CDW
3.4 of 5 493 reviews
www.cdw.com Vernon Hills, IL 5000+ Employees

CDW Reviews in Chicago, IL

Updated Apr 6, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.4 236 reviews

                             

92% Approve of the CEO

CDW Chairman and CEO Thomas E. Richards

Thomas E. Richards

(74 ratings)

67% of employees recommend this company to a friend
236 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
in
  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Disapproves of CEO

1 person found this helpful  

Go for the training, gain some experience...and then leave...

Account Manager (Former Employee)
Chicago, IL

I worked at CDW full-time for more than 3 years

ProsTraining. A lot of young, fun people (although rarely very smart).

ConsInternal resources that are supposed to be part of CDW's value prop aren't reliable or valuable...

Upper management = huge embarrassment

Advice to Senior ManagementThe definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. Turn over is so high and has been for so long that my conclusion is that CDW is insane...insane to not overhaul its compensation plan and insane to not overhaul their hiring and recruitment process.

CDW needs to take a long, hard look in the mirror and think about where they are going to be in ten years. There is zero innovation occurring within the company and I predict it will soon be left in the dust.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

 

Revolving door

Account Manager (Current Employee)
Chicago, IL

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

Prosgood experience gainer to sales and IT

Conslow pay
no room for advancement
dont care about you unless you are the top sellers

Advice to Senior Managementcare more about your employees

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

 

Get 18-24 months experience then get out.

Account Manager (Former Employee)
Chicago, IL

I worked at CDW full-time for more than 5 years

ProsI worked with about 3,000 22-28 year olds in downtown Chicago with an endless supply of vendors to take you to happy hour. It’s basically an extension of college. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it was fun. Unfortunately, that is really where the benefits end. The sales training was mediocre, but the technology training was very well done. Get 18-24 months experience then get out.

ConsThe two biggest issues here are compensation and poor middle management. For HiEd, K-12, Healthcare, S+L, and MedLar you are based at $25,000k. This doesn’t change depending on seniority or performance. Commission is 10% of GP unless you have about $40k in profit for the month. At that point your base drops out and you get 16-21% depending on the total GP. To put this in perspective here are some numbers of a typical AM who has been there for 2-4 years; You sell $250,000 in a month at 8% GP netting $20,000 profit for the company and in $2,000 in commissions for you. If you do that every month you will earn $24,000 in commission and $25,000 in base for $49,000/year. You aren’t poor by any means, but it is far below industry averages and around 30% of what they claim during the interview. To top it off, if you fall behind 80% attainment of goal they don’t pay commission. They try to hide this from new hires so if you are just starting ask about it. Goals are often set a few days before the end of the month so this can be a surprise $2-3k hit. If it happens once or twice during busy season then you may quickly end up at $40,000 for the year instead of $50,000.

    Management is made up primarily of people hired from 1998-2005. In 2006 the company nearly doubled its sales staff so anyone with experience who wanted to be a manager got the job. This resulted in a lot of under qualified and under motivated individuals in management. To compound the issues, a lot of the people they started with are now on their teams. This results in a favoritism that is toxic. As people leave the company, their good accounts are given to the Managers friends, who then send their worst to the mid-level account managers, who take their worst and send them to the new employees. This is a huge issue in government sales since new entities are rarely created meaning that hand downs are the only way to get new accounts.

Advice to Senior ManagementI don’t know if there is much management can do. They got bitten by the private equity beast and it is slowly killing them. The cutting of compensation won’t stop until CDW has been back public for a few years. Invest in your employees if you can. Gut the ineffective managers and hire from within. There is still talent in the AM ranks.

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

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • No Opinion of CEO

2 people found this helpful  

I woke up dreading work and sick to my stomach.

Account Manager (Former Employee)
Chicago, IL

I worked at CDW full-time for less than a year

ProsAcademy managers truly help and care. The benefits are good, free food, and vendor gifts.

ConsHiring managers are quick to judge and expect the unattainable from you. Your book goal is outrageous and most of your book of business is awful. It's hard to gain new business. The minimum call count is crazy, they want a high call time, and the new review and compensation plan are awful. The classroom trainer I had was awful and I did not get much out of it.

Advice to Senior ManagementGive more guidance to new employees. You also need to realize that life happens outside of work.

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

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

2 people found this helpful  

The worst job I have ever had

Account Manager (Former Employee)
Chicago, IL

I worked at CDW

ProsGreat training- The training provided to Account Manager was fantastic and intense. You are constantly learning something new in the IT world.

ConsThe base salary is absolutely terrible and the commission plan is even worse.
They talk about being a company that build relationships and adds value to their customers, but really it is just a bunch of commodity brokers just like tigerdirect.com or newegg.com. They only care about how many calls you make. You really aren't a sales person there, you are a tele-marketer. The most important thing management cares about is how many calls you make, they could care less about how much you sell or how much profit you make for the company.
Long hours for low pay in short with an uptight atmosphere.

Advice to Senior ManagementYour comp plan is awful! If you are going to treat employees like garbage, than pay them for that mistreatment. You may be able to recruit talent, but will never be able to retain talent.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • No Opinion of CEO

 

Not worth it!

Account Manager (Current Employee)
Chicago, IL

I have been working at CDW

ProsWorking downtown and in a nice area
Clean facilities
Some what comfy chairs

ConsLow pay, bad management, calling a lot, poor communication between employees, snobby bosses and low pay. This is a stressful job and not worth 25k a year in my opinion but for others it might be.

Advice to Senior ManagementPay your employees what you would want to be paid for the tasks that are required.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

1 person found this helpful  

Great for some, terrible for most

Account Manager (Current Employee)
Chicago, IL

I have been working at CDW

Pros- the vast amounts of continued training and informational materials
- numerous resources to assist account managers
- extensive initial training
- vendor perks

Cons- CDW epitomizes the faulty american culture - all work, no play
- CDW does not promote a healthy work life balance, in fact they discourage it
- feels like working in a frat/sorority house
- though the resources are plentiful, an account manager has to jump through way too many hoops to make any progress
- not nearly as laid back as they promote themselves to be
- extreme micromanagers in a subtle, backhanded kind of way
- very rarely congratulate you but very quick to tell you what you're accomplishing isn't good enough
- every time I go to someone with a problem they tell me to go to someone else, who tells me to go to someone else, etc. until i'm back where I started
- we are falsely encouraged to be "ourselves" as long as "ourselves" is exactly what the company wants us to be
- nearly impossible commission structure on top of laughable starting salary
- very little paid time off offered
- extreme favoritism
- success depends heavily on who you know rather than how good you actually are

Advice to Senior Management- focus on truly promoting a healthy, enjoyable work/life balance
- increase the starting salary to stay competitive in the sales industry (i promise you what it's at as of 9/12/11 is not at all competitive)

- UPDATE: as of this month there is a new commission structure and you did not successfully pull the wool over anyone's eyes - the amount of money you claim to have fought for to put into the new structure is great on the surface but what you don't mention is that you initiated a pay cut to a large majority of account managers in order to throw more money at the absolute top tier and to newer account managers who will quickly grow their business beyond the lowest commission tier but will most likely never reach that absolute top tier - they will be stuck in the middle majority making less on the new & "improved" structure vs what they would've on the old structure...please revisit your compensation plans and make it more appealing for us to stay with CDW

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

 

There is no way to save this sinking ship

Senior Account Manager (Current Employee)
Chicago, IL

I have been working at CDW

ProsThe only thing that is making me happy right now here at CDW is that the vendors are spending more money towards contests and trips that you can win. My pay check over the last 7 years has dropped due to accounts being taken or moved.

ConsThe managers don't know what they are doing half of the time. I have a manager who has been with CDW for less than 3 years and this is their 1st job out of college. The pay sucks and I am back to making the money that I 1st made when I started with the company 7 years ago.

Advice to Senior ManagementLike everyone else posts on this site, you need to treat the sales reps with more respect and better pay. We are the ones who are making money for the company to pay your paycheck. Also, you need to trim down on how many managers/directors there are. I feel like I am in the movie "Office Space." Every month someone is being promoted to some new job position that was created out of thin air.

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

 

Would be a great job for a high school student

Account Manager (Former Employee)
Chicago, IL

I worked at CDW

ProsNo dress code enforced, you get to use a computer with dual monitors, most of the people are young (under 35)

ConsNo professionalism, upper management is very incompetent, strong focus on "effort numbers" even if you are one of the top sales representatives, lack of communication from upper management on new initiatives, while you do about 80% of the work- you take home only about 1% of the pay, no career path

Advice to Senior ManagementWhile your best employees don't often show up as an "asset" on your balance sheet, the revenue and profit each employee brings in can be measured. Use that as a metric in measuring your best sales representatives as opposed to the "number of phone calls" a sales representative makes.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

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

 

There is no more bonus.

Account Manager (Current Employee)
Chicago, IL

I have been working at CDW

ProsCDW can teach out over the phone sales skills and tactics.

ConsThere is no more signing bonus. Depending on where you are located the pay may not be enough to qualify for an apartment.
CDW went private and the company is fixed upon bringing people in for the short term, "two years" in order to keep the funds rolling in to line the executives pockets.

Advice to Senior ManagementGo to school or back to school for those of you who actually have a bachelors.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review
RSS Feed Embed

Worked for CDW? Contribute to the Community!

CDW Videos

Loading...

CDW – Why Work for Us?

​​Companies today are only as strong as the technology that supports them. That's where we come in. At CDW, we go far beyond delivering high-tech products. We provide customized services. And we deliver solutions… Full Overview

Provided by employer [?]

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.

Glassdoor is your free inside look at CDW reviews and ratings in Chicago, IL — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for CDW CEO Thomas E. Richards. All 236 reviews posted anonymously by CDW employees.