewing your contract, you had & have every opportunity to decline the job offer, or even just walking away if you really feel that you’ve become mind-fucked from all the “monotony.” Those that have worked here know that you are signing a 1 year contract & agree on the pay rate offered. If you do well, you may be offered an additional 1 year extension, upon your acceptance. Of course, if you prove that you are incompetent stupid fuck, then “yes” your vendor will show your ass the door, as with any other employer. So stop with all the “oh my god! I’m so shocked! I feel so mislead & my mind is melting to mush…” Just fucking LEAVE if you feel this job isn’t for you. If you have left, shut up & move on, no need to look back, because we are definitely not sitting around scratching our asses & wondering, “gee… whatever happened to that one…uh.. what was their name again…? Meh, oh well… wonder whats on Youtube today..”

        Way to stay challenged & accomplish something meaningful

        Wait… How much cat fur does one need to knit sweaters for America? We don’t want to let Hyde take over that mind engaging job from us too?!!!

    • SeattleMike5

      70% of the employees are watching movies on their work screens all day? That’s pathetic.

      • sgtdoom

        Sounds like that IG report of a few years back on the highly-paid SEC employees (excepting they were mostly viewing online porn)!

    • What he ^ said

      Couldn’t have said it better myself. Some of the blame for any inappropriateness in the office that the author refers to can be placed on Google for not demanding a higher level of service from the Vendor firm (provide onsite management) or providing an onsite lead who is a full time Google employee. There needs to be someone there with something at stake, and if Google really wanted to change the atmosphere, they would.
      As for the job itself, while it may not be glamorous or pay fabulously, it is a good entry level position that I have hired several employees from. It sure beats the hell out of Fast-Food or a textile factory. I think we are very fortunate to have jobs like these available in our area.

    • Meep

      Well said. I agree with a few points in this article but having moved in to a “real” FT job, I miss the atmosphere, free food and cool people I met at Google Bothell. And yes, the “numbers” were so easy- simply put, easiest job I’ve ever worked.

  • Someone who Knows

    As a current contractor for the so called “hard-ass” Randstad. I would like to make a disclaimer here. It is extremely difficult to get fired from this job. I have been here for about a year and a half and by no means over work myself and I have never once been talked to about my numbers. In fact I almost always sit near the very top of production and quality and this all takes very little effort on my part. I will also mention that vendors do not decide what numbers you need to reach. The team and pod leads look at the project and decided what is a reasonable expectation and if you are not reaching said expectation the vendors are then informed. And there is no need to cozie up to the vendors. In fact i speak with the vendors only if i need to ask a scheduling question.

    I have no love for this place. It is contract work. Welcome to the real world. The vendors are not here to hold your hand and tell you it is ok to preform badly cause you dont like the conversation around you. To say anything about a racist approach to hiring is completely wrong. There are people here of all backgrounds. The ratio is about the same as you would see walking down any given street in Seattle.

    This is really no more than a person who is taking it personally that they were fired from their job and refuses to accept that perhaps they were not cut out for it. And to go and make a public article trying to portray your former employer as an evil that must be stopped is just pathetic.

    This is not a dream job. The atmosphere here is very relaxed. The wages are not amazing and the opportunity for advancement is limited. However, anyone who has gone through the interview process for this job knows that all of this information is given to you before you officially apply. The vendors tell you: its very relaxed here, you are required to meet numbers, this is not a permanent full time job, projects tend to change alot…and then “are you still certain this is the job for you?”

    You know what you are getting when you start. This job is not hard. You are a contract worker. And you have probably just ruined a lot of career opportunities for yourself. Nobody wants to hire a person who goes and writes an article for the world to see about how they were cheated by “the man” when really they just didn’t do the job required of them.

    Dont get me wrong. I am not crazy about this job. But is a contract job and for being a contract job it really isn’t bad.

  • GG

    I worked at a Google contract campus in Tempe, AZ. It was just as if not worse. The thing that made it worse was that we were customer facing emploees for adwords and G places… We often took advantage of people and were successful because they trusted the Google name. This ethical conflict causes huge moral problems.

  • Grizzled Veteran Contractor

    Former contractor of 6+ years (yes and by choice) based out of Redmond here:

    Gripefest writing tone with no more specific solution than “it could be so much better, guys” — if you don’t like the job, leave. If you don’t like contracting, don’t contract. If you don’t like the lack of response by the vendor and you still want to work there, if you want to actually do something about the working conditions, go above them. Complain to regional headquarters, a district manager, anyone higher on the food chain. Write an email to Larry Page, even.

    Raphaela has done nothing constructive to solve the problem, nor suggested no practical solution that could be implemented. She appears to have done nothing besides write an open letter to her fellow contractors to commiserate in a public space — which she bullied Geekwire into publishing in the name of “getting the word out”, thanks insiders for the head’s up before this even hit the internet. (The contracting grapevine in the Puget Sound area is faster than Buzzfeed, I swear.) Congratulations, here’s the audience you wanted.

    Props to her for getting “fired”, which is code for not having your contract renewed among those who have been churned out, unless she actually did get fired, which in that case (again, speaking her audience’s language): wow, just wow. It’s profoundly hard to accomplish actually getting fired as a contractor without being seriously bad at your job, so congratulations.

    The big contractors in the Puget Sound area might neglect the human aspects of office life, but one thing they’re pretty goddamn good about — even the big gaming companies — is keeping long-term tabs on the performance of their contractors while being reasonable and amicable about performance expectations.

    Good luck to the author contracting at her next gig!

    • guest

      Email Larry Page. Problem solved! Good point! When you have a problem at your 47,000 person company you just dial up your CEO.

      Way to present a solution.

      • sgtdoom

        If you ever find his email address, you just be sure to pass it on to the rest of us, hear?

    • SeattleMike5

      What’s your solution, and why hasn’t it been implemented yet? Who’s in charge of implementing solutions? Will it be done next week?

      • magic66

        A union would be a good start…but good luck with that!

        • SeattleMike5


    • sgtdoom

      You’re soooo right, dood, there’s sooooo much choice in Amerika today, but then you don’t really sound particularly well-informed, now do you?
      Care to cite the stats on the jobs offshoring undertaken by Microsoft, Adobe, Oracle, Apple, etc., etc., etc.?

      For many years, we (political action groups) petitioned the presidential administrations about those stats, always receiving the reply that such a department which kept them did not exist.

      Then a year or so ago, the Obama administration admitted that such an office which actually kept such statistics on jobs offshoring was being shut down?

  • voleheart

    very very nice read. Personally I aspire to be marketer at Microsoft but like what did you really do? I did like article first time I read something so long till the end

  • RealityAlwaysBites

    Nothing thicker than corporate management, they lack morals, common sense and most importantly humanity. Accountants should be confined to their office, they make lousy management.

  • Rita Sherry

    A welcome inside look into how Google operates outside its glamorized headquarters. That working conditions in the world of contract workers is taken for granted among those whose awareness begins and ends with bells and whistles does not make it any less regressive. Nor, as the author points out, does common practice give Google itself a free pass.

  • Billy

    This article is false for the most part, aside from vendors not knowing your job and quality vs quantity, although this is inherent in this type of job no matter where you work. If you get fired from that job you pretty much deserve it. Most people who complain watch movies and spend more time and focus online than they do their work. It’s filled with recent college grads who have no idea what the work force is actually like, they complain that they don’t get the same treatment and FTE Googlers. You don’t say….I completed two contract terms for Google and I thought it was a great job, not the greatest, but it did the trick. And to those people who are saying it’s not mentally stimulating etc, you are only offering a back handed compliment while tooting your own superiority flute. This job can be stimulating if you make it, but that’s everywhere you work, just depends on your attitude….

  • Good Riddance

    I was a coworker of the author

    As far as contract work goes, this is a pretty decent job. You get two meals a
    day, the base pay is above average, you are there for a long-term contract (two
    years), and the regular operators’ work is not stressful. Many times you can
    even watch shows in a second browser window or on a mobile device while you are working, as others have indicated, while meeting the bare minimum for productivity.

    To get a fired from a position at this particular branch of Google, you have to fail to meet easily attainable productivity numbers, through either sheer laziness or incompetence. It’s not my place to say what the particular ratio of these two the author possesses, but her “tour of duty” was characterized by a protracted battle to exert herself. She never met the productivity bar while she was here and was fired long after she should have been. It’s worth noting she was fired long after she should have been – because two leads fought for second and third chances due to the tool issues she comments on.

    Her entire stint at this office involved complaining and slacking off. Low and behold, she was shockingly fired.

    I wish this was a more productive article, like the Amazon article linked in it.
    That piece mirrored the problems that contractor team and pod leads have at
    this job, where they are constantly trying to improve the workplace despite
    knowing that they have a two-year time limit in their position. These people
    actually want to make changes simply for the knowledge that they work hard and are actually helping. So yeah, there are problems and it can be demoralizing when you are cast aside by management despite trying to fix those very problems. The difference is those people are working on those problems.

    This article was nothing but a cry out for attention from someone that didn’t deserve it and who had nothing constructive to add. There are plenty of good workers, past and present, that deserved to give a shining light into why contracting work can be hard at Google. The author is not one of them.

    • Sallynotadude

      I don’t know the specifics of how they do it but there are generally no “free perks” at work. It’s all benefits. Your salary in their eyes reflects the amount you pay in for “free” things. So it’s like an extra benefit package that you can not change or negotiate. I hate it when anyone tries to use a “free” thing to hold or shame someone into compliance, you pay for those free things and the company shouldn’t be giving out free things if it can’t take it.

      Reminds me of that old parable of a poor man that borrows money only to see himself in worse situations later, about to be sold into slavery he begs to be absolved of his debt, and graciously is. Later, when the man is rich the same thing happens to a vassal of his, the vassal asks forgiveness in much the same way and the man denies him. People like to take this as a lesson in selfish dealings (I think god sends the guy to hell), but in reality the absolution he received earlier came with a bunch of invisible strings if accepting it meant he had to change his whole way of life.

    • sgtdoom

      And they also hire workers over the age of 25 or 30, huh?

  • Don’t Let the Door Hit Ya…

    I’ll join the handful of fellow Google Bothell contractors adding their perspective to this. TL;DR: Raph is right about some things concerning contract work in general, but has a very skewed view of this job and her former coworkers.

    This article is a mixed bag. Yes, there’s no room for advancement here. Yes, the vendors are overly fixated on numbers (though as another commenter pointed out, the vendors are going off of numbers determined by the team). Yes, the conversations can get loud.

    But for heaven’s sake, I’d like to address a few things. As has been said elsewhere in the comments, it’s extraordinarily difficult to be flat-out fired here. And no, I don’t mean “not having your contract renewed.” Raphaela, you were let go because your productivity was atrocious. “I won’t pretend not to have had my share of off-color conversations with coworkers within the silent confines of my computer screen.” That’s putting it mildly, Raph. I sat near enough to notice that you spent hours on “your share” of instant messaging conversations. Plenty of other people have had trouble with the tool, or have watched movies on their iPods, or gone on long walks, or chatted away with friends, or any other time-consuming thing without it affecting their productivity. Funny how you’re the only one, eh?

    Regarding those nasty ol’ pod leads that were part of the group of loud, offensive jokesters, that couldn’t be approached because of the intimidation factor. Three things. First, employees here HAVE been chastised as the result of noise complaints delivered to the pod leads. It’s called an email, or an instant message; no physical confrontation required. Second, you are the only person I’ve ever heard describe this workplace as “offensive.” I’m willing to believe that a blue comment may have occurred now and then; none of us can hear every conversation. But the idea that this is some sort of ongoing issue endemic of nearly the entire workplace? I’m not going to stand by and have you trash us all for your own vindication. And third: do you have any idea, at all, how much sooner you could’ve been fired? The pod leads went to bat for you. Several times. At least two different pod leads worked really hard to give you as many opportunities as they could. To have gotten fired after all that is lazy incompetence at a staggering level.

    I have no particular sympathy for the vendors, but you seem to have had a markedly different perception of our relationship with them. I’ve been here for over a year and a half, and I could probably count on my hands the number of times I spoke with the vendors. I certainly didn’t have anyone tell me to start cozying up to them, and I never witnessed tougher administration from Randstad than from Aerotek. If you stay focused and get your work done, neither one will care. But then again you never did a lick of work, so what would you know?

    All things are relative. Yes, contract work sucks, and it usually sucks pretty hard. I don’t look forward to job searching again, and I don’t like having a staffing firm garnish my wages. But having contracted for several different companies, I can safely say that this is the best such gig I’ve ever had. Yes, that doesn’t give companies a free pass. Yes, I’d like full-time employment. Yes, I’m concerned that the encroaching presence of contract employment is becoming a sort of “anti-union.” But keep things in perspective! Try for a better job, certainly, but don’t act like the gig here is representative of the darkest dregs of contract work. When I was at Nintendo, I’d have killed for another $4/hour, flexible starting times, free meals, and the ability to use the bathroom without notifying a supervisor.

    I agree that contract work needs to be talked about more, and that the employees in such situations have few rights. But I saw very little constructive words in this article. I mostly saw, “I’m upset that I got fired, and I’m going to complain about my lot in life for the next several paragraphs!” Even that I wouldn’t mind so much, though I think it’d be entirely self-serving. What upsets me is seeing my coworkers dragged through the dirt by one of the most unlikeable people I ever worked with. So to that end, this article greatly angered me. Everyone else was able to communicate in a friendly, honest, and forthright manner here, Raph. You are responsible for your own problems, and until you learn to accept that, you’re going to be a miserable person. Good luck finding new work… Lord knows that no one who runs a web search on your name and finds this article is going to hire you.

    • wang chung yoon

      Definitely sounds stinking miserable. Right or wrong aside, working for a company with this many layers of management and this many temporary and offshore staff is nothing but hell. I’ve done it in the past, and I will never do it again. The only thing that blows my mind about this whole thing is the talk of your wages as a contractor being less than full time employees. Every contract position I’ve held as a developer involves higher wages for putting up with the BS that comes with being treated as a temporary replaceable cog who’s expected to write code like its english. Being paid less for this type of work is news to me. I wouldn’t take this job if it crawled up my own butthole. Good luck to you guys, … I guess you took the job, so you are the ones enabling companies like Google to get away with treating employees like expendable pieces of garbage.

      • sgtdoom

        Being paid less than the typical employee is standard in the Puget Sound Region, blame it on BillG!

    • sgtdoom

      If what you claim is true, that would indeed be unique.
      Normally, a contractor (or a temp, for that matter) is routinely fired for the most insignificant reasons. Incredibly insignificant reasons, I should add….

    • Meep

      Well said. This article makes me look at ALL articles of this nature much more critically- you never know what bias lies beneath the surface. The vendors were beyond lenient with her. I recall another co-worker and myself waiting out her getting the inevitable axe- it took months of remarkably low productivity.

  • Nem

    I have worked on all the same projects using all the same tools as Raphaela, and I have never, ever had any problem reaching the minimum productivity or quality bars. Never been called in for a chat with the vendors. Nothing.

    Yes, the tools are buggy, but to claim that the issues are so prolific that they’re responsible for lags in productivity so great that you got fired over it? Laughable at best.

    There are plenty of legitimate reasons to not like contract work in general, but trying to make excuses for not being able to keep up with the perfectly reasonable (easy, even) productivity requirements is just sad.

  • TempBadge

    I work at Google Bothell currently, and I am part of the same team that the author worked on. I agree pretty wholeheartedly with Ms. Weissman’s points here — while I am proud of the work I’ve been able to accomplish, it is beyond frustrating how mismanaged things can be. The mixed messaging from “the real Google” and the vendors is by far the biggest problem, and likely the root of a lot of our morale problems. In the current system, we work to serve two masters who judge us by very different scales. As a result, the main focus of our job becomes aiming for the middleground, rather than actually doing work we can be proud of.

    Of course, the unprofessional atmosphere of the office only adds to these problems. I am amused, though not surprised, to see that some of the office’s most egregious offenders have come here to make ad hominem attacks against Ms. Weissman for even bringing this subject up. Is it any wonder why some of your coworkers might find it difficult to speak against you when you behave like this? If Ms. Weissman was as unlikeable as you claim, if she was so lazy and incompetent, why exactly did her coworkers and pod leads fight for her? Not to mention that the paragraph in question is simply highlighting the vendors’ failure to act, and only speaks in general terms about office behavior. To take it as some sort of personal attack… the commenter doth protest too much, methinks.

    While I may not have personally experienced some of the problems mentioned in the article, I know well enough to realize that that alone doesn’t mean they never happened. People may have different experiences during their time working at Google Bothell, but it’s foolish to act as if nothing is wrong. It’s even worse to say that it is pointless to criticize these flaws. Here’s hoping this article can inspire some discussion and change.

  • Drupal Guy

    Google has become ‘Big Brother’. Google tracks all web users; the worst mistake a web user can make is to create a Google account. I intensely dislike being spied on. I recently deleted my Google account and all data associated with it. We’ve given Google way too much information about ourselves. How ironic that George Orwell’s vision of the future has become true via the Google enterprise model. I don’t trust Google; I don’t trust the NSA; and I don’t believe a word of their ‘corporate ethics’ drivel. Wake up, sheeple.

  • Roy

    I also worked at the Bothell (practically college)”campus” and was also eventually fired because of not meeting productivity metrics. Though I have worked as a long-term contractor at 2 other tech companies, this was the only job where I saw such a high turnover rate amongst the contracting teams. I have never had trouble meeting productivity goals in, what I might add were admittedly much more strenuous and mentally engaging positions at both previous companies before working as a contractor for Google. The difficult part of the position at Bothell’s campus was not having a consistent project and a developed set of tools to work with. The project I worked on was a confidential project, but many elements were a secret to the actual team that was working on it, and was being developed as we went along. It’s very understandable that a project like the one I worked on was going to take a great deal of flexibilty, which I was thoroughly prepared for, but attaching metrics to an ever-evolving, contantly breaking and always changing workflow is ridiculous. The first 6 months of the project should not have been tracked as far as production goes, because there were simply too many variables and every team member was involved in a different aspect of the end product. In addition people were constantly switched to work on a different project, sometimes mid-day, while still expected to maintain high quality and quantity scores. So to the point that this article made about having issues with the tools, I think it is a very valid point. As far as the work environment goes, it wasn’t just the people that were lazy or goofing around that were having trouble with numbers. I didn’t go on long walks or take multiple breaks or converse overly much (on or offline) or watch movies while I worked and I found that to do a high quality job, it wasn’t exactly a walk in the park.

    I am seeing an odd trend here: Many of these posts emphasize how this is just a contract position (so why give a shit?), while in the same breath those who are asserting this are defending the policies of the contracting companies. When I was there I witnessed vendors flirting with employees, continually leak personal information to the whole building via email, miscommunicate and retract production goals.. you name it. I don’t have as big a beef with Google as I do with the poorly mismanaged contracting companies that Google hires to do it’s grunt work. For being so concerned with numbers, both Randstad and Aerotek’s turnover numbers were pathetic, and it didn’t merely have to do with people finding other FT work to do.

    • sgtdoom

      Exactly, and well articulated, Mr. Roy!
      Both agencies have miserable reputations to anyone who has worked in this area well knows, and which the author explained quite succinctly!

  • Petunia

    I think this article, as well as the one on Amazon, should be the beginning of an important dialogue our society should be having. As a baby boomer, I told my children that if they work hard and hopefully get a college education, they should be able to land a fulltime job, afford rent/a home, raise children and live comfortably. Unfortunately, that isn’t happening for the Millennials.
    They were sold this dream, accrued ridiculous amounts of debt with the rising cost of college tuition and were thrown in the job market that was crashing. When anyone mentions that college-educated young people are waiting tables and making coffee, the easy, scapegoat, Bill O’Reilly response is “They’re lazy! They expect everything to come easy! They’re spoiled! Their helicopter parents are to blame! They’re on their iPhones all the damn time!” Which is easy to say if you’re older, the job markets were better, full time jobs were readily available and your income allowed for you to save for/purchase a nice home. Go ahead, say it, you know you want to.
    It’s juvenile for Ms. Weissman’s colleagues to criticize her performance in this arena. She openly admits that she was fired and she didn’t fit into the workplace. As she states in her last paragraph, what she’s writing about is the perceived culture of Google versus the actual culture. It is not an attack on her pod lead, vendors or team leaders. It’s an opinion piece on how getting a job at Google is perceived (I, as a parent, would also be unknowingly thrilled if my children called me with this news) versus what is actually is. And it’s sad to see that for a company that prides itself of extended parental leave for men and women, death benefits for widows and a diverse board of directors, that they’re willing to risk their good reputation on contract jobs such as this, that so clearly do not reflect their Google “don’t be evil” culture. (I am aware Google has back-pedaled on this phrase but it is still inherent in how they wished to be perceived.)
    Like Amazon, especially in Seattle, people want to feel good about these two companies and it takes courage for Ms. Weissman to start this conversation, especially as already previously pointed out, given Google’s scope of power. Say what you want about the Millennials, I hope this piece and other’s like it are the beginning of a turning point for their job prospects and how all people, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, education, etc should have the right to work in a career that is dignified, a productive use of their time and respectful of who they are.

    • SeattleMike5

      These crappy contracting jobs aren’t new. They existed for Gen-Xers also.

  • guest

    Don’t put your name on articles running down a company you were just dismissed from. This is a fantastic way to burn bridges that don’t even exist yet, potentially damage personal and professional relationships you have with people at the company, generate harassment from the Internet, and ruin your online presence. Every employer who bothers to look up your name online will likely see this. It’s extremely unprofessional and damages your credibility in this piece.

    We should be discussing how the contract system hurts everyone involved, including the companies that use it. Revelations like “It turns out that entry-level college graduates working their first real job lack professional decorum,” on the other hand, do not seem important.

    Finally, either accuse Google and/or its vendors of violating discriminatory hiring laws or, better yet, leave this one alone, since conflating white people and Asians as if they’re a giant homogenous group (of “white people” and “might as well be white people”) is embarrassing.

    People taking this article at face value do so at their own peril.

    • sgtdoom

      You make a tremendously important point, which I sincerely hope everyone pays attention to!

      With data mining having hit critical mass around 2003 or 2004 (only one’s age and zip code are required for full data dump, and if you give them your name and telephone number, less work is required — such info typically appears on everyone’s resume), this type of article will surely come back to haunt the author sometime down the road if she seeks other employment!

      Been there, and experienced it waaaaay too much….. (They first hire you, then “unhire” you before you’ve started work, citing a back background check, yet they refuse to say why or what was on your background check to preclude employment — happened countless times to yours truly, and beyond my creative background in computer science, I’ve also held the highest security clearances in the land!

  • Elly

    I also worked in this office, have since moved on. It was a stepping stone, and I’m very grateful for it. No incentive to lie here.
    This job was the best this millenial has had thus far. I LOVED my coworkers, and the work, although sometimes mundane, was ultimately very satisfying. Never again will the work I do touch so many lives, and contribute so broadly to society.
    Realistically speaking, this is also true for the author.
    All about perspective.

    I knew exactly what the terms were going into the job. I worked hard, not sure what these other people are saying about the work being easy. It is challenging, and keeping up with metrics is engaging, but that’s a good thing.

    The issues raised by the author are a larger cultural problem within the structure of the American Economy, definitely not Google.

    Consider the alternative… either you have these jobs done completely abroad [and then you get super shitty quality, btw, and opens up more problems in the long run], OR, they go on hiring and purging binges.

    At least they don’t hire people full time en masse, have those people establish lives, and then fire them.

    If Google management reads this… I have much love… send more work to Bothell!!! The young kids in upper management in Bothell are doing some amazing things, with innovative approaches that aren’t seen in other places.

  • shakeyoudown

    Enjoyed the article however it is hardly a revelation. Most of the larger companies in this country have enlisted the large staffing companies with the allure of large body counts in return for skimpy margins and contractor pay rates. The agencies cannot afford to pay for quality workers so they enlist the marginal workers who are willing to accept assignments on the cheap. The result is high turnover and a severe lack of quality. Combine it with the majority of the work being done offshore and you have the perfect storm.
    And it is only getting worse with all the VMS models now being implemented throughout big business. You get what you pay for.

  • Demosis

    I worked for the Bothell branch and have to say that this article sums up my experience. One thing left out was the multiple pods talking bad about each other. It made for a very uncomfortable work situation. When you hear pod leads talking about how ‘stupid’ and ‘dumb’ people it’s distracting when you’re hoping it wasn’t you. Very bad for morale.

  • Gregory Hutchinson

    Rolling, rolling, rolling
    Rolling, rolling, rolling
    Rolling, rolling, rolling
    Rolling, rolling, rolling


    Roiling, rolling, rolling
    Though the streams are swollen
    Keep them doggies rolling

    Rain and wind and weather
    Hell bent for leather
    Wishing my gal was by my side

    All the things I’m missin’
    Good vittels, lovin’, kissin’
    Are waiting at the end of my ride

    Move ’em on, head’ em up
    Head ’em up, move’ em on
    Move ’em on, head’ em up

    Cut ’em out, ride ’em in
    Ride ’em in, cut ’em out
    Call ’em out, ride ’em in

    Keep moving, moving, moving
    Though they’re disapproving
    Keep them doggies moving

    Don’t try to understand ’em
    Just rope, throw and brand ’em
    Soon we’ll be living high and wide

    My heart calculatin’
    My true love will be waitin’
    Be waiting at the end of my ride
    Move ’em on, head’ em up
    Head ’em up, move’ em on
    Move ’em on, head’ em up

    Cut ’em out, ride ’em in
    Ride ’em in, cut ’em out
    Call ’em out, ride ’em in

    Move ’em on, head’ em up
    Head ’em up, move’ em on
    Move ’em on, head’ em up

    Cut ’em out, ride ’em in
    Ride ’em in, cut ’em out
    Call ’em out, ride ’em in

    Rolling, rolling, rolling
    Rolling, rolling, rolling
    Rolling, rolling, rolling
    Rolling, rolling, rolling


  • Meep

    Fellow google contract worker here- although I didn’t have a terrible experience there I was shocked that the vendors do absolutely nothing about harassment accusations. I was sexually harassed on a daily basis by another employee and even with evidence in the form of emails and screenshots Aerotek did nothing but tell me to figure it out on my own. Aerotek takes advantage of a young workforce and banks on the fact that they lack the financial ability to sue.

  • Adrienne

    Interesting. I’m considering a job here. I’m going into it with next to nothing outside of food service/retail, and expecting it to be pretty boring. It’s production, and I’m still looking for something better. But it seems decent pay to me, considering no degree.

  • Dada Mike

    I was Adam’s friend in Foster City. Can you contact me?

  • BlasphemousDopeFiend

    The job is painfully easy. You were fired for being terrible.

  • BlasphemousDopeFiend

    This was posted by someone that was terrible at their job.

  • Gin

    Do you have a follow-up article?

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