ESI International Reviews

Updated January 24, 2015
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2.5
61 Reviews
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ESI International President and CEO John Elsey
John Elsey
36 Ratings

Pros
  • Extremely laid back office, excellent work life balance consideration (in 3 reviews)

  • Free classes for employees if you have the time to take them (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Non-existent career progression resulting in mid/senior-management glut of people with unprogressive business mindsets (in 5 reviews)

  • Most of the old senior leadership is gone now (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. Ups and Downs

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

    I worked at ESI International full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Dependent on department, there are cross department shadow opportunities for potential career development. 2 free Instructor lead training courses a year and unlimited e-training courses, which give you the opportunity to earn training to use elsewhere. Some departments have amazing team environments. The Christmas party is fantastic, however since the organization was acquired by the Equity Firm, community events and contests have went out the window.

    Cons

    Very sales oriented. ESI is a for-profit Professional Development company. This means sales tend to be more important than the quality of the product. If you care about quality, process improvement, consulting, education, training, and professional development, this is not a good organization for you. Because the company is so sales oriented, the company will cower and extremely lower standards to entitled customers, rather than earn the respect of the education community by holding standards.

    There once was a time when the organization value career growth. This is no longer the case. There is no internal job board or growth opportunity. When a job is posted, you are up against the rest of DC. Plan on staying within your position for years to come.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Practice what you preach. It is amazing that the company can develop so much professional development material, however not follow their own guidelines. Believe in your employees. The turnover rate is growing because employees want opportunity to grow, and if you cannot do it within the company, you must go outside the company!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 4 people found this helpful

    Not great, not bad, probably better out there.

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

    I have been working at ESI International

    Pros

    Autonomy in the workplace. If you prove that you can do the work, you are rewarded with the freedom to shine. Management in certain departments is fantastic. The work schedule is flexible - depending on your position and department though. Senior management has changed dramatically - hopefully for the better. More transparency has occurred with the Executive Team recently, which puts everyone at ease. Work/life balance is really good - but also depending on the department you work for. There is gym in the building that is available for free.

    Cons

    The HR department has been completely dissolved, except for one young employee. All HR issues are now transferred out to ADP, which knows nothing of the business or its employees. Getting benefits questions answered is like a meeting with the Pope - almost impossible. High turnover. I have seen WAY too many people in my department leave for better paying positions or where they feel appreciated. This isn't the type of job for those who need a lot of praise or encouragement. Unclear goals for 2015. No one is quite sure what they are tasked with for this coming year -- and the goals set for 2014 were impossible to reach.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More communication with the entire company. Personal interaction instead of email communication day in and day out. Make employees feel as though they are appreciated rather than just lucky to have a job.

    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. Ever changing

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

    I have been working at ESI International (more than a year)

    Pros

    Wonderfull location, friendly staff, relatively relaxed work space, decent work life balance

    Cons

    It can often feel any requests for change or improvement on processes can fall on deaf ears. A great lack of communication on internal processes.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take the advice of those on the front line. It is advice they are ready and willing to give but often seems to be dismissed or ignored.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. Not Bad

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

    I worked at ESI International

    Pros

    Pretty good overall could be better though

    Cons

    Not the best place to work

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful

    Hard working people, disjointed leadership

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

    I worked at ESI International full-time

    Pros

    Great people, great area, decent benefits

    Cons

    Owned by a publicly held, British company so strategies area all over the place trying to come up with quarterly profits.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  7. these guys got a great logo

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Business Development Manager in Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Business Development Manager in Arlington, VA

    I worked at ESI International full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    They have great training courses, you can go to great colleagues , the common areas are really clean. They reallhy hace great office parties on Friday night

    Cons

    poor sales commission structure , some managers in there are really like frosty the snowman, really cold and kind of frigid, wont go to the office parties that go on on friday night

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    buy more donuts for the teams

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 3 people found this helpful

    Where talent goes to die.

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

    I worked at ESI International full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Everybody is friendly and nice. A few people in the company are trying to make intelligent change. Mostly hindered by management. We apparently have very well like instructors and generally get positive feedback from students.

    Cons

    Poor environment, poor incentives, poor senior management. There is a major lack of innovation and positive change. There is no corporate culture. Lack of communication between departments. A multitude of business processes that are inefficient and slow down or impede growth. There has been some intelligent changes from marketing as of recent. Might be too little too late.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Senior management resign.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful

    Time to get some help...

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

    I worked at ESI International full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Free classes if you have the bandwidth and support of your manager. Decent location and decent office space...

    Cons

    First, the post on July 16, 2014 does not seem to reflect other reviews. I would be weary that this post came from the company. So here we go... incompetence galore! Some people should not be given the responsibility to manage people if they do not take the role seriously or ethically. Things have restructured and changed of course but making the decision to have a lawyer's tentacles leading HR and other areas of the business led to a lot of tactless results. The quality of products and services have dwindled dramatically because lack of motivation is a problem. Sometimes getting good managers help with this type of problem...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get some solid consultants to help you figure out what the core issues are with not your products but your relationships with your employees. No need to clean house, fire/layoff more people; you've done quite enough of that.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful

    Exciting times ahead

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

    I have been working at ESI International full-time

    Pros

    Work-life balance, collegial atmosphere, amazing brand equity in the market place. This company has been around for over 30 years and has established a strong brand in their particular niche. They continue to invest in innovative services and products with a lot of great stuff coming down the pike.

    Cons

    In the midst of organziational transformation, work load/staff size. Recent acquisition by VC firm as caused us to reevaluate our strategy and fit with the market place. A lot of exciting things on the horizon, but in the transitional period, there are some growing pains.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    May want to evaluate fresh blood joining the senior levels of management to bring in new perspectives.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful

    Wasted my time

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Arlington, VA
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Arlington, VA

    I worked at ESI International as a contractor (less than a year)

    Pros

    Friendly co-workers and free coffee via keurig machine. Free classes too if you have time.

    Cons

    -low pay
    -benefits are not competitive
    -not much room for career growth despite what they will tell in the interview
    -bad management all around
    -CEO is not very competent in motivating employees
    -no perks
    -no work culture
    -very boring place.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    When you restructure to lay off people, start looking at the management team first. It might be easy to blame the entry level employees for lack of sales/revenue, but essentially they only do as told.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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