Avalara Reviews in Seattle, WA

Updated August 7, 2014
Updated August 7, 2014
81 Reviews
3.9
81 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Scott McFarlane
62 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Company is growing at a rapid (fun and challenging) pace (in 4 reviews)

  • Front line employees are great people trying to do the right things (in 5 reviews)


Cons
  • The commute to the Bainbridge Island office in addition to a drive and bus ride makes for a long day (in 8 reviews)

  • Growing pains with infrastructure trying to support such rapid growth (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

50 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Work hard, have fun...

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

    I have been working at Avalara full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I'm fairly new at Avalara but there are already a lot of things I like about the company and culture. The work environment is positive and people really embrace the vision of the leadership. I'm looking forward to being part of helping the company grow.

    Cons

    Benefits are good, but could be a little better especially for things like 401k. This should get better as the company continues to grow. Office space is a bit challenging as well, but it is to be expected with any company growing as fast as Avalara is.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    I love working here

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Regional Sales Manager  in  Bainbridge Island, WA
    Current Employee - Regional Sales Manager in Bainbridge Island, WA

    I have been working at Avalara full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    -Work Environment
    -Product's
    -Potential for growth
    -Everyone and I mean EVERYONE get's along, no mater what department you work in.
    -Very easy to go up to anyone in the company and ask for help or advise and even Senior Leadership

    Cons

    I really don't have any

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep the good work

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    This is a great place to work and is how they describe it.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director  in  Bainbridge Island, WA
    Current Employee - Director in Bainbridge Island, WA

    I have been working at Avalara full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    This is an impressive company with a great culture and dynamic people. The folks you work with are open and want to help you be successful at your job. The company invests in their people and constantly push for ways to do things better. It is a fast paced environment where you are expected to perform and have fun.

    What I love, having come from a Fortune 200 company, is the ability to have a voice and have management listen. You will be hard pressed to find another organization of this size where you open access to all the key leaders. I was blown away how senior leadership makes an effort to be accessible to the front line people.

    Cons

    Ferry commute from Seattle. I will be glad when they expand their Seattle office space. You will find that the orange in your wardrobe will grow significantly.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You have built an amazing culture. Look for ways to keep this alive as you rapidly grow. Train your people well enough so they can grow and treat them well enough that they will want to stay.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Frat House

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

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

    Pros

    The business Avalara is in makes sense. The people are certainly friendly and fun-loving. Flexible environment. Decent technology, as far as it goes.

    Cons

    Weakling management. More interested in creating a circus atmosphere than succeeding, probably because they don't know how to succceed. Several so-called senior managers think they are smarter than they really are. Activity is mistaken for strategy, the latter being absent. The culture is a chaotic hybrid of a harem + Animal House. Compensation is below average. Plenty of competition.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    An army of little minions is unlikley to up elevate the game. Better rethink that strategy.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 5 people found this helpful  

    Plenty of ups and downs, get ready for micromanagement from middle managers who are blameless.

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

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

    Pros

    Great culture, really embrace the casual workplace
    Summer BBQ's
    Good mix of employees
    Minimal travel

    Cons

    Managers that treat you like scum
    Little or no advancement possibilities
    Below market salary
    Nobody gets fired, even for sub-standard and half-assed work, very frustrating when they don't recognize success and reward accordingly
    Weekend work often, ridiculous hours that grind salary employees to the bone
    Ferry ride to Bainbridge can be a pain

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE! Reward your employees, do away with sniveling middle management, reinforce a culture of innovation rather than stagnation. Have to do away with much of the old guard.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Like a fast pace and switching hats?

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

    I have been working at Avalara full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    My time at Avalara has been like a return to the dot.com boom only at a company with a lot more business savvy. If you see a better way to do something, there isn't red tape getting in the way or barriers to change: make a case and do it. You might need to roll up your sleeves and make it happen but in my opinion being able to sit at the table to discuss strategy and then dive deep to make things happen is one of the reasons I find Avalara a great place to work. Successes are celebrated.

    Cons

    The pace is fast: that's pro and a con. So much is happening you hear talk about wanting to debrief as you run on to the next project.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't forget to stop and look back so next time, we do even better!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    best place I have ever worked

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

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

    Pros

    The people here are smart and fun. Seriously a fun company. Beer on draft in the "tiki lounge" and the offices are baller. I split time between Seattle office and the Bainbridge location and while I was worried about the ferry it has been the coolest commute I have ever had. There is wifi on the boat and lots of Avalara people with me so I get work done or have meetings or just hangout with people.

    The business is doing really well and has lots of opportunity ahead. The company's growth in size and product footprint means there is big interesting work to be done and lots opportunities for people to jump in. I've worked at companies before where you are always stepping on someone's toes. Not the case here.

    I saw one of the other reviews here said something like “wants to be a startup but isn’t.” BS. Avalara is the biggest player in a market that is desperate for disruption. The company shipped a new product offering this month and 4 months ago their wasn’t a line of code written. Pretty cool.

    Cons

    Because of the company's growth in size and product footprint there is a lot of work to be done. While weekends are pretty free it definitely isn't a good fit for people looking for a 9 to 5 job in most parts of the company. Also, not a good fit for people that only want to do one thing or have ever said "that isn't my job." The frenetic pace can boarder on crazy at times.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    don't try to do too much

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Exciting, challenging, great opportunities

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Business Development  in  Bainbridge Island, WA
    Current Employee - Business Development in Bainbridge Island, WA

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

    Pros

    It's an exciting place to work if you like tackling projects of every size and shape. There are lots of smart people here and plenty of opportunity for someone who wants to grow their career and expand their boundaries.

    Cons

    Of course there are growing pains. Strategies can change quickly. There is at times inefficiency in implementing process without key stakeholder approval, then conversely change is too slow because decisions are too consensus-driven. This is mostly expected I would say with other similar companies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Maybe practice more flexibility relaed to work at home etc.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Happy, fulfilled, and engaged employee

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

    I have been working at Avalara full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I have an amazing boss and my immediate team is just great. I am offered independence and autonomy in my work and I know that I have 100% support when I need it from anyone on my team. Open, transparent communication, fun, driven people - one of the most positive work environments I have ever had. The product is exceptional and driven by a highly intelligent, creative and innovative team. Everyone puts in their best effort and is able to stay playful while working hard.

    Cons

    The Seattle to Bainbridge commute is a little long, but it is also beautiful and peaceful and subsidized by the company. I don't really feel like I can complain about that, although I know that has been a point of contention for some.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep the lines of communication open as you have. Being given the responsibility of being a trusted member of the business keeps employees motivated and accountable. I do think there needs to be more female representation across the company, and I know this is something that the organization is working on now.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Avalara Response

    Apr 27, 2014Management

    Thank you for sharing some of the things we see in our company that makes it so great. We continue to hire talented men and women to join our team. And, as for the commute…you are right, there are ... More

  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Company gets smarter and better with every hire

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Management  in  Bainbridge Island, WA
    Current Employee - Management in Bainbridge Island, WA

    I have been working at Avalara full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Challenging and vibrant place to work, building a real product that every business can use. We seem to attract and hire better and better people all the time. Company expects you to take ownership, has Big Hairy audacious goals

    Cons

    Still need to train new people faster. As the company grows its harder to meet and know all the new people. The culture is important, and Avalara needs to ensure everyone new understands the reasons for the culture, and the goals and how they can impact them. Company needs more activities focused on meeting new employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to focus on the vision

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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