Cengage Learning
2.8 of 5 290 reviews
www.cengage.com Boston, MA 5000+ Employees

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9 people found this helpful  

Losing the Struggle

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Belmont, CA

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

ProsMany of the folks doing the actual work are incredibly gifted and a joy to work with. There is a valiant effort in the Belmont (soon to be San Francisco) office to engage employees in social activities and fun events, such as pancake breakfasts, gourmet coffee mornings, and the occasional food truck.

HR makes good attempts at providing some online and in-house training, and managers/supervisors are generally supportive of this training. (examples = leadership workshops, 401k seminars with Fidelity, etc.) It's mostly fluff, but it's free.

The new office in San Francisco looks nice, and there will be some public transportation reimbursement to offset the high commuting costs for all of us in the East Bay, South Bay, and Peninsula.

Benefits package includes 401k, health/dental/optical insurance.

ConsMoney - Publishing doesn't pay much in general, but Cengage pays even less than competitors. No bonuses in the past year, no cost of living increase, chapter 11 bankruptcy ongoing since July.

Overworked employees - A 60-70 hour work week is typical if you're salaried, but you are shooed out the door if you are hourly and declare more than the 37.5 hours for full time.

Attrition - Many people have left or are looking elsewhere because of VC mis-management, chapter 11, and low morale. Getting replacements is either impossible or the position not approved. Being over worked has become the new norm, and we're being asked for more innovation, more ideas, and more production while still producing the same number of titles and assets as before. Lofty ideas are great, but there is no one to execute. Freelancers have declined their contracts because of the bankruptcy and delays in payment.

Moving to contractors - Instead of hiring full time employees, there is a movement to outsource the work to temps and contractors. The time/effort this is supposed to save gets eaten up by having to train new people every 3-6 months and check their work or redo it.

Digital transition - The digital move to Mindtap will not get off the ground without engineers in the seats. The Silicon Valley area has too much competition, and engineers must be paid accordingly. They've had engineering positions open for over a year. There is no workload adjustment, the executives just want more innovation and more new things. Again there is no one to execute and our projects are delayed.

Manager heavy - In each reorg in the past 18 months (most of us have lost count) there have been more managers and manager-level positions created, including the promotion of several of the previously-digital academic types. Again their teams are left without writers and replacement positions hang open for months which delays or compromises the digital products. These academics have great subject matter expertise, but are ill equipped to jump in and manage the editorial side of things.

Executive decisions - Like so many huge companies, there is a serious communication gap between executive management and everyone else. What we get in town hall meetings is lip service and forced/half-hearted cheering with no facts, no concrete information (though I'd like to give them the benefit of the doubt that they seem to mean well.)

Lack of promotions - Maybe because of the hiring freezes in the past 3 years, but there have only been worker-level promotions coming out of the Boston office. Belmont, Famington Hills, and Mason have seen nothing except for managers getting a bump.

Advice to Senior ManagementChange at least some of the items in the cons section. If digital first is supposed to be the new mantra, then let the digital teams call the shots and budgets for a change.

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

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4 people found this helpful  

Unless you're desparate, don't take the job

Senior Manager (Current Employee)

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


Pros: Supports education and our schools. Cons: Leadership is abysmal and lacks the strategic planning skills required to take an industry into the future. When leadership… Advice to Senior Management: Stop promoting people to their next level of incompetency and stop… No, I would not recommend this company to a friend More

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

5 people found this helpful  

Much room for improvement

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Cincinnati, OH

I worked at Cengage Learning full-time for more than 8 years


Pros: Good benefits, good hours, great staff and staff work ethic. Cons: Management is too separated from the day-to-day, but insists on planning half-baked workflows for immediate… Advice to Senior Management: Ask your own people for their insights, and listen to… No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company… More

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