Isobar US Reviews

Updated June 30, 2015
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3.4
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Isobar US Co-CEOs for USA Jeff Maling & Geoff Cubitt
Jeff Maling & Geoff Cubitt
6 Ratings

Pros
  • Smart People, some bleeding edge projects, beautiful offices, free coffee, pop, juice, bagel fridays, once a month chair massage (in 5 reviews)

  • app being developed is cutting edge (in 3 reviews)

Cons
  • Long hours, demanding environment, client expectations are high (standard for the agency business) (in 4 reviews)

  • 45 billable "work" hours per week is the standard, not including meeting hours (in 2 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

15 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Challenging and intriguing projects, impressive talent

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Director in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Isobar US full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    * A mature, professional organization, measuring success by results * Very strong, available leadership * Highly skilled and motivated workers * World class, efficient internal staff supports an inviting company culture * Fiscally responsible / sustainable growth * Balanced strength across disciplines * Low turnover, most stay for a several years

    Cons

    * The nature of these projects require heavy hours at times

    Advice to Management

    Management is already humble and approachable... take your elevator pitch to them directly


  2. Helpful (1)

    Unprofessional mgmt

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Functional Analyst in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Functional Analyst in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Free snacks. Great place to have a perfect example of worst job ever.

    Cons

    Poor business model that promotes a lot of conniving underhanded things by few engagement directors. They over charge their clients and internally site their reasons to support a certain life style which is an illusion. No real team structure or any opportunity for growth. Few not all engagement directors are incompetent, unprofessional, and far from being respected leaders. Bunch of tools doing the same job creates unnecessary competition resulting in number of emails and pings to show their value whereas the team sits in the same aisle.

    Advice to Management

    Believe in your business model, honest hard work, and the talented folks you hire. No need to micro manage if there is full transparency on your part.


  3. Great Opportunities

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    There are lots of smart people. The environment is super collaborative. The clients are generally high profile, so projects are great resume builders. The Chicago office is very social and people are very friendly and inclusive.

    Cons

    I am not sure how the review process works, but I feel like it's less structured than larger consultancies/ agencies. Honestly, not much to say here.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you're doing - it's working.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    Easy to get real work done.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Devops in Chicago, IL
    Former Contractor - Devops in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Isobar US as a contractor (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Growing company. Very little red tape. Colleagues are helpful. Co-workers are very sharp. (Fun and friendly also). The iOS / Android app being developed is cutting edge. Work / family balance was good. Commute to Ogilvie train station is easy using Divvy Bike, or shuttle bus, or walking the pedway. Good coffee, drinks, snacks, fruit, etc. Glorious office with a stunning view a Grant Park, Lake Michigan, and the city grid.

    Cons

    It is a consulting company. Some people travel. Sometimes the hours are long.


  6. Helpful (4)

    High Schoolish Work Environment

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Manager in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Isobar US full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Smart People, some bleeding edge projects, beautiful offices, free coffee, pop, juice, bagel fridays, once a month chair massage.

    Cons

    most managers do not know how to manage, favorites get best project work, managers and above talk the talk but don't really follow through on helping grow a persons career, people on the bench who have skills that can be used elsewhere but nobody takes the time to find out their skillset, people are ridiculed, have bad nicknames for staff members, a lot of gossip surprising since there are so many men in leadership roles, no real respect for family leave time, 9+ hour days as billable people MUST bill a minimum of 9 hours a day.

    Advice to Management

    take time to learn about your employees, don't put people in management roles because you like them but because they earn it and know about their discipline and practice area.


  7. Helpful (5)

    Gorgeous offices, awkward staffing, and a lot of legacy deadwood

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Experience Designer C1 in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Experience Designer C1 in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Isobar US full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Pretty cool work space, profile projects (if you are luck enough to get staffed to them) and for most part everything is cool in terms of work life balance, training, etc.

    Cons

    They don't really have the processes in place to recognize and promote new talent. It can become a real problem when a new hire sits on the bench for two months before being staffed. I've seen this many times. It is awkward to experience.

    Advice to Management

    Get to know the skills of your new hires better. Develop a process that allows staffing to actually know what they have.


  8. Helpful (1)

    Good Company even as a hourly contractor

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Mobile User Experience Designer in Chicago, IL
    Former Contractor - Mobile User Experience Designer in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Isobar US as a contractor (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great offices and solid Project Managers. The work was pretty interesting and I had the opportunity to be on a great team of Android developers.

    Cons

    Commute is difficult from the train station every day. There is a bus that can take you but its 4 bucks a day and you have to have a special pass. No a lot of sharing or learning from other teams. Even though it has an open work desks teams feel segregated.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Times have changed since 2009...

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Technical Lead in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Technical Lead in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Isobar US full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Work from home Company provides decent equipment Some lab projects (if you can find time and they don't get squashed by management)

    Cons

    Lost promises of "cool" tech projects in favor if cash cow projects that burn you out. Labs is a joke. If you are any good at what you do you'll end up so overworked you won't have any time for fun projects. Overtime compensation is insulting. You are already overworked and then they give you "comp" days and a small gift certificate for working 80-100 hours overtime in a couple months but you barely have time to use them. The management seems to have sold out now that the company has been sold to Aegis. The exciting atmosphere has faded quite a bit.

    Advice to Management

    Go back to your core values: focusing on your development teams and finding ways to recognize their hard work in more meaningful ways or you will continue to burn out your best talent. I've spoken with 5+ employees recently who feel the same way.


  10. Hard work with brilliant people. Burn out seems to be a problem.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Isobar US full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    You work with brilliant people on projects of seemingly infinite complexity. Process-oriented culture provides great feedback on project performance and career development. Project teams are diverse which creates a great environment for learning cross-discipline. Regular feedback cycles means problems are eventually.

    Cons

    Extensive travel/on-site work. I spent two of my three years at Roundarch on-site at client offices. This leads to siloed and monolithic project teams that rarely communicate with each other. The advertised "work hard, play hard" culture skews heavily toward "work hard." Minimum 45 hour work weeks with actual annual utilization at 125% - 150% of target.

    Advice to Management

    Burn out seems to be a problem between years 3 - 5. "Work hard, play hard" may attract new employees but it won't keep them around for more than a few years.


  11. Helpful (3)

    Once a great company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Isobar US full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Roundarch started off as a company focused on the employee. The onboarding process was something to marvel at. They really took the time to show new hires that they mattered. At least they did 3 years ago.

    Cons

    Over the past year, Roundarch has been traded around like stock, and not in a good way. Most of the upper management has checked out, waiting til they can collect their last, rather large pay check. Attention is no longer on the employee, as much as it is on getting projects done in unreal time frames, taking on projects that aren't well thought out. It's currently a lead by the seat of your pants kind of operation. The focus is no longer on quality and innovation. It is all about numbers.

    Advice to Management

    Pay more attention to the little guy.



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