Author Solutions Reviews

Updated April 18, 2015
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3.5
68 Reviews
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Author Solutions CEO Andrew Phillips
Andrew Phillips
23 Ratings

Pros
  • Decent Pay, Great Benefits from Penguin Random House (in 7 reviews)

  • The best reason to work at Author Solutions is that it is a better than decent springboard into the world of publishing (in 3 reviews)

Cons
  • The result is a company with low pay ( (in 6 reviews)

  • There was absolutely no training, & constant change to products & company (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (2)

    One of the best employers in Central/Southern Indiana

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Publishing Consultant in Bloomington, IN
    Current Employee - Publishing Consultant in Bloomington, IN

    I have been working at Author Solutions full-time (More than 10 years)

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

    Pros

    Owned by Penguin Random House, this employer takes care of it's employees. The starting pay is aggressive plus the added bonuses and commissions can triple or quad triple your annual earnings here. There is no ceiling on what you earn. Health benefits are stellar and most likely the best in the country. Just after a year with the company, an employee can earn over a month of vacation/personal time/sick time. After 10 years, the company grants a one month paid sabbatical on top of a full four weeks vacation. I've been with this company for over 10 years and have advanced in annual earnings each year. The position of Publishing Consultant is inspiring and rewarding. The secret of a successful career at Author Solutions is dedication, hard work, honesty and integrity.

    Cons

    The cons are minimum. The Sales and Marketing positions at Author Solutions are not for everyone. The growth of this company is massive which can sometimes lead to hiring the wrong individuals for a position. This is a fast paced, high growth and earnings company. I've worked with some of the former employees that have reviewed this company in a negative light and can honestly say that they simply were not cut out for this environment. Although this is a sales position, it requires a level of intelligence and an understanding of the publishing business, all which is taught on the job. The products and services offered by Author Solutions are targeted to each individual client. The former employees that left Author Solutions on a bad note were simply unable to grasp this concept or lost patience in the process of learning.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to challenge and reward employees. We have some of the best career minded, hard working people in Indiana as part of our family in Bloomington and Indianapolis.

  2. If you can sell well and network well, you'll make money; if not, you won't.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Publishing Consultant in Bloomington, IN
    Current Employee - Publishing Consultant in Bloomington, IN

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

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

    Pros

    --Potential to make good money is extremely high for people without proven sales records or experience
    --Some great managers left after ridding themselves of the not-so-great ones
    --If you produce you are left alone
    --Benefits are amazing
    --Some awesome people work there

    Cons

    --You're not selling anything of much value and the amount of authors who are actually satisfied with their experience is astoundingly minuscule (it is a volume business and the promise of "one-on-one author support" is never delivered upon)
    --Lack of proper communication between various departments causes both internal and external problems
    --They may change the comp plan on you within a year's time (as this has historically been the case--although at the moment, it is better than adequate)
    --End of month overtime can be a drain (you may work until 8 p.m. on some nights)

    Advice to Management

    --Stop hiring so many consultants and focus on those you have
    --Hire quality salespeople, train them well, and keep them
    --Fulfillment is a mess, and as a result you're constantly battling refunds and bad press. You might lose this game in the end if you don't adapt accordingly
    --I wouldn't have been in middle-management if you'd begged me; so I suppose my advice to upper management would be to take a serious look at your pay structures and be open to change. The ship is large but it can turn.

  3. Good, not headed towards great...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Tech in Bloomington, IN
    Current Employee - Tech in Bloomington, IN

    I have been working at Author Solutions full-time (More than 3 years)

    Neutral Outlook
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    As a subsidiary of Penguin Random House (ultimately Bertlesman), the benefits are great - including perks like a 4 week paid "sabbatical" on your 10th anniversary, company paid disability coverage & life insurance. Overtime is seldom required.

    Cons

    Office interior is not impressive, however a facelift is underway first in Bloomington that should make the facilities at least solid.

    Advice to Management

    Direction of the company and priorities seems reactive rather than proactive, and some executives (VP or higher - predominantly males) come off as aloof and overbearing. This can create a stifling environment.

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  5. Love Working at Author Solutions

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

    I have been working at Author Solutions

    Approves of CEO
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Author Solutions is a great place to work. The benefits are good and the employee's are awesome to work with.

    Cons

    The only con would be the salary. Author Solutions should do a salary comparison study and adjust salaries so they are comparable to similar positions in the area.

    Advice to Management

    Employee's who are appreciated for what they do and compensated for what they are worth are more likely to stay at a company rather than look elsewhere for better pay.

  6. Helpful (2)

    great place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Bloomington, IN
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Bloomington, IN

    I have been working at Author Solutions full-time (More than 10 years)

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

    Pros

    Love being part of the AS LLC family. great place to work. Good Management. Been here long enough to see a lot of changes

    Cons

    I don't really have anything bad to say. Good place to work. the work area could be a little cleaner but work with what you got

  7. Things are really shaping up! I see a very bright future ahead. New management training program coming! Great benefits!

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

    I have been working at Author Solutions

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

    Pros

    Benefits are outstanding. The people are awesome. Laid back, casual atmosphere. HR really cares and they try to help employees. Flexible scheduling. Presidents trip open to everyone, not just sales. Generous paid time off.

    Cons

    Pay grades are a little on the low side, but are getting better.

    Advice to Management

    Employee morale...don't overlook the little people. They matter too. Be encouraging, supportive, and empathetic to everyone. Treat your employees equally across the board. Don't play favorites. You'll see a definite improvement in attitude and performance.
    Executives: Reassess the pay scales of positions. Many are below average. Be fair and show you care.

  8. Great Career Choice!

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

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    +I feel like the work I do is appreciated and that my supervisor/director respect me as an employee and encourage my career growth.
    + Great work is regularly recognized and awarded with prizes, quarterly dinner/awards ceremonies and yearly trips.
    + Education reimbursement program.
    (Plus, little things like free breakfast in the morning and lunch vendors nearly every day for those who chose to stay in the building.)

    Cons

    - The building is lacking cosmetically, but we've been promised renovation is on the horizon!

  9. Helpful (2)

    Not a bad place to work but not a career

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

    I have been working at Author Solutions

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

    Pros

    Wonderful co-workers there are people who really care about the Authors and attempt to do the right things for them. Benefits are great. Pay is not unless you are a high level sales person

    Cons

    HR is a joke- they rarely get pay correct, they spend little time working with employees, they are more interested in meeting some magic head count number than getting in good people

    Top level sales people are treated well - as long as they remain top level, have even one bad month and you can be written up.

    encouraged to tell the customer what they want to hear to make a sale and let everything else be someone else's problem.

    Advice to Management

    Treat people better, set realistic goals, pay fairly and stop changing pay structure on a whim

  10. Amazing Place to 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 Author Solutions

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

    Pros

    Author Solutions has an outstanding benefit program, available on day 1 of employment; you really don't see that anywhere anymore. I love that I have normal daytime hours here. I really enjoy most of the people I work with and have made a lot of friends.

    Cons

    The only "con" at Author Solutions is communication. We have (like every company) some younger people who enjoy drama a little too much, which causes people to not communicate effectively in a professional manner.

    Advice to Management

    My advice to management would be to push communication on your employees. This will not only help them personally, but most importantly it will help them professionally and help our company continue to grow.

  11. Helpful (1)

    Low pay, even worse management...HR is the only silver lining

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Writer in Bloomington, IN
    Current Employee - Writer in Bloomington, IN

    I have been working at Author Solutions full-time

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

    Pros

    Office culture is laid-back, very casual dress code, free breakfast (granola bars, fruit) every morning, affordable on-site lunch vendors almost daily and with great variety, time off is generous for first-timers and seasoned vets of the company.

    Cons

    Poor management that verges on the incompetent.

    Supervisors regularly bully and/or lie to their employees regarding company/departmental policies and changes to protocol. Most of the time, supervisors don't know the correct company policies themselves, so they make up situational rules for each employee on a case-by-case basis. NO ONE is treated equally or fairly.

    No opportunities for advancement or growth in a career path, so stagnation and complacency is rampant.

    Absurdly low pay for workload and expectations of the job.

    CEO has huge plans to grow by at least 25-30% each year in terms of revenue (revenue hasn't been up in a full two years, it's been down by 3-5% every six months when he comes to rally the troops in Bloomington).

    Work is completed without regard to quality, standards or consistency, so all the training or expertise new hires have to offer is thrown out the window in favor of "this is how we've always done it, even if it's wrong/subpar".

    "Say-one-thing, do-another" attitude by managers who let authors run wild with demands, pushing those demands off on production staff and demanding lightning-fast turnaround that hinders work quality and hurts overall morale.

    Managers fulfill clients' every wish, even if it makes the company look like a hack-job joke.

    Supervisors routinely pick favorites; they offer promotions to entire teams, but shadily and secretly groom certain teacher's pets without giving others a chance to vie for "once-in-a-career", highly coveted advancement/new position opportunities.

    Rude, moody, negative environment brought on by certain manager in marketing, to the point where multiple employees complained and nothing was done about it.

    Open door policy is a joke, managers will listen to your concerns, then tell you the "job isn't for everyone"; blaming the job instead of the atmosphere or direct supervisors' behavior for downtrodden and unfulfilled employees.

    Any concerns raised to supervisors/upper management are taken as threats or hostile behavior. To get anything done or have your voice heard, you have to approach and talk to HR. They are the only great thing about this company, unfortunately.

    Bosses and supervisors rarely show up to work on time or at all ("working from home" is the norm for some, often taking multiple days each week out of the office), but hound *salaried* employees to report what time they made it in to the office, even requiring some employees to email when they arrive in the mornings. If an email is sent after a certain window of time, that employee gets chewed out and written up without warning, often months after the incident occurred when nothing was immediately said. Very low levels of trust and respect for employees who want to work and do a good job each day.

    Salaried employees in the writing department are soon being transitioned into hourly employees = ENORMOUS morale suck and case for worry for most of the team.

    Advice to Management

    Allow employees to review managers, just as managers review their employees. Some interesting things will appear.
    Re-evaluate your hiring decisions and pay attention to supervisors who have had multiple complaints and concerns taken up with HR and DO SOMETHING about them.
    The little people matter and they are being run into the ground.
    Stop projecting lofty goals that won't be attained; you're already a top self-publisher, there isn't much of anywhere to go from there.
    Enforce standards and stop catering to baby-boomers, fanatical religious zealots, bogus Reiki masters/healers/"spirit channelers" and senile elders who don't know what they're getting into.
    Attract a more upscale and reputable clientele (we are owned by Penguin-Random House, after all!)

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