Lithium Technologies

  www.lithium.com
  www.lithium.com
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Lithium Technologies Reviews

Updated September 10, 2014
Updated September 10, 2014
126 Reviews
3.5
126 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Lithium Technologies CEO Rob Tarkoff
Rob Tarkoff
101 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great people with a lot of successful tech company experience in their past (in 10 reviews)

  • One possible pro is that they are based in downtown San Francisco (in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • Company is growing fast and there are some growing pains associated with that (in 6 reviews)

  • Based on the above, there is extremely high turnover in Sales and other divisions stay for a long time (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Work with cool technologies on a product that really gets used and makes a difference.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Consistently growing revenue stream based on well know customers that use the product at scale. This has lead to predictable growth and stability at the company that has allowed for consistent execution of plans.

    Very experienced and talented engineering management team hired a couple years ago to bring fresh blood and energy into engineering. This has meaningfully transformed the culture of engineering here into a place of experimentation and innovation. Its been really cool to inject modern big data technologies into our application and make it able to do things that at one time felt impossible.

    Nice environment. Engineering is on the 14th floor of an office building in the financial district of San Francisco. Its a really bright and uplifting environment. We get catered breakfasts and lunches and an unbelievable snack and drink selection. A lot of young people work for the company so there are always a lot of opportunities to make friends and socialize if you want to.

    Good experience. We get to do real things and are held accountable. I always feel like I am being asked to learn something new. I feel like I am paid well and the bonus program is real. If you work hard and produce you will be compensated well.

    I believe in the marketing vision of management. What this really means is that I think that someday when the company goes public the stock could be worth some serious money. That's exciting to me because I've worked in start-ups for which that was not the case.

    Cons

    We have a huge installed base of existing customers. This means that decisions are tempered and constrained by the expectations of existing users. This means that sometimes we have to do a lot of what feels like "extra work" to satisfy existing constraints. Sometimes things will move slower than we want them to because of work we have to do to satisfy previously incurred technical debt.

    The environment is fast paced. We work hard and constantly have to be improving our game. Sometimes I get tired.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be transparent. Nothing is ever all positive or all negative. Accurately and honestly communicate the priorities the plan and the results. Transparency builds trust and stability.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Incredibly rewarding job and inspiring team

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

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies as a contractor for more than 3 years

    Pros

    This is a company poised for the big time. There is incredible passion, energy and dedication to success here. There is a great culture of openness, collaboration and empowerment that I have found hugely motivating. The EMEA team is very well respected by HQ and there is a strong relationship across the regions. Regional leadership is exceptionally strong and here in EMEA, there is very little attrition.

    Cons

    There are growing pains associated with a company at this stage and decisions take too long but there is genuine willingness for HQ to support the regions. The office environment is good in London, ok in Paris and cool in Zurich but none at the same standard as San Francisco.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Empower the regions to be more self-sufficient and keep up the communications to the international business.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    The Real Deal? I Don't Know Anyone Here That Is Happy.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Awesome office in downtown San Francisco
    - Free lunches
    - Many smart and energetic people

    Cons

    - Super outdated technology - communities - tech created in 2001
    - High turn over - everyone at the company seems to be looking for a job
    - Executive turn over - not typical of a company close to an IPO
    - Layoffs - not typical of a company close to an IPO
    - Desperate/dishonest executive team - when things start going bad, people start lying and that is what is happening - my favorite lie? the infamous Lithium IPO - the CEO has been saying this for years - but there is no way it is happening; company performance is just not there. The other issue? Lithium is spin city - everything bad is spun to be good - like layoffs - how can you spin layoffs as a good thing?
    - Office culture of backstabbing for survival - like rats on a sinking ship people are doing unnatural things to save themselves from the layoff - that is when they are not spending work hours looking for a new job. Not a healthy environment.
    - Klout purchase was a failure - poor integration, and not a clear message as to how/why it adds value to lithium or to the product offering. - Complete fail by the CEO.
    - Hardly any sales people making their number - again - not typical of a company close to IPO.
    - Finally all of the talented people are leaving -

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop lying, stop manipulating your employees. Be honest about the performance of the company - STOP SPINNING!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Fantastic

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    I have worked in many organizations and trust me when I say this place is a dream. I am an individual contributor, and treated with respect, and valued.

    Cons

    I really wish I lived closer. My commute is a bear. But, because I love what I do, it makes it more palatable.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I wish the conversion process was faster. As a contractor, it would be nice to be a regular employee since i have been here well over 6 months.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 3 people found this helpful  

    Good CEO, Great Product, Politics and Lot of Executives

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Engineer  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Great CEO who has a vision and clear communication. The direction to make as much revenue as possible is a great way to go and keeping the research and new products to a minimum until we hit the threshold for a bigger player is the way to move forward.

    Cons

    Lots of VP's, SVP, Executives for a such a small company. Why this company behaves like a large corporate and want to be a startup? Can never understand that ???
    We are TOP heavy and bottom small. It is supposed to be a engineering company right? So many smart engineers leaving every week because they feel threatened by this inefficient Managers & VP's.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The product is build by smart engineers. The fact that a lot of companies fail to innovate and fall behind is when they spend a lot on hiring these so called VP's with little skills and no knowledge of code that build the company.
    These executives create a space for themselves by playing politics and division across engineers. Keep the TOP simple and give the power to navigate the products & engineering to the pointed person/s and reward for their performance.
    A group of policy makers would really not make any good or focussed decisions, but all that they would do is risk mitigation, back covering and playing safe. Its CEO who has to decide where he want the company to go and just fire these so called Executives and VP's and keep engineering focused and business aligned to target.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Hm...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Lead Operations Engineer  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Lead Operations Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    A recent refocusing on the products, sales, and market. Really great things happening as a result. Some really great people have recently joined and we are already seeing results of their work impact the business. Opportunity is still the largest Pro and always has been in my opinion. Opportunity for both career development in our organization and opportunity for market share.

    Cons

    I guess we can always find something to complain about. But I don't want to feed any negative energy by providing fuel. It doesn't mean that I am not thinking critically about our company by not listing cons. It just means that I do not see a need to publicize them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The underpinning business components are well on their way to being very strong. All of us need to continue working together towards better communication, training, and culture. While it is important to stay focused on our customers, we also need to stay focused on everyone within the company. I understand how hard mgmt is. Keep it up. - J.F.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 7 people found this helpful  

    Many great people; company spoiled by some bad apples.

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

    I worked at Lithium Technologies full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The majority of the employees are great people and extremely talented. Offers many of the usual startup/young tech company bennies (food, games, happy hours, flexible work hours, work from home, etc).

    Cons

    Power plays. Turf building. Poor communication. Promises made and not kept.

    As others have mentioned, the company appears to be lacking a clear direction. I was gone long before the Klout acquisition, but I can't see how it'll help them either Lithium or Klout in the long run.

    The good managers that I worked with are gone. The bad ones are still there.

    Little investment in building the skills of their existing employees, instead hiring hot shots, so not much chance of upward mobility. (Brown bag talks excluded - though those are primarily used to bring co-workers up to speed on arcane details of the existing system.)

    Rob Tarkoff appears to be more interested in building a company he can sell off than in building a quality product.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest more in your people's skills, less in your fancy digs (though probably too late for that now, as the money has been spent).

    Figure out what your core products are, and polish those.

    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great Place to work. Great People. Great Culture.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I am surprised by all the negative reviews I see. I have been working at Lithium for 6 months and have had a great experience. It is true that we had to let some people go and I along with everyone else hated it but from what I saw it was done very well. Everyone was given a package and they were also given cobra coverage and out placement support. I have always said that the only type of company I can work for is one that treats their employees with dignity and respect and that is exactly what I saw. Change can be very hard and frustrating but I really do believe they did the best they could. The next day our CEO had an all hands to talk about the business and the changes they were making and why. He has made himself available for questions and I believe he means it when he tells people to come to him.

    Cons

    I really can't think of any cons. The Klout integration is still going on. It wasn't handled perfectly but I have never seen an integrations that has been.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It seems like you are moving in the right direction. Keep it up!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Underpaid, Undervalued, Just a Number

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

    I have been working at Lithium Technologies as a contractor for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The team in general are great to work with, the product itself has evolved well

    Cons

    - Contractors are treated like numbers, not acknowledged as part of the team nor acknowledged as being a face to clients helping them understand the product
    - No communications, standard staff get company updates and invited to the Monthly Town Halls, contractors nothing, no company updates no progress report
    - Pay rates are low, very low and never ever reviewed
    - Severe lack of performance reviews and opportunities
    - No career progression
    - No thanks for going above and beyond
    - Only hear from Department Managers when there is Negative Feedback
    - No Up-Skill Opportunities
    - Favouritism with department team members
    - Being made to feel third party citizens
    - Not mentioned for service in all hands (e.g 3 years / 4 years) when regular staff are.
    - Regular staff get PTO & Company Holidays, Moderators don't

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Communicate, review pays, work with moderators listen to what they say remember they are another point for clients

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 5 people found this helpful  

    Lots of ups and downs, wasted resources and opportunities

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Lithium Technologies full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    - the company has 'grown up' since the earlier days in Emeryville
    - many great, committed people on the floor and out in the field, generally friendly atmosphere in engineering and services
    - nice SF location, WFH and good work life balance for a mid sized company

    Cons

    - cross team collaboration is poor and politics are high considering this isn't a huge company; lots of passing the buck to those who actually do work
    - when will we see an updated roadmap? resources get pulled off of stable projects constantly to save ones that are behind schedule or were committed without a realistic sense of scope
    - company goals and product vision is not clearly communicated internally or externally at key events
    - management doesn't get to know their reports very well, lack of real feedback and support; it's sink or swim every time you get a new manager
    - more HR driven 'celebrations' than those of actual business success; glassdoor review drives

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Communicate reasons behind major decisions more broadly and in ways that everyone will hear (not just at sparsley attended weekly 'huddles'); figure out how to properly vet and integrate acquisitions; stop wasting money on offices no one works in

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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