Olam Reviews

Updated October 7, 2014
Updated October 7, 2014
42 Reviews
3.4
42 Reviews
Rating Trends

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Sunny G. Verghese
32 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Very Good Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Finance in Chennai (India)
    Former Employee - Finance in Chennai (India)

    I worked at Olam full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Excellent company! This organisation will give very good opportunity to learn new things and all managers are friendly. Work pressure will be high on month end time and less work will be there rest of the month. Company has very good value and the comfort will not be there in any other company.

    Cons

    Nothing much to specify as CONS.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Managers are very good and keep up the good work.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    General Manager

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

    I worked at Olam full-time

    Pros

    Great learning platform. Multi functional expertise.

    Cons

    Weak HR processes and systems. Quest for growth has to be coupled with strong support structures.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Strengthen structures, reward stable consistent performers and NOT fly by night managers!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Operations manager for an up-country agricultural business (buying from farmers and processing in factory)

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

    I have been working at Olam full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Responsibility & opportunity to take ownership of a business unit or its operations as a junior manager

    Cons

    Lack of diversity (gender and ethnic)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Poor senior management & People skills

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - GM FINANCE in Singapore (Singapore)
    Current Employee - GM FINANCE in Singapore (Singapore)

    I have been working at Olam full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Ability to survive in a company growing without structure

    Cons

    Poor work life balance, short sighted, too much of theory & high talk

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Look for long term & not short term with focus solely at stock market!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Great Exposure but an Unstructured Environment

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

    I have been working at Olam full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    High Exposure to Country/Product, Tremendous learning experience Esp for Management Trainees, Responsibility, Risk Management, Localisation of Talent, Support of experience in Africa

    Cons

    Lack of formal training, outdated processes, scared management, lack of strategy, one-man-show, work-life balance

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Clearly defined strategy permeating down to the local employees is critical for survival. Senior management needs to hedge relationships with govt factors much better. Define processes, HR, IR & functions to be straight and strict across all levels of the workforce.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Great

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

    I worked at Olam full-time

    Pros

    Entreprenuerial spirit, personal growth

    Cons

    Youre stuck to a geography - especially if youre in Africa.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Poor PCH with poor people skills

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Procurement Manager in Lagos (Nigeria)
    Current Employee - Procurement Manager in Lagos (Nigeria)

    I have been working at Olam full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    compensation is good all things considered. the perks are quite decent. the salary is paid in a timely manner which is not true for all companies in Africa.

    Cons

    poor managers who are clueless on how to deal with people. they are too set in their old ways and do not want to change. they have no forward thinking. they live in the past. the turnover is shockingly high and the pch is oblivious to it.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    train the managers in soft skills

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Disappointing

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

    I have been working at Olam full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Pays very, Very good work life balance

    Cons

    Incentive don't come on time, HR and Other processes are very wak, person driven co. instead of through systems, not a very healthy employee relations

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on Employee Connect, Try to give incentive (which is large pie here) on time instead of delaying intentionally, develop good HR practices across co., make promotion and rating systems more transparent

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    It has its good points and its bad points

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

    I have been working at Olam full-time

    Pros

    Keep in mind I can only speak of what went on in my business unit - I am sure other parts of the company are totally different.

    The company spends a lot of money on educating its managers. I was sent overseas on a commodity training courses, they paid for a good part of my post grad education, they sent me on leadership course and paid for a VBA programming course I showed interest in.

    As an up and coming trader this company is both good and bad. On the good side, they were quick to give me a prop book. I suspect this is because when I arrived at the company people knew next to nothing about option trading. I could not believe the huge positions being taken by people that did not understand non-linear risk and were getting paid a fortune. For me this was a good thing because option trading was my speciality so it was easy for me to stand out.

    Cons

    On the bad side, the company is not good at managing talent. For example, there are some really "average" (to put it mildly) people in some really key positions.

    This frustrates the talent that has to report to these "average" managers/presidents. Further, the bonus scheme is a mess - you can do a really good job and make money but if someone else in your business unit makes huge losses then everyone suffers.

    What makes this worse is that Olam does not demote or fire managers that make huge losses and they allow for all sorts of lame excuses.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I like the way the company gives room for manager to fail, nonetheless, some managers/presidents are simply not the best person for the job.

    Its no good allowing a manager to fail when there is better talent in the organisation that would not have failed.

    Further some people learn more quickly than others - you want your best talent and quickest learners in the senior positions.

    Just because someone has had their position for a long time or has been with the company for a long time does not mean they should keep their position when there is far better talent that could be making our shareholders more money.

    Remember "creating value is our business" not "letting long time employees keep their job".

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Check where exactly you are going !

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

    I have been working at Olam full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Decent remuneration if you are an expat, great ownership and high responsibilities given at a young age, some very smart people in the topmost management

    Cons

    Very little formal systems and processes, no standardization, everything depends on what your boss or Business unit is doing another Business Unit may be doing exactly the opposite at the same time, locations can be very difficult based on which country you are based out of, work profile can be a bit of a put off based on the country of operation

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please put in place some processes

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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