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Helpful (6)

You'd better be ready to suck up to your boss

  • Work/Life Balance
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Current Employee - Senior Developer in Blacksburg, VA
Current Employee - Senior Developer in Blacksburg, VA

I have been working at Harmonia

Doesn't Recommend
Doesn't Recommend

Pros

They have a decent benefits package and their pay is at or just below industry standards. The Blacksburg location is right on VT campus, meaning that you're centrally located.

There is a weekly developers' meeting, but you'd better keep your head down during it. Once a month there's an extra-company activity where food and drinks are paid for.

Equipment-wise, state of the art. Dual screen monitors, Dell laptops with docking stations and they don't get crazy about you using it as your own laptop.

The network is well thought out, the VPN is well-configured so, if you're working from him, it's easy.

They give Christmas bonuses.

Cons

It is a my-way-or-the-highway, personal-initiative squelching experience. I was actually let go over using the wrong notation when creating variables private to a web page, because that wasn't the way that the program manager liked to create variables. There was no comment on the code I created.

The place is exceptionally narrow at the top - there is nowhere to go here until someone quits or dies.

Firing occurs without notice - you don't get a review, your boss doesn't like what you did so you're out.

As for the work environment: head-down programming. You've got your task, so shut up and do it.

This year they screwed up taxes for everyone in the company by leaving off Christmas bonuses, meaning that a good portion of the employees filed an incorrect return and would have to refile.

They're trying to start a .Net developers' division. The lead is a mediocre programmer but probably the most accomplished micro-manager of his time. This is particularly bad because he doesn't spec out the work he wants done. Expect directives like, "Do it like it is in this other program I wrote, but not really" and then corrections by Outlook email (if he doesn't take your code over himself and rewrite it without warning you).

Advice to Management

You clearly want to be a great place to work. You're putting too much faith in your middle management who, by their own admission, believe that laying abuse on their subordinates is part of their job.

For example, I was waiting on a travel expense check and I really needed the money, because I maxed a credit card to be where I was supposed to be with 3 days' notice. I submitted the expense report the day I got back and let the CFO know.

Two weeks, just to get the check signed, and then another week JUST to give me the check.

No one wants to work with their boss going word-for-word over their project. No one wants to feel like programming exactly like his/her boss is the only way to keep their job. And no employee is your bank

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Best company of my career

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Solution Architect in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Solution Architect in Kansas City, MO

    I have been working at Harmonia full-time (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I'm a veteran Data Management practitioner with over 35 years of IT experience. If you're a competent professional with a solid work ethic, Harmonia will treat you more like a family member than an employee. The level of engagement and genuine concern about staff welfare from senior and executive management surpasses anything I've experienced in my civilian career. I've been with the company less than a year and I've already been recognized as a Star Performer AND recieved a significant promotion.

    Work hard, behave professionaly and you will be recognized, rewarded and your skills and career will advance. If you are considering joining Harmonia, there are few places (in my experience) that can match what this company has to offer you, or best the way you will be treated.

    Cons

    I have yet to encounter anything negative about Harmonia that would rise above a petty complaint.

    Advice to Management

    Stay the course!

    Harmonia Response

    Jun 21, 2015COO

    Thank you. Your feedback is humbling and motivating. It is our hope that we can continue to attract and retain top talent such as yourself. In our opinion, that is in large part all that is ... More


  2. Emerging Diamond of Software Development Talent

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Quality Assurance Engineer in Blacksburg, VA
    Former Employee - Quality Assurance Engineer in Blacksburg, VA

    I worked at Harmonia

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Harmonia is a special place to work. The people there are extremely welcoming and easily collaborate with others. The management has an open door policy and seem to have genuine interest in the people who report to them. Harmonia has a highly advanced and constantly improving development process and workflow which only the most cutting edge of companies have attained. For a company of its size, you would not expect the kinds of investment that Harmonia has made in making their work better for both their customers and their contributors. The agile leaning, Scrum environment provides a well-balanced box of planned work from week to week, and the push for continuous integration across the board is something many larger companies haven't achieved yet.

    The testing processes have vastly improved. Despite the heavy documentation needs of its clients, Harmonia works closely with its customers to try and find the sweet spot to provide the right amount of support and documentation to meet their project objectives. Harmonia has worked hard to add more automated checking when the investment is warranted, and taken the first steps towards including more advanced testing techniques.

    Suffice it to say there are a lot of good things going on at Harmonia.

    Cons

    This is an agile environment, while SCRUM is their methodology of choice; Harmonia strives to be responsive to changing needs for customers, and seeks to deploy the best possible solutions. That means that sometimes your burn-down chart will suffer, but as long as the needs of the customer on the project are being delivered, who cares about automated metric systems? Delivering solutions to the customer, where they actually show your work and say do it more like how Harmonia does it, is praise that only few in the industry can ever hope to attain. Harmonia has done that, and is keenly positioned to continue to do so.

    Lastly, Harmonia fosters a transparent culture of accountability. Developers are given the freedom and responsibility to drive their work within the confines of the project constraints and we hold each other accountable for that. Because of this, those who have trouble handling constructive criticism, learn from it, and improve and grow beyond it may not be a good fit. However, if you like being treated with respect, and given the chance to make mistakes, and then learn and grow from them while delivering impactful products and serving your country, then you ought to check out Harmonia, this company is only going to continue to grow and improve.

    Advice to Management

    Keep being smart about hiring, looking for culture fit and enough skill to get people started. Continue looking for the 'just right' mix of process and technology while maintaining the agility to respond to customer needs. The government contractor space is about to go through a sea change, and you are positioned well to be a leader in the Government IT Sector.

    Keep doing things the right way, and the sky is the limit.

    Harmonia Response

    Jun 13, 2015COO

    We are grateful for your thoughtful and positive comments. We will continue to strive and do our best to be an employer of choice for top talent. We do see ourselves as an emerging lead player in ... More


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