Turn

  www.turn.com
  www.turn.com

Turn Reviews

Updated November 28, 2014
Updated November 28, 2014
44 Reviews
3.7
44 Reviews
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Bill Demas
38 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Software Engineer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Redwood City, CA

    I have been working at Turn full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Perks and benefits are above average (ergonomic auto-lifting desk, free drinks and beers, awesome snacks, nice coffee makers, catering lunches and etc.)

    We never run out of interesting projects down the pipeline. People are very easy to get along with. Respectful PM, managers, and co-workers. People are very helpful and sometimes work very crazily. Absolutely the work at Turn can help you increase breath and depth in core computer science areas. Also, I feel I have a lot of responsibility and ownership on the work, which is really a great opportunity for a guy fresh out of school. It is very easy for me to jump into the work quickly when I get to the office in the morning every day.

    Cons

    There are chances when the workload can get overwhelming. Growing slowly and having a lot of growing pains but we are still working as a team.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be frank to the employees about the difficulties the company is facing with. Stabilize the morale and keep people staying with the company.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Awesome place to work

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

    I have been working at Turn full-time

    Pros

    - Great perks
    - Benefits are better than average
    - Learning/career opportunities are excellent
    - People are friendly and easy to work with
    - Culture is fun and lively

    Cons

    -Company is going through a rough patch, but is on the right track
    - Work/Life balance takes getting used to

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 3 people found this helpful  

    Awesome company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Redwood City, CA

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

    Pros

    Great perks and great potential growth

    Cons

    none that I can think of

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of the Eat Club food

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Finally people are telling the truth....

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

    I have been working at Turn full-time

    Pros

    - Online advertising continues to grow tremendously. Because of that and the fact that Turn was early in the audience targeting and RTB space, it's almost impossible it will fold.
    - Schedule flexibility
    - Decent free lunches
    - Some good friends have been made

    Cons

    - These reviewers are absolutely right. HR asks everyone to post positive reviews. It's ridiculous.
    - Turn has let many other companies outshine them not only in campaign performance but in service because they have gotten completely unfocused.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of the rest of the old SVP's regime, cut the dead weight and get Turn back to being an industry leader who people actually like to work with and work for. Although, it might be too late...

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 17 people found this helpful  

    A Typical Business Case of How to Ruin a Company in a Few Months

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

    I worked at Turn full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Decent salaries, good benefits, flexible working hours. A lot of smart dedicated people, especially within the low ranks.

    Cons

    This review is written with a good dose of objectivity. Note that one week after I joined the company, I have been asked to leave a positive review by HR. I refused to do so because it is unethical. Warning to folks reading the reviews, you can tell that many of the positive reviews are either written by HR or by new employees fresh out of onboarding week.
    I initially joined Turn because of the great image, caliber of people and amazing culture that they had. Unfortunately, the company is going through a very difficult phase which will result in its demise. I am certain that Turn will no longer be a major player in the industry for the following reasons:
    - There is simply no strategy. The upper management with the exception of a couple of folks has no idea how to read the market trends, listen to the employees, listen to customers and then build a roadmap.
    - Misalignment and backstabbing within the senior management team. This is literally a soap opera situation! I have never thought that in my lifetime I would witness such backstabbing, hatred and politics within a small organization. The level of obnoxious behavior within leaders makes Washington politics look so docile.
    - Operations and execution: Back in business school days, they taught us that the most difficult phase in a startup life is scaling it from 100 employees to 300. This is where Turn has failed. The management has no concept of operational excellence.
    - Innovation: How can you survive in ad tech without innovation. The level of throughput by product dev is dismal. Many other reviewers are right in stating that leaders within Product and Engineering are quite poor and no one is holding them accountable for their results.
    - Ethics: This is a big one. Ad Tech is a very fluid environment and crap happens everywhere. But at Turn it is at a different level. There are specific cases where I believe that the company mislead its customers and its employees. Sooner or later there will be a backlash and when customers will know that they can take their business elsewhere they won't hesitate to do it.
    - Reading the ecosystem: the company is reactive and it keeps changing its strategy from one month to the other. Read the industry news about Turn and you will notice how they announce something different each month.
    - Bottoms-up feedback: This is not a very communicative organization. Many of Turn's competitors offer a much more transparent and communication channels with the CEO or the upper management. Turn acts as if these channels are in place but actually they don't know how to operationalize them. For instance, one of the Turn rep responded to a reviewer by saying you can email the CEO directly. Sure! in an ideal environment. But when you know that the CEO will fire you or that your manager will make your life hard because you provided an honest feedback then no one will email that CEO!! There is not genuine policy to make all levels of the org participate in the decision-making.
    - Obsession with the IPO or being bought. Many companies in Ad Tech look for the IPO as a key to they success and fruition of the years of work they've done. At Turn it is simply the CEO and Manager's obsession. This only shows the lack of leadership and the spirit of a group of pseudo-managers that are just in it for the short term.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I am not sure if Management will listen or needs any advice. I may ask them to stop backstabbing each others. Stop focusing on short term goals. Stop looking for an exit strategy. Pay attention to people and their well-being. Do not hesitate to fire a..hole. I doubt that they will do it because they simply do not have the capacity to look beyond their differences for the well-being of the organization.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 4 people found this helpful  

    Story still unfolding

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in Redwood City, CA

    I have been working at Turn full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Smart people, strong leadership team, and a vision to take on the world. When I joined several years ago I did so for these exact reasons. None of these facts have changed to date. What has changed is that Turn has grown tremendously, through thick and thin, despite the occasional naysayer who didn't believe, and is still here today proving that if you fight the good fight, you will prevail.

    For those considering joining, the reality is there's no shortage of interesting projects to work on and you will get exposure to the latest technologies. It is part of the culture roots of Turn. The growth opportunities have been and, I believe, will continue to be great.

    Cons

    As with any company trying to grow quickly, it inevitably burns a few people in the process. It's the nature of startups and ad tech in particular due to the pace of the industry. Former employees who didn't have tolerance for it left their mark with a negative vibe which, unfortunately, had a cascading effect. Turn does have it's problems but they are minor, on a relative scale, and fixable and it's pretty clear steps are being taken to address them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on culture and don't simply push it to HR or the employees. While Turn's constituent parts makes it's culture, the leadership team takes no small part in defining it. Engage your staff. Now that Turn is emerging from startup-hood, this is more important than ever. It's what binds us together. It's what makes people want to be the driving force behind the company.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good Enough Place

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Turn

    Pros

    - Friendly, intelligent people
    - Nice office spaces, catered lunch and snacks

    Cons

    - having tough transition to medium sized company

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Turn was a great place to work for a long time, but then became too corporate and confused. Towards the end I got the sense that all the optimism around an IPO/exit was internal propaganda, and that the company was kind of stuck in purgatory. That said it was fun while it lasted.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 6 people found this helpful  

    What was once a great place to work!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Redwood City, CA

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

    Pros

    Great Technology stack, Good People, A good place to learn

    Cons

    Company has lost a lot of key folks in the last six months, mainly due to ineptitude of the executive team. Software companies rely on people to succeed, not wild ideas. Executive team has a lot of in-fighting, and has led to recent departures of several key people including the VP of HR.

    There is consistent clashes for managing engineering resources, the product team is full of people who have no clue about technology - cronyism is rampant in the team and have never built a product in their life, there are more program managers than needed.

    There are still stars in the company, but executive team need to understand to retain people and not play politics which reminds of Yahoo.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus. Respect hard work. Be humble and not try to invent stuff.

    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 8 people found this helpful  

    A company in transition... lessons better than Biz School!

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

    I have been working at Turn full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    I've only been at the company for a few months, but the company takes incredibly good care of its employees. On the lighter side, it offers free lunch everyday, great benefits, a flexible work environment, casual culture, and a sweet ping pong table. On the professional side, there are a lot of very bright people within the company and you will get into intelligent conversations on a daily basis and learn a lot. You'll jump right in to your work and be managing your own projects immediately.

    The core technology and revenues of the company are close to, if not, market-leading. Turn is one of the few positioned within the crowded ad-tech space to IPO at a multi-billion dollar valuation.

    As you can read in other reviews, the company is undergoing a difficult time in figuring out how to get to that next level. Historically, the company, like any DSP has been driven by agency I/O dollars, and the team is trying to grow beyond just that revenue stream to something larger. This has caused for some level of internal dissent as the company plays out its next bet and figures out its path forward.

    A number of people have jumped ship as the company transitions, which, to each their own. However, and here's my soap box moment, realistically, this is a large business in the fast-growing and dynamic space of digital media. If you're a current employee considering a change seas to find the wind easily blowing at your back, go for it. But invariably, recognize that all businesses must go through periods of struggle and successes on their way to being a strong, defensible business for years to come. Soon to, the new company you join will very likely face difficulties and you'll be back again, trying to get ahead of the wind, and will never have built the spine to stare down when the wind is in blowing in your face. I've been at companies that have rebounded from near death to acquisition, companies that have gone bankrupt, and companies that have went up to the right -- we are not in a bad position.

    Joining Turn today means part of being a struggle to help a $1 billion dollar business to become a $5 billion dollar business. If you are considering other companies in the space, recognize that being at a point-player cross-device company with 5 engineers isn't changing digital media nor going public. A point player DSP with lower pricing may grow fast, but do you want to bet it's ever going anywhere beyond that? DSPs are quickly becoming commoditized and they too will feel margin squeeze soon. Ad-tech is finally consolidating and Turn is one of a few companies with a chance to become the next great company within the space -- you can be a part of it.

    Cons

    During these rocky times, morale is a bit lower than normal as the company goes through an abnormal rate of churn relative to historical levels. Getting things done internally is excessively political and the company needs to be able to move faster on things and be more responsive to the market, when those things align with the future bet of the company. The strategy of the company is clear, but the roadmap there is quite fuzzy.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Decrease the level of politics and empower more people to make decisions day to day so that things can get done. Give people more meaning within their roles as to how personally they can help re-define the future of the company from just some DSP to something much greater. We don't need more ping-pong, beer, free happy-hours... embrace the current volatility and give us each a purpose!!!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 10 people found this helpful  

    How to ruin a company in 6 months...

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

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

    Pros

    Prorgrammatic advertising is where digital advertising will continue to move towards. Turn still remains a main player in the digital marketing automation space despite very fierce competition.

    Cons

    Where to begin...
    The CEO has an obsession with being a SAAS company. Unfortunately, 99.99% of the Turn revenue comes from media and media is not bought in a SAAS format nor will it be any time soon.
    Only listening to the voices in his head instead of credible advice, he pushed out this big software company strategy, replacing many of the old guard and bringing in SAAS executives over the past year to transform the company.
    The biggest mistake of them all was hiring the new SVP of sales and operations who completely rolled out a reorganization plan of sales, operations and services at the start of the new year. Mind you, those areas had grown the company 100% or more YOY, he tried to fix something that was not broken at all all because he wanted to prove his value.
    All that did was cause expenses to soar, more "SAAS-minded" people who haven't contributed a thing join the company, morale to nosedive and people to leave in droves.
    You know there is a problem when the top sales guy, top account manager and one of the up and coming services people leaves in the past few weeks alone not to mention the engineering masses that have headed and will continue to head for the exits.
    I'm sure top-line company revenue has grown this year, but expenses have outpaced it and this space is growing so rapidly that it would be hard for it not to grow especially with double the sales people.
    Meanwhile the competition is out to eat Turn's lunch and they are. Competitors have been innovating rapidly, are much easier to work with and much more nimble which has allowed them to beat out Turn for business left and right.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think some of management needs to move on for Turn to be successful most notably the CEO and this SVP. To those that remain, you should get the company back to having great morale with an industry leading product with people who are psyched to come to work in the morning.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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