Fortigent, LLC
3.0 of 5 20 reviews
www.fortigent.com Rockville, MD 50 to 149 Employees

Fortigent, LLC Reviews in Washington, DC

Updated Apr 15, 2014
Fortigent, LLC – “Mud Wrestling”

All Employees Current Employees Only

2.6 14 reviews

                             

83% Approve of the CEO

(no image)

Jamie McIntyre

(6 ratings)

27% of employees recommend this company to a friend
14 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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    A company in transition, in an industry in transition to online service

    Software Developer (Former Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsSmart people, personable, merging with larger parent corporation. Opportunity to influence a larger more staid development team. Incredible growth opportunity if they expand their software service offerings to institutional investment providers (banks) and their base of accounts explodes.

    Great automated continuous build process. Centralized code sharing and compilation-test makes it easy to share with other developers. Automated user interface test is not up to speed yet.

    Dot Net shop, with a C#, VB, MS-Server, Knockout.js, AutoFac stack. Uses SVN/Tortoise and GIT/Tortoise repositories as required for different storage. Parent company wants to go to Agile.js

    ConsMerging into new parent company. Converting into silos of development as the team expands and the projects increase. Despite the paen to Agile development, the process is fairly loose, and the higher levels of Agile organization are slight. This may be changing, but there is going to be a large learning process before the different silos operate together with capable leaders for each team. All this may become futile if the organization is subsumed in the much larger parent company (LPL Financial), that acquired them two years ago and is now merging development processes across the extended company.

    The financial reporting software that Fortigent has been existing on is at once complex and at the same time limited to reporting. Hence there is an effort to grow it by extending it to support institutional accounts and limited trading. This expansion of the scope of their business to trading, brings in another level of complexity. I was surprised that the reporting software Fortigent provides is at the same time exalted and considered novel in the outside world. Doesn't everyone offer this level of reporting? But that is their market niche.

    The Fortigent subsidiary is not, to my knowledge, making money. This leaves them less leeway with the parent company, and makes it more likely that some or all of the parts will be co-opted into the LPL organization if they stumble, or fail to expand profitably.

    There are about 25 personnel in the development team. The core team is small. Perhaps 10 key experienced personnel, including the CEO and managers. Several senior developers have left over the last year, making it hard to pick up the pieces and offer a smooth continuation path. Due to the team size, there tends to be one or two talented individuals in any particular category.

    Some of the tools are dated. Two small monitors per developer. Please. There is some small amount of Test-Driven-Design (TDD). The unit testing is good but not total. Committing source code can 'break the build' which will end up hung up for everyone until the source code is fixed. But that's because the source code is so large that it can't be tested locally in time for a quick turn. This is being addressed by spawning test blocks onto local computers to reduce the unit test cycle time. But a better test-before-merge function might help here. Or break the project into smaller pieces.

    It is up to the individual to keenly track what is going on and to stay on top of things.

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou are bringing in a lot of people. You will need to make a better effort at integrating them into the team, and bringing them up to speed on the S/W stack and business model. Its not clear that the new silo-ed teams have enough

    Because of the small team and fast process there may be little feedback to employees. I could see this going on with other people around me as I left, and hope management pays attention to it if they want everyone to succeed.

    The parent company's practice of off-shoring low level business processes is ultimately destructive to maintaining a technical capability nearby, in the US, and they will loose potential customers if they send formerly internal jobs overseas. As Jaron Lanier puts it 'the siren server tries to accumulate all the money, but it can't without destroying the environment itself'.

    The other half of Fortigent's business is selling investing advice. If the market is random and unbiased, then every model will return the same expected result. If it is biased with insider trading then someone is benefiting when they should not be. I don't believe much in the 'favored investment manager' idea, but others may want to buy in to that idea.

    Oh, and keep away from the Dark Pools, when you decide to trade, I hear they are gamed ('Flash Boys').

    And the unspoken threat is, as Jamie said, the online no frills investment house with the generic ETF and cut rate mutual funds - because the advisors can't beat the market in the long term.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Abrasive and arrogant environment

    Anonymous, Operations (Current Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsA good entry-level place to start, but definitely not a place to stay beyond a year or so...

    Company has the spirit of a tech startup.

    ConsMost decisions are made behind closed doors, and most job/advancement openings are filled silently because someone pitched it directly to a decision-maker.

    There's no infrastructure for advancement on merit if you do not play the office politics; each unit and team within the department has been crafted to elongate the promotion process. This explains the lack of transparency even among the teams within a unit of the department.

    Company culture exhibits temperament and dynamics of a tech startup, but when it comes down to it, the business is really boring. Department culture reinforces "these are your superficial goals, now go work like a drone." Senior employees mismanage teams and take advantage of the bureaucracy that has been set up.

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou market agility to customers, apply it to your own organization. The pay structure definitely needs to be realigned with the Washington metropolitan demographics.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Agile company undergoing big changes

    Software Developer (Current Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsAgile software process
    Hard working people that care
    Friendly environment and approachable people
    Commitment to new technology and thinking

    ConsOut of date infrastructure (Network speed, Workstation hardware)
    Minor bureaucratic annoyances.

    Advice to Senior ManagementI love the idea of remaining scrappy, but try not to do EVERYTHING at once.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Great place for growth!

    Software Engineer (Current Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsDevelopment team is very strong. You are surrounded by very smart people and learn a lot. Strong growth potential in the future.

    Free snacks in the kitchen are great, too.

    Great work-life balance.

    Independently operated but with the security of being owned by a much larger firm.

    ConsA little isolated from surrounding Rockville. Benefits and perks are slightly lacking compared to West Coast startups (but that is somewhat expected in DC).

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Not Alright

    Anonymous, Operations (Former Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsPLEASE NOTE: This review is at the department level and is intended for viewers who would like to know what it is like to work for the largest work group within the company.

    - There are 40+ subject matter experts so you will never be out of a job because everyone is important.
    - The organizational chart (org chart) never really changes because the 40+ subject matter experts are vital to the department. Only titles are slightly modified to append tenure and tutelage.
    - Free breakfast foods and subsidized soda machines.
    - No finance/accounting background necessary.

    Cons- Non-exempt employees are pushed to hit impractical goals while supervisors just stand by and watch imminent failure.
    - Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 is totally ignored.
    - There are 40+ subject matter experts for a simple investment accounting software and financial reporting system.
    - The managers and supervisors lack basic skills training for his/her position.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTear down the short cubicle walls. Let everyone see what really goes on with the dual-monitors all day long. Create more visible career growth opportunities.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Alright

    Senior Operations Specialist (Current Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsLeisure environment, good kitchen amenities

    Consslow paced, not enough room to grow

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    Progression... I think not

    Analyst (Current Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsYou will get breakfast and the occasional catered left overs
    You can work from home
    Dress code policy
    Diverse staff

    ConsWhere do I begin? Company meetings are times for executives to beg for better reviews on Glassdoor.

    Turn around rate is ridiculous
    More work without training (Learn as you mess up kind of company)
    Separation between all departments (certain departments have different benefits)

    Bonuses... Don't even bother

    You are lucky to make over 40k a year

    The finger will always point away from management. Owning up to mistakes, is not THE Fortigent way.

    Not the brightest people. You could work at Fortigent for ten years and still not understand the difference between key internal language.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInvest in your employees before they all leave. So much money coming in yet individuals are still making less than 40k? Something doesn't add up.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Should've seen the red flags

    Anonymous, Operations (Former Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsExecutive - impassioned, brilliant padrones
    Consulting - the face of the company, best dressed
    Research - they "do the dew" on portfolio manager recommendations
    Platform Ops - the golden child, #teammoneymaker
    Technology - the bread and butter, some of the brightest in the enterprise software industry
    Operations - unwanted stepchild

    ConsLifers who continue to strive to further secure their position by delegating senseless tasks and downplaying roles in the department.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThere is a problem when high turnover occurs within a department and it is mainly your first and second-year employees.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Pretty horrible

    Analyst, Operations (Current Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    Pros- Acquired by a publicly-traded company
    - Good executive team
    - A lot of windows in the office
    - Unrestricted internet usage
    - Breakfast foods and fruit provided

    Cons- Copious organizational silos
    - Rigid atmosphere
    - Poor attendance (employees arrive to work 30-45 minutes late, take 1.5-2 hour lunch breaks, and leave early as they please)
    - Unrestricted internet usage (supervisory-level employees may spend 75% FB-ing and 25% daily tasks)

    Advice to Senior ManagementRestrict social media usage (FB, Google Chat, etc.)

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Company take over and all that jazz...

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
    Rockville, MD

    ProsRecieved an Apple Macbook Air as a prize during the merger (Fortigent to LPL). Addition of $1500 for classes per year but it would take forever to earn any degree with them.

    ConsChanged EVERYTHING... pay, work from home, vacation, hours, punching in and out like drones, healthcare, etc.

    Advice to Senior ManagementI doubt they would listen.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Fortigent, LLC reviews and ratings in Washington, DC — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Fortigent, LLC CEO Jamie McIntyre. All 14 reviews posted anonymously by Fortigent, LLC employees.