Ocean Tomo Reviews

Updated July 31, 2015
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Ocean Tomo Managing Director, COO Andrew W. Carter
Andrew W. Carter
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19 Employee Reviews

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  1. Good company

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

    I worked at Ocean Tomo full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    This was my first job out of college and it was great. The people taught me a lot about business, financial analysis,and intellectual property. The office space was very nice. Social activities were good. I learned a lot, got to travel, and had great co-workers; not sure what else I could ask for. The only reason I left was because I got an unbelievable offer from a dotcom. Otherwise I would have stayed.

    Cons

    I've read some of the other reviews on here and I'll agree that it would be nice to have matching for the 401k. Not sure about some of the other negative comments as I was always treated well, though more transparency on firm revenue and earnings would have been good (to say "we are profitable" but not telling everyone how MUCH profit seems a bit too secretive).

    Advice to Management

    Although the space was very nice, all the Analysts (like me) had to sit in cubes, even when there were open offices available. Hey, would it have killed you to let some of us have a windowed office, even if only for a few months?


  2. Helpful (1)

    Good career start

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

    I have been working at Ocean Tomo full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    This has been a great career starter (and I may stay in it for several years). The work is interesting and challenging. My coworkers are very helpful and the "higher ups" seek my opinion and involvement. Although this is a niche business a lot of what we do is transferable anywhere. I have learned great model building skills and business case skills.

    Cons

    Probably the biggest con is that we don't rotate through all the offices like I thought would happen. There are office in Houston and several west coast cities and in three years you'd think management could rotate me (and everyone) through them. Also, the break room should have new items added as not everyone plays pool or uses massage chairs. Maybe add some pinball games?

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you are doing, but give us even more freedom. Maybe allow everyone to pick which office they want to work in for 3 months out of the year. Also, while I appreciate the cell phone subsidy, it could be beefed up a bit.


  3. Helpful (1)

    Great financial analyst job

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

    I have been working at Ocean Tomo full-time

    Pros

    I think the best thing about this place is the people. My coworkers are smart and helpful, people are fun to be around, and even the bosses are cool. The work is mostly challenging, but can sometimes be boring. The field (intellectual property) is unique and interesting. I'm building skills in both the financial area and the legal area so this is a good springboard to a lot of different careers. Socially we have a lot of fun. We go out about once a month, and we just had a summer drinking and gambling cruise that everyone really enjoyed.

    Cons

    As mentioned above, the work can be mundane at times. But as I have gained more experience I have had less and less of that to do. It would also be nice to have free lunches. I have a couple friends that work at start-ups and they get all their lunches for free. Here we only get free soda, ice cream, and lunch a couple times a month.

    Advice to Management

    If you give us free lunches we will probably work harder (hint hint). Also, it would be nice to have a rotation program where we can work in the other offices, especially San Francisco in the winter time.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    sinking ship

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

    I worked at Ocean Tomo (More than a year)

    Pros

    None - awful place to work

    Cons

    Too many to mention but cliquish, secretive; bucket loads of management hubris; management blindspots; trivial place to work

    Advice to Management

    Look in the mirror


  6. Associate

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

    I have been working at Ocean Tomo full-time

    Pros

    Challenging work. Unique work. I wasn't sure exactly what to expect when I joined but things have worked out pretty well. It's almost like a cross between finance and the law. Is the work sometimes repetitive? Yes, but that is the nature of preparing reports for litigation, as everything has to be 100% perfect or the expert (my boss) will get killed on cross examination. Like a lot of professions this one gets more interesting as you stick with it since you have more client-involvement and higher level work. Work/life balance is good. I have had some 80 hour weeks and some weekends, but I also have had lots of "easy" weeks and have taken several weeks of vacation a year.

    Cons

    As others have mentioned, 401k match is lacking. The monthly firm outings have also seemed to have dropped to every other month and I wish we still went out every month. It would also be nice to get together with the other offices (we have offices in several cities) more than just once or twice a year. Maybe we should have at least three all-firm get togethers a year, one in each of the major offices.

    Advice to Management

    My advice is really related to my "cons". More outings and get togethers would improve morale I think. And a 401k match would be good too.


  7. Helpful (2)

    Patent Review Process

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Company was very professional from the start and you feel you're in good hands.

    Cons

    Ocean Tomo informs you that during the patent review they can use any data provided as they see fit as well as ask any question regarding the technology and say its part of the review process. This is data mining.

    Advice to Management

    Provide a non disclosure statement to patent owners before any information is accepted.


  8. Helpful (6)

    Entry-Level Analysts Beware

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Ocean Tomo full-time

    Pros

    -Work with some smart people -Learn about interesting technologies/topics -Good office space

    Cons

    -No integrity in the firm's senior leadership -Salary on a per hour basis is a joke (no 401K match either) -Bonus is a joke -Incredibly long hours and weekends doing trivial, monotonous work that can and will be slightly altered and need to be completely redone on the whim of a director or managing director -1/2 the job of an analyst is to check and recheck sentences and numbers in reports

    Advice to Management

    Be more open and less secretive. Treat your employees with respect. If you anticipate that a project will cause someone to work 80 hour weeks, maybe staff some more people on it. Hire more people instead of pouring the money into luxury cars.


  9. Helpful (4)

    Took awhile, but I finally found my "this is it!" company

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

    I have been working at Ocean Tomo full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Cutting edge in its field. I have learned a lot here in less than 2 years. The people here are the best. Everyone is willing to help and I learn from them every day. The work environment is very flexible, which makes it great for working mothers. The Chicago and SF offices are very nice (I have not been to the Houston office yet). And, while this may seem small, they pretty much pay for my cell phone. It's nice little gestures like that that really show they care.

    Cons

    Almost too much socializing. We go out monthly, have semi-annual all-company get-togethers, and there are the random "let's everyone grab something at the bar" nights. Last year I couldn't make it to everything (missed the Cubs rooftop and Whirlyball nights). Would be nice if they we got to vote on what nights the monthly outings are so I don't miss things.

    Advice to Management

    Management should promote their family-friendly attitude more. They have great family policies but downplay them (I almost did not accept the job because I didn't know about the flex time). I pretty much work 4 days a week, which in consulting is unheard of. In other words, dear bosses, don't be humble... tout what makes your great!


  10. Helpful (1)

    Great people, space, and work. I really enjoy it here.

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

    I have been working at Ocean Tomo full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Smart, fun, and helpful coworkers. I love the people here. Management appears to really care about us. Great office space. The work is interesting and challenging, and it seems like I frequently learn something new.

    Cons

    Work can be erratic at times, with some unplanned late nights. While I understand this can happen in consulting, it still can be upsetting when I have to change my personal plans to finish a project.

    Advice to Management

    It would be good to have monthly outings, instead of only having "fun" nights every other month. This would be especially important if we have had to work any late nights.


  11. Great culture, manageable hours, overall good people to work with

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Ocean Tomo full-time

    Pros

    1. Company has "unlimited PTO", which is good because you don't have to acrue PTO before using it. It is bad because you may not have ownership over a certain amount of days, so it may be hard to take off 3 straight weeks even though you have 15 days, for example, depending on your boss. Management is overall very understanding of taking time off, and I would say the average employee takes more time off here than most other firms, which is a plus. All time off is paid. 2. Very casual, familial culture. Some employees, especially the director and MD level employees seem to have been there a long time. I think this is a sign that people really do enjoy working there if there isn't turnover. 3. Paid continuing education classes if management approved of it. 4. Alot of after work fun events designed to allow employees to have fun and bond, even in the economic downturn.

    Cons

    1. No 401K match even in an uptick in the job environment. 2. Niche business, so transferability of skills is very weak at best, most exit opportunities are other patent-related businesses. If patents are what you love, this isn't a con. Business school is intriguing as the experience is very different than other business school applicants. There isn't much the company can do about this con as patents are their business. 3. We paid 20% of the healthcare costs pretax. 4. From my understanding, some of the business lines may pay below market rates. 5. There is some expectation that you work for other groups in times of downturn in your business line, which I disliked. Employees have their strength and weaknesses which make them bad fits for other business lines sometimes. We also don't get compensated based upon work for other lines, so incentives are not aligned there.

    Advice to Management

    Aim for a higher standard of entry-level employees. Except on the West Coast where there are USC and UC Berkeley hires, aspire to hire the top students everywhere. In the Midwest (biggest office) in Chicago, management does not hire heavily at U of Chicago, Northwestern, Notre Dame, etc, which are the best schools in the region. It is more common to see U of Illinois, Indiana University and DePaul at the firm. No disrespect to those schools, but there isn't even a recruiting presence at the previously mentioned schools. I think it results in lower quality work.



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