Ascend Learning Reviews | Glassdoor

Ascend Learning Reviews

Updated September 9, 2018
210 reviews

Filter

Filter

Full-timePart-time

3.4
StarStarStarStarStar
Rating TrendsRating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Ascend Learning Chief Executive Officer Greg Sebasky
Greg Sebasky
71 Ratings

210 Employee Reviews

Sort: PopularRatingDate

Pros
  • "Manageable workload, and good work/life balance" (in 26 reviews)

  • "Great people with leadership driven by goals of financial success & nurturing a successful work culture while achieving financial goals" (in 15 reviews)

Cons
  • "Work/life balance can be a challenge" (in 7 reviews)

  • "Lots of turnover in upper management and changes in the last two years" (in 12 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (3)

    "Organization on the right track"

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

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

    Pros

    Flexible, independent culture, ideal for people who enjoy feeling ownership over their work, actually committed to the corporate values, opportunities for professional development and continuing education. Dedication to hiring the right people. Commitment to constant, if incremental, improvements.

    Cons

    Fast growth can lead to a fast-paced environment, things are changing a lot as we grow and develop which could make it not the right fit for some people.

    Advice to Management

    Keep the dedication to those core values! It definitely shows that leadership is committed to them now.


  2. "Leadership lacking; big disconnect between what they say and do"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in Leawood, KS
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in Leawood, KS
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The people who work there are smart and driven. They aspire to be a cool place.

    Cons

    The leadership is out of touch. They promote a cool culture, but it's not what they say it is. There is a big gap between what they put on paper and how the leadership acts. They don't even talk to people when they visit offices.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the people who work there. Quit playing favorites.

  3. "New Leadership is so bias"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Leawood, KS
    Current Employee - Manager in Leawood, KS
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Talented onsite resources.
    Hardworking people
    Unlimited PTO

    Cons

    Long hours of working almost round the clock
    Bias promotions based on the relationship
    Raise is nominal even though company performs better
    Lack of good and friendly leadership in Tech & Ops

    Advice to Management

    Treat people unbiasly and promote those who deserve
    Reduce offshore dependancy
    Be friendly with people and don't treat yourself as bosses
    Offer fair share of profit to FTEs


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Jump on the merry go round if you dare"

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

    I have been working at Ascend Learning full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Decent pay
    - Annual bonus
    - "Unlimited" PTO
    - Can be promoted quickly if you are identified as a high potential employee

    Cons

    - Despite strong financial performance in 2017, raises were laughably small this year
    - Frequent reorganization of teams and management structures leads to instability
    - Poor communication across the board
    - Some processes are way too complicated and needlessly time-consuming, while other processes are nearly non-existent
    - HR is more focused on making sure people watch the annual harassment video than on creating a culture of trust
    - Overworked tech & ops (shared service) teams, leading to burnout and avoidable mistakes
    - People are way more focused on covering their butts than an actually getting things done, because there is no trust
    - Company organization and bonus structure is designed to make business units fight each other for shared resources to complete their projects, so that they make their profit margins and get their bonuses
    - Culture may be good in high performing business units, but in lower performing BUs and in T&O it's basically nonexistent. There is a lot of lip service given to culture at the corporate level, but all it's one-sided. Employees are expected to be selfless and courageous, but I have never seen those qualities from executive leadership. They exist in a bubble, very much removed from the rank and file employees, except for a "town hall" meeting once a year. You are encouraged to submit questions ahead of time, but they then cherry pick the ones they want to answer.

    Advice to Management

    - Stop basing bonuses on individual business unit performance, and instead focus on the company performance as a whole.
    - Provide budget to things that will provide the highest ROI, regardless of which business unit it's in, and communicate the priority all the way down the chain so that EVERYONE knows what people should be focusing on, and why.
    - Executive leaders should spend more time actually interacting with employees, especially employees who don't work in Burlington or Kansas. People working in the smaller offices need to feel like a part of the company too!
    - If you have a good year financially, give people decent raises. Bonuses are not enough to keep your top talent.
    - Stop using offshore consulting firms to provide 75% of your tech resources. This is not true of every offshore contractor, but an awful lot of them are simply not as competent or skilled or knowledgeable as a full-time employee. It also means that your technical teams are essentially working around the clock because it's only possible to collaborate when one side or the other is working late at night.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "So close to being Amazing"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer in Leawood, KS
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer in Leawood, KS
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    - Great pay, Unlimited PTO
    - Remote friendly, flexible
    - Fun Environment

    Cons

    - No onboarding process
    - Heavy focus on overseas
    - No business unit cohesion
    - Your workload is always heavy and always changing so no ability to make significant progress even on the projects that would help solve those issues.

    Advice to Management

    Ascend isn't too shy to admit they grow through aquisition. If you aren't going to retain the new business' staff, then you need an on boarding team to integrate the environments to an enterprise standard.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Boring Company in a Boring Industry"

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

    I worked at Ascend Learning full-time

    Pros

    Autonomy, work life balance, no unreasonable expectations.

    Cons

    Dizzying changes in leadership. Execs always talk about value to shareholders and THEY'RE the shareholders, not the workers.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Good teetering on great"

    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 Ascend Learning full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits, products and clients that are easy to care about, and really exceptional coworkers

    Cons

    Executive management is improving, but still has a way to go -- especially in some areas of the technology organization. Individual companies within Ascend Learning often do better, but their gains are largely in spite of the parent company.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure everyone really understands Agile development and DevOps engineering. Focus on aligning structure and processes with those concepts.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Great Place To Be"

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

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

    Pros

    Friendly atmosphere, I love the culture here folks are easy to approach. Ascend Values are very important, Passionate, Selfless, Courageous, Great Listener, Embrace and Accountable. These values help you to grow as a person. There are internal moves are available. Unless something changes I plan on being here until I retire.

    Cons

    Sometimes the lack of communication but I think that is a lot of businesses issue.
    Learning how to communicate with one another.

    Advice to Management

    To continue to grow and to communicate.


  9. "Culture & Opportunity"

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

    I worked at Ascend Learning full-time

    Pros

    Ascend had a great culture with great people. Very flexible and a lot of autonomy. It's a growing business so things move very quickly.

    Cons

    Not all of the systems and groups talk to each other making it very difficult to get things done. .

    Advice to Management

    Leadership needs to listen to their front-line employees


  10. "Marketing Communications Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing Communications Manager in Leawood, KS
    Current Employee - Marketing Communications Manager in Leawood, KS
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The people are amazing. Great perks, easygoing atmosphere and genuinely good, good people who care about doing great work.

    Cons

    None that I have encountered in my three years. Truly a wonderful place to work.

    Advice to Management

    One of the things I respect most about Ascend are the opportunities for promotion from within the organization and business unit. I would encourage management to NEVER lose sight of this.


Showing 210 of 216 reviews
Reset Filters