SmartBear Software Reviews

Updated August 24, 2015
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3.2
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SmartBear Software CEO Doug McNary
Doug McNary
22 Ratings

Pros
  • Management is an open book, and the company is growing fast (in 7 reviews)

  • After seen many changes in the company, today SmartBear is still a strong company and still definitely a great place to work: (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • Very fast-paced (which could be a pro or a con depending on your point of view) (in 3 reviews)

  • Right now only one con I can think of: Beverly location isn't that convenient for me (in 2 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

70 Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (3)

    Work Hard Play Hard

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

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

    Pros

    The Somerville office is an awesome place to work. The office has a great "work hard - play hard" culture where a game of ping-pong or a spontaneous nerf gun fight are common place. The company provides breakfast twice a week and lunch once a week, and they don't skimp on the food they provide. If you are looking for a young, fun, relaxed office atmosphere then this is the office for you! As far as bosses and upper management go, I can only comment on what I have experienced. From everything I have seen, management has a solid plan and direction for both the company and your roll in it. They are good communicators, always make themselves available and willing to do anything they can to help you succeed. They are the perfect managers for anyone who isn't afraid of high expectations, want to work hard and excel at what they do.

    Cons

    The hours are a bit longer than other offices, 8:30 to 6. However, they don't make you punch a clock, there is no one timing how long you take for lunch, and as long as you are working hard and getting your stuff done, they are not crazy strict about those hours. In addition I am personal not in sales but it looks like they keep a close eye on the activities of each sales person. I believe they track the number of calls that each rep makes and things like that. I do not know how these numbers are reviewed with the sales reps, and this may be the cause of some of the more negative reviews here. In my opinion though, if you do not want managers tracking your calls, opportunities etc. everyday, then a sales job anywhere is not for you. From my experience that is the life of a sales rep regardless of where they work.

    Advice to Management

    I truly enjoy working here. You guys have build a great "work hard - play hard" culture in the Somerville office. Although it has not been an issue for me, you may want to consider changing the office hours to the standard 9-5. Even if 8:30 to 6 is not strictly enforced, prospective employees may be instantly scared off without giving us a fair chance because of these hours.


  2. Love Working at SmartBear!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Somerville, MA
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Somerville, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    There is a great energy at SmartBear that I really love. It is very rewarding to be a part of this great team of hard-working, energetic people that are very passionate about the work they do. The company also offers great benefits package and the office is beautiful.

    Cons

    Commute maybe not that great if you are coming from the suburbs.


  3. Sales

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales in Somerville, MA
    Current Employee - Sales in Somerville, MA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at SmartBear Software full-time

    Pros

    Good pay, good products, easy to get to the office via train. Also great young company with a lot of good employees driving their business. Free lunches are nice, but they are given to keep you in the office to learn. Not always a bad thing, but it's tough to stay in one place for a 10-11 hour day. They also invest a lot of money on training.

    Cons

    8-6 or 6:30 is an adjustment you are going to need to get used to. 10 hours in the office is the bare minimum and they will never tell you this in a interview. Call numbers are constantly tracked. Territories are split up with as fair as you they can be in a sales organization, but some reps have it significantly easier than others.

    Advice to Management

    The hours are rough- I'm not saying change things to 9-5 (because nobody on salary works 8 hrs with a lunch), but make it reasonable. If you come in at 8:00, you should be able to leave between 5:15 and 5;30 and not feel like your doing something wrong.


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  5. Helpful (6)

    Work hard play hard? No one says that unless they are executive level, or some friends talking about drinking..

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Somerville, MA
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Somerville, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    I'm not sure I can think of anything top of mind. They have a large amount of inbound activity I guess.

    Cons

    I keep reading these "comments" about how sales is about metrics. Who is writing these reviews?! I bet you can guess! SALES ARE ABOUT SALES. Not about how many calls you make in a day, it's about how many SALES you make. That's why salespeople have a quota on the offer letter and it doesn't say "100 calls completed per day". Once you start following a sales reps call log 2x a day, that is called micromanaging. Typically if your sales reps are not meeting their numbers, then you'll need to manage their daily activities. Are you saying SmartBear, your reps aren't meeting their numbers? - Hours are 8-6pm+, no matter what. You will be reprimanded for leaving early or getting in late - Pay for parking - EXTREME micromanaging - Politics are big here - Your territories get smaller every 6 months or so. Once they start adding more people. As you see they quite a bit open opportunities out there. - What's the 5 year plan for SmartBear? To be purchased? Not sure but you should ask. - As a sales rep, you've missed the wave so the likelihood you'll make good money is slim to none. - If you want to go make 50 calls or more a day, go to a startup where they pay better (and have similar hours) - Notice how they did not win the Best Company to work for. There is a reason for that. - Being that Boston is a hot spot for tech, do your research and avoid this place!

    Advice to Management

    Please don't reply to my review, it makes you look silly and you are not saving face.


  6. Helpful (3)

    Any positive review was written by Marketing Department

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Beverly, MA
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Beverly, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    None - It's a sweat shop. Products are not competitive and Management's only strategy is to ask sales to "make more phone calls and work longer hours"

    Cons

    Everything. Inept management, 11 hour days, poor products and oh year the location is not convenient if you own a car.

    Advice to Management

    Resign


  7. Helpful (5)

    Not even close to as bad as some of the reviews make it seem

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Somerville, MA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Somerville, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Like some of even the negative reviews said, there are some great people here to learn from. Goals, expectations, and metrics are clearly expressed ahead of time across the board. The company is successful and growing at a good clip.

    Cons

    It's an extremely Sales driven company, not really a con as much as it's something to be aware of goin.

    Advice to Management

    I would focus a bit more on retention and invest in heavier development of some of the older products, they could use some new blood with new ideas.


  8. Helpful (4)

    Great place to learn... can't agree more!!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Territory Manager in Somerville, MA
    Current Employee - Territory Manager in Somerville, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    This is my second job since college. I have found SmartBear a great place to learn and a good way to set the pace for my career in Sales. The people here are great. Everyone works hard but there is always time to chill as well and I appreciate that. Everyone works together and we celebrate each others wins. Sure some products are harder to sell than others but the challenge and the hunt is what Sales is all about. As far as the hours, its up to you to make that choice... you have things to do, you stay. Overall great company and great products.

    Cons

    Lot's of discussion on Glassdoor about the hours and the metrics. Metrics -- that's what you expect from Sales. Maybe just ease up a bit on the messaging.

    Advice to Management

    Thanks for the opportunity! Stay connected with your staff and continue to provide ways for them to learn and grow. Feedback and recognition for a job well done goes a long way too.


  9. Helpful (9)

    Young, modern company operating with outdated, archaic strategy

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Somerville, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Somerville, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at SmartBear Software full-time

    Pros

    If you live in the city, the location is great. The company is on the 4th floor at the main intersection of Assembly row and has a fantastic view of the complex, Boston skyline and Mystic River. There are great restaurants, bars and shops on campus that are all within walking distance as well. One of the best perks of working at SmartBear is the people. Specifically, the individual contributors. It;s important to like the people you work with and the majority of them are smart, creative and talented. The company also promotes from within so if you are looking for a chance to move up, there is opportunity there. The products are great and have a strong presence in the market.

    Cons

    The culture is really toxic. The employees with longer tenure talk about the past leadership team and how amazing the environment was. In fact they used to win awards for "best place to work" from multiple viable resources like boston.com and glassdoor. The more recent SmartBear is the complete opposite. Upper management removed things like quarterly company outings, a public speaking group, casual dress code, normal hours, etc. and by doing so, eliminated the culture, identity and foundation their predecessors had built. The sales people are often miserable and stressed out. Sales management is solely focused on call metrics and not "working smarter" which creates low morale, bad behavior and less quality. Constant call report updates and call statistics on TV's all over the office is the exact definition of micromanagement.. The sales people have to ring bells when they close a deal, each have an army helmet at their desk and get a sticker for that helmet when they hit their call number or close a big deal. Most of the sales people are in their 20's and while young, don't need to be treated like children. There's not a lot of faith or trust in the employees so management is part of every decision. They've over-staffed as well and territories/accounts are constantly changing making it extremely hard to build rapport and hit your target sales goals. Leaving the office before 6-7 PM is also quite frowned upon. This nose-dive in both culture and quality of life has resulted in the company losing some dynamic employees across all departments. It felt like I missed the party by starting when I did and instead, every day felt like funeral at SmartBear. The compensation package is below average compared to similar roles in the Boston area and equity in the company is not offered.

    Advice to Management

    It's not too late to save the place from leveling off. Care about your people again and stop trying to run a young, modern, mid-sized hi-tech company with archaic, outdated practices that worked for the older, executive upper management during their heyday 10-20 years ago.

    SmartBear Software Response

    Aug 4, 2015 – VP, Chief People Officer

    Hello Former Employee in Somerville, Ma Thank you for taking the time to post your comments to our page. Seeing that you are an ex-employee of SmartBear we appreciate your passion to post of your ... More


  10. Helpful (4)

    Great place to learn

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Territory Manager in Somerville, MA
    Current Employee - Territory Manager in Somerville, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Comp plan is pretty strong w/ some nice accelerators. Quota is reasonable, but not a walk in the park. Training here is the best I've had so far. My last company showed me my desk and my phone, I got a link to the website and was told to start dialing. Here they have a full week long on-boarding that taught me a ton about the company, my products and the sales process. It was definitely intense, but I thought they did a great job teaching me what I needed to know and then setting up shadow sessions w/ senior reps and mock calls so I could practice what I just learned. Coming from a place with no guidance I really like that they have a program like this and lots of resources to help a new rep get off to a good start. My boss picked up right after that training and still does mock calls and other role plays with me to help with different conversations I have with prospects and customers. Managers are more interested in my success than any company I've worked for which was weird at first. Since my last boss was super hands off I was a little nervous with how plugged in my boss and other sales managers are to what's happening every day. They took the time though to show me how to plan for success and explained all the metrics they look at and why. Once they explained that it made sense why we should be shooting for the goals they talk about for calls and pipeline. I remember them talking about this in my interview so I guess I shouldn't have been surprised to see it here, but I've heard that before so I've been happy to see they actually delivered on it. Most managers were also reps here first and then promoted to management so I know they understand what it takes. It's nice to see that if you work hard there are opportunities to get promoted. Really great products. It's awesome to call customers and have them tell you how much they love your stuff. Even prospects will talk to you once they realize you're here to help them solve their problems.

    Cons

    Early on there were some reps that complained about how they liked the old days when there were no metrics. Nobody likes listening to negative people so that was annoying, but most of them are gone now. It seems like most companies our size measure plenty and I have friends that work at places with way worse expectations for # of calls and crazy work hours (12+ every day as opposed to 9-10 here). At the end of the month or quarter it can be pretty stressful. The company is growing fast and when we passed our goal in Q1 there wasn't much said about it. I know there are bigger things they're shooting for, but it would be nice to have some recognition that we hit that mark. Even if it is on the way to something bigger.

    Advice to Management

    Keep hiring great people and making great products.


  11. Helpful (9)

    A lot of good people stuck in an unhealthy environment

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

    I have been working at SmartBear Software full-time

    Pros

    - Excellent products to sell. Truly industry leading in most spaces. - They do a great job in the hiring process, have a lot of awesome people on board that makes day-to-day life do-able -Middle and lower management are great for the most part. Reasonable people given the environment they're working in

    Cons

    -"Live to work" atmosphere. It's a lot like a sweatshop. If you're not at your desk making dials, then you're wasting management's time and they'll let you know this via automated 5-6 automated e-mails everyday providing updates on daily metrics (calls, conversations, talk time, etc.) -LONG hours. Be expected to work close to 60 hrs/week. Leaving for doctor's appointment or to catch an early flight is also frowned upon. -Unrealistic quotas and opportunity creation expectations make it extremely hard to hit OTE. 20-25% of reps hit quota. -Senior management is out of touch with day to day life of a rep and continues to make life more difficult for them.

    Advice to Management

    Senior management needs to take a close look at what life is like for a rep at SmartBear and make some serious changes. Things aren't sustainable there.



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