AppDirect Reviews | Glassdoor

AppDirect Reviews

Updated October 16, 2017
109 reviews

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3.6
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AppDirect Co-Chief Executive Officers Nicolas Desmarais & Daniel Saks
Nicolas Desmarais & Daniel Saks
82 Ratings

109 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Amazing office and perks way above usual german standard (Roof top terrace with BBQ, ping pong table, free food and drinks) (in 12 reviews)

  • emphasis on employee wellness and work life balance (in 6 reviews)

Cons
  • I would chalk it up to growing pains that are unavoidable (in 5 reviews)

  • top to bottom style: no one listens for engineers and take into account their opinions (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (7)

    "Over-arching issues are being dealt with"

    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
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AppDirect full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great people. Great office. Great views. There are, of course, rough patches as with any scaling company, but it feels like many of those things are finally being discussed and addressed.

    Cons

    With so many moving parts, there are times where it feels like the cross-functional communication is lacking. Leadership team seems to be working hard to address this, with the help of a newly robust People Operations team.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing your best to keep your employees happy and engaged. Communication goes a long way!


  2. Helpful (6)

    "What does it feel like?"

    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
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AppDirect full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    What does it feel like to work for a company you believe in?

    AppDirect has an incredible product and an even more incredible vision for the future; striving to build the platform the world needs to find, buy and use software in the modern age. AppDirect is tackling the largest distribution problems the world faces. Problems that the largest fortune 500 companies struggle with and avoid. And we are succeeding!

    I work with some of the most talented, passionate, kind and intense people I've ever met. I am excited every day I come to work. The company is growing rapidly but has so many things going on that there is plenty of room to grow and evolve in your role and responsibilities.

    What does it feel like to work at a company you believe in? It feels amazing!

    Cons

    We still have a lean management layer. You need to be a doer! There are no 9-5 jobs at AppDirect and plenty of second jobs to pick up if you're hungry for responsibility. Those who thrive here are those who choose to get involved.

    I won't say we don't have problems. We have a lot of spaghetti code, our builds take a long time, there are serious technical redesigns needed. But our CEOs recognize the issues and have a lot of people dedicated to fixing it. They care a lot about the happiness of engineers. It took a while to get the product to a place where we could focus on the platform as much as we are now. We lost some great and talented people along the way but I am excited and hopeful for the journey ahead.

    Advice to Management

    Get out there and talk with your employees! Nick and Dan have such a great vision for the company and the product. More people need to hear it first hand to understand the true magnitude of where we are headed.

    One team, one dream!

    AppDirect Response

    Jun 20, 2017 – Head of Human Resources

    Thank you for the feedback. I’m glad you’re part of the amazing group of people working together to create a product we can be excited about. While we’re proud of how fast we’ve grown, we realize... More

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Great Environment and Positive Culture"

    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
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Amazing facility and office space, fun community events and team bonding (wine nights!), talented leadership team who engage with all staff and sit on the floor with their team members, staff alignment on company's core values, great holiday party

    Cons

    The business team feels like a fraternity


  4. Helpful (3)

    "Maturing with huge potential!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AppDirect full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Company has been on a rocket trajectory and is now working through the phase of stabilizing and maturing to build real scale. The mission/vision is highly ambitious and the market is primed. There is significant opportunity to impact the business and no shortage of projects.

    - Passionate, smart people to work with
    - Opportunity to Play at the center of an emerging digital ecosystem
    - Strong but evolving culture
    - New more seasoned management coming on board
    - Driven CEOs with hearts in the right place

    Cons

    AppDirect has hit a rocky patch as it transitions from start-up to mid-sized platform company. Rapid international expansion and acquisitions have stressed resources and cost structures Many of the foundational elements in people, technology, process and business planning were overlooked due to rapid growth. This is now recognized and starting to get addressed, but will take some time. As a result many early employees feel disheartened and have departed.

    Founders/Co-CEOs need to learn to let go and trust. Entrepreneurial leadership is not the same as mature leadership

    Many individual contributors, managers and executives with limited professional experience has created a make-it-up-as-you-go ethic as an artifact of the start-up culture.

    Sometimes speed trumps planning with questionable results.

    Advice to Management

    Keep focused on building the foundation of the new organization and hiring for management/executive experience.
    Build a clear plan and trust people to execute on the plan. Separate skunk-works from core objectives.
    Better decisions get made with more input. Reach out to the smart people you have to help make decisions.


  5. Helpful (5)

    "Growing pains, but bright future"

    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 AppDirect full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    People and transparency! The people are the reason AppDirect is a great place to work. Being surrounded by the best and brightest every day make the job fun and rewarding (and the views from the San Francisco office don't hurt), but transparency has been critical too. Like every company with rapid growth there are ups and downs but I always feel in the loop and know how to contribute.

    Cons

    Growing pains – in some ways AppDirect has suffered from it's own success. Adding headcount, global offices and new technology is a challenge and everyone feels the stain of that on occasion, but if you're looking for a company where you get to define the gray areas it's a good problem to have.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to acknowledge the challenges as much as the successes and trust in the talented employees to provide the solutions. Listening goes a long way.

    AppDirect Response

    Jun 20, 2017 – Head of Human Resources

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback. It sounds like you really enjoy working here and we’re so glad that you’re part of the team. We’re always seeking out areas to improve, especially... More


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Experiencing some growing pains, but still loads of potential"

    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
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AppDirect full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Smart passionate people.
    Product potential is huge.
    Execution is becoming easier after a year of changes.
    Strong new leaders in place.
    Fun culture that is building up again.

    Cons

    Internal communication and clear decision making is a challenge.
    The CEOs need to empower the new set of leadership in HR, Marketing and Product to shine!
    My career opportunities could be clearer to me during this transition phase of the company.

    Advice to Management

    Make it easier to execution on on plans to hit our goals.

    AppDirect Response

    Jun 20, 2017 – Head of Human Resources

    Thanks for the review and for being part of the team. I have to agree, we have a lot of amazing and talented people working here! I also agree that we still have progress to make when it comes to... More


  7. Helpful (4)

    "Challenging, engaging, and rewarding"

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

    I have been working at AppDirect full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    AppDirect is flying at a million miles per hour on a mission with a huge scope. They need all the help they can get, and there is no shortage of challenging and exciting projects to work on. The amount of growth opportunities for you here is only limited by the amount you're willing to take on. If you're motivated and engaged, it's very easy to find strong opportunities for yourself here.

    Cons

    Not a lot of supporting structure, you'll have to carry your own weight. If you're looking for a specialized role, with limited responsibility, this is not the place for you.

    Advice to Management

    There are opportunities to add more supporting structure for those who need more clarity and direction in their role. It can be challenging to feel looped into the primary mission unless you actively seek it out yourself, so try to find ways to distribute these goals out to all the teams so everyone feels engaged.

  8. Helpful (10)

    "Cronyism, discrimination, brain drain"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at AppDirect (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Beautiful downtown SF office. Good employee benefits (except if you want to have a baby, the mat/pat benefits are not great, and some women only took two weeks maternity leave. Although I think the maternity benefits are being revisited/developed now by the new HR team).

    There are some incredibly talented and smart people working here. Many of them left. There are still a few hanging on and some great new people. There are also some really genuinely kind and intelligent people who happen to fit the CEOs image of themselves, so they stay and get promoted.

    I've heard that other office locations (non-SF) have a less oppressive culture.

    The technology is apparently "cutting edge," and maybe the idea is, but the product is such a complicated mess that it is difficult for the engineers and product designers to understand, let alone the end users.

    Cons

    Tons of cronyism. I look through the positive reviews here, and think I understand who wrote them: the inner-circle, the yes-men that support the CEOs and their clique, and people who probably haven't been here very long. The recruiting team used to bribe people to give GlassDoor reviews (free waffles) to bump their ratings.

    Covert racism and sexism and is insanely rampant here. When brought up to HR, I was told it wasn't a problem and that it was worse other places in the valley.

    I have seen people of color and women get bullied (sometimes subtly and sometimes overtly) by their bro bosses. I've seen VPs make incredibly sexist remarks in large meetings with their entire team (and the CEO) present.

    A few women started a women's group last year, and the one of the CEOs attended the first meeting. He soapboxed for half an hour about how he didn't believe sexism was a true problem in tech (adding in that he didn't think Affirmative Action was a good idea). A year later, about 60% of the people who attended those Women of Appdirect meetings are now gone.

    There is a yearly "culture survey" mid-year. In 2016, the reviews were quite awful. People were very unhappy with the lack of consistent process and various types of cronyism and discrimination. The customers were unhappy, the subsidiaries were. Infused and unhappy. The CEO took the opportunity at the next all-hands meeting (Town Hall) to tell everyone, in so many words, if you don't like it here, LEAVE. Guess what? People left in DROVES. If you give thoughtful feedback and your CEO then tells you it doesn't matter, I think that's a pretty good sign that your opinions are not valued and it's time to go.

    That's just one example of the type of mentality that proliferates here. "My way or the highway." For that reason, there is a SERIOUS brain drain. The smart people who have good ideas and plans to implement them leave, because the CEOs are arrogant and defensive. People with good ideas for scaling the company get told to sit down, shut up, and do as I say by inexperienced CEOs.

    If you don't want to think for yourself and want a controlling and arrogant bro for a boss, work here.

    Advice to Management

    I've tried, listening and being objective isn't their forte :)

    AppDirect Response

    Oct 5, 2017 – Head of Human Resources

    Thanks for providing this review. I am concerned to learn about the cases of discrimination you mentioned and if you’re open to it, I’d welcome a conversation to discuss in more detail. At AppDirect... More


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Awesome Work Culture And Enviroment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior QA Engineer
    Current Employee - Senior QA Engineer
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AppDirect full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    You have free food
    You have TT, Foosball, Pool games to pay
    You have karaoke room, Dance room, You can play your own music.
    You have Yoga, Dance class, Zumba.

    The company is taking care of his employees.

    Now coming to work part:

    You can choose which kind of work you want to do.
    You have complete freedom to choose your work.
    If required WFH is available.
    Your Managers are very much understanding
    Everyone is treating like a Family.
    Regularly the offsite activity is conducted. You can do your work related courses and it can get reimbursed.
    You can connect to anyone anytime.
    The floor has very energetic enviroment.
    You have flexible work hours. [This does not mean you can come at 12 and go home at 5 :) ]. An employee should take this in common sense and respect the flexible hrs policy.

    Cons

    Need to improve the food quality.
    Need to improve on the government holidays side. Currently, the number of days are bit less.

    Advice to Management

    Keep the momentum.


  10. Helpful (16)

    "Burnt out, frustrated and saddened"

    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
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The relationships I built with my peers were very meaningful and significant. Good people DO exist at AppDirect, but they're also powerless, get burnt out, fed up, or disgusted, and inevitably leave. There are people there who SHOULD be cultural role models, but aren't treated like that.

    Cons

    Negative, stubborn, spiteful, grudge-holding executive leadership. Rampant cronyism. Broken promises. Lack of autonomy. Consistent turnover—people so thoroughly frustrated that many left without securing a new position elsewhere. You can feel the dissatisfaction looming throughout the office.

    Advice to Management

    I wouldn't even bother offering any more advice to management. Advice offered to management never changed anything. During my tenure, well meaning, insightful feedback was consistently dismissed, or ignored by management.

    AppDirect Response

    Jun 20, 2017 – Head of Human Resources

    Thank you for your feedback. Our goal is to make AppDirect a great place to work, so I’m sorry to hear that you had a negative experience. We’ve sent out an extensive employee survey to gain better... More


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