Forrester Research Reviews

Updated March 10, 2015
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3.4
21 Reviews
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Forrester Research Chairman, President, and CEO George F. Colony
George F. Colony
16 Ratings

21 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (3)

    Good for the CV but lacking a focus on employee development

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Principal Level
    Current Employee - Principal Level

    I have been working at Forrester Research full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Looks good on the CV and some great colleagues. Percentage of loathsome and offensive people is relatively low (but like all companies there are a few). The brand is relatively well regarded which opens doors to the vendor community.

    Cons

    Management thinks it is really great when in reality, they are the core of the problems and lack of growth. To get on, it's all about how you fit into the "Cambridge Clique" - there is no real career progression for anyone other than juniors who are woefully underpaid. Over time, I managed to evolve my role, but ultimately management tend to try and keep you in a box rather than fast track your career.
    As regards the processes and practices of the firm - they are still firmly rooted in the past with abysmal internal systems. A real case of "cobblers children". Too often the "how things get done around here" is something you have to put up with.

    Advice to Management

    Stop preaching to employees and engage them - tell sell doesn't work. Stop spending money on buying your own shares back to puff up the the short term share price and focus on developing your business instead (gives better long term results and more sustainable).

  2. Helpful (2)

    Looks ok on the CV

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Executive in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Sales Executive in London, England (UK)

    I worked at Forrester Research full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Forrester has Great people, great social aspect & best of all table tennis to help you distress from the poor management.

    Cons

    The company lost most of there good sales leaders which has resulted in poor leadership, poor European strategy. Forrester is very US focused meaning a lack of resources for EU reps. They lack sales training (poor training) and have poor career development in Europe.

    Advice to Management

    Hire some new management as the current leaders in Europe have poor management skills & are terrible at recognizing real talent and rewarding the real talent.

  3. Helpful (1)

    Great company to work for but not without its challenges

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Manager in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Account Manager in London, England (UK)

    I have been working at Forrester Research full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    I started Forrester as a junior sales person and have been able to develop my professional skills to a more senior role and deep dive into the technology industry in a way which would be hard in other companies. There are some really good instances of collaboration across the company and I've been very lucky to work with some really smart and passionate people who represent the "Forrester" that is so well-reputed. With that as well - Forrester remains a fantastic name to be able to put on your CV - and for good reason.

    They've developed their UVP in the past 6 months meaning that they're able to move away from the direct comparison between Gartner and find their own footing - in the long term this is certainly the best move for them and it will be exciting to see the success that comes out of this.

    There is a good career path should you prove yourself - but you've certainly got to represent your own ability and take ownership for the work you do and the next stage you want to reach. Forrester has definitely got better in the past year at making the metrics that they consider for promotion clearer to their staff.

    There has also been an improvement in the culture of Forrester since hiring the new CSO. A shaky couple of years in terms of profit and staff retention, whilst never awful did create an uncertain atmosphere across regions. The new CSO has brought structure, drive and a fresh face to the way the company needs to go.

    Cons

    There is a poor and declining atmosphere in Europe. Whilst it's one thing to feel like the underdog, it's another thing to feel like the underachievers. This is a result of a combination of culture, leadership and investment. Europe hasn't been high performers for the past couple of years and so staff can feel like they're fighting a constant battle. There's also a lack of regional leadership which would help translate and implement some of the CSO's global imperatives.

    There also doesn't seem to be a recognition that Europe literally won't be able to compete with the US' growth figures if they have less resources - whether that be analyst coverage, data or consulting abilities. The communication of this back to senior management doesn't seem to be happening effectively.

    I mentioned in the pros section that collaboration is a real plus - which it is. However whilst it's present it isn't seen across the board - we are often told about the best practices, which is great in terms of inspiring us to all work like that, but there are fundamental flaws in collaboration between product and sales teams that are ignored. This means that often Forrester will stop themselves selling something because of poor communication or personalities getting in the way of taking a client-centric approach.

    Advice to Management

    Manage management messaging and culture in European offices to build trust and prevent further retention issues. Get closer to product and sales groups to understand more about what clients need and define how to best message Forrester's offering to drive sales.

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  5. Good on the CV, great people but lack of support and growth in Europe

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Development Specialist in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Sales Development Specialist in London, England (UK)

    I worked at Forrester Research full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    The people at Forrester are what make the company a fun, vibrant and generally good place to work. The pay is reasonable (good basic rubbish commission) therefore you are not hugely incentivised to over perform as an SDS.

    Cons

    Forrester is a very U.S. centric company therefore growth in Europe is slow meaning a lack of career opportunities, also the marketing is targeted towards us market even though that is slowly getting better with localised marketing.

    Advice to Management

    Keep pushing for more support in Europe to help grow and retain best talent. Look to promote from within and create a more visual career plan with employees.

  6. Helpful (1)

    Good on CV- not a good experience.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Associate Account Manager in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Associate Account Manager in London, England (UK)

    I worked at Forrester Research full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Worldwide recognized brand, some great colleagues, access to interesting research & good sales training (although through outsourced provider)

    Cons

    In my business unit: Moving goal posts. Useless internal sales trainers who've never sold anything & hence clueless. Harassment by management.

  7. Great place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Development Manager in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Account Development Manager in London, England (UK)

    I have been working at Forrester Research full-time (More than a year)

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

    Pros

    Atmosphere and people are great

    Cons

    Slight lack of career development

  8. Good firm lacking leadership and strategy

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

    I worked at Forrester Research full-time (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Recognized name, great colleagues, interesting work.

    Cons

    US-centric, zero chance of advancement if not in MA.

  9. Helpful (1)

    An American company with an international presence

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK)

    I have been working at Forrester Research full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    People, very talented people to work with.
    The sector/industry: dynamic and ever-changing.
    It is still a small company with some kind of start-up mentality.
    Forrester clients: very interesting companies engaged with Forrester.

    Cons

    It is still an American firm: everything is centralized and all decisions are made from the Boston headquarters, with little knowledge/input from offices outside the US.
    Red-tape/hierarchy: There is little career path at Forrester. Promotions are not based on skills/expertise, but on who you know in Boston. Although there is a training department (L&D and ST), there is no succession plan, and competency benchmarks and assessments are a once-in-a-year event. Managers/HR does not leverage input for coaching/promotions.
    Management/Executive team: The vast majority of managers/executives come from internal promotions at Forrester. A great individual contributor does not make a good manager. Forrester is stuck into its own world with little new and fresh blood from the outside.
    Lack of coherent long-term strategy: If the strategy does not give results in 6 months' time, there will be changes and redundancies, even if Forrester proudly announces how much cash it has in the bank.
    Lack of communication/collaboration among teams/regions: Decisions made at executive level are not properly and timely communicated to the field, what creates rumours and frustration.
    Focus on Gartner: Forrester is always comparing itself against Gartner: in each presentation/training, Gartner is always mentioned. Forrester will do much better IF it focused on what makes the company unique.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your teams and clients and do what the field is requesting. Develop your team members and go back to what make Forrester unique.
    To the executive team: "walk the line": truly apply Forrester culture and values!

  10. Helpful (1)

    Why you should consider Forrester

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK)

    I have been working at Forrester Research full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    Working with some of the smartest minds in the technology industry as well as having C level execs from top Fortune 500 companies as your clients. Autonomy, freedom a big company ethic with a small company mindset and a pretty happy company culture. Average tenure is high with hundreds of folk across departments having been with the company for 10+ years. A hugely respected name to build your own personal brand around. George Colony is a fabulous, inspirational CEO but could be more involved with spending time getting to know with his teams outside of head office in Cambridge, USA.

    Cons

    Too US-centric at time although big strides are being made and the board have finally realized the importance of EMEA and APAC. Too many radical changes introduced in 2012 for the teams to keep up with which resulted in loss of potential earnings from sales and an unusual spike in attrition. A penny pinching attitude at times to save a few thousand dollars when the real cost of losing great people runs into the hundreds of thousands in lost revenue, hiring and training.

    Advice to Management

    Spend more time listening to the people on the ground and in the trenches. Not just in vast open forums, but each member of the board should once a month take a small group representing a cross section of departments and seniority for a few drinks or dinner and really talk. Each Exec could take a table of 10 out for dinner once a month and within a year, everyone in the company would get to spend some quality one on one time with a Director and have a voice. Genuis. To introduce a bit more fun as everyone that works at Forrester is deeply commited, so some down time to get to know each other works wonders.

  11. A great product, shame about the inferiority complex

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Accounts Executive in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Accounts Executive in London, England (UK)

    I worked at Forrester Research full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Smart people, fresh thinking, opportunity to work with large accounts

    Cons

    Nano-management, lack of autonomy, tactical sales process.

    Advice to Management

    you have a great offering, better believe your own capability and inspire confidence in the ranks. changing the strategy every year doesn't help.

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