kCura

  www.kcura.com
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kCura Reviews

Updated Jul 31, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.6 60 reviews

59% Approve of the CEO

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Andrew Sieja

(34 ratings)

45% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Becoming more flexible with work-from-home policies (in 4 reviews)

  • Lots of great people you work with whom you can call friends (in 5 reviews)


Cons
  • Company finally instituted work from home policy but still fairly restrictive (in 6 reviews)

  • I have a great work-life balance, but for folks in other departments, it may not be that way (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights
60 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
in
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Stable, growing company with an outdated technology stack

    Developer (Former Employee) Chicago, IL

    ProsThe people, the compensation, and (some) of the perks.
    Almost to a fault, the people at KCura are nice, approachable, and generally fun to be around.
    Overall compensation, at least on the engineering side of things, seemed to be inline with larger developer market.

    ConsThe culture here is very cliquey, and it's pretty obvious off the bat if you fit in....or you don't. Also, there is an almost zealous focus on desk time and mandatory 9 hour work days...even if there's downtime. Forget about workplace flexibility. If you like the latest and greatest technology, this is not the place for you - the code base is old(VB? Really?), and there are redundant, frustrating, layers of process throughout. Plan on a lengthy, sometimes stressful, on-boarding process in the neighborhood of 2 months, before you see any actual code.

    Advice to Senior ManagementEliminate the middle management layer, or give them something legitimate to focus on. If you are going to buy into agile, go whole hog: 'agile-like' is painful for everyone. Also, workplace flexibility is a big deal and starts from the top down: it's sorely lacking and needs to be fixed.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Must be a Yes Man

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsNice perks but all are frosting on the cake. Its the cake that needs work. Benefits are now decent, up till this year not so much. Finally found decent health insurance, I think cause they are hiring more people who have families and they demand good health care or won't join.

    ConsIf you don't go with the program or against top management, you won't last long. I've seen them hire top people who tried to make a difference only to be fired for no reason. Guess they don't realize everyone sees what happens and just goes with the flow so we don't get fired. They say this company has a start up feel, the only part of that is true is they expect more than 40 hours in the office and more at home if you get lucky enough to go home on time.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThere is no board on this company, its owned by one person who rules; there needs to be a balanced board of directors to lead the company and provide checks and balances on decisions. When one person has the total say so, its a dictatorship, just saying.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    A fun, rewarding experience but you have to work for it

    Software Engineer (Former Employee) Chicago, IL

    Pros- people are smart. they get stuff done, and the onus is on you to follow suit. this is a huge plus in my book.
    - one of the best cultures i've seen.
    - it's exciting to come to work on a monday.
    - great equipment to work with.

    Cons- the interview process should be tougher. hire fast does not equal great talent. don't saturate the talent;
    - developers shouldn't be doing support (unless they really want to).

    Advice to Senior Management- protect the dev talent pool. if the product is the most important aspect of kcura, then make sure the developers are happy by continuing to pose challenging tasks that help the developer get better at what they do.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Challenging, great place to work with evolving policies

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Chicago, IL

    Pros-Love the people--kCura has some amazing people to work with
    -Becoming more flexible with work-from-home policies
    -Great benefits
    -Great culture

    Cons-Some of the policies are still not established enough to be reliable or to feel comfortable taking advantage of them

    Advice to Senior Management-Thanks for making us feel like our voices are being heard and we can always talk to someone about our concerns

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    You will be challenged and accepted

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThe hiring standards are very high, and it shows. Expect to work with people who are very smart and have a lot of self-motivation. Everyone is themselves here; people are honest, aren't afraid to like what they like.

    Perks are awesome. Don't expect to work from home every Friday, but if you want to duck out for a dentist appointment, or even stay home for a plumber, I've never had a problem doing that. You can use your PTO in as large a chunk as you want, which is something my friends elsewhere can't always do. Training budget to go to conferences is dispensed without many restrictions. Free fruit, pop, good health plan.

    People are friendly but are very serious about the work to be done.

    The company gives a lot of money and time to hurting public schools. You can tell that senior management cares a lot about this and it isn't just for show. There are people sinking months and months of effort into this, making sure that the impact is broad and can be expanded to other companies, which is really cool.

    People are talking past each other when it comes to internal promotion in Product Development. Employees hired in the last 15 months don't realize that the VP of Engineering + half of the managers are internal promotions from 12-24 months ago. They see a number of managers and C-level execs hired from outside within the last year, and so they worry about their careers, while at the same time complaining that the leadership isn't/wasn't experienced. Well, you can't have it both ways. Leadership is half external and half internal. Meanwhile, management responds to this criticism by counting the number of internal promotions, but they included things like "Software Engineer -> Sr. Software Engineer" which is pretty hilarious and perhaps even misguided.

    ConsDue to hiring, the office is cramped and it's getting worse every Monday. It will be resolved next year....ish. For awhile. Luckily all of the working space has awesome equipment and big desks, and most of it has sweet conference rooms and breakout spaces, which helps.

    There are growing pains as policies like compensation, bonus, WFH, etc are instituted and the kinks worked out.

    I think some of the complaining I'm reading is the result of the stress of living up to your peers. When you work with people who are seemingly effortlessly awesome at their role you have to work hard to not suck.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTying bonus to corporate revenue is not popular. Don't take it further. Expect to see resignations if raises, 401k match, or literally anything else goes down this path. Also, when you change something popular, such as the old bonus system, you need to be brutally honest about why this is done with as many numerical figures as you can. I think it's pretty obvious it had to change, but not enough justification was given.

    Make every department define a WFH policy as if it was a legal code. Enforce it, tune it, and then, stop. Right now it's possible but not common, which is as far as I'd want to go.

    I hate Storyboard.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Grateful to be part of this team

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsI read these reviews on Glassdoor and wonder if some of these folks walk in to the same building I do every day. I love this job. I don't feel controlled or manipulated. My manager(s) are supportive and open-minded. I laugh a lot. My peers are intelligent and capable. I don't work with "frat boys" or adhere to a "party mentality" (plenty of coworkers don't even drink). The benefits are fantastic. Our clients are a pleasure to work with. There are near-constant learning opportunities. We now have the ability to work from home, though it's still expected that, for most people, the standard workday will be spent in the office.

    ConsWe're on a sometimes grueling schedule to release a large number of features in a short amount of time. I have a great work-life balance, but for folks in other departments, it may not be that way.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Fast growing company with some growing pains

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    Pros-Nice office perks (free food, good office layout, water/drinks, etc)
    -Great people to work with
    -Fast paced, interesting work
    -Decent yearly training budget
    -Good insight into the direction of the company

    Cons-Cramped space in the office
    -Poor model for annual reviews that ties directly to bonus
    -Undefined office roles often leads to confusion
    -The fast company growth has left a lot of people in management positions without much experience

    Advice to Senior ManagementIt would be very helpful to have a looser policy for working from home. Also make sure that the A players are being adequately recognized and rewarded.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Training program is a miserable ordeal

    Technical Writer (Former Employee) Chicago, IL

    ProsI don't have many "pro" comments to list, unfortunately. On paper, it appears to be an exciting company with great technology, but you quickly forget about that as you get swamped by the training program.

    ConsNearly every new employee (pretty much everybody but admin people) gets put through an excruciating 6-week training program, and they have to pass a very difficult certification test at the end of it to stay at the company. I've never seen anything remotely like it. The training period is an extremely stressful ordeal. Sure, they give you an iPad, but early on they drop a number of large documents for you to read and learn, and before you have enough time to get through them there's more, and then more and more after that. It's an impossibly large amount of information to assimilate. There are night study sessions you have to attend, and eventually you become completely obsessed with passing their certification, to the exclusion of everything else in your life, like your family. You have to learn every nook and cranny of their pretty large software application. For the certification, you have to be able to correctly execute 5 intricate, intentionally mis-ordered 30+-step procedures in their app, then answer a very long series of highly detailed multiple-choice questions. It smacks of age discrimination, as I think that only a young person would be able to successfully assimilate the gigantic amount of information they throw at you. (Nearly all of the surviving employees are younger than me; I'm 50. Being 50 should be an asset, not a liability, but not at kCura.) Because of what they put their new employees through, I feel that this company definitely does not belong on the Tribune's annual "best places to work" list that it always makes.

    Advice to Senior ManagementIs it really critical that each new employee know that such-and-such field can hold 200 characters? Do you really want to welcome your (supposedly valued) new employees by putting them through this hellish ordeal? Before I started, I was very enthused about working there. Now I hate this company, and I hope I never have to experience an ordeal like that again. I also hope somebody slaps an age discrimination suit on them.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

    7 people found this helpful  

    Typical software company

    Senior Software Engineer (Current Employee) Chicago, IL

    Pros- You can cash in your vacation time, up to 1 week.
    - Health benefits are fully paid.
    - Work with the latest and greatest technologies.

    Cons- Not many internal folks are promoted. They keep hiring managers from outside.
    - If you don't know someone, they don't say hi to you. They keep looking at the floor until you pass by. Some say hi, but most don't.
    - Only 18 days of vacation and sick time. Even if you're a veteran, everyone starts off with 3 weeks off.
    - No work life balance. Have a kid? Going to school? Have activities planned for the evening? Then don't work here.
    - You can work from home on some days for emergencies only, but it's hard to get. You're pressured to come in anyways, even when there's dangerous road conditions (snow, flooding, etc) where you live. The managers don't care.
    -Bonus structure is changing. For the last 3 years, it used to be 5 weeks pay, paid in December, but now they're pushing it out to Jan/Feb. If the company hits 90% revenue, you get 50% of your bonus (10% salary is still the target). If company gets 91%, you get 55%, 92% gets you 60%, etc. If company makes over 100% revenue target, then you get a 1% match.
    - Next year's bonus will be 50% company revenue target and 50% goal targets.
    - Some of the engineering managers are useless. All they do is stop by and gossip, complete waste of my time.

    Advice to Senior ManagementWhy don't we have work from home like other successful companies? They get to work from home once a week and have summer hours (work 9 hours M - Th, 4 hours F).

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    Poverty and jealously

    Technical Writer (Former Employee) Chicago, IL

    ProsFree fruit and coffee
    Their products are not unique - just look at your competitors

    ConsYou must work 9 hour days for exempt employees
    If you work before 8 am or after 6 pm, the time does not reduce your 45 hours per week requirement
    New exempt employees must wait six months to work from home. While interns can work remotely
    An exempt employee can be late and harassed
    Your manager has the right to take vacation days from you that he pre approved a month in advance
    Will steal your work and say it's their own

    As you can see the items on this list are trivial and indicate discrimination.

    Yeah, this is how you are treated when you are not white and you work there.

    Advice to Senior ManagementNone, this is a top down approach.

    Good luck.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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