Cook Pharmica

  www.cookpharmica.com
  www.cookpharmica.com

Cook Pharmica Reviews

Updated October 23, 2014
Updated October 23, 2014
35 Reviews
3.1
35 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Tedd M. Green
15 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Engaging and Interesting Work

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

    I worked at Cook Pharmica as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Excellent compensation for a temporary position and a helpful and warm HR team. Work ethic was overall good and the facility is absolutely top-notch.

    Cons

    There is what I would consider an abnormally high turnover rate in the lower level positions resulting in some under-achieving employees. Ultimately, this could be due to the location of the facility as Bloomington is likely less appealing for a substantial group of professionals due to distance from major urban areas.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great working environment and benefits!

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

    I have been working at Cook Pharmica full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    I worked here as a temp for a year and knew I wanted to continue to do so. I'm about to enter my third year and wouldn't dream of going elsewhere. I feel like my skills are recognized and utilized, while my shortcomings are much improved since I was hired.

    Cons

    I can't eat at my desk. It's inconvenient, but a very understandable policy.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Get experience here, go to a company that pays decent!

    • 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 Cook Pharmica full-time

    Pros

    Work culture is great, love upper management for the most part. Laid back, clean, and great career opportunities.

    Cons

    Pay is terrible, new managment is terrible. A lot of lazy people and the company lets too much slide, they're usually the ones to get promoted. A lot of drama also. Paid time off and holidays are terrible. they do not keep their word on raises either.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Buck up and start managing your employees like you should. New management needs to slow it down and stop trying to change everything without knowing how we have been doing things.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Go in, get your job done, and get out!

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

    I worked at Cook Pharmica

    Pros

    Lovely staff and team work culture. The compensation was excellent and the benefits were top of their field. There was a lot of good energy pouring off of employees.

    Cons

    Watch out for the duds! The "duds" are the people who come late, leave early, take long breaks, and generally do not do anything. Their presence brings down morale.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Appreciate the staff you have today, because they may not be there tomorrow!

  6.  

    Inten

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

    I worked at Cook Pharmica as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Flexible, reliable, friendly, great sense of community.
    Great networking opportunites.
    Very educational.

    Cons

    Training - 5 day long event
    Numerous employees complain about their worl-life balance and salaries; however, as an intern I was paid competitvely and felt very balanced.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Politics

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

    I worked at Cook Pharmica full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Insurance was good. We had plenty of work to do.

    Cons

    Coworkers very gossipy, sewing circles. Had to use Cook clinic doctors. No privacy. Had to be "on-call" wasn't discussed during interview process

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognize talent

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 6 people found this helpful  

    Desperate to Get Out of Here

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

    I have been working at Cook Pharmica full-time

    Pros

    401(k) matching is the only decent benefit
    Cheap cafeteria onsite, which is nice when you don't have time to leave for lunch

    Cons

    PAY: Nowhere near competitive with industry. Especially since there are no bonuses. And despite what they say, cost of living is NOT that much lower here than on either coast. Entry-level MAs are paid pathetically low - literally less than a lot of fast food restaurants. You also only get paid once a month if you’re salaried because they’re cheap. (It’s 6 weeks between checks in December and January, so if you live paycheck to paycheck, good luck!) You have to watch closely when you’re given a pay increase. You’ll agree upon one amount and when you check your pay stub, it will be less than the agreed upon amount.

    BENEFITS: Awful. Pathetic. Way below industry standard. No bonuses. Insurance costs a lot and doesn’t start on day one. If you live in Bloomington, you’re stuck going to the Cook Clinic with no other options. The care at the clinic is mediocre, at best. If your spouse has insurance offered through their employer, they cannot be on your policy. 401(k) profit sharing doesn’t vest at all for 6 years. Relocation bonus comes with a required 3-years or you owe it back.

    TIME AWAY: Laughable. A pathetic 13 days of PTO if you’re salaried; only 10 if you’re hourly. No sick time; you’ll have to use your PTO for that. No winter holiday shutdown. Only 6 holidays a year. (Sorry, no day after Thanksgiving.) You want to earn extra time off? You’ll have to work here for 5 full calendar years before you get one measly extra day. (This means if you start on January 2 you'll actually have to work 6 years to get another day.) No comp time. One single day off for bereavement. So if a family member passes away out of state, you’ll be using PTO for that, too. Ridiculous.

    CULTURE: It sucks. Staff have low morale. People are overworked, underpaid, and unappreciated and it shows. No one respects anyone else. MAs are treated like second-class citizens when they're the ones doing long hours and hard work every day to make sure product goes out the door. People are overly defensive and difficult to work with. Complacency is an epidemic. There is an overabundance of finger pointing and self-promoting egos, which makes collaboration horrendously difficult and inefficient. People do what they want and get away with it because there is no accountability at all. (Dump a million dollars worth of product down the drain? No big deal. We’ll just re-train you.)

    TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT: What a joke! The fix for everything is more training rather than taking a look at systems and procedures to see where the breakdowns are. But the training and incessant re-training is coming from a bunch of people who have no relevant experience. Training program is a nightmare and the OJT isn’t effective at all. There are no options for development (outside training, conferences) for anyone other than upper management, who goes to every conference in industry to schmooze and doesn’t bring back a single thing to apply to fixing this place.

    LEADERSHIP: There is none. The majority of senior leadership is completely incompetent and doesn’t have even a basic understanding of the Drug Substance side of the business. No one can set proper goals or effectively communicate anything. There are no clear-cut roles and responsibilities, so no one knows what their purpose is and what they should be working toward. No one holds anyone accountable for anything at all. Basically these guys exist to stuff sunshine up your butt and make you think everything’s peachy while the business goes down the tubes.

    STAFF EXPERIENCE: Minimal. They’re too cheap to hire people with relevant experience. Senior operators with valuable experience are few and far between. The majority of people running the Drug Substance show have little to no experience in DS. We’re being told what to do by a bunch of people who worked in the medical device industry, or who worked at the hospital running lab samples, or who sat on a vial filling line for years and are all of a sudden bioreactor and column experts. There are people in very high positions that haven’t a clue what they’re doing in the DS realm and it’s obvious daily.

    FACILITY DESIGN/RESOURCES: The design of the facility is critically flawed for DS production. The use of disposables coupled with completely separated/isolated GMP suites for solutions prep and production make it an absolute nightmare to move product streams through the facility. Flow paths are precarious at best. We seriously lack the physical resources to get the job done - equipment is old, broken, limited, inadequate for the process, etc. A significant portion of the equipment is piece mealed and cobbled together in a less-than-reliable manner, and there are no backups for anything, so when one piece of equipment is broken or in for a PM, it becomes catastrophic quickly. All of this leads to continual poor decisions and rehashing of familiar issues over and over and over again.

    DECISION MAKING: It is impossible to get a solid, scientifically sound decision made in this place. These guys are pros at knee-jerk reactions that are not based on logic, reason, data or science. We never think past five minutes from now when making decisions. It’s ridiculous and exhausting to constantly rehash the same issues because we chronically make stupid decisions.

    ETHICS: I question mine daily working in this place. The bottom line is Pharmica cares only about becoming profitable; not about the patients, the clients, the employees, or doing the right thing. They would rather continue to rush clients in and out the doors with sub-par products, literally hundreds of deviations per month, and questionable compliance than to slow/stop production and fix what’s broken. I don’t feel like this place cares about me as an employee, about the clients as customers, or about the patients as end users. At all.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get a grip. This is not a successful business model. Pat yourselves on the back all you want, but until you get it together and start fixing things that are broken and holding your staff accountable (yourselves included!) things will never get better.

    Give your employees some benefits that are comparable with industry and make them feel like valued members of the company and they may not hate working for you so much.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 6 people found this helpful  

    Felt Like I was Paroled When I Left!

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

    I worked at Cook Pharmica full-time

    Pros

    - The people you work with on a day to day basis are really awesome.
    - Huge building with room for expansion.
    - Good location in Bloomington.

    Cons

    I am absolutely inclined to agree with a previous reviewer who stated that HR is making up reviews on this site to pad their ratings. I worked in this place for too long, and I saw how miserable people truly are. When I left this place I felt like the world had been lifted off my shoulders. Believe the critical reviews. I didn't, and I regretted it. Big time.

    - First and foremost, I didn't ever feel ethical working here. I constantly felt like I had to compromise the right thing to do in order to please management and "just get it done." What they value here is clients being happy and Cook making money, not the end patient. There were several instances where I felt uncomfortable with the decisions that were made at a high level and forced down the line.

    -They're a private company, so they can do whatever they please, and they do. Employee feedback is not encouraged, nor considered when instituting rules, policies, benefits, etc.

    - They will promote you, but you don't get any money for promotions. You have to wait 6 months after a promotion, and then they'll assess you to see if you will get a raise. It's not guaranteed. So you may spend the 6 months performing additional duties and then not get anything to show for it. Then they wonder why people get a title and leave. Hmm...

    - Personal growth? Non-existent. Training sucks. No mentorship or professional development at all. And they won't pay to send anyone to professional conferences or certification courses. Oh, except upper management.

    - Upper management is constantly undermining lower level managers. Supervisors and managers have no power here. If you have one of those titles here, it's solely for resume building. Don't expect to develop your managerial skills here. And don't expect to have much of an impact.

    - You're always working towards a moving target. Yes, I understand that's the nature of a CMO. I have worked in other CMOs before and it was NEVER this bad. Within the course of a single day, your course of action could change 5+ times. And often communication of the changing priorities is very poor. It stresses people out and burns them out quickly.

    - With that said, planning ahead is not a strong suit. Many of the "fires," so to speak, could be nipped in the bud if management would push back on the clients and insist that things be well planned and in place BEFORE a campaign starts. Instead they'd rather jam everything through as quickly as possible. Quantity over quality!

    - HR is completely unethical. (Really, it's just one person in particular, but no names and all that...) They have double standards and don't understand the concept of confidentiality. If you have an issue with another employee that you would like to be handled in a professional and confidential manner, you're SOL. They are also incredibly childish, condescending and horrendous to deal with when conflict arises.

    - Hiring practices are beyond ridiculous. These guys think they're in a league to be able to compete with Lilly and they're not. Basically, if you have a pulse they'll hire you because they are too cheap to pay for experience. They'll promise you the world in your interview just to get you in the door and then renege on it once you're there.

    - They'll offer you a pretty good relocation package, but it comes with a 3-year commitment or you owe the money back. Don't think that sounds like a big deal now? You will when you're 10 days in and realize what a mistake you've made and how much money you're on the hook for.

    - As others have stated, benefits suck. Yeah, yeah...we're in Indiana...blah, blah, blah. I don't care. You don't pay people who are making drugs to inject into someone's body less than someone who works at Taco Bell. They probably give less vacation than Taco Bell, too. Vacation is given in 8 hour increments even though MAs work 12 hour shifts. So when you get an extra vacation day, you really don't. You actually get 2/3 of a vacation day.

    - Petty, but I absolutely HATED having to dress up for work. I have worked 10+ years in the biotech industry and I have never had to dress up for work. I want to be comfortable when I work and I'm not in dress clothes. I guess they think it will make Cook look better. But everybody knows you can polish a turd, and it's still a turd.

    - They treat people like toddlers there, not letting you have a drink at your desk unless it has a lid - so no coffee mugs. And you can't eat anything at all at your desk, ever. So instead of being productive and snacking while you're working, you waste work time sitting in the cafeteria. Again, petty, but makes you feel like a prisoner in your own space. Other companies DO NOT do this.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It's not me, it's you. Throw in the towel and sell out to someone who can turn this place around. Amgen, Biogen, GSK...someone! Your employees will thank you when they see how good life can be when they work for a company who respects their workers and allows them some freedoms to feel comfortable and happy in their workspace.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  10.  

    The work was great, the culture was terrible

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant Scientist
    Former Employee - Assistant Scientist

    I worked at Cook Pharmica full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    It was a good place to get experience and the pay was really good. Health insurance and other benefits were also pretty good. Time off was pretty flexible and easy to use.

    Cons

    Coworkers were very gossipy and management only fostered or in some cases started it. Often salaried employees are taken advantage of concerning numbers of hours worked.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't let lower management get away with promoting bad behaviors among the employees that report to them.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 5 people found this helpful  

    Little people don't matter.

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

    I worked at Cook Pharmica full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    On the surface it seems like a great place to work. Friendly co-workers, good cafeteria, nice work environment.

    Cons

    Management does not care about employees. Time clock system is horrible. Bad raises, everyone is very stressed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat employees the way you want to be treated. Think about compensating employees what they are worth. Follow Bill Cook's philosophy.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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