Starcom USA Reviews

Updated October 26, 2014
Updated October 26, 2014
123 Reviews
3.2
123 Reviews
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Starcom USA CEO Lisa Donohue
Lisa Donohue
28 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good training program to learn the fundamentals of media (in 14 reviews)

  • You will learn about media planning and buying, lots of vacation, abundance of free meals/events/gifts/etc (in 6 reviews)


Cons
  • The work life balance depends directly on your team, i've seen it be great but they can also drive you into the ground (in 16 reviews)

  • Long hours, difficult to maintain healthy work-life balance, below industry compensation package (in 20 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great opportunities for career advancement if you're will to put in the long hours/work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Media Planner in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Media Planner in New York, NY

    I have been working at Starcom USA full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great atmosphere and great people. You can learn a lot about the industry. Training programs and paid time off is above the industry standard.

    Cons

    Low wages, long hours. Often feels as though you aren't working fast enough, and haven't accomplished anything. High stress environment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat mid/lower level employees with a bit more respect, and they might stick around.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great research, tools and resources

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

    I have been working at Starcom USA

    Pros

    Research, tools, resources, and people

    Cons

    Hierarchy, Poor communication, and small fish big pond

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    In the fast pace industry of media communications Starcom excels in strategic thinking and challenging the status quo.

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

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

    Pros

    - High energy
    - Strategic thinking lead by human insights
    - Exposure to leading category companies
    - Being on the cutting edge of media communications

    Cons

    - Strenous work life balance
    - Limited staffing for workload, unbalanced across teams

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Unfocused and arbitrary, but has potential

    • 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 Starcom USA

    Pros

    Starcom is part of an amazing group of companies, in Chicago at least, it is a great location and office space. The clients are typical agency clients, if you work in advertising you know what that means. Salary is somewhat competitive, but geared towards younger workers.

    Cons

    If you're a smug, entitled, unfriendly, borderline alcoholic 20-something, this is the place for you. It's like high school all over again and the rampant lack of professionalism with this group of employees is staggering. Due to re-orgs and red tape it's difficult to even predict where you sit. Weeks go by without seeing my boss. Feedback and input is a rigid process, but info and sources aren't shared - you're just supposed to accept what you hear in reviews without knowing who said things or why. It's disorganized now due to some half-hearted culture change they are attempting, but no one, not even the champions of the new structure, can really even explain what it is. It's just confusion and chaos. If you aren't 23 with hundreds of pieces of SWAG on your desk, don't expect anyone to talk to you. You're invisible.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Properly on-board people! Don't just plop someone at a desk and hope for the best. Be sensitive to the needs of new employees. Be more authoritative and proactive about your organization. Watch the alcohol consumption at work as well as vendor perks - both are bad signs for your firm's integrity. Teach basic manners to people who don't seem to know otherwise. You lose good people because it's not a nice environment, unless you're used to sororities and frat parties. You're running an enterprise-wide clique and you'll continue to lose more people every day. And someday your client will say the same. I've never worked with such rude people in my life.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good place to start but very high turnover

    Current Employee - Media Associate
    Current Employee - Media Associate

    I have been working at Starcom USA full-time

    Pros

    Good training program to learn the fundamentals of media
    Big brands/clients

    Cons

    No work/life balance
    Understaffed
    No overtime
    Poor management

  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Very fun atmosphere, but very difficult to live in Chicago on the salary

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

    I have been working at Starcom USA full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Very fun atmosphere with an extensive training program.
    You are constantly exposed to a wide aspect of media, giving you a very steep learning curve.

    Cons

    You will work 50-60 hours a week with no overtime.
    Starting salaries are very low and are difficult to live on in Chicago.
    High employee turnover results in every time a team starts to work well together someone leaves the company or rotates to a new team resulting constantly taking on extra work from others.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Offer employees more incentive to stay at the company and teams will perform more efficiently/effectively, ultimately producing better work for clients.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great learning experience & the most supportive work team ever. It has become a second family.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Media Planner/Buyer in Guaynabo, PR
    Current Employee - Media Planner/Buyer in Guaynabo, PR

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

    Pros

    Flexible hours, good team work environment, a great place to start on the advertising industry, excellent work tools.

    Cons

    Lack of leadership and/or personnel in management levels to direct the agency locally into a more competitive one. No human resources department available to attend local employee issues. Few growing opportunities inside the local company.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    The training program is amazing!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Junior Associate in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Junior Associate in New York, NY

    I have been working at Starcom USA full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    training program is great
    professional atmosphere
    work environment

    Cons

    low pay
    inefficient processes
    management could be better

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    increase pay to increase incentives of well qualified applicants

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great group of talented, smart and fun people

    • 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 Starcom USA full-time

    Pros

    Social culture - you will make great friends working here
    Generous time off - more days than you can use!
    Fast paced and challenging work

    Cons

    Can be difficult to obtain work life balance due to nature of agency structure - teams are often very understaffed and people fulfill more than 1 role
    Salary is not very competitive as compared to other Chicago agencies

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Correct the agency structure model - it may work for hitting margin goals but it contributes to high turnover, burned out employees and poor work life balance

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Associate

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Associate in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Associate in New York, NY

    I worked at Starcom USA full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Fun atmosphere and perks, work with smart people

    Cons

    Very cliquey, limited growth internally

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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