AKQA Reviews

Updated July 18, 2014
Updated July 18, 2014
183 Reviews

2.9
183 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Ajaz Ahmed
27 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • You'll get to work on some massive clients and work with some great people (in 16 reviews)

  • Lots of great clients, good budget and wonderful people to work with (in 14 reviews)


Cons
  • I know some other departments have a much less favorable work life balance (in 21 reviews)

  • Low pay, long hours, 2 weeks of vacation for the first 2 years (in 19 reviews)

More Highlights

65 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Blue chip clients. No investment in people.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate Media Director
    Current Employee - Associate Media Director

    I have been working at AKQA full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Best in class clients and projects. Smart, good, and cool employees. Able to touch and be exposed to a lot of different types of work.

    Cons

    No investment in people. Little vision from the top. You're sort of on your own here, there's no proactiveness towards retaining best people. It's only when you are out the door when they try to incentivize you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in people. Invest in emerging disciplines. Commit to a vision and direction. Proactively reward top performers so they aren't forced to leave/job hunt. Provide career opportunities and paths.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Made amazing friends, but creativity is dismal.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Designer
    Current Employee - Designer

    I have been working at AKQA full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Great people, made amazing friends
    - Okay salary (Warning, they will always try to undercut you)
    - Nice office spaces

    Cons

    - Dictatorship with being fun and creative around the office, the office manager once hid all fun toys and signs when Ajaz was coming in for 20 minutes.

    - Agency thinks they are creative, however 9/10 they will do whatever the client wants, project mangers will take any kind of terrible work from client, just to keep their time allocation for every creative packed.

    - You work in a call center, because no one wants to make the environment fun

    - They hire people who bring nothing to the culture of the company, who love to do their 9-5 and go home.

    - They will show you a demo reel, watch closely as all the creative work are digital leaderboards.

    - Technology Innovation agency. You're kidding. IT gives incorrect, outdated, slow machines. Refuse to buy industry standard displays that every single creative agency uses, because they believe that Dell make the best displays. Even though, they are more expensive that the industry standard Apple Cinema Displays. The colors don't show up right. One time, our client made a observation that the white, was pink. during a presentation.

    - Don't even bother doing reimbursements. They take too long, and sometimes take two months to get to your account.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Allow creatives, to be creative.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Ok company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Motion Graphics Designer  in  New York, NY
    Former Employee - Motion Graphics Designer in New York, NY

    I worked at AKQA as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Good people working in the company.

    Cons

    But not a good people management.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Good place for a short time

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Creative Developer  in  San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Creative Developer in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at AKQA as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Using news libraries and working on various projects!

    Cons

    There is a big gap between the managers and developers. You get the feeling that all they care is to make the customer happy nothing else.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay more attention to the work everyone is doing not just a small group.

    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    nice people to spend ALL of your time with

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at AKQA

    Pros

    Nice people who work really hard and will put all of their time into their work.

    Cons

    Zero work/life balance, so be prepared to spend all of your time with these nice people. Raises and bonuses rarely happen despite the competitive industry and all the best people end up leaving once they figure it out. It is a shame because there are great people who work there and great pieces of business to work on.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    A good jumping off point.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at AKQA full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    You'll get to work on some massive clients and work with some great people. It's a good vibe in a fun environment.

    Cons

    It can be very political. There's a lot of "High-level thinking" without a lot of actual work from the top. This creates a trickle down effect of sorts and creates inefficiencies, and not the most impressive work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Look out for your lower ranks.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Unrealistic Expectations

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate User Experience Designer  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Associate User Experience Designer in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at AKQA full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Fast turnaround on projects results in lots of opportunities to learn and grow, though often there isn't sufficient time to apply learnings to a project before it is pushed out the door.

    Cons

    The work/life balance and the expectations set on the employees are unrealistic. The salary is quite low but employees are expected to value working at AKQA for the sake of the name.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat employees with respect and retention will be less of an issue.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good for stability and building up resume, not for long term happiness

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Creative Developer  in  San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Creative Developer in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at AKQA full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Very talented and hungry bunch. High quality is drives everyone.

    Cons

    Upper management seems to put priority on winning awards and keeping up appearances than providing a work/life balance for employees. Burn out is inevitable.

    Almost every project is the one that's "most urgent" which results in putting out fires daily. It's draining.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please look outside the advertising industry to see what makes employees happy to work somewhere.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Eye-Opening

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Creative Technologist  in  San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Creative Technologist in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at AKQA as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Exposure to the best companies and resources

    Cons

    Don't get to work on desired projects as it's a big team

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    need to share futuristic vision

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Good people working hard to do their best work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at AKQA full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great people, no egos and all very talented

    Cons

    Management is very hands-off and unapproachable.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn to be effective managers - consider the people behind the job titles.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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