A2Q2 Reviews

Updated May 15, 2015
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2.7
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Kim Le
5 Ratings

7 Employee Reviews

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  1. Great consulting firm!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redwood City, CA

    I have been working at A2Q2 full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great team and great clients (large multinational to pre-IPO big name start ups!)

    A2Q2 has great flexibility, management support, and a relatively competitive starting salary. With a mentor/buddy program, this firm does a great job of giving constant one on one feedback so that you can constantly improve yourself in your career. Consultants have the opportunity to join in projects where they learn fast and start managing their own work. This steep learning curve allows quick growth, and with constant support from managers and directors, this ensures that intricate details commonly overlooked by inexperienced employees are not missed.

    A2Q2 also participates in many non-profit orgs, provides social events for its employees, and supports employee scheduling flexibility.

    Cons

    Work-life balance can become strenuous, especially during tight project timelines (this expected in the consulting/professional services industry)

    Advice to Management

    Continue to keep up with industry standards in terms of compensation and perks to reduce turnover.


  2. Experienced Consultant

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Consultant in Redwood City, CA

    I have been working at A2Q2 full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The firm has a diverse client base, from large size public companies to hot star-ups. I have been working for A2Q2 for more than a year and I am glad I get to work with so many talented people. Aside from my own client, I constantly hear positive feedback from other clients regarding our other team members. The best and the hardest challenge is, especially for someone relatively new to the finance/accounting consulting world, you get to work alongside with some very experienced industry veterans. You can learn much faster when you report directly to a partner-level manager who has decades of public accounting/industry experience. Also, the challenging environment trains and prepares you to face any fire-drill. In my opinion, the tough projects often help you grow the most.

    I have witnessed some very young and talented people who advance quickly within the firm, faster than what they would do in bigger firm. They all have something in common: knowledgeable in their field, well-rounded, and dedication.

    Last but not the least, the CEO, Kim Le, is a visionary leader. Most client seeks out for her because she has a proven record of leading an outstanding team and well-known for the expertise she and the team can offer.

    Cons

    The environment is competitive and demanding. It requires constant training and development to stay on top of the game. If you are looking for a comfortable 9-5 job, this might not be the right place.

    Advice to Management

    Provide a little more one-on-one feedback to consultants and seniors


  3. Personal & Professional Growth is Highly Encouraged / Supported

    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at A2Q2

    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I would like to show my appreciation to my A2Q2 family by sharing where I’ve come from, how you’ve helped me to grow, and where I see myself in the future.

    Growing up in a rural area in the south and receiving a degree in French did not prepare me for what was to come. I did not major in Accounting or in Business and there have been so many lessons to learn during my time here. As a fresh out-of-college kid, I moved across country to Arizona with a hope and a dream of a bigger opportunity than what I would have had if I had stayed where I was. Little did I know, offering me a job as a virtual admin to the CEO for $11/hr would be the beginning of a long line of opportunities to come. Almost a year after I started, I was offered the opportunity to move to California to learn more about the business and to learn how to better support the team (of 4-5 people) at the time.

    My journey over the past several years with this team (my A2Q2 family) has not been an easy one. It’s been one of making mistakes, learning from them and growing. I’ve learned how to dress and speak professionally. I’ve learned how to use tools like Excel, Visio, Expensify, Podio, and NetSuite. I’ve also learned new skills everyday like time management and project management. I’m so thankful for the culture and environment here that cultivates growth and personal as well as professional development.

    It’s not just about the work. The fact that I’m still employed says a lot about the owners because I’ve made so many mistakes and probably should have been let go years ago, but they have continued to work with me and teach me the professional and personal life lessons that I had not learned before. Their patience and continual support has been much appreciated. They have given me numerous opportunities since I started which has included learning how to manage my own team, not just once but at least three times so far. I have been given hours and hours of personal and professional coaching as well as new responsibilities to learn new skills. I have been given the opportunity move around within the company from admin to client service to the business management so I could learn the bigger picture.

    Since it is a smaller team, it has been difficult over the past several years to help all who have joined the team and it hasn’t worked out for everyone. The work is demanding because we’re client focused. I’ve had to learn how to stretch myself to complete tasks in a timely manner. Even though the expectations are high, I can reach out to anyone else on the team for help. Plus, the company has provided and continues to provide opportunities to those who wouldn’t otherwise have them like single moms or stay-at-home mothers returning to work or people who need work visas.

    Though the culture is fast-paced and things can change very quickly, as soon as management finds out that a team member is sick or is dealing with a personal emergency, a care package is sent out and the work is shifted to other team members to relieve the pressure and stress on that person while they cope with their current situation.

    I continue to see A2Q2 as a part of my future. They have become part of my family and I am excited to be a part of a team that is growing and learning to become more than who we are today and that is making a difference in people’s lives, not just doing work.

    Cons

    As mentioned above, the work can be very demanding and due to deadlines, there may be some late nights or early mornings required. Since this is a consulting company, this should be expected.


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  5. Helpful (4)

    Former Employee

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant in Phoenix, AZ
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant in Phoenix, AZ

    I worked at A2Q2 full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    -Remote working for AZ employees. Outside of weekly meetings, the AZ jobs are virtual.

    - A selection of free Audible books. The CEO shares her Audible account with the employees (mostly self-help books).

    -Flexible work schedule. Assuming you are in good favor with a few key people at the company and you are willing to be available when needed (having a good cell phone and a laptop by your side helps!), the schedule is flexible.

    -Fast-paced learning opportunities. As an employee at A2Q2, you are awarded lots of opportunities to work on projects outside of your skill set and in a short time frame.

    Cons

    -Unstable work environment. Within 6 months, over three quarters of A2Q2's Arizona workforce was laid off. Most of them received no notice and no severance packages, even though they were told that they were being fired through lack of work (through no fault of their own). The CEO is not shy about her vision to allow people to easily "get off the bus" if they are not happy. Unfortunately, I saw a lot of people get "pushed off the bus."

    -Poor business practices. Before laying off the employees, most of them were re-hired under a new company (same CEO and owner) called "A-Team HQ." This company was formed to help support the CA company's clients. A-Team HQ is based in Arizona, not California (where there are strict workers rights). Just a month after the new company was formed, massive lay-offs began. These "employees" were listed officially as "contractors" in many cases. These "contractors" received extensive training when the were hired, were provided company computers to work off of, and were required to fill out timesheets AND report summaries their daily activities by a specific time each day. Most of these people were paid $10-$14/hr (I feel bad for them when tax time comes). A2Q2 took advantage by listing these people as contractors (although they fit the profile for employees), so that they could more easily lay them off. Finally, the company (which specializes in project-based accounting), struggles to make timely payments to its vendors and "contractors." The internal accounting department is poorly organized because of contradicting visions constantly being force fed to the employees. Payroll and filings are always rushed, and nobody is a true "specialist" in any field because they are moved around so quickly. For this reason, it is a VERY common occurrence for employees to be up all night on a web-conference trying to make deadlines. Unfortunately, this disorganization also extends to client work, which is also often rushed.

    -Unprofessional management. Employees hired on Visa's are forced into working unrealistic hours because they have nowhere else to go. Management punishes employees who take military leave by taking away their positions (and does not provide them with an alternative position). Management does not have boundaries and respect for employees' "personal" time. Employees are basically considered "on-call" all the time. Management is not open about the direction they want you to take with your work, and they change their minds frequently.

    -Poor work culture. Ideas are stifled, and work-life balance is non-existent (especially for the CA employees). When people are fired, it is not talked about openly. There is no room for growth.

    Advice to Management

    If you would like to grow your company, communicate your vision appropriately to your employees. Earn your employees loyalty by treating them fairly.


  6. Helpful (5)

    NOT WORTH IT!

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

    I have been working at A2Q2 full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    As a previous reviewer mentioned, this is a boutique consulting firm. The projects are diverse and challenging. Working here, I did get exposure to various projects: accounting, SOX compliance, ERP system implementations, etc.

    Cons

    I agree with both reviews, turnover here is HIGH! "We only want the best and it's not for everyone." If I were you I'd steer clear of working here. It is just not worth it. As a staff you are expected to be available late nights, early mornings, and even weekends. No true training. Compensation is low.

    Advice to Management

    Invest more in staff training maybe this would allow you to fill up the seats in your bus!


  7. Helpful (7)

    3rd world company run by 3rd world mentality

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Audit Senior Manager in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Audit Senior Manager in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at A2Q2 full-time (Less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Pros is that many many smart folks with many years of industry experience come and go like its a drive-thru. A few old-timers start back-biting and squabbling almost immediately and this only coalesces the new comers into making a great network. Oh yeah, if you are hired as a senior staff, the juniors and admins will drop everything they are doing - eating lunch, working etc - and go fetch you water or grab your roller bag to your cube. Now, you see why I call this a 3rd world environment. I have worked in Asia, Europe and USA for many years and many industries and never seen any feudal structure like this. I saw this type of behavior quite a few times.

    Cons

    Too many moving parts and nobody tells you what is going on. Lack of moral values, decency, just a lot of hiring, firing and lies - every week you see new faces and every week you hear from grapevine that this or that person is let go - its never handle in a graceful manner, let alone communicated. There is almost no training other than you get thrown into the water so you either learn to swim or sink. Most folks will sink because they are set for failure and not fur success. There is absolutely no visibility into project pipeline or your performance. The so called Sr. staffs do informal evaluation and most of them include likes/dislikes of personal traits and nothing work-related or constructive. They will tell you that you are doing great, your job is safe, only the other person is going to get fired next Friday and then your turn comes the following week and you are told there is no more money left and then you see a few advertisements by A2Q2 in craigslist for your role and how great the company and mangers are. Before I forget.. they usually fire you just a few days shy of your 3 months so you are left ineligible to even file for unemployment.

    Advice to Management

    The management should stop using their stories about struggle and success in this country in every meeting and youtube videos to gain sympathy and business. For someone who was taken in and welcomed by this country, fostered and given many chances (and free food, lodging, preferential treatment and many more such entitlements), you would expect more down to earth and humble behavior in return but I noticed just the opposite. There are tons of achiever in the bay area who has done way more for the society and continue to be humble and most importantly, show class. I think this company can learn from them.


  8. Helpful (10)

    Challenging work and diverse clients, but poor management style and unrealistic expectations for staff. Don't work here!

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

    I worked at A2Q2 full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    This is a consulting firm, and the work can be diverse and challenging. Clients range from start-ups to established companies and organizations, and are in multiple industries. Working here, you can get exposure to work in accounting, consulting, SOX compliance, ERP system implementations, etc. You can learn a lot if you are paired up with a good manager. Managers and contractors come and go here, so there is opportunity for networking.

    Cons

    The pay and benefits are very poor in comparison to industry standards. Hours are long (management expects minimum of 50 hours/week on a good day) and commute can be long (depending on the day and client). Management has unrealistic expectations for staff which sets the staff to fail. Although there is a "formal" performance evaluation for the staff, things such as raises, promotions are largely determined by frequent informal feedback between the manager and senior management, and often do not tie directly to your work performance. Because of this and unrealistic expectations, staff are often caught unaware when they get laid off, bad reviews, etc. - as a result many staff come and go here. You are basically on call for the manager 24/7 and if there is no immediate response, you may get in trouble with senior management. I would advise against working here because of unrealistic expectations from senior management, which makes you feel you are never good enough; and the poor work-life balance.

    Advice to Management

    Learn to retain your current employees so that you can leverage the knowledge and experience they've acquired from being on the job, instead of constantly hiring new staff and interns to replace the ones you've let go. Learn to better appreciate your staff, so that they will enjoy working for you.

    A2Q2 Response

    Apr 18, 2014

    Thank you for taking the time to write such a thoughtful review. We love the feedback!

    You are correct that we expect quick responses; our guideline is to respond to clients and colleagues
    ... More



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