There are newer employer reviews for Centerline Digital

2 people found this helpful

Great agency with an unique culture

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Project Management in Raleigh, NC
Former Employee - Project Management in Raleigh, NC

I worked at Centerline Digital full-time (more than a year)

Pros

First and foremost, I have to call out that my coworkers here were absolutely some of the very best I've ever had. You simply can't beat the personality and talent of many of the people working at Centerline and I'll always be thankful for the great colleagues I was able to work alongside.

I personally found the rewards to be great for the hard work. The culture is unique and one I think is hard to duplicate. It's a relaxed and fun environment (lots of agency events, ping pong, open bar/happy hours, etc.), but while doing a great amount of work with great clients. I felt respected and heard by management and saw compensation and title increases during my time there. The benefits are outstanding: complete healthcare coverage (domestic partners included), 401k matching, lunchtime workout classes provided and participation encouraged, lots of food (fresh fruit, cereal, milk, coffee, soda, lunch every Friday, etc. etc.), not to mention a great social group to connect with if you desire. Everyone works on Macs and overall has great technology and IT support. The agency business department (HR, business manager, office manager, etc.) is truly outstanding and works hard to ensure all employees have what they need to do their job well. I also found the majority of clients to be fantastic to work with and trust Centerline as a true partner rather than just a digital vendor.

The work is very fast paced and the volume is high, but that's agency life and it attracts people who do well and thrive in that space. Those who do not enjoy it typically only stay for a few months and move on somewhere else. Other than those quick turnovers, I found the attrition to be very typical of any other agency.

I feel lucky to have spent time at this agency in my career. It's a place I will always feel connected and watch the great things being done here.

Cons

As with most agencies, the work ebbs and flows depending on client needs and launches, which can means several clients with major launches/projects concurrently. This can add up to very busy times where resources are stretched a bit thin. During these times I personally struggled with work/life balance, but it was something that was an open and frequent topic of discussion with my manager and the extra work did not go unnoticed.

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  1. 10 people found this helpful

    The opposite of how it appears

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Video in Raleigh, NC
    Current Employee - Video in Raleigh, NC

    I have been working at Centerline Digital full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Some wonderful and talented people work here, it has the potential to be a fulfilling job but falls short. You can grab a drink from the bar at 4, although there's hardly time. They try hard to make it look like a fun place to be, although the highlight of the week is free pizza on Friday's that is usually eaten quickly and quietly before rushing back to work.

    Cons

    The work here is mind numbing, they will tell you this in the interview, and in the end it's why the turn over is so high. 95% of work is for IBM, 4% Lowes, 1% random (mostly self promotion). Most projects run in series so you may be making the same video/ animation/ music over and over and over again, with the expectation that they will somehow magically be more interesting as you go. Every project has an allowance for hours, you may have 3, 35 hour projects in a week... Why? Because they do anything and everything to please the almighty IBM at the cost of there own employees. If you have a family, don't work here you'll never see them and they don't care if you don't.
    The reason this company exists is to get as much money from IBM as possible, they don't consider any other clients and in the end all it will take to collapse them is IBM backing out or cutting down on the work they give. So, mind numbing work for one client will cause people to get bored and quit, or you'll be fired after 90 days because they don't think you're the right personality fit. You can be replaced, everyone can be replaced at centerline.

  2. 15 people found this helpful

    A Sharp Lesson in Contrast

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

    I worked at Centerline Digital full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Centerline is a conundrum. It dangles amenities, parties and benefits, but smacks the wrist that reaches for them. It purchases tons of expensive equipment and technology, but refuses to pay a competitive salary. It sings of creative expression, but values calculated efficiency far more. Thus, the pros and cons of Centerline are intertwined. I've categorized them by which way they lean, but they could easily sway from side to side based on personal opinion. One thing to always remember though is: the reward for good work is more work.

    If you love work, then there is no better place to find it. I often found myself during my last few months at Centerline repeating, "Well, I'm not dead," when people asked me how I was doing. I think "not dying" is a pretty big pro when you are expected to work 16 hours a day plus weekends. Pro: Decent Health Insurance

    Often when you are knee-deep in the creative trenches of video production, you don't have time to grab lunch. Also, going out for lunch (or leaving the office for any reason) requires detailed documentation that is reminiscent of elementary school, which is so creepy and big brother-esq that I often didn't want to leave for fear of retribution. Luckily, they provide snacks, soda and alcohol to keep you working. Just don't try to sit in a booth after you've finished your snack, as that is a "pet-peeve" of management.
    Pro: Soda Machine, Free Snacks and Pizza Friday

    When eating your company-provided snacks, the best part of the day is conversing with your peers. The people stuck in Centerline's hungry claws are amazing; easily some of the coolest, most talented people I have ever met. Everyone is personable, nice and well-rounded. Important exception: certain members of account and upper management. While nice enough on the outside, their nougat is rotten, icky stuff (more on this in the Cons section).
    Pro: Great People

    In addition to food, the couple that runs the company likes to shower their employees with gifts and fun outings. This is where I'm most conflicted. In general, i think they are good people who have read Ayn Rand too many times and it's poisoned their brains. The outings are fun and who doesn't like some sweet holiday gifts? But I would gladly trade a new xbox for the reign of terror to end (more of this in the Cons section).
    Pro: Parties, Gifts and Company Outings

    Cons

    When considering working at Centerline, think about how mentally strong you are and how much you care about nice things. If your answer is that your have the mind of a Greek God and that your self-worth is directly linked to your Tory Burch flats, then these cons might not apply to you.

    Happiness at Centerline is deeply entrenched in how much your value system aligns with upper management, and how much they like you. If you're not an intense suck up, then the best you can hope for is to be ignored. If you're ignored, then at least you're not unemployed. Being talented and smart are not enough to succeed.
    Con: Working Hard Does Not Equal Success

    The flip side of this is that if you become a darling of management you are handed the world on a silver platter. You could not be at work for months, come back and be promoted twice in quick succession. This can be good and bad, because on one hand... money, but on the other, everyone resents you.
    Con: Rampant Favoritism

    The Reign of Terror is a real thing and the most important thing to consider before working there. They love scaring employees. Every few months they do a "clean up" where they fire a couple of people in each department that they consider the weakest link. Management will also randomly go over your work with a fine tooth comb and make you completely re-do a project if it doesn't meet their subjective, ever-changing standards. "Centerline Paranoia" is an actual thing. In addition to a case of paranoia, I also developed a panic disorder. Fun!
    Con: Likely Development of Mental Health Issues

    One of the reasons the paranoia sets in is that quite a few people are nasty, rotten people that will smile and nod to your face and then throw you under the bus quicker than you can say, "banana phone." People were often put on probation for using Twitter, checking Facebook, answering the phone wrong, making fun of the music in the bathroom, ect. The most inane, random things could equate in a write-up. Part of the issue is that management will entrap you, asking you if you saw so-and-so doing this? You answer truthfully and suddenly you're named as a witness in their witch hunt.
    Con: The Centerline Inquisition

    A few people really love it at Centerline.
    Con: Stockholm Syndrome

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Your most talented employees are often overlooked. Implementing 360 reviews would do a ton of good and show who should be in leadership positions, vs. fast-track promoting people who buddy-up to you. Also, you're far too trigger happy with firing people and all it does is make the remaining employees more resentful and less loyal. 95 percent of the people who work there will leave the second something else is offered to them. Centerline paranoia is real and a huge problem. Fix it.

    Doesn't Recommend
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