Cobalt Reviews

Updated September 13, 2014
Updated September 13, 2014
285 Reviews
3.7
285 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Cobalt President and CEO John W. P. Holt
John W. P. Holt
219 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work-life balance is here is you are willing to sacrifice any career advancement (in 45 reviews)

  • They allow some positions to work from home on a part time of full time basis (in 23 reviews)


Cons
  • Preference is given to employees who have no work/life balance (in 8 reviews)

  • Low pay, clueless upper management, many people in jobs above their ability level (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Rising tides raise all ships

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

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

    Pros

    Fast moving business in growing digital advertising industry. Innovative company in a great location in SoDo. Decent pay and positive work/life balance.

    Cons

    Poor leadership with little to no vision. Customer takes a back seat to revenue, no commitment to anything but revenue.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Wipe the slate. Focus on solving real customer problems...what benefit does Cobalt deliver to dealers outside OEM mandates? The company will never win until they start listening to the people who actually drive their business.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great place to learn about website management and online advertising.

    • 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 Cobalt full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    This is a great place to learn how websites are maintained and online advertising works. Many folks are hired at entry level with little to no previous experience. You will be brought on with little training and do quite well if you have a curiosity for the industry and the drive to teach yourself what you don't know. It is a very informal work environment and allows for moderate growth. Use this place a a resume builder and then leave to get paid the industry standard.

    Cons

    The business concept results in slower pace of development/product improvement. Since Cobalt's primary revenue stream is focused on contracts with large Automotive OEM's instead of individual business owners, the development work is slowed. This makes for an interesting dynamic where account managers want to service the individual business owner's (Dealership Owner's) requests, while aligning with the OEM's compliance standards. Refining the art of telling the client we are not able to provide them with the exact solution they want and offer what we are able to provide, hoping the "consumer's perspective" will win out in as the ultimate influence.
    There are major inefficiencies in the sales through implementation process. It is very difficult for the sales teams to easily submit an accurate order for any product correctly. Cobalt utilizes a spreadsheet for 300 products and the exact product must be identified from a spreadsheet that is most of the time outdated. Implementation ends up being a major bottleneck, as only 2 staff members are tasked with manually entering all orders from an email que. There is a huge opportunity for refinement here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Dig in to the tasks that your front line staff do on a daily basis to better understand and measure success. Investing some time to develop and utilize Salesforce (CRM) to it's fullest potential will help to measure client engagement quality.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Cobalt is where I finally found the job I was looking for my whole career.

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

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

    Pros

    I work with some amazing people at Cobalt. They are smart, and very good at what they do. Politics are at a minimum. You can't get away from them, but they don't hamper progress. The managers I encounter look out for their people. They support us and make sure we have the tools we need to do our job. They embrace people here. If you are honest and do your job, you will do well here.

    Cons

    Cobalt as a part of ADP no longer has that start-up vibe as far as culture; for example there are no giant parties (but there are some good ones). Still some of this is actually good.
    Some of the things that you would expect they would have down-pat they do not, but I am stretching to come up with this Con.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A more consistent and intuitive review system would be nice.
    There is a great work/life balance. I think the balance between making the "new and innovative" and "supporting the existing/infrastructure" is pretty good, but there are still some frustrations when the established tools/processes/products break.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    One great company

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

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

    Pros

    Cutting edge technology. Great developers and progressive thinking

    Cons

    Work in silos. Not good for career development

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The culture is laid back, need more cross training.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    A couple of the best reasons to work at Cobalt is the Culture and the Managers.

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

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

    Pros

    They have excellent benefits compared to all the other companies I have worked for. I can only speak from experience in the Digital Advertising department but from my experience Cobalt really cares for their employees. I also have noticed that if you have the drive to succeed, you will.

    Cons

    Promotions take longer at this company than I have seen at other companies I have worked for. That being said I have never worked for such a large company in the past so the competition is fierce here due to the great talent.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    My experience has been positive.

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

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

    Pros

    Cobalt offers a great work life balance.
     My manager is very positive and does not micromanage me at all, she is very trusting.
    They have a gym on the first floor so I am able to work out everyday.
    I am looking into moving to another position within the company and my manager is helping me in the process.

    Cons

    The work can feel a little redundant at times.
    It's a big company so sometime I feel we are just judged on the numbers we produce and not quality of work

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

    Cobalt is LOST and Account Advocates have no hope!

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

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

    Pros

    Only Pro is being able to work from home! I get more done not dealing with the very POOR managers.

    Cons

    Poor Advocate Managers
    Poor Guidance
    No career path
    If you are not one of the "PETS" to one of the POOR managers you will not go anywhere
    My only thought is WHEN will HR get involved? Account Advocates need assistance.
    I have to say that about 8 months ago or so they let go a bunch of Team Managers; that was a miss because they let some of the real managers go. At least there was a true sense of management. Now with the ones left we have to deal with 4 managers have affairs with each other and we are all suppose to ignore it. Interesting is that at lunch time there are at least 2+ hour lunches by these "couples" and they don't think anyone notices

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Read above and get a clue.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Cobalt Response

    Aug 29, 2014Senior Director, Advocate Services

    Thank you for posting your thoughts and concerns. I am new to the Services Organization as the Senior Director, Advocate Services and I’m very passionate that we create and foster a world class ... More

  9. 4 people found this helpful  

    if you enjoy mind boggling incompetence at a management level - come work at Cobalt!

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

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

    Pros

    Orca card, weekly bagels, nice view from the office window, centrally located in International District downtown Seattle transit hub

    Cons

    utterly incompetent upper management, a mind boggling array of middle management suck-ups who add no value, a training team that at the core provided no assistance or real worth, you have zero voice and nobody listens to your suggestions or warnings

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Wow, where do I start? I worked here for 4+ years and this was by far, the weirdest place I've ever worked. You had so many "team managers" on the floor that literally added no value to the company that it was mind boggling that they were ever give a management level position to begin with. There literally is no chance for promotion unless you are buddy-buddy with upper management. Promotions were given to people who were so horrible at their job, but had "the look". Middle managers ran amok and would have very public affairs with co-workers. Two managers were so bad that their teams of 10-12 employees would stage walkouts. HR was a complete and utter joke while this was all going on. All the while the CEO put his head in the sand and did nothing. I'm at a much better position now and suggest if you are still at Cobalt GET OUT while you can before the rest of the job market punishes you for having them on your resume, because word is definitely getting out. And if you're considering a position there, by all means stay away unless you are one step away from being homeless.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Account Advocate; not what they describe it would be

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

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

    Pros

    Location, benefits, gym, Orca card, flexibility

    Cons

    Management, repetitive, not a consulting job like they advertise it as.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire people with dignity and degrees. Most of the management don't know what they're doing and are completely biased and political. One of the managers there - a Raider's fan, had 10 out of 12 people leave his team because his management style was so bad. It was all about numbers and metrics. He REALLY needs to leave the company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Interesting place to work, but not an inspiring or motivating industry.

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

    I have been working at Cobalt full-time

    Pros

    Good work schedule, good location, nice work environment and people. Company paid bus pass (for now at least.) Some attention is being given to career advancement, but it is slow.

    Cons

    Pay is poor. There are no bonuses and the health plan is very poor.
    Workgroups have too much to do to effectively communicate amongst themselves and other workgroups.
    Company parties are available to some employees, but it's not fair that some groups can not attend due to their work schedule. No one in management seems to care.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take care of your employees. Reward and inspire them. Make it easy for me to do my job better. Remove hurdles.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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