PEAK6 Investments Reviews

Updated August 14, 2014
Updated August 14, 2014
82 Reviews

2.7
82 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Matthew Hulsizer
63 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Smart people, Learning org, testing of ideas, entrepreneurship (in 10 reviews)

  • Good benefits, decently easy to take time off (in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • The result is that good traders leave because of how bad it is to work here (turnover is extremely high) (in 5 reviews)

  • Very cheap company - low salary ranges for similar jobs in other companies and industries (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Great place

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

    I have been working at PEAK6 Investments

    Pros

    Lots of good snacks, smart people

    Cons

    Company has multiple unrelated business, direction and strategy of the firm lacks focus.

  2.  

    All about the Appearances

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

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments

    Pros

    - Free soda and snacks
    - Great company parties

    Cons

    - IT Managers were completely clueless. I didn't get the impression they had a great grasp on how the business worked. Even worse what the competition is doing.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Politics rule over Meritocracy

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

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments

    Pros

    Candy Drawer. Fridge of snacks/pop. A few extremely smart traders who are completely open to sharing thoughts and strategies.

    Cons

    Meritocracy is not rewarded and they fear taking on risk in even moderate proportions. The company is ruled by how you are perceived in many cases, and middle management is a huge mess. The traders are great, the management are not; in many instances you have to suck up to get anywhere.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    You are smart enough to stay away.

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

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments

    Pros

    There are free sodas for everyone and candy. Those are way cheaper than providing their employees with decent lunches or healthy drinks. There ARE better drink options in the storage room but those are reserved for the partners.
    The pay is well BELOW financial industry standard. That's a pro because mo money mo problems.

    Cons

    If you like being told what your opinion is and what to do and are willing to be a scapegoat when things go wrong. This is the perfect place for you.
    If you believe the lies that quality MUST suffer in order to get out software in quantity then this is the place for you.
    If you want to work for less than industry standard in an environment where you are micromanaged.
    Yes they have that too!
    If you like to have your good ideas stolen and not being given credit for them, you are just in luck.

    IT partners and their lackies run the show here. If you like kissing butt then this is the perfect place for you. Just don't voice your own opinion unless you first make sure it's the opinion of one of the partners or their lackies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is no advice to give to management. If you read the reviews you will see that this has always been their culture.
    The laughable thing is that an HR manager told me during my exit interview that the retention rate for developers was great.
    3 of the last 4 hires have LEFT (not fired. Just left). So 25% is great. Well that makes sense if you drink the PEAK6 koolaid I suppose.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    You Don't Want to work there

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments

    Pros

    Most of the people that work at PEAK6 is friendly and willing to help in most cases.

    Cons

    If you are not part of the in group you will have no chance to advance and will be used as an escape goat when something does go wrong.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You need to re-evaluate who is running the ship.

  7.  

    It's a place to work but not excel

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Junior Trader  in  Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Junior Trader in Chicago, IL

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Diverse investment in different business

    Cons

    Very conservative in risk taking

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 1, 2014President

    Thanks for your feedback. We appreciate you acknowledging the diversity of our businesses. This has been a focus for us and we are growing here. Risk management is also something we focus on at ... More

  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    its a place to learn a trade

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Trader  in  Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at PEAK6 Investments full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    There is inherent edge in trading options. While a lot of the space is becoming automated, and there is lots of competition with other firms, firms that have more resources, better technology, and more talented people. Nonetheless, by selling options you are effectively functioning like an insurance business, and are collecting risk premium. However, the issue at hand is what side of the trade you're on when it's not to your advantage to sell volatility. 9 years of making money and then one year you hand it all back.

    Trading is a tough business to get into. It's a place to learn and get your feet wet. There is a handful of talent working for this company, talent you can learn from.

    I think the owners, Matt and Jenny are very capable people, and despite their conservative approach, are savvy enough to maintain profitability. They understand the firm's limitations, the market environment, and have cleverly decided to diversify in the asset management business and have the risk management skills to prevent a blowup of the firm.

    Cons

    The company has a niche that it has occupied in the past, and despite the rhetoric it feeds its employees, it tends to be conservative and isn't willing to make a commitment to innovation. However, the edge in the space is drying up.

    The environment is not only conservative in risk taking, but also quite political.

    This can be seen by the fact that many of the people in positions of influence are acquainted(old friends, college roommates, fraternity brothers, sons/relatives) of the founders or partners.
     Some managers may have a tendency to pick favorites, and so be aware and be careful not to step into any booby traps. Some traders, especially the more driven ones, find the micromanagement to be hell.

    They're looking more for someone how fits the bill and won't put the firm at risk, and so new ideas while funded can be cut quickly if they don't pan out. Also pay is well below other firms, even for top performers, as they provide a cut only after taking into account cost.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    don't be afraid to innovate and spend money doing it
    pay your top employees better to keep talent
    if you take pride in meritocracy, you should make it so and get rid of the politics

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Comically bad micromanagement in some areas

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

    I have been working at PEAK6 Investments full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Nice office. A couple of smart, no b.s. people. Good time off policies.

    Some partners are smart, and a joy to work with. Depends on where you are in the biz.

    Cons

    Staff are not perceived as valuable, more of a commodity. Some executives micromanage inane details and don't empower talent to make even trivial decisions.

    We are talking extreme micro-management. Depends who you work under though.

    This culture drives away many of the best and brightest. Hard to make a counter argument when the cash is rolling in. If you want to be a part of innovative technology, however, I'd suggest seeking an org. that can operate more like a startup, and less like a top-down financial biz.

    These guys have a niche that works for them, and doubt they'll ever change. They've been successful despite valuing furnishings above people. Be prepared to play politics and bite your tounge.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to exit interviews and hold people accountable, regardless of position.

    Do what you are good at.
    Empower and delegate other things.
    Take care of your people.
    Eliminate micro managers. Most really good people won't tolerate it, so it lowers the quality of your staff tremendously.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 1, 2014President

    Thanks for your feedback. I'm disappointed to hear you don't feel empowered in your role and feel micromanaged. That’s certainly not aligned with our core values. I’d welcome an opportunity to ... More

  10.  

    Company Review

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments

    Pros

    -fun, great leadership, good compensation

    Cons

    -often times stuck with nothing to do

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 1, 2014President

    We're glad that you enjoy working with us at PEAK6 and appreciate your feedback. We're definitely focused on creating a culture where everyone feels challenged in their role and enjoys what they're ... More

  11. 6 people found this helpful  

    Just watch how quickly a fabulous company review shows up after a truthful review is posted.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Trader  in  Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Some great parties that have been continuously declining in quality and attendance. Candy drawer.

    Cons

    A crowded room of yes men who know enough to never question a ridiculous initiative or new business venture. The owners have their trusted lieutenants along with a bloated layer of junior partners and middle managers unsure of where they will be or what they will be doing in 3 years. Just very little vision as far as a plan of attack. Even the gentlemen responding to these posts was the owner's roommate in college and now the President of the company. Its a great job if you can get it.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    At this point there is not much that can be recommended. They have pretty much made their bed which is to say they have a lot of options traders who at best are probably struggling to make money against the likes of Citadel, Goldman, and Wolverine trading in this highly automated and algorithmic environment. Don't get me wrong they have some pretty cutting edge stuff but so does everyone else.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 1, 2014President

    Thanks for your feedback.

    I'm sorry it wasn't your experience, but we do encourage an open, transparent culture where people debate ideas. It sounds like your experience wasn't aligned with
    ... More

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