Merkle

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Merkle Reviews in Columbia, MD

Updated May 6, 2014

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All Employees Current Employees Only

3.0 64 reviews

60% Approve of the CEO

Merkle Chairman and CEO David Williams

David Williams

(52 ratings)

47% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Many smart people--from bottom to top there are many(in 28 reviews)

  • Work/life balance: Availability to work from home occasionally really helps with work/life balance(in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • Running hard means work life balance sometimes suffers(in 16 reviews)

  • If you are not in senior management you have no chance to obtain this award(in 12 reviews)

17 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    5 people found this helpful  

    For IT Professionals, there are better places to work!

    Director (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    Pros· There are some talented people in IT but most are unhappy and/or looking for other opportunities.
    · Opportunity to get your hands on the latest technologies.

    Cons· What do you do when you don't have enough people? Use the same resources for multiple functions and call it a "matrixed organization". Get used to having multiple bosses and conflicting priorities. There are far too few people to support the large infrastructure, they are slow to hire, and they struggle to retain talent. Hiring freezes are in place more often than not..
    · Meetings 7-8 hours a day (they provide greasy pizza for lunch). And just to make sure that everyone is in sync they will have more meetings to discuss the previous meetings, these are called "alignment meetings". This is an effort to get your 5 different bosses on the same page but you will still get conflicting direction. There is no way to get your work done during a normal business day so you are expected to get it done at home in the evenings.
    · The free expresso, coffee, soda, and chocolate is to load you full of caffeine and sugar.
    · Benefits are awful, your portion of health and dental costs will be a lot more than you may be used to, 401k matching is trivial and vesting is not incremental and takes 6 years, they implemented “No Rules Vacation” that is closely monitored and totally contradictory.
    · Beer, Beer, and more Beer - It just doesn’t seem wise to have a few beers and then head out into rush hour traffic. The company not only condones this but seems to encourage it.
    · A weekly resourcing meeting is held in IT where all resources are assigned 47 hours of work (the standard Merkle IT work week). This is manipulated to falsely reflect that IT is properly staffed when in fact it does not account for many other tasks that staff is pulled into.
    · Production issues are abundant, on-call duties are a nightmare and even if you are not on-call you will often get pulled into issues in the middle of the night.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTake a closer look at your senior IT leadership. They may keep costs low but it is at a much greater expense. Don't be fooled by the "Greatest Places to Work" survey results. IT staff was pressured to the point of coercion to provide positive survey results. A large group of employees decided to mark the highest rating through the whole survey but later regretted this. Lower the Merkle flag, it should not be flown at the same level as the US flag.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Clueless Senior management needs help!

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsGreat People...very nice building. Free drinks!

    ConsThere is never any positive feedback from management. You can work very hard and you can add value to this firm but you will never feel like you have done enough.
    also look at the make up of upper management....this will tell you a lot.

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou need new thought leadership at the top...Get rid of the dead weight....Add some diversity.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Had to leave

    Operations Analyst (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsYour co-workers are your best asset at this company. Make the right friends.

    ConsNo work life balance. Crazy expectations. No career path. Management is clueless to what is going. No training except Google. You will get frustrated. Hard to understand your dev team because most of them are from India or China. No on-boarding process.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPlease create a formal on-boarding process.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    10 people found this helpful  

    No Training + High Turnover = A Lost Company

    Lead Analyst (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsYou can wear jeans to work.

    ConsBait and Switch Recruiting: In the 2 weeks between receiving a verbal offer and my official offer letter, Merkle demoted the title, decreased the salary, and slashed the number of vacation days. They enticed me with one position, but the job I finally got barely resembled the title, responsibility or compensation Merkle advertised, interviewed me for and verbally offered. My boss-to-be tried to ease my concerns over the title change by noting that the same thing happened to him. Seems like that indicates a pattern of bait and switch recruiting.

    HR is Very Disorganized: On my first day, no one was expecting me. There was neither a desk nor a computer set up. I waited idly in a conference room for 2 hours while HR tried to track down my new boss. He also hadn't been expecting me.

    The IT Department is Ineffective: Of the numerous requests or bugs I entered during my time there (most of which were simple, but essential, permissions requests), only 1 was ever resolved, and that required escalating the matter to my VP, who had to personally visit the IT guys to convince them to handle the issue.

    They have No Training or On-Boarding Program: None. Zero. Zilch. Not even a tour of the building. I repeatedly asked for training resources and was ignored. I asked my coworkers, my boss, his boss and his boss's boss. No one had time for me. I was left to fend for myself.

    Due to High Turnover, There is No Historical or Institutional Knowledge: There were no other analysts on my accounts. Every previous analyst had been fired or quit in the preceding 5 months. My boss joined Merkle just 1 month before me, so there was literally no one who could outline or explain the work I was expected to do. I was left to sift aimlessly through hundreds of disorganized files and thousands of lines of uncommented SQL in an attempt to reconstruct the work and processes of my predecessors. Worse yet, after a mere 6 days on the job, I was told that I was the resident expert on 3 different accounts and that, if anything, I should be the person explaining these accounts to others. Talk about being set up to fail!

    In sum, I felt that Merkle was consistently dishonest with me and provided zero support or training. Thankfully I was able to get my old job back and didn't have to hang around too long.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    6 people found this helpful  

    Too tired to give a f#$% anymore

    Account Management (Current Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsNice office building
    Very flexible with office hours
    Occasional fun events
    SOME people are nice, caring, hard workers

    ConsWhile in the office hours are flexible, expect to be available all the time
    People are quitting and due to corporate greed, instead of being replaced, their work is being dumped on existing employees
    Latest trend is promoting people to VP...the large majority of which are males
    Management over-commits to clients daily and then steps out for lower ranks to deal with the problem of how to deliver the impossible promise they've made
    Those that move up are usually talented at manipulating lower level staff to do their work so they can look good.
    Continually change the "mission". I thought it was to improve customer satisfaction, but how will that ever happen if there are never enough resources to make the clients happy?
    Not treated equally with senior or even mid-management - be lucky if you get to sit in on a meeting with them, but don't expect to talk. You'll get ignored or talked over.
    Nice culture guide - too bad that was the past and the present is a horror show

    Advice to Senior ManagementClean house and bring in new people who care, want to make a genuine difference and will get us back to the "one team" collaborative culture - not more clueless, too good for the working class, greedy bastards that can talk a good game, but can't deliver when it comes time for the big plays.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Learn as Much as you can and Move on...

    Account Manager (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsSome Great People, a Great building, free coffee, you can bring your dog to work.

    ConsSenior management is out of touch. Top Top Senior management is not the best of the best. They have some great workers who contribute to the success of the company ...but senior management is
    not that smart.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTake a look and make some smart moves...

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

    5 people found this helpful  

    Nice workplace, however work is often chaotic

    Project Manager (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsCan sometimes work from home
    Pay is good
    Workspaces are nice
    Mostly young, energenic co-workers
    Flexible schedules are sometimes tolerated

    ConsExpectations are to work 50+ hours per week
    Your work is evaluated by your peers, often leads to "alliances"
    Negative feedback shared with manager, but not employee

    Advice to Senior ManagementShould reassess how employees performance is evaluated. Employee performance reviews are typically influenced by personal issues between coworkers. Need to rethink "surround sound" approach.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    6 people found this helpful  

    Bait and Switch

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    ProsNew building
    You can bring your dog to work
    free drinks
    talented coworkers
    accessible location

    ConsI was hired after being put through their standard 6 hour interviewing process (including presenting a 20min powerpoint presentation that is required for all employees) and then placed into a role that I had done for two other companies and was overqualified for and STILL I never measured up to "expectations". Exceptations that were never communicated.

    They do not have any real training processes in place and will expect you to train yourself which is extremely stressful for a new employee in a fast paced work environment. And if you can't keep up with the break neck pace you are out. I saw many hard working and very talented and creative people railroaded and walked all over by management. Unattainable expectations are put on middle management that put them inbetween a rock and hard place when they are trying to lead their employees.

    They spend all this time drilling you with a very intensive interviewing process and claim they are hiring you because your attributes match what the company is seeking and then turn around and claim your incompetence when you exhibit those same qualities as their employee.

    If you are a work-a-holic salesperson who can also handle a lot of details at warp speed without a hiccup then this is the place for you otherwise I would suggest looking for a company that gives as much as they take from you.

    When they tell you that you will have a flexible work schedule what it really means is that they expect you to be flexible to work at all times.

    Advice to Senior ManagementWhat comes around goes around. If you are not leading your people well then they will not lead the people under them well either. You also might want to put achievement benchmarks in place for specific jobs or you risk loosing talent at the whim of a middle manager who wants to hire someone to fill a stagnant role.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    5 people found this helpful  

    Work hard, Play hard, Crash hard

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) Columbia, MD

    Prosgreat building to work in
    happy hours and drinking allowed
    location is convenient for commuting
    modern, dynamic company to work for

    Cons55+ hours a week
    its a churn and burn environment
    management can be obnoxious
    interview process is out of control and at times rude to the candidates
    horrible benefits that are very expensive
    not a family friendly company to work for

    Advice to Senior ManagementHire a real HR department and listen to them, what is in place now is a joke. Its fine to be growing and ask people to work hard, but Merkle has taken it to the extreme.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Saaaaaddddddddddddddd

    Senior Production Specialist (Current Employee) Columbia, MD

    Prosdrinks, nice space, good team members, flexible timing

    ConsMerkle is such a sad place to work in... everyone who does the work are frustrated and sad. Managers ane leads are liars and the ones who work hard have no motivation towards their career growth.... work environment in Merkle plays a vital role in ruining people motivation level and work their like slaves... Mangers talk as if they will do wonders to your careers... all the weekly, monthly, quaterly MEETINGS are BS... they do not care of anything, but numbers... This is a modern day slavery.

    Advice to Senior ManagementCheck closely on your managers and team-leads... they are having fun on expense of hardworking individuals.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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