OpenTable Reviews

Updated August 28, 2015
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OpenTable CEO Matthew Roberts
Matthew Roberts
66 Ratings

Pros
  • OpenTable offers a great work/life balance (in 6 reviews)

  • A lot of great people to work with (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • This is by no means a hip tech company (in 3 reviews)

  • Extremely stiff & uptight people who lack imagination and creativity (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

97 Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (6)

    Good work, good People and good times.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The People - An intelligent and collaborative workforce that makes it enjoyable to come into work every day. Everyone does seem to respect one another professionally as well as personally; the people are genuinely nice. People also ask the right questions, and move forward on ideas accordingly (Decisions are thoughtout and most of the time are backed with data). The Location - Downtown San Francisco. Can't really beat where the HQ is, and the office space is welcoming. The Happy Hours - Creatively themed and a lot of fun. Not overproduced (nor a waste of dollars) these events typically are centered around the employees. Most notable have been Halloween, Kentucky Derby with employees riding large toy horses around the office, St. Patricks Day and then the impromptu happy hours that happen out of thin air and typically include people from various departments. Base salary is competitive and the RSUs add a nice touch. Happy with the benefits too. Seems to be a time for opportunity and growth for the business and me as an employee. I'm excited for the growth of the product.

    Cons

    At times I feel like the work hours can be a little long in comparison to my friends that work at other companies in the Bay Area but in all honesty I think this could also be a result of me not feeling the need to rush out of the office right at 5pm. (The hours are better than east coast NYC hours) 401K match seems slightly low but the RSUs make up for it.

    Advice to Management

    There seems to have been a very positive shift for the company over the past year or so. This began prior to the Priceline acquisition, and has continued onward. I'm hopeful that management stays this course, and continues to create and drive innovative features for our products.


  2. Helpful (6)

    Engineers receive no recognition or reward

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Interesting work, conveniently located. That's about where it ends.

    Cons

    Are you an engineer? Are you looking to use your talents to build great products, and receive recognition and reward for your hard work? Then you'd better look elsewhere. Go to Google, Facebook, or countless other technology companies which value their engineers. These are fundamentally technology driven companies, OpenTable is a sales/marketing driven organization. Engineers are simply cogs in the wheel, and are easily replaceable in the eyes of management. They just don't do performance-based compensation at all. Sure, management has received about $20 million each in stock option based compensation, but the rules are different for everyone else within the company. Even for the engineers who actually create the product that is making management so extraordinarily wealthy. There is no individual recognition whatsoever, unless you make a mistake which costs the company money. Then they will hold an all hands meeting to place blame on the engineer who made the mistake. If you create a product which generates millions in revenue, not a word is said. There is no bonus structure at all. Work as hard as you possibly can, still no bonus. There is absolutely no incentive at all for hard work within this organization. You work your butt off and management gets rich, that's pretty much how it works around here. There is no opportunity to advance within the Engineering department either. All the team leads have been there 6+ years and aren't going anywhere. Promotions and even recognition are not lacking in any other department within the company, but they are an extreme rarity within Engineering. I want to reiterate to any talented engineers out there -- if you want to see your talents appreciated and rewarded, you are better off looking elsewhere.

    Advice to Management

    Follow the example of so many other technology companies -- ie Google, Facebook, Microsoft. Reward your top talent. Create a bonus incentive for performance. Give recognition to employees who deserve it. Stop giving the company's money away to management in the form of massive stock option grants, investors and the media are starting to take notice. It's really becoming excessive.


  3. Helpful (5)

    Potentially great company if you don't consider engineering management

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineering Lead in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Engineering Lead in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    * Location is good - close to BART * The stock was high - it could go there again * They don't seem to care if you don't work long hours * Most of the employees are cool and competent * The company has a great market niche

    Cons

    * The engineering VP rules by fear * One of the engineering directors is the most inaccurate yet condescending person you will ever meet (i.e. he is frequently wrong but talks down to you even when you are right - it's quite amazing) * You won't be trusted to think and do a your job without being micromanaged * Favoritism is frequent and out of control * You will be sacrificed to 'the bus' and demoted if a manager needs to lay blame on someone else (even if said manager was micromanaging you) * The technology is about 10 years behind current times and no one in management is in a hurry to change that

    Advice to Management

    Take a serious look at your engineering management. Talk with the employees... people are unhappy and your engineering department is on a collision course with disaster. It's not too late to fix this but it's getting there. I'd suggest firing the top two (maybe three) tiers of engineering management and bringing someone in from outside that can get things done the right way. You have capable engineers and they aren't being given a chance to do great things for you.


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  5. Helpful (3)

    Sales is old and out of touch

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

    I have been working at OpenTable full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - Fantastic co-workers, lots of great talent across most departments - Decent benefits - Potential to travel for the job

    Cons

    - Culture is very stiff. This is by no means a hip tech company. They work at this though. - Old technology. Staff laptops for sales are cheap PCs and old iPads (no 3G/4G). Technology is pretty dated on the customer side as well, the only thing that keeps the company at the top of the market is its network of users and restaurants. - Constant change. Within a few months of bringing me on they essentially decided to restructure the sales org. Bonuses were slashed and the commission structure was changed for the worse.

    Advice to Management

    - Innovate, do something new and don't take so long to roll it out. - Decide what you are going to do and stick to it.


  6. Helpful (2)

    Half open table

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Something In the Creation Process in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Something In the Creation Process in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    It is a fun place with. Plus you learn about the restaurants and Food is Fun.

    Cons

    No forward progress. It seemed that they would rather bring in outsiders rather than promote existing.

    Advice to Management

    TRUST your employees... Damit...


  7. Helpful (10)

    Decent pay and benefits, but a very negative corporate culture makes this a very unattractive place to work.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    This is a technology company. For engineers the work can be interesting, and there is a decent amount of opportunity to learn new technologies, though management is generally resistant to incorporating new technologies or ideas. These are not "early adopters" by any means, until about a year ago they were still using SQL Server 2000. (This was in 2010)

    Cons

    Very unhealthy corporate culture. Senior management recently awarded themselves a second round of stock options equivalent to five times (500%) the industry standard for executive stock option compensation for 2010. They then used those same 'industry standards' to cap all employee salary increases to 3% or less for the year. They then cashed out nearly all of those options they had just awarded themselves. They are almost all completely divested of the company at this point. One wonders if this is simply a strategy to get yet another options award to keep management incentivised. There is little to no formal recognition of engineers who create the products that are making these managers into multi-millionaires. There is an immense amount of anger in Engineering towards management, which may explain why we haven't seen the VP of Engineering in nearly six months.

    Advice to Management

    Meritocracy. Look it up. Reward your employees who contribute disproportionately to the products which make this company money. Communicate with your staff. Stop being secretive. Stop treating the company as your own personal cash cow.


  8. Helpful (5)

    Stuffy, Anti-Creative Corporate Culture

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Account Executive in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Account Executive in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Excellent earning potential, great base, great commission opportunities Advancement opportunities, they do promote from within Very competitive benefits and time-off package

    Cons

    I was in sales as an account executive. This was the worst job of my life. I have worked for several tech companies (from start-ups to Fortune 500's); and with the exception of Opentable, they were all truly amazing experiences. OpenTable claims to hire "challengers", but the people they actually hire are just plain rude. They're motto "If you're not being thrown out of a meeting at least once a week, you're not doing it right". While this type of attitude may work in some markets, it does not work in all parts of the country, sales styles need to be adjusted to to the corresponding market and to the person or people to whom you are presenting. The company pits salespeople against each other. Healthy competition is a great thing in sales, but this is not what OpenTable does. They encourage sales people to say negative things about one another. This information then goes into the employee's file, to be used against them if necessary in the firing process. Be prepared to hit your goals or be fired within 60 days. Period. They rule by fear and as opposed to working with team members to help them reach their full potential, OpenTable is very quick to fire. Fortunately, I was not fired. I put in my year and got out as soon as I could.

    Advice to Management

    Allow your sales team to use their creative, analytical and decision making skills to sell. You hired them because they have a proven track record of being top performers. Let them sell. And take that stick out of your butts.


  9. Helpful (7)

    Stiff, uptight people who lack creativity, but excellent compensation plan.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Account Executive
    Former Employee - Account Executive
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    The compensation and benefit plan for sales people is excellent. If corporate culture is not a concern and you are strictly motivated by money, this is probably a good place for you to work. The product is excellent. Nothing in the market compares to it. Sales quota and targets are achievable.

    Cons

    Extremely stiff & uptight people who lack imagination and creativity. If corporate culture is important to you and you value working in an environment where creativity is encouraged and appreciated, this is not the place for you. Sales managers pit salespeople against one another and encourage them to say negative things about each other. Be careful who you befriend, these reports go into your employee file and will likely be used against you later. Everyone out for themselves type of environment. It was like working on Celeb Apprentice every single day. Very hostile working environment. Very quick to fire, so hit your targets or be fired. I always hit my targets, so I wasn't fired, but I saw this happen to a lot of people.

    Advice to Management

    Hire more mature sales managers and do exit interviews.


  10. Helpful (2)

    Turnover is thy name

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

    Pros

    Nice people, nice location, decent holidays/time-off, some decent leadership at times, some growth but not much.

    Cons

    Lost the culture from top to bottom, this is now a marginal service for most. Bad support in UK and Europe.


  11. Helpful (2)

    I keep hoping things improve.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Extremely great work-life balance, and I'm almost shocked to read other's who wrote that as a con. Most of the employees in SF have families and tend to leave around 6pm every day. Almost all my colleagues are super friendly and great to work with. Plus, we're all foodies! I've never found so many great places to eat in the city than during my time here at OpenTable. There's a lot of passion for making the best restaurant experience. Everyone from the bottom of the company really believes in the mission.

    Cons

    With that said, where do I begin with the cons? First off, the CEO is hardly around and makes bizarre low-level decisions without entrusting of his direct reports. Another exec is completely out of touch with their org other than a couple projects that interest them. This makes communication a gigantic hurdle and employee promotions a struggle. Another team came in from an acquisition with an *extremely* toxic employee who insults everyone around them causing stress and damaging to the culture and still manages to get praised by the exec team. We have a very tiny budget for anything that increases employee happiness. Only a few employees have standing desks, and there's only a couple boxes of fruit for 400+ employees, and we share low quality Costco sugar snacks. The office manager does care about this problem, but there's little they can do given the unreasonable constraint on budget.

    Advice to Management

    Every quarter there's some new mission that's completely different from the last quarter. So ultimately there's just no long-term planning for the company. A company like OpenTable needs a 3 to 5 year plan of action, but instead we're always so focused on the now. Communication between all the levels of the company is also extremely poor. I'm always amazed at how in the dark people are about very important things.



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