Interactive Brokers

  www.interactivebrokers.com
  www.interactivebrokers.com
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Interactive Brokers Reviews

Updated September 20, 2014
Updated September 20, 2014
45 Reviews
2.7
45 Reviews
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Interactive Brokers Chairman, President, and CEO Thomas Peterffy
Thomas Peterffy
33 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 6 people found this helpful  

    Mixed feelings

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Programmer  in  Greenwich, CT
    Former Employee - Programmer in Greenwich, CT

    I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - SOME employees are very smart, very good at what they do.
    - Agree with other commenter that business is run in an ethical manner. ie. doing the right thing even if no one is looking.
    - Still on the cutting edge in some areas.
    - Minimal bureaucracy.

    Cons

    - Current incentive structure (no incentivization of employees) guarantees that the smartest and most motivated will leave. This is why HFTs ate their lunch.
    - Low pay relative to industry.
    - No growth opportunities.
    - Company is kept alive by H-1B slave labor.
    - Some groups are wildly incompetent (eg. HR, Marketing) due to perceived irrelevance by mgmt and these should be fired en masse.
    - Very anti-social office culture.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get a life? TP runs this as a hobby, and I can't imagine a more boring hobby. If you're not HUNGRY, or know how to hire/retain people that are, your failure is guaranteed.

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

    Its a miracle there hasnt been an office shooting there yet

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    They pay for your lunch
    Fully stocked pantry
    I heard they finally upgraded the accounting systems.
    The "party favors" at the annual meting/holiday party
    The Chicago people seemed nice
    The money flowed like water (at least it did in 1999-2000)

    Cons

    No life work balance
    Asinine procedures
    TP has to have his hands in every aspect of the business but cannot be bothered if you need his signature or approval for anything
    Office bullying is rampant at all levels

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There are more activist investors out there that know what kind of outfit you run and avoid IB like the plague beacuse of it.
    Actually, keep doing what youre doing. Ive made a s---load shorting IB since you went publc.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    This company should qualify as #1 worst place to work for

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

    I worked at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    The only one that I can account of is the free lunch you are entitled to. But guess what, you are supposed to eat it at your desk ( which is the whole point of it being free) and if you dare to leave you will be attacked by disapproval looks

    Cons

    -disrespectful management - you will get yelled at for things such as the way you arrange your own desk, the shrift you use etc. You will be constantly treated as being incompetent and worthless.

    -on your own - This dept is a bunch of people that happen to work together ( very far from team). You are not supposed to ask questions. if you dont get something it's your own fault, don't expect to recieve support. On the contrary, asking for one will put you faster on the unemployment bentch than you think ( happened to a colleague)

    -Zero employee morale - basically 90% of the treasury team leaves within a year ( true statistics). Main reason - management that creates a sick environment, comparable to a concentration camp.

    To sum up, do yourself a favor and don't even bother apply. You will not only lose your time but hurt your career and health. Don't do it! There are so many better companies out there ( happen to work for one now) that will put a lot more value on you and your career development.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    First day on the job I was told " If you think this is a place where you can chat around with colleagues, you are not int he right place" Turned out to be the total true. I have no other comments.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 6 people found this helpful  

    Avoid this at all costs if you value life outside of work

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

    I have been working at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    Decent salary is how we get people in the door. Based on performance (and we are pretty fair about this), you can get a decent bonus. There are absolutely no meetings to attend, not any -- ever. So if you like to sit at your desk and just work (i.e., no politics) then that is a plus.

    1. The hours are fine -- approximately 9am to 6pm.

    2. They allow you $12 per day to order lunch on seamless web.com.

    2. The work is fairly interesting IF you get assigned an interesting project.

    3. They give you annual "cost of living" increases of 4% per year.
    THIS IS WHY I AM STILL HERE AFTER 8 YEARS, FYI. It adds up -- quickly!

    Cons

    Benefits, culture, and career. Trust me, you do NOT want to work at this place unless you are 21 and have no life. I got in early, and I'm almost done, but in clear conscience I must tell it like it is.

    1. You are expected to be at your desk the entire time, even for lunch. You will be reprimanded if you are away from your desk for too long.

    2. You do NOT socialize with your coworkers. Management walks by several times per day and WILL notice this and comment about getting back to work. It has gotten better in the 8 years that I have been here but this is not a place to go to make friends or to have any type of workplace camaraderie.

    3. The benefits are horribly, horribly abysmally bad. You'd better not have any type of protracted injuries, for example, because if you need short-term disability (I did once) it provides a MAX of $500 per week for 26 WEEKS (since when is 26 weeks short-term?!!!). A normal policy would provide FULL salary for 6 weeks followed by HALF salary for a much longer term.

    4. The benefits also suck for vacation -- you get 2 weeks (10 days) per year. You have to work there for 5 years (!!!) to get another 2 days (!!!). This is a sweat-shop, boys, plain and simple.

    5. You will not be exposed to any of the inner-workings of the firm for many, many years. This is prudent on our part, but it also means that YOU WILL NOT LEARN ANYTHING about the brokerage or trading business that you couldn't get by working for 1 year at another firm. You are here to code, plain and simple.

    Guys -- I got in early and got stock options and I'm almost done with my career. I have had highs and lows with this firm. But I look at some of the new people coming in now, and it's just pathetic that they don't know how much better it can be at other places. I have golden handcuffs -- they do not.

    Look elsewhere and you'll thank me that you did.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    None -- this is a money-making machine and they squeeze everything they can out of labor. It's paid me well and continues to do so.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
  6. 4 people found this helpful  

    pretty secretive and communist attitude, stingy with salary

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Quantitative Analyst  in  Greenwich, CT
    Former Employee - Quantitative Analyst in Greenwich, CT

    I worked at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    Learn to code ( it is a programing sweat shop) and
    Learn basics of finance and trading
    Get your foot in the door

    Cons

    poor compensation
    no freedom to be creative
    Very autocratic
    the place has a management crisis
    and a really secretive culture where they dont permit interactions

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    don't work here if you want to be a real developer

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

    I have been working at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    pay is not bad. working hours is OK. good location.

    Cons

    1, You don't feel like a developer working there, just a typist. Micro management detailed to the level that you don't have to have a brain working there, two hands are enough.

    2, Cryptic culture. Developers are often given projects without knowing what's is really for.

    3, The culture is formed in such a way that people do not talk to each other, they sit at their desk eating their lunch quietly ... day after day.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    In addition to money, try to be nice to you employees, do not just pretend to.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    If you want to feel like chattel, this is the place!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    Talented development staff. Everyone in the same "situation".

    Cons

    This entire organization is run by the delusions of one person... the people in customer service are good, but the systems that dictate the methodology is awful and unbending.

    The company seems more like a psychological experiment than a business.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    haha...useless. It's Thomas Peterffy.... Take some value in the people who made you rich.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Horrific Work Culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Zug (Switzerland)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Zug (Switzerland)

    I have been working at Interactive Brokers

    Pros

    best for people who look for 9 til 5 kind of civil service job.
    learn and leave for another job

    Cons

    no incentives for innovation as no profit sharing or P&L related bonus
    no additional perks , no support for further education
    company sticks to only provide legal minimum vacation days

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    none, consultation fees should be given to employees for such advice

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Good people but limited resources to work and internal tools always crash

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative

    I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    -Majority of the people in customer service and technical support are very nice and helpful

    -Free lunch (if you stay in office and work during your lunch hour)

    Cons

    -Internal communication tools and systems constantly crash and could not get information to help assist customer

    -Limited resources (more often no resources) and training to help customer, for example they expect you to assist a client to place an order in an iPad and iPhone, we don't even have these tools in the office! Constantly have to use personal phone and mobile data plans to help customer; they don't care how things are done as long as the customer is assisted.

    -Management controls everything, they have the final say and if you are on the trainee system and you submit a reply, chances are you have to wait one or two days for approval. Chasing them is hopeless.

    -Communication between regions is very troublesome. Colleagues from other regions are often bouncing between tasks claiming it is because customer is based on the closest region or because of time difference. Since the global routing, people may cold transfer calls back to the existing queues so that they can leave on time.

    -Projects that are assigned are often random and pointless.

    -Majority of the Technical Operations team are very unhelpful, when escalating an issue they either do nothing or waste your time, or wait 2-3 days to copy and paste your report on the bug report to escalate further.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Train employees and provide better resources to complete day to day tasks. For example, mobile devices and tablets so that we know how to walkthrough clients on placing orders.

    You may also want to give more incentive for your employees to stay.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Intense, originally challenging but later depressing and even debilitating

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

    I have been working at Interactive Brokers full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    - A few of efficient business processes, most well-automated
    - A handful of worthy technologies to learn and think of.
    - Fair-n-square business practices as far as I can say (not to confuse with "nice to clients")
    - Acceptable pay; almost-guaranteed "raises" for raising cost of living
    - Keep to the letter to their side of your contract (which does not include much good; but still)
    - Free lunch that you usually eat at your desk (if you consider that a pro)

    Cons

    - Self-righteous and rigid high management; initiatives and comments are effectively discourages
    - Antiquated and ineffective-to-stupidity software governance (do not confuse with 'inefficient').
    - Non-existent work/life balance (total 16 days for vacation, personal and sick days; you are mostly treated and managed as a resource rather than human being)
    - Not only are free information and idea exchange not promoted but in many ways strongly discouraged. As an example, you won't even have an Internet access at your desk unless your function needs it. As one of the results, the company is stagnating technologically.
    - No training/learning programs I am aware of.
    - People are discouraged from talking

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Not that I think they would take any, but: consider formally training yourself in ethical people management (maybe try reading Stephen Covey's books?).

    On a side note: I had to rank CEO "disapprove" for his failure to keep the management effective and adequate to the company''s scale. This is not at all intended to deny his technical and financial genius and ethical business practices that made this company possible. I would have selected "both approve and disapprove" if the Web side provided this choice. (I did not want to select "No opinion" because I certainly had one)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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