AKQA Reviews | Glassdoor

AKQA Reviews

Updated July 20, 2017
415 reviews

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Pros
  • great people, brands and leadership (in 38 reviews)

  • Great clients, some of the best quality developers in the biz (in 35 reviews)

Cons
  • I assume that at times work / life balance will not be ideal, but that is true for every agency in London (in 36 reviews)

  • Work culture of working very very long hours (in 45 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "Continue to Inspire"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AKQA full-time

    Pros

    I am inspired daily by the "do-ers" of AKQA- the soldiers on the ground, putting pen to paper for our clients. The client roster is strong and impressive, which yields clients who are constantly challenging us, constantly pushing us to be better, together.

    Personally, I feel empowered to forge my own path here- if I wanted to pivot roles, work abroad, start an interest group/club- all possible. Be determined and prove yourself, and you'll get the support you need.

    Cons

    I don't believe the cons are specific to AKQA, rather the larger-sized agency model as a whole- the amount of red tape to get some day-to-day things done logistically is incredibly challenging at times.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to cultivate a culture of empowerment from the bottom ranks up. Lead by example.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Strategist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at AKQA full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great atmosphere, people were enthusiastic.

    Cons

    Turnover was almost immediate for many. Management had little training and zero communication skills. Leadership was lacking. No structure.

    Advice to Management

    Culture is more than drinking and karaoke. Listen and communicate in smaller groups. High turnover only leads to uncommitted workforce waiting for their raise/promotion before leaving for a better opportunity.

  3. Helpful (12)

    "It was great, until it wasn't"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    This is a tough one, because the main pros have died a slow and painful death due to changes in leadership. Let's see, the office was really nice, and in a great location.
    There were some really great people who worked there, at one time.

    Cons

    There is open acceptance of behaviors that the industry as a whole has been trying to move away from, which trickles from the top down and even pervades HR. Apparently AKQA hasn't gotten the memo. If you are a female, you'll be scrounging for a mentor in this environment. Culture is terrible, unless you want to join in the Mad Men behavior. Training is absolutely non-existent. Leadership is truly unqualified and this affects everything from the work you're able to do, to L&D opportunities, to culture. It's quite sad.

    Advice to Management

    Please, please, please stop putting unqualified people in positions of power simply because you're buddies. Please take HR complaints seriously. Please shed the bro culture. "We are listening"...ha. Please listen.


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Shadow of it's former self."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at AKQA (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great people and clients. One of the best places I have worked.

    Cons

    Management expertise is lacking in many offices.

    Advice to Management

    Think Globally, Act Locally. Invest in the culture and people beyond Bananas and Beer.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Project Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Project Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at AKQA (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The team was nice, and overall the people are nice.

    Cons

    Senior Management makes the work environment horrible, and the work has gone downhill significantly.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Best agency in DC"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AKQA full-time

    Pros

    Most thoughtful and hard-working people you'll ever work with.

    Cons

    Have to be a self-starter to really succeed.

    Advice to Management

    Spend more on training.


  7. Helpful (14)

    "AKQA NY office has been changed, now a dooms place"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Nice office, once a week morning breakfast, every other Thursday party evening. Nice location

    Cons

    Since two of the major senior executies left AKQA NY few months ago, things have changed. New management does not know how to run an Agency in NY. Lots of politics, people are trying to save their jobs. Run away...

    Advice to Management

    Need right MD and CCD to acquire new business. Need to have strategy to retain existing clients. Not sure why clients are running away from AKQA NY

  8. "Art director"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AKQA (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great opportunity to work with big client accounts and if you like fast pace.

    Cons

    You'll most likely be staying late. A lot.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Great Agency, Fun Staff, Intensely Creative"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Art Director in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Art Director in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AKQA (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The best thing about this office of AKQA is how happy and connected the staff are. Every day I come into work I see smiles on everyone's faces. People are happy here. This is the Bay Area so it's Tech focused...that means the vibe is a perfect mix of nerdy and cool. They have an impressive roster of clients and a killer work ethic. On a daily basis, I'm reminded that I'm working amongst the most talented and innovative people in the world. I'm constantly amazed at the ideas coming out of my coworkers...who come from all over the world. Everything is a team effort. At other agencies, there is a sink or swim mentality projected on to individuals. At AKQA SF, it feels like the team sinks or swims together. They have an amazing wellness manager who works to bring people together and encourage healthiness. It's a great place to hang out.

    Cons

    Um, where's the beer on tap? No nap pods? I suppose ping pong and kegorators of cold brew coffee will have to do.

    Advice to Management

    Keep listening, Keep inspiring the team to reach for the stars.


  10. Helpful (15)

    "New York: wait for the creative captain"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at AKQA full-time

    Pros

    - Some really great, talented people overall (especially below 30).
    - You get a sort of aura and street cred on your resume (when you don't know what happens behind closed doors).
    - Internationals welcome.
    - Kickass managing director (but should be more present).

    Cons

    - People don't smile, laugh or talk to each other. Desperate need of senior creative leadership to stir the ship and create culture.
    - Some bad blood in high positions who seem professional but don't have the experience of their title.
    - Has a bad rep in New York but AKQA leadership doesn't seem to care at all about trying to fix its human problems.

    Advice to Management

    Hire an ECD asap. Make people talk to each other.
    Take Glassdoor seriously. It looks like AKQA leadership gives zero fs about what people really think.


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