National Information Solutions Cooperative

www.nisc.coop

National Information Solutions Cooperative Reviews

Updated December 3, 2014
Updated December 3, 2014
19 Reviews
4.0
19 Reviews
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National Information Solutions Cooperative President and CEO Vern Dosch
Vern Dosch
18 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Good company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Mandan, ND
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Mandan, ND

    I worked at National Information Solutions Cooperative

    Pros

    Great place to start your career. They are good at noticing and rewarding hard work. If you work hard and expand your knowledge you're going to get recognized. Like everything in life they aren't always perfect, but I never doubted that the leaders were doing what they felt was best for the company.

    Cons

    The Cooperative culture holds them back a little from what they could do. It makes them hold rates down, hold salaries down, be a little conservative with projects, makes them have to cater to members whims a little.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop bragging about how proud you are that you're holding rates for members steady...because you're also holding salary rates steady.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    NISC Cedar Rapids

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Cedar Rapids, IA
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Cedar Rapids, IA

    I worked at National Information Solutions Cooperative as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    Wonderful, relaxed work environment with friendly motivated people. The company is expanding and promotes the company as a community very well. They promote health and wellness and bring in outside agencies to support those goals.

    The technical/software part of the company has frequent technical discussion events to keep members informed about future directions. There are really sharp developers, particularly in the most senior positions and highly motivated R&D folks. They are always working to incorporate new and emerging technologies into their platforms. Exciting, engaging place to work!

    Cons

    There are some legacy systems that are not as exciting to work on.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Stable company that you can get stuck in

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Support in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Current Employee - Support in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Stable company with flexible hours. The company repeatedly talks about their record profits.
    Niche market.
    Tries to involve employees in activities and sends out surveys to try and measure employee satisfaction.
    Lake St. Louis office is easy to access from the Interstate, although far from St. Louis center.
    Health and 401K benefits are good.

    Cons

    There are four locations and a lot of different departments, which all seem to operate differently. This review is for the E&O office in Lake St. Louis.
    Loud open office, small desk work environment due to running out of room. Hardly anyone has an actual office. Uncomfortable chairs provided unless you want to pay for your own.
    Low salary increases, which don’t even match a cost of living increase, yet record profits. This is for knowledgeable employees who are rated highly on performance reviews.
    Department is known to not like to give promotions, so this is not a place you want to stay and keep working. There is a lot of turnover, and many employees are always looking for a different job which makes for a very depressing work environment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognize that the support and consultation area is a big part of your interactions with your customers. Instead of constantly having to train new employees, value the ones you have by increasing wages and making a more comfortable work environment. Users would rather talk and interact with the same knowledgeable employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good for starting out, pay is lackluster after a few years.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Specialist in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Current Employee - Software Specialist in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Easy-going atmosphere, good people. The office is nice looking, though the developer work stations are so-so. A lot of very smart people to work with.

    Cons

    The pay starts low and does not rise quickly enough. Not competitive in the St. Louis market. Also the office is very far away for most professionals in the area.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Compensation needs work. The work stations are slow and detract from productivity. The desks are too small since removing the old cubicles.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    A quickly growing company that's grounded in great values and supportive of its employees

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Every level of the company is supportive of work/life balance and provides flexibility. A range of great benefits. A clear focus on employee satisfaction, supported by regular (brief) surveys and acting on all feedback. Regular all-employee meetings (via WebEx) to keep everyone informed about what's going on with the company. Great transparency. Ample opportunities for learning and career growth. A great group of smart, humble, friendly employees, and really great customers (you sort of have to experience it to get it). You'll personally meet with the CEO within your first month or two. (He works in our North Dakota office, so it might not be right away.)

    Cons

    In the past, some teams weren't supported with enough staff, but there's been a concerted effort recently to staff at appropriate levels. (We hear from our CEO in employee meetings that he never wants to have to lay someone off because we've overstaffed. It seems like a very genuine reason that they take their time and deliberate before deciding to bring more people on board. I appreciate this thoughtful approach.)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to focus on improving compensation to keep great people from leaving and to help attract people to work here.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Cooperative values lived out in the core of everything done on a day-to-day basis and in innovative steps going forward.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Associate in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Current Employee - Software Associate in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time

    Pros

    NISC is a Cooperative. This means that decisions made aren't as profit driven as they would be in a regular corporate environment. With this comes a freedom to innovate in ways that other software companies can't, and this mentality is definitely carried down to a regular employee level. If you don't know what a cooperative is look it up, and then scrap whatever money-grubbing corporation you are working for now and go work for one.

    I feel appreciated in my daily work. The benefits and compensation match that of most other software companies, and NISC is dead set on making sure its employees have a good balance between work and regular life.

    The way meetings are handled and performance reviews done are backwards from what you would normally see. It's much less, "Here's how we think you have been doing." and much more, "What can WE do to help you towards your greatest potential?" This is encouraging and not like anything you might expect from any company larger than a mom & pop shop.

    The Wellness program is phenomenal and inspiring, and the monthly company get-togethers (called Meet-Ups) are enjoyable and make you feel welcome and a part of a larger community (not to mention they provide soda, beer, wine, food et cetera).

    Cons

    NISC can be a little slow moving when it comes to new features and products, but it's picking up.

    There doesn't seem like there are a lot of opportunities within NISC to move up the ladder, but with the big vision for adding more developers, engineers, support, QA and so on there will be a need for more management positions, it's just not there right now.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep doing what you're doing, and don't ever underestimate what your employees are capable of.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Great place to work, a few tweaks and NISC will become best-in-class!

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

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    You can't ask for a more, family-focused environment, great customers who are more like extended family, teams who go out of their way to be supportive of fellow co-workers in ways unimaginable these days...it is awesome! NISC is one of the best places to work if you value these types of things. There were no layoffs during a recession and infact, they grew as a company! They value opinions, insights, have values when it comes to business and their people and they listen about new ideas and thrive on innovation.

    The focus and drive and culture of this organization is very different than that of a 'traditional corporate' setting and that I wouldn't change. Titles don't matter here, that means internally, people from all levels within the organization are pulled onto a project, to get it done right. It could be an executive working with a manager, a specialist and a project lead around the table, working on a solution together. In other words, if you have the skillset and the know how, you will be a part of some very cool, innovative projects no matter your rank. For an organization that supports rural America, NISC is very innovative and forward-thinking. Watching the solutions NISC creates make a difference in lives is very rewarding.

    And the benefits are more than just health insurance. There is a strong focus on employee wellness, encouragement for community engagement and a support network for each other! It's the best it can be for anyone who wants more than just a job or even a career...NISC is filled with people who really do care and it goes beyond the 40 hour work week.

    Cons

    While NISC is on track in a lot of ways, opportunities for growth are limited and I think that will cost them to lose really good people. While titles are not important in this organization, which can be a good thing as I mentioned above, it's important to recognize that titles do matter. Titles matter, not only outside of the organization...as a perception of an employee representing NISC, but it also matters to many of the employees. Since the jobs don't always align with the duties/tasks and jobs of the people doing them, it gets confusing and when an employee is misrepresented of what they do for the organization it's not the best morale and they shouldn't have to explain themselves/what they do.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognize a job well done more frequently. Don't just save them up for one special day. Hire more people. Get people in who appreciate all the benefits of NISC, ones that will keep and encourage our unique culture. Add more titles that align better to the employees' jobs.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Great place to work.

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

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great benefit package, workout facility, exercise classes, management strives to make the company a good place to work.

    Cons

    Advancement to management may be limited due to the flat organizational structure.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good small company with exciting products

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Software Specialist in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Current Employee - Senior Software Specialist in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I have been working at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Small company, technology solutions centered, IT is not an overhead cost it is a driver, easy to talk to people, nice equipment and facilities, good work life balance, casual dress code, working with newer technoglies

    Cons

    Chances for growth are limited, small company so smaller pay. Some projects have around the clock support so you might get wrangled into that. Dealing with internal support can take up a lot of time.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think they are addressing this with their newer review and coaching system but for most of my time there I met with my actual boss once a year to talk about my performance.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Used to have a great culture, but it's gotten lost in new quest for $$$

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I worked at National Information Solutions Cooperative full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Amazing people to work with, not only the co-workers, but the Members (aka: customers).

    Cons

    There is so much potential to be an employer of choice, but in recent moves that are more profit driven they have forgotten the importance not only of the employees, but the Members which they serve.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Move Corporate Services to a different entity (sell them or break them off somehow). Concentrate on continuing to develop the best software product for the Cooperative Electric/Telecom Industry and refocus on the needs of the Members. Too much energy and focus on profit (for a cooperative business) from iGEAR and UBP has tainted the organizations culture and caused you to lose sight of your own Shared Values.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

National Information Solutions Cooperative Photos

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Vern Dosch presents at the 2013 Member Information Conference

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