Descartes Systems

  www.descartes.com
  www.descartes.com

Descartes Systems Reviews

Updated November 5, 2014
Updated November 5, 2014
12 Reviews
2.5
12 Reviews
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Descartes Systems CEO and Director Art Mesher
Art Mesher
8 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Dead end, with decent PTO.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Descartes Systems full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    There are some very knowledgeable individuals around if you luck out and get the chance to work with them. The benefits package is pretty good and it is a paycheck which means something in this economy.

    Cons

    The organization is plagued with stagnation. There are no career paths and zero employee development programs. Consequently, patience of junior talent only lasts so long and they move on. This has led to most lower level management being there because they stuck it out rather than being promoted based on merit. Upper management is unapproachable and incredibly disconnected. I've literally gone several months at a time without any sort of meeting to plan or discuss anything.
    Promotions are non-existent. The pay is absolutely horrendous and raises are like an urban legend. You will be worked like a mule and never receive any feedback. There is too much animosity and the office culture is utterly terrible.
    The organization is very resistant to change and process improvement does not exist. The "big picture" solution is to keep poaching smaller companies rather than invest in the people or infrastructure.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take care of your employees and they will take care of you. As it stands now, when the economy comes back around there are going to major issues when everyone heads for the door.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Skip this place unless you are desperate for a job.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Staff (Too Small to Say Exactly) in Marietta, GA
    Former Employee - Staff (Too Small to Say Exactly) in Marietta, GA

    I worked at Descartes Systems

    Pros

    You get a pay check.
    Free coffee
    If you are lucky, it will be a short commute
    any port in a storm (it's better than not job at all)

    Cons

    Company policy is at least 4 years between pay increases of near nothing.
    Some managers will treat you with respect others lie to your face to manipulate you to work more.
    Company stated policy is to squeeze "resources" you like a lemons

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    At least try to show some appreciation for the people making the company run. AND actually know what your managers are doing, some manage people like personal servants but not in front of you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Don't work here unless you enjoy being abused!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Descartes Systems

    Pros

    The people working there are great and work well together, even under the extreme amounts of stress and expected extra working hours.
    You can be open about looking for another job, because everyone working there is!

    Cons

    No work life balance. Management/Executives suggest how life should be, but do not follow through making employees work long hours, including weekends without any extra compensation. No raises for a number of employees for years, however the CEO het a 119% salary increase?
    Always working under cutbacks, refusal to purchase badly needed IT infrastructure due to lack of cash flow. Goal is to bandage everything and spend no money.
    They would rather expect an employee to work 24/7/365 to keep stuff working manually than pay to fix it properly, and don't expect a bonus, a raise, or even a thank you for doing this extra work.
    Staff is underpaid and over worked.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start treating your employees with respect. Start spending some money to make things better. The IT infrastructure is sadly underfunded.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Overworked

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Descartes Systems full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Get to take on a lot of responsibility over a diverse set of systems. It is a great learning opportunity.

    Cons

    A lot of fire fighting. Lots of short term thinking from above. Resistance to invest in labor saving tools. Callous treatment of employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn to give ALL your employees recognition for their efforts. Recognize high turnover as a cost.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Dissapointment and buffled how bad Senior Managment can be

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Sof in Miami, FL
    Current Employee - Sof in Miami, FL

    I have been working at Descartes Systems

    Pros

    The vacation package is 20 days after 4 years of employment, which is something unheard of. 7 sick days, 1 personal day, 7 holidays - extremly good. The company also have a great health insurance and 50% matching 401k. You might be able to work from home, at least some of the time, but that depends on your direct manager work philosophy.

    Cons

    Extremely low pay compare with the same position in the industry - somewhere in the lowest 5% of the normal curve. No respect for employees, no raises. They had the performance review last year, and salary review this year - long process, starting in mid-October. When there was finally a time for senior managment to actually come up with the numbers (middle of January) they not only ignored the schedule, they acted like there was not salary review and haven't even mentioned the issues in CEO webcast three month later.
    The morale is extremly low since all the employees I know feel extremly disrespected. Six best developers already left, and the most of the rest is looking for a new job. Productivity is very poor, since there is no motivator - no raises, and a big demotivator - being treated like s..t by the senior managment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You guys up there need to quit. There is total disconnect with you and the employess. If you want developers to work on McDonald salaries, open offices in China.

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

    Tumultuous place to be on the Sales and Marketing side of the house

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA

    I worked at Descartes Systems

    Pros

    It's a job, which is good in this time of slow economic growth. There is a good bit of autonomy (which is also a negative, which I will outline under Cons). Benefits are good. Co-workers are nice and I made a few good, lasting relationships. Smart product people (developers, engineers, and product managers).

    Cons

    The company had 5+ Sales and Marketing complete re-orgs since 2000 from what I understood via very reliable sources. For proof of this, I randomly met a friend of a friend who had worked both at Descartes in a similar role and at another company I was with. He was at Descartes 3 years earlier and echoed the feeling of it being a chaotic environment.

    Descartes is a "product" organization and doesn't really, truly, deeply believe in the value of sales and marketing. There's a reason their revenue had been stagnant over the course of several years. I saw numerous middle management changes in 2 years, and of course very senior management people are never going to take a look in the mirror and ask "What's the common denominator here?"

    As for middle management, I would have out-of-town bosses visit and spend less than 10 minutes with me before jetting off. I once went 3 weeks without speaking to anyone on my team. The CEO, Art, wouldn't even acknowledge that I existed when in the same room as him (and I'm a social person and made a concerted effort to make contact). Then one time, a senior VP publicly acknowledged the efforts of every person who contributed to a major S&M event- except for me. I worked my butt off and my efforts were recognized by all the others on my team except for him. Admittedly, I was laid off weeks later as the next-to-last from my "class" on the Sales and Marketing ferris wheel, so that may have been his way of avoiding eye contact. Still, a little humanity and thankfulness for making him look good would have been nice and respectful.

    Just a terrible fit for me with atrocious upper management who have obviously sucked up to the Board to the point of not having to produce results or treat sales and marketing with respect for their abilities. Despite the doom and gloom, it was good work experience, it paid the bills, and I enjoyed my co-workers, and it's good to end on a positive note.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    See above.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Nice vertical but management is technical top heavy and have limited business types

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

    I have been working at Descartes Systems full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Distributed work environment is great.
    Pay is good.

    Cons

    Heavily matrix structure
    Too distributed
    Heavily off-shored development

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire more business people
    Be more business focused

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Director of Tax

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Tax Director in Waterloo, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Tax Director in Waterloo, ON (Canada)

    I have been working at Descartes Systems full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Opportunity work with taxation jurisdictions in Europe, Asia, and North America

    Cons

    Limited resources, inadequate feed back and failure to respond to proposals by senior management in timely manner

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire more middle level finance staff

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    It is just a job, not good and not bad

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Waterloo, ON (Canada)

    I have been working at Descartes Systems

    Pros

    It is just a job, better than having no job at all. If you are ambitious and expecting to make a difference by working hard, then this is not the place you should come. If you only want the paycheck or not capable to do anything, then you have very good chance to stay here for 5 or 10 or 15 years without being kicked out.

    Cons

    No raise, no bonus, no training and the only reward for your excellent work is the smily face from your manager.

    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    Needs improvement.

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

    I have been working at Descartes Systems

    Pros

    Good technologies, recognized in supply chain circles.

    Cons

    Work can be demanding, at times.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More training opportunities for employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

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