Sparks Reviews

Updated January 22, 2015
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3.7
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Scott J. Tarte
9 Ratings

13 Employee Reviews

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  1. Sparks continues to excite me every day, it allows me to propose creative solutions to different obstacles.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - Director in Philadelphia, PA

    I have been working at Sparks full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Working for Sparks gives me the opportunity to do something different almost every day. The company coordinates many types of projects for our clients which keeps life very interesting and entertaining. We also have a ton of internal company events....The summer BBQ's are great.

    Cons

    Sometimes I feel that we do not have enough resources for the high-pace work that we have to deliver.

    Advice to Management

    It would be nice to have a better company communication vehicle, teams and departments are sometimes feel like they only know there own world.


  2. Helpful (4)

    Expect to work around the clock

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

    I worked at Sparks

    Pros

    The agency works with top brands, which is great experience for someone looking to work closely with high profile clients.

    Cons

    They throw you in the deep end from day one. No mentoring, and the expectation is that you will be on call/email 24/7. If you're against that work mentality going in, you will not last long.


  3. Helpful (3)

    Nice but need mentors

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

    I worked at Sparks

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    cool perks-- they throw lunches and activities every few months. All the people are very nice.

    Cons

    Hard to find team support/ anyone to teach you the ropes. Throw you in and expect you to read their minds on what they want.

    Advice to Management

    create a mentor program.


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (3)

    Top heavy

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

    I have been working at Sparks

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    -short work week providing for good work/life balance

    Cons

    -reactive opposed to proactive with clients
    -top execs make decisions
    -huge percentage of company with big titles, not enough "solders"


  6. Helpful (3)

    Great Working Environment, Always Trying to Improve

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

    I have been working at Sparks full-time (More than 8 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The thing that I like best about working here is the environment. Everyone is very friendly and there are so many company sponsored perks that make it rewarding (On-site lunch cafe, small events and BBQs, etc). There is a lot of effort to continuously improve on conditions and address employee issues.

    Cons

    Some policies could be improved like 401k match and the vacation policy (which does get better after multiple years).
    Some employees are overworked and demands from clients can be overbearing.
    Communication is sometimes a problem, people aren't made aware of things and protocols are not always followed properly.


  7. Rapidly Expanding Event Marketing Agency

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales in Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - Sales in Philadelphia, PA

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Sparks offers flexible work schedules including the ability to work from home (depending on role and project load). There are some very talented people in upper management who have a powerful vision of turning Sparks into a top notch brand experience agency. The employees are friendly and fun; there's a good mix of industry veterans and energetic young professionals. Company culture is important and there are a number of employee appreciation -type events throughout the year. Nice, newly renovated office in Philadelphia with some great amenities like an employee lunch program.

    Cons

    Due to the nature of the industry, there will inevitably be projects with tight deadlines requiring long work hours. Additionally, there are periods where the whole company is busy and bandwidth for most employees is slim. Certain departments (Creative, Events) are particularly overworked, which can make it difficult to get things done which require collaboration with those departments. The company is growing at a quick pace, and sometimes it seems like certain departments/ systems are lagging behind the growth in business.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to solicit and act on the feedback of employees (upper management does a good job of this already). Continue to share your vision and specific plans for the continued growth of Sparks and expansion of services. Be sure to staff up appropriately if you intend to maintain the current rate of growth.


  8. I have worked at Sparks for over two years now, and everyday I feel as if I learn something new and grow.

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

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The people that I work with as well as observe at Sparks are unbelievably smart, talented, passionate, and motivated.

    Cons

    Work/life balance can be challenging at times do to the extreme deadlines,last minute changes, and the time it takes to ensure that a show/event has the best chance of running smoothly.

    Advice to Management

    More team building/activities that the company can participate in together to get to know one another outside of there individual department and/or team.


  9. Helpful (6)

    Has potential to be a leading experiential marketing agency, but falls short.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Coordinator in Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - Coordinator in Philadelphia, PA

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

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

    Pros

    Depending on team, some great people work here.

    Salaries are good, compared to similar agencies.

    Cons

    The name is confusing. Is it Sparks, Sparks Exhibits, Sparks Online, Sparks Marketing Group? The brand is all over the place and not a clear solution driven picture to clients.

    Office location is very inconvenient. Located in the upper Northeast region of Philadelphia, it requires a 30 minute commute from Center City.

    Leadership is non-existent. Seems to a disconnect between management and employees in terms of work-life balance and corporate goals.

    Time-off is also lacking. 10 days from when you start, and increases after your 5th(!) year.

    Company seems really set in the old ways of conducting business. For example, the accounting systems is very antiquated and division workers are very unpleasant.

    Advice to Management

    Restructure time-off policies.

    Better utilize marketing department to put Sparks brand at the forefront of experiential marketing.


  10. Helpful (8)

    Eh. It's a job.

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

    I worked at Sparks full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Nice people. They are dog-open for the right dogs owned by the right people. There is corporate funded lunch available from time to time. Creative team is amazing (but overworked).

    Cons

    Not a family friendly company. Management is old boys network - the money doesn't shake down. Many hard working staffers are just scraping by with gov't assistance while owners drive multiple Porshes, etc. They are also big on looks and pretty sexist. Don't have children, ladies, if you want to be kept or to advance. Benefits are abysmal, no 401k matching, enforced furloughs in recent years, no bonuses. Graphics department works nonstop. Travel for account teams is insane.

    Advice to Management

    Better benefits, share the wealth. Also, it's not 1950 anymore. Better open up the doors for women to advance (women with families, even) and cut the Don Draper stuff. Also, watch the maternity related layoffs; could get you in more trouble.


  11. Great company

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

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great benefits, great leadership, fun corporate culture, dog friendly, catered lunch 3x a week, great people to work with.

    Cons

    Can't think of any cons



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