Headspring

  www.headspring.com
  www.headspring.com
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3 people found this helpful  

The Real Deal

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Austin, TX
Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Austin, TX

I worked at Headspring full-time (more than an year)

Pros

I left Headspring a few months ago after over two years of service. Unlike many of the other reviews from current, happy employees, you might expect this review to tell it like it is, to air the dirty laundry.

Except there isn't any.

Headspring really is the best place I've ever worked. Management cares. People think. There really isn't any office politics. Everyone is transparent and willing to help each other. The CEO/Owner (Dustin Wells) genuinely cares about every employee, their career, and in providing a great place for you to work. Everyone in a position of leadership is completely deserving of it.

Career growth at Headspring is completely merit based. I've seen people get promoted by TWO levels at a time, more than once. I've seen another get promoted twice in the span of two months. Advice to new employees: you may get offered a position lower than you were hoping for. Don't worry about that. If you truly deserve a higher level, just prove yourself and you'll get there quickly. This isn't a normal company where you have to wait for annual reviews to get a possible promotion. You could get one after your first month - if it's deserved.

One final note, to counter a point I'll make in the Cons section: You're not going to love every project you're on. Fact of life. But if you speak up and help your manager know what types of projects you do like (and what role you prefer to play) and he or she really will listen and make an effort to accommodate you, within reason. Obviously, it all depends on what is available.

Cons

Most of the Cons of Headspring have to do with the type of business they're in: consulting/client service. This means having to bill hours (daily), sometimes being on a project that you don't love, a relatively proper dress code by Austin programmer standards. There's a chance you may be asked to work off-site at a client site (this is becoming more rare, though). When you're near the end of a project you may have no idea what you're working on next.

This isn't really a con, but Headspring's management does move fast. Decisions are made quickly. Sometimes they are the wrong decisions. So procedures and policies tend to be in a much greater flux than you're prepared for if you are coming from a bigger, slower company. The good news is that almost all of the changes will benefit you! For instance, in the span of a year they went from having no bonuses, to having quarterly bonuses that took a year to vest, to having quarterly bonuses with immediate vesting. And then they just got rid of bonuses altogether, and rolled it into everyone's base salary giving everyone a nice raise. Similar things have happened with vacation and flex time.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Overall: Way to go, you are doing the right thing.

Be careful about aggressive growth goals. When you celebrate having another "best month ever" and it's almost completely due to the fact you're at the highest headcount ever, it's kind of a hollow victory.

Recommends
Positive Outlook
Approves of CEO

29 Other Employee Reviews for Headspring (View Most Recent)

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    I'm respected and valued by people I respect and value

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Austin, TX

    I have been working at Headspring full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    When Dustin, our CEO, wanted to put words around Headspring's raison d'etre, he asked us, the employees. And we did; collaboratively and transparently, we realized what we all have in common is that we believe there's a better way to do things, and we are driven to find it and help others to benefit from it. We share a culture of continual learning, mutual respect, and radical transparency. I get to write code that matters, on a team that ships software as a matter of course, collaborating and joking and bouncing ideas off of the same developers I hung out with before they were co-workers. And we work 40 hours a week; no lie.

    Cons

    The most straightforward career path is that of the client-facing consultant. While that still involves a lot of coding, design, and the fun parts of software development, it also involves tracking and discussing budgets and work estimates, and trying to gently persuade clients to do what's in their best interest. I do appreciate how strongly we value doing right by the client, guiding them to the solution that best fits their needs and constraints, but it's hard for an introvert like me. You've gotta be honest with yourself: Do you enjoy collaborating with the people who will use your software, or do you want a Business Analyst to take care of that? No shame in being in the latter camp, but then Headspring wouldn't be a comfortable fit for you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think job candidates would give us a better picture of their actual skill if we invited them to submit to us a code sample (or a code assignment) and then, instead of the live-coding exercise, had them walk us through and explain the code, and modify it on the fly. Nerds do best when they're able to start the conversation with something they feel confident about. And I do not agree that the high-pressure environment of the LCE represents the pressure we're under with clients; it's not similar at all, and there is a huge difference between "I hope I can impress Headspring in order to get this awesome job," and "I'm sharing my expertise with this client, with the support of Headspring at my back."

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Very cool place to work!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consultant in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Consultant in Houston, TX

    I have been working at Headspring full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Supportive and transparent environment where open-communication and friendliness embellish core culture of the company. Plenty of growth opportunities - getting involved in multiple projects is, definitely, more learning.

    Cons

    -Lack of female leadership
    -More elaborate training / orientation to new employees is needed.
    -Houston office needs management people

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep your heads up!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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