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3 people found this helpful  

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer  in  Seattle, WA
Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Seattle, WA

I worked at Corbis full-time for more than 3 years

Pros

First, until recently, the company attracted very talented technology resources (unfortunately, as inside stories are coming out, this may be one the decline). Second, the company owns motion and still content that museums and competitors would die for (and I am sure our founder paid a fortune for). Last and not least, the sole shareholder/benefactor has as deep pockets as it gets and the wherewithal to standby the proposition.

Cons

Other reviewers have pointed out the incompetence of IT leadership. I can't improve upon it, except to say it is only the top IT gal and the head of each department under her, except operations, that needs to be replaced by competent people.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

First order of business, please stop the bloodletting, that is, letting go of the most senior people. Second, go beyond copying competition; be the leader that you are! Finally, for God's sake, buy a text book on management; all the advise you need is already in the text book ( or hire a couple of MBA's).

Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

129 Other Employee Reviews for Corbis (View Most Recent)

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great people, incompetent senior leadership, constant restructuring

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

    I worked at Corbis full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    The people and product are great. Work/life balance is very much respected in most departments. Due to small size of the company jobs wind up overlapping to some degree, meaning you might get to work on interesting projects outside your usual sphere. Lots of interesting, smart, creative folks. Good location and decent office. OK benefits. Used to be significantly better but have taken a hit in the past few years.

    Cons

    Don't consider working here if you value a secure work environment or expect your contributions to mean anything when it comes time to cut heads. The company reshuffles all levels of leadership and restructures internal organizations every six months, laying off scores of workers in attempts to attain profitability or solvency via ill-conceived scorched-earth policies. You should EXPECT major restructuring and layoffs every 6-9 months.

    Often, the decisions regarding changes seem arbitrary and are certainly ineffectual as they are frequently reversed some time down the road under the guise of next year's hot new business plan that is certain to "ensure profitability." It all starts sounding like the hot air it is after you've heard it twice a year for multiple years with nothing to show for each round of cuts and changes except more fear and loathing amongst the hoi polloi.

    Room for advancement is very limited and the loss of talent and braintrust due to constant reshuffling means you will always be in a cycle of adjusting to new management, playing catch-up and doing more with less. Major initiatives are launched every year and then scuttled or shelved due to organizational change or lack of will from management. Lofty projects frequently wind up being little more than fool's errands due to poor planning and restructuring.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The company has never been profitable and most likely never will under the current CEO and senior management. The company values transient executive messiahs over the people who actually get things done. Grow your micro-stock offerings mightily and stop chasing the latest unicorn. Tap into the value of the company's existing collections and significant internal talent. Perhaps redefine the notion of success to be more realistic and humble in this economy.

    I understand that restructuring and lay-offs are sometimes necessary, but it is ridiculous to suggest that whole departments should be eliminated or reduced when an endless stream of incompetent executives run the company into the ground while continuing to enjoy hefty salaries and expensive travel budgets.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 4 people found this helpful  

    unending funding - the only safety net!

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

    I worked at Corbis full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    global Presence
    good compensation benefits
    good place for work-life balance
    good benefits (not great benefits)
    good source for funding (never ending)

    Cons

    perishing industry
    poor IT and no sr management in IT
    people leaving
    promotions are unfair
    professional hiring team unable to attract talent

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    give the board the real picture and not hide under 'consultant slides'. hire sr management talent in IT

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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