Merkle Reviews in Columbia, MD

Updated September 24, 2014
Updated September 24, 2014
177 Reviews
3.4
177 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Merkle Chairman and CEO David Williams
David Williams
131 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Many smart people--from bottom to top there are many (in 32 reviews)

  • Work/life balance: Availability to work from home occasionally really helps with work/life balance (in 11 reviews)


Cons
  • Running hard means work life balance sometimes suffers (in 17 reviews)

  • If you are not in senior management you have no chance to obtain this award (in 14 reviews)

More Highlights

69 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 4 people found this helpful  

    I've had great managers and the opportunity to learn, grow and succeed here.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Creative  in  Columbia, MD
    Current Employee - Creative in Columbia, MD

    I have been working at Merkle

    Pros

    Merkle is a healthy company and the leaders have an incredible appetite to grow -- and are actually doing it. It's tough to get a job at Merkle because they only want the best and smartest people and the interview process is rigorous! I can almost guarantee in any given meeting you won't be the smartest person in the room so learning opportunities are ample. Merkle is quick to give you responsibility with a degree of autonomy so if you're smart, talented and hungry, it's the place for you.

    Cons

    The downside of a growth company is constant change and adaptation. Although the core senior leaders have been in place for many years, the middle management shifts a good bit and ocassionally you'll see a lot of transition all at once. Another downside is demand. Merkle is an incredibly demanding company and seems to be continually under resourced. You work hard here and depending on your department, some nights and weekends (or many). I'm fortunate in my position for that to be the exception and not the norm, but I've seen much worse in other business units. The biggest downside is that Merkle isn't all that family friendly. I do have a young child and am able to spend a ton of time with him, but I work at it and I have an awesome manager who knows that family comes first. That isn't always the case for others, however.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Help your staff achieve a better work-life balance. I have a great manager who truly gets what's important, but I know this is not something that other employees experience. When possible, try to have company activities that include family -- even kids. Company picnic or day at the ballpark -- just something that says Merkle knows we have families and appreciates the support they give behind the scenes to help Merkle grow.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 9 people found this helpful  

    Chaos reigns supreme

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Project Manager  in  Columbia, MD
    Current Employee - Senior Project Manager in Columbia, MD

    I have been working at Merkle

    Pros

    Staff does what it takes to get things done. Management has lofty goals to grow the company.

    Cons

    Chaos reigns supreme. Communications between departments is poor and it has a negative impact on the ability to deliver customer solutions to the promised level of quality (which is oft-times oversold by the client engagement team/sales people). It is a hero culture that is based on fire fighting. While the company and management recognize the heroic efforts people put forth to keep things running, it rewards the continuation of a reaction-based approach.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a breath and make the investment in developing repeatable processes to enable the staff to effectively execute in the delivery and sustainment of customer solutions. Don't knock people as 'non-cultural' fits because they don't think continued chaos is a good thing.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    So far, so good

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Columbia, MD
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Columbia, MD

    I have been working at Merkle

    Pros

    People, Learning opportunities (i.e. getting exposure to areas outside my role, such as SEO, database marketing, project management, marketing mix, what your CFO wants you to know about corporate finance, etc), Facilities, Benefits, and Flexibility (i.e. work from home, hours, etc)

    Cons

    Some departments work longer hours than others, but doesn't affect everyone.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Constantly changing

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

    I worked at Merkle

    Pros

    There are a lot of really smart people and it is a great place to learn about direct/database marketing..

    Cons

    Crazy hours, not good for work life balance. Constantly reorganizing. Too many chiefs and not enough indians (which contributes to the hours).

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Merkle is not perfect, but overall a darn good place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Columbia, MD
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Columbia, MD

    I have been working at Merkle

    Pros

    Private company so can manage financials beyond quarter to quarter and make smarter long term decisions than a public company. Amazing co-workers all very bright, work hard and nice. Little to no politics. Great clients provide interesting work with a lot of breadth and depth of experience. Fun culture. Very flexible. Very autonomous.

    Cons

    High expectations because the bar or standars are very high based on the quality of the people there. Need to be able to juggle many things and stand on your own. Support exists but a lot of accountability is placed on each person. You can always find things to pick on about any company and Merkle is not perfect, but in comparison to the many other places I have worked Merkle is at the top and I feel very confident that senior management is doing the best they can to balance the needs of employees, clients and profitability.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    As the company grows continue to put more standards in place as lack of consistency is a bigger problem across a larger organization than a smaller one.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Pretty good but could be better

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Columbia, MD
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Columbia, MD

    I have been working at Merkle

    Pros

    One of the best things is that they are very flexable about working hours and working from home

    Cons

    you work very hard and are unappriecated. you never know if you will have a job

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It would be great if people go noticed and were all treated fairly

    Approves of CEO
  8. 11 people found this helpful  

    No Training + High Turnover = A Lost Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Lead Analyst  in  Columbia, MD
    Former Employee - Lead Analyst in Columbia, MD

    I worked at Merkle

    Pros

    You can wear jeans to work.

    Cons

    Bait and Switch Recruiting: In the 2 weeks between receiving a verbal offer and my official offer letter, Merkle demoted the title, decreased the salary, and slashed the number of vacation days. They enticed me with one position, but the job I finally got barely resembled the title, responsibility or compensation Merkle advertised, interviewed me for and verbally offered. My boss-to-be tried to ease my concerns over the title change by noting that the same thing happened to him. Seems like that indicates a pattern of bait and switch recruiting.

    HR is Very Disorganized: On my first day, no one was expecting me. There was neither a desk nor a computer set up. I waited idly in a conference room for 2 hours while HR tried to track down my new boss. He also hadn't been expecting me.

    The IT Department is Ineffective: Of the numerous requests or bugs I entered during my time there (most of which were simple, but essential, permissions requests), only 1 was ever resolved, and that required escalating the matter to my VP, who had to personally visit the IT guys to convince them to handle the issue.

    They have No Training or On-Boarding Program: None. Zero. Zilch. Not even a tour of the building. I repeatedly asked for training resources and was ignored. I asked my coworkers, my boss, his boss and his boss's boss. No one had time for me. I was left to fend for myself.

    Due to High Turnover, There is No Historical or Institutional Knowledge: There were no other analysts on my accounts. Every previous analyst had been fired or quit in the preceding 5 months. My boss joined Merkle just 1 month before me, so there was literally no one who could outline or explain the work I was expected to do. I was left to sift aimlessly through hundreds of disorganized files and thousands of lines of uncommented SQL in an attempt to reconstruct the work and processes of my predecessors. Worse yet, after a mere 6 days on the job, I was told that I was the resident expert on 3 different accounts and that, if anything, I should be the person explaining these accounts to others. Talk about being set up to fail!

    In sum, I felt that Merkle was consistently dishonest with me and provided zero support or training. Thankfully I was able to get my old job back and didn't have to hang around too long.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 6 people found this helpful  

    Too tired to give a f#$% anymore

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Management  in  Columbia, MD
    Current Employee - Account Management in Columbia, MD

    I have been working at Merkle

    Pros

    Nice office building
    Very flexible with office hours
    Occasional fun events
    SOME people are nice, caring, hard workers

    Cons

    While in the office hours are flexible, expect to be available all the time
    People are quitting and due to corporate greed, instead of being replaced, their work is being dumped on existing employees
    Latest trend is promoting people to VP...the large majority of which are males
    Management over-commits to clients daily and then steps out for lower ranks to deal with the problem of how to deliver the impossible promise they've made
    Those that move up are usually talented at manipulating lower level staff to do their work so they can look good.
    Continually change the "mission". I thought it was to improve customer satisfaction, but how will that ever happen if there are never enough resources to make the clients happy?
    Not treated equally with senior or even mid-management - be lucky if you get to sit in on a meeting with them, but don't expect to talk. You'll get ignored or talked over.
    Nice culture guide - too bad that was the past and the present is a horror show

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Clean house and bring in new people who care, want to make a genuine difference and will get us back to the "one team" collaborative culture - not more clueless, too good for the working class, greedy bastards that can talk a good game, but can't deliver when it comes time for the big plays.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Think twice before working here!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Data Warehouse Developer  in  Columbia, MD
    Former Employee - Data Warehouse Developer in Columbia, MD

    I worked at Merkle

    Pros

    I worked here for 4 years and the ONLY reason the competent devlopers have not all left in mass is because Merkle does offer good work/life balance. This is the one thing keeping them there i.e. the ability to telecommute. Most of the smart people have already left or are trickling out the door.

    Cons

    Working in the IT department was like working in Bangalore, India. If you're not Indian or Chinese, you WILL have trouble getting ahead here. Your career will eventually stagnate because of stereotypes and cultural perceptions of leaders and lower level managers. If you interview here, you will see for yourself this IT shop consists of around 70% immigrants from India. Those of us who are non-Indians are NOT treated fairly.

    If you have another job offer, think twice. If not, plan to stay for a while and quit before you run into the brick wall.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire Americans too!! They are out there looking for work.
    Offer some managment training to the low level managers. They are in desperate need of understanding what is meant by team work and employee development.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Learn as Much as you can and Move on...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Account Manager  in  Columbia, MD
    Former Employee - Account Manager in Columbia, MD

    I worked at Merkle

    Pros

    Some Great People, a Great building, free coffee, you can bring your dog to work.

    Cons

    Senior management is out of touch. Top Top Senior management is not the best of the best. They have some great workers who contribute to the success of the company ...but senior management is
    not that smart.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a look and make some smart moves...

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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