Zen Internet Reviews

Updated July 23, 2015
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Richard Tang
19 Ratings

21 Employee Reviews

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  1. Proud to work for an independent and innovative company.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Lots of opportunity and despite lots of change it continues to maintain a great and true culture, largely thanks to a great MD. Huge potential for the future as an independent company vs many larger corporate competitors.

    Cons

    If you want things laid on a plate for your then look elsewhere. Change, which Zen has been through a lot of over the last 6 months, is often perceived as a bad thing but it's an essential part of a great company growing.

    Advice to Management

    Keep focused on understanding the great culture and ensure those around you invest and embody it.


  2. Helpful (3)

    Problems with culture and management

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Zen Internet full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Lack of pressure to deliver - means that there is no stress if you miss deadlines. Two pay reviews a year. More than likely to get 1.5% each time so over 3% per annum. Reasonable wages if you come in externally. Internal promotions tend to get little reward.

    Cons

    Lack of pressure to deliver - things take an age to get done. The Zen culture grew from when the company was small. It was never properly addressed at the start and so has got out of hand. There are small efforts to change but the people doing it generally want to raise their status (middle management), have little real experience and so come up with solutions that are worse then the problems they aim to fix. Senior management seems to be recruited on some notion of what is a proper manager in a large organisation. However, being a small ISP it could do with more driven managers instead of dreary grey yes men. Bonus is low and not percentage based.

    Advice to Management

    Try to recruit some people outside of your comfort zone. Too much similarity in the senior management team. Lots of nodding dogs without much in the way of drive.


  3. Helpful (4)

    Ticking time bomb...

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Decent canteen, some good genuine people trying to keep it all together. Surf the Internet all day at your lesuire you'll never be pulled up, great for networking and job searches...

    Cons

    Wet managers straight from education with no life experience and hastely recruited senior staff who re invent their roles every 12 months in order to avoid being rumbled as being out of their depth. "Zen time" apparently this is similar to actual time however it seems to run around 100x slower.

    Advice to Management

    You've literally got around 100 plus too many staff in roles that are not actually required. Is it any wonder you're in such trouble? Stop recruiting idiots for pitty sake.


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  5. A Current Employee (and one who still likes it - It's not all doom and gloom here as some posts may have you think)

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    To begin with I want to put that at the time of writing this, I am an Active Zen Employee and I have been working here for 8 years (not long enough to say I’m fully “Old School” but I feel I’ve been here long enough to go through some of the changes that Zen has gone through). I work in one of the Operations teams (so I’m not an engineer or someone at the core of Zen’s networks). I have had 4 roles since I started at Zen and feel I have always been supported in my career development. I wanted to progress and develop myself, and I feel I have had the help needed with this. Yes, not all of the training and learning has come from within Zen directly (i.e. I have undertaken things myself outside of work), but I have been able to learn a vast array of new skills which have helped me to progress from my first role to where I am now. The vast majority of people that I work with are great. I have seen many staff who have been here for a long time start to lose their happiness with their role. Whether this is down to their inability to progress roles (either through lack of positions or lack of ownership over their own development), or if it has been down to not liking changes that have happened within the company. I am a believer that I will stay with a company whilst I am happy – and I’m still here! I believe that a lot of people who were not happy will leave and it does seem that a lot of reviews on here have the same complaints (which from a guess I’d say are from similar areas of the company). That said, I work with a lot of people who do like their job. Obviously I don’t speak for everyone, but there are some of us here that still like it!

    Cons

    I can only speak for my own experiences with Zen and obviously I can’t sell you the whole picture. My own experiences don’t echo those of everyone. Career Progression: Although opportunities for development are here, there are not always guaranteed positions for you if you have been working on moving up in your career. I have seen multiple occasions where someone has not been promoted from within because the decision was made to take on an external candidate (on a few of those occasions you could tell the internal candidate would have been 100% better than the person actually hired). I am a believer though that the managers will hire whoever they believe to be right for the role and will do what is best for the company. And yes, sometimes this means that people will not get promoted internally. Lazy Staff: As will all companies, there are quite a few lazy people here that will try do as little work as possible. I have faith though that they will eventually get what’s due! I don’t think there is any company out there where you won’t find some slackers. News flash – it happens! It’s down to the managers to manage their staff & sort these sorts of behaviours out.

    Advice to Management

    Deal with those lazy staff Listen to the feedback from your teams. If they are complaining –why are they complaining? We know there is no smoke without fire!


  6. Helpful (2)

    Relaxed, low stress, good people. Opportunities to develop if you search them out.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Relaxed atmosphere, Free Parking, Good People

    Cons

    Salary does not keep pace with market


  7. Helpful (4)

    Zen appears to have lost its shine.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Zen Internet full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Worked at Zen Internet for over 8 years. It was fantastic back in the day, I was able to work hard, prove myself and get on. This changed in more recent years, eventually I got another job.

    Cons

    Management team, especially SMT. Not sure Richard Tang really knows what is going on anymore. Making the principal engineer redundant, someone who was effective at providing checks and balances to an otherwise out of control system, was a calculated move and a low blow. Very poor wages in the industry.

    Advice to Management

    Hiring more managers is not the solution to your problems. Do something Richard, before it is too late.


  8. Helpful (2)

    Don't bother if you want to progress your career, perfect if you want to retire

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anon in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anon in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Zen Internet full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Excellent security team, most of the staff are friendly. Holiday entitlement is quite good. The sales forecast for new products are always worth a laugh. If you want to hide away and do nothing then after a few months you can quite easily do so.

    Cons

    Little or no development of staff, all software is in house so it mean you won't get to use latest tech. Inflexible about remote working, job shares, part time working. Constantly changing priorities depending on the MDs mood. Product managers not allowed to develop products, just told what to sell and no work in ensuring that product is supportable. Hugh reliance on people to make things work to cover process and system gaps. No leadership development. Most roles are now filled externally. Massive loss of benefits over the last few years. Meetings, meetings, meetings with nothing to show and also acceptable for people to turn up late (normal the meeting organiser as well) CEO is incapable of leading a company of this size, unrealistic sales forecast every year, shrinking profit margins, attempting to be all things to all people. What was a very good company to work for has gradually declined, whilst people who have left won't be happy the same themes keep on coming across again and again. My advice is if you join zen be aware that you will fall behind the rest of the industry very quickly apart from in a couple of roles, opportunities to progress will be very limited and the benefits package is very poor. Also be very aware that any point BT could destroy this business without much effort. Most people on here think the CEO is doing a good job whilst having a negative outlook on the company, how can this be? The company is his and the ethos is his, if the company isn't preforming then thats down to him. If he didn't own the company he would be out of the door now.

    Advice to Management

    Richard Tang should step aside and let someone who is capable of running it take over, he should go and start another business.


  9. Helpful (10)

    Career progression if you've been there 5+ years and / or your nose is very brown.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Free fruit. Free parking. That's it.

    Cons

    Very clicky company. There is an old guard who have been there 8-9 years and have been promoted as the company grew (fair enough right?). However these people can't manage and there is much disgruntlement among the newer staff members and a high churn rate. Good people with great skill sets being passed over. Not quite nepotistic but same kind of barriers to progression. A few favourites get whatever they want. The rest of us could go whistle in the wind.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your staff - not just your favourites with whom you've been mates with for years. Listen to newer staff members who might have something to offer. Stop the blatant favouritism. Dreadful atmosphere - not at all what one expects until one joins as staff then it is obvious this company is withering from the inside out. CEO out of touch with reality, his staff and his clients. Happy staff, happy suppliers, happy clients indeed Richard.


  10. Helpful (6)

    How difficult it is to save the bark of reputation from the rocks of ignorance?

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Free parking but whatever you do don't park outside the faded lines or you'll have a picture of your effort posted via email around the business to humiliate you...

    Cons

    Huge staff turnover. Many long standing employees very cynical, jaded and usually looking for jobs elsewhere. Massive lack of confidence in middle and upper management. Very much lost it's appeal and credibility.

    Advice to Management

    Update your C.V's you'll be needing them shortly.


  11. Helpful (9)

    HR reviews , are so obvious. Heres a true account of life at zen,

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rochdale, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You get paid, thats about it.

    Cons

    Full of snakes, and over zealous bum kissers. The company prides itself on being "super friendly" until you start working there and it becomes "super only if your face fits" The accounts department reminds me of the cult 90s teen flick "clueless" , both in their ability to sit around talking about their weekends while everyone works and the fact they are clueless. CEO also needs to engage with his staff, not his donkey management.

    Advice to Management

    They have management!?



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