Applied Underwriters

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Applied Underwriters Reviews in Foster City, CA

Updated February 9, 2015
Updated February 9, 2015
7 Reviews
2.1
7 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Sidney R Ferenc
7 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Quarter vending machines and decent benefits that only exist to try and suck you in (in 12 reviews)

  • Good benefits of you can tolerate the work environment (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • Everyone gets the same meager COLA (cost of living adjustment) raise each year no matter if you're the hardest working employee or a slacker (in 6 reviews)

  • No real direction from senior management (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

7 Employee Reviews Back to all Reviews

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  1.  

    Challenging + Creative

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

    I have been working at Applied Underwriters

    Pros

    I work in the Brand Communications Dept and love the work I do. It's creative, always-different work, healthy production budgets, manager trusts us to do our job and is hands-off (but there if you need him), beautiful workspace, nice co-workers, fun projecgts, excellent work/life balance. I am always, always learning new stuff. Some of the best projects I've ever worked on in my career have been done here. Salaries are decent.

    Cons

    COLA raises - small percentage raise each year for everyone.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Waste of a career

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

    I have been working at Applied Underwriters full-time

    Pros

    25 Cent vending machines. That's it, there is nothing else positive about working here.

    Cons

    Everything possible that you think could be wrong with a company is wrong with this company. Absent senior staff, middle management hired without any experience or knowledge of what they are doing micromanaging all the workers. The company itself, there seems to be something wrong with them. They have very few costumers, if any at all, so makes you wonder where the money is coming from.

    Working in the brand management department feels like a sweat shop. You are told you can work from home, but that's a trap as you'll be accused of not doing your job if you do. The managers have very distinct favorites who get very little work to do, while the work load is thrown on people who are obviously trying to be pushed out. Very much a "my way or the highway" mentality. No room for free thinkers or intelligent people here. You are but a tool, you are to push every button exactly as you are told. No one ever gets a raise, no one ever gets a bonus, no one is ever told they are doing a good job.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Find a new job?

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  3. 4 people found this helpful  

    Something is wrong with this place

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

    I have been working at Applied Underwriters full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    25 cent vending machines, mail order pharmacy, great location in the heart of Silicon Valley.

    Cons

    There are two types of managers, those who think the worst of their employees, who think they are lazy and stupid, and thus need to be micromanaged and intimidated to do work by fear, and those who hire the right people, treat them like smart individuals who can be trusted, and welcome them into the business so they feel like they are a part of the company who will give their best to make it a great company.

    Guess which type of managers Applied Underwriters is full of?

    AUW Managers:
      - They are never ever wrong
      - They expect you to be just like them
      - They will always know more about how to do your job than you do
      - They will call you on your days off and after hours and expect you to do work
      - They are micromanagers
      - They are constantly changing their mind
      - Will constantly tell you the business is changing, and that they want things to be done differently. But they will never let anything change, and everything will always work the same
      - They have favorites
      - They are very quick to blame you for mistakes, but rarely express gratitude when you succeed

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to what people say, and take a look at why people are so miserable working for you. Either change things, or realize your company is on a one way trajectory down hill and won't last much longer.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 7 people found this helpful  

    A company that does not care about their employees

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

    I worked at Applied Underwriters full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    There is a free pharmacy. The location of the Foster City office is nice.

    Cons

    If you want to be treated like a number and not like a human being, then you should be here. People are not treated as people at all. I was written up for being gone for surgery (with a doctors note that I had submitted mind you). Most people would not even smile (let alone say hello) at me in the hallways. People were cold, and I felt like "Big Brother" was watching every step I made. Micromanagement was out of control and heaven forbid if I wanted to actually use my PTO.

     I cannot stress enough how much they do not care about their employees and give the bare minimum of what is needed. The President of the company does not understand the purpose of having "company events", and if he could, would not have them at all. Which shows in the budget for these events.

    Keep in mind, the point of their job is to turn people into numbers and find whatever petty way they can to deny them the health insurance coverage those people actually need. And it shows in how they treat their employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change your corporate culture. If you want to hire humans, then treat them that way. Otherwise start employing robot drones.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 5 people found this helpful  

    Don't expect to stay for long...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Financial Technical Analyst in Foster City, CA
    Former Employee - Financial Technical Analyst in Foster City, CA

    I worked at Applied Underwriters full-time

    Pros

    -Above average starting salary
    -Good job training for new analysts

    Basically, if you're fresh out of college and need a place to cut your teeth, this place is fine. Just don't expect to put down roots in this business. The first month or so is just training in VFP and SQL.

    Cons

    -No benefits, sparse vacation time
    -Ridiculous micromanagement; boss is impossible to deal with
    -Insists on using obscolescent tools and systems (Visual FoxPro? Really?)
    -Very little opportunity for advancement

    Productivity is not measured by the quality of your work, but by the clock. The management really gets on your case if you clock out early (< 9 hours). Expect friction between work and your family and social life. Furthermore, you have to clock out for lunch; the entire team usually eats a hurried half hour lunch.

    The stuff you will be using is really antiquated. There is little novelty in the work; you spend most of your time doing queries, reports, and maintaining the absurd amount of legacy code in the system. Your ideas will mostly be ignored. Do not expect to do anything important; they won't even let you access production for a year or two, and most people leave before their first year is up.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn to trust your employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 6 people found this helpful  

    Crappiest place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technical Analyst in Foster City, CA
    Former Employee - Technical Analyst in Foster City, CA

    I worked at Applied Underwriters full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Great pay - I was making 6 figures with only 19 months of work experience. Good co-workers. Location is convenient.

    Great learning experience - Applied Underwriters provided me the worst manager, the worst employer, and the worst leadership I've seen in my career - this has helped me see the silver lining in all my subsequent work experiences.

    Cons

    Horrible benefits and very few days off.

    Micromanagement.
    You have to clock out for lunch (as an exempt worker) and my manager berated me for putting in 7.95 hrs one day despite having 50 hrs on the clock that week. I had dinner with my family only on weekends during my entire employment there. Entrenched management, not interested in better or more clever solutions.

    They monitor not only your lunch, but also your work habits and anything you do. Churn is very high - you're treated like a number. I wish I'd seen the writing on the wall sooner and quit like two of my coworkers had.

    If you're a high achiever, they will recruit you with $$$, then treat you like a drone unless you get hired into management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep it up. Applied may have 1 star on Yelp, but there's still 2 stars here so you have some work to do. You need to disenchant employees and customers equally.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    Good place for new grads

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Foster City, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Foster City, CA

    I worked at Applied Underwriters

    Pros

    reasonable pay, can learn many things

    Cons

    poor benefits package, tough boss

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    employee needs more pto days

    No opinion of CEO

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