Axosoft Reviews | Glassdoor

Axosoft Reviews

Updated Jan 24, 2020

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3.6
59%
Recommend to a Friend
53%
Approve of CEO
Axosoft CEO Lawdan Shojaee (no image)
Lawdan Shojaee
15 Ratings
  1. "I love it here"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Phoenix, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Axosoft full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    I was here for a year as an intern, I’ve now been here for a year and change as a full time SWE, and I love it. I love everyone on my team, the product we work on feels like it has a real impact (and we get so much positive feedback from users that feels soooooo good), and the benefits are great. I really like how almost the whole company sits down for lunch every week. It’s tight night but still very professional - they’re really good at respecting work/life balance and boundaries, and we have a lot of trust an autonomy from higher up.

    Cons

    My only complaint was the variety of snacks stocked in the kitchen but that was addressed last time they did reviews. I honestly don’t have anything bad to say right now

    Axosoft2020-01-24
  2. Helpful (10)

    "Just 'Don't' Do It!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Axosoft full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The pros really don't outweigh the bad so I will omit this section.

    Cons

    I should have run for the hills during the interview process (when I was asked inappropriate questions), but I didn’t and subsequently paid for my poor judgment. Axosoft: A company ran by two ego-maniacs. If you don’t agree and smile they will put you down. If you don’t stroke their ego’s they will dislike you. If you show an ounce of self-respect they will be sure to belittle you. Interestingly enough, I’ve never endured bullying, until this job, as an adult. Quite insane and I have suffered slight “PTSD”, if you will, from my experience there. Read the previous review of the company titled, “Red Flags Abound”. I couldn’t agree more. On multiple points. I have also never seen such a high rate of turnover. Do yourself a favor and look elsewhere. The “culture” they shove down your throat is all smoke and mirrors.

    Axosoft2019-07-24
  3. Helpful (10)

    "If You Get in, You're a Rockstar - From the Founder"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Founder in Scottsdale, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Axosoft for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Here's the deal: We're working on some amazing things. The world's top software companies and teams depend on our tools to do their jobs. It’s extremely rewarding, but things can get tough from time to time. We make mistakes. You'll probably make mistakes. We encourage risk-taking, which can lead to mistakes. You'll be working hard, making decisions fast, with lots of unknowns. You're doing things that have never been done before, and there's no roadmap. We are charting our own way. If you choose to be a part of this company, you can expect this work to be some of the most satisfying work you've ever done. You can also expect it to be challenging. Your work will touch hundreds of thousands of software engineers around the globe! Software engineers from Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Netflix, Apple, Tesla, Slack and virtually all other major companies use the products and features that you will help make. We have interns who have shipped code that touches 250,000+ developers in their first month! It doesn't get much better than this. You might be thinking, if it's so awesome, why are there some negative reviews about Axosoft by some former employees? Alright, lets talk about that... We hire only the top people in their field. As a result, we have some really, really smart people with lots of strong opinions. It's awesome! It’s truly an honor to work with such brilliant people every day. We meet, we argue, we make ourselves heard. Then we make decisions and the team gets behind those decisions. But, like any other company, sometimes our hires are a miss. I hired one such miss a few years ago. He was like cancer that spread like wildfire in my company. I didn't stop him in time because I didn't realize what was happening. Like most cancer cells, this individual looked like any other great employee. He was smart, he was a great programmer and he even showed some leadership skills. However, he was extremely cynical. He viewed everything with a negative lens. He had an us vs. them mentality, separating the team from management (including me), with an extremely cynical view of any decisions made. He had turned the team on themselves, and against management. Within a short period of time, this cancer had spread in the company. None of these people were bad people, but they had started to view every decision with a negative filter. One by one, we started losing great people. People I love and respect. It was painful. It was my fault. I didn’t act quickly enough. But when I did, it was too late. It was clear that a small portion of the team had a negative view of the company and of me. To fix the problem, we gave everyone the option to take a severance package, and encouraged anyone who viewed the company negatively to take the severance. Several people chose the option to leave. It was sad. We lost some extremely talented people that day. Some of them were my friends and it hurt. Unfortunately, some of the people we lost also decided to lash out at the company through a series of negative reviews and personal attacks. My wife (who is the CEO of the company) and I run Axosoft together. We each have our strengths and weaknesses. Those strengths and weaknesses tend to compliment each other. Some reviewers have tried to use this against us, attacking us individually or attacking other brilliant managers, trying to undermine all the amazing people that work at Axosoft. OK. Whatever. It is what it is. I get that's their only way of lashing out. But great people don't need to lash out. They can focus on results. Here’s something I can say unequivocally: since our big d-day (it’s been over a year now), the company has flourished. Our growth has accelerated. We have created new products that are getting rave reviews, and our revenues have skyrocketed. Most importantly, we have rebuilt a team that believes in the product, in the company, in the management and is more bullish about our future than ever before. It doesn’t get any better. If you choose to work at Axosoft, you'll be working with some of the most amazing people in Arizona. Even the worst reviews confirm this fact.

    Cons

    If you are an under-performer, need a lot of hand-holding, not a self-starter, or are afraid to learn new things, you won’t last long.

    Axosoft2018-07-09
  4. Helpful (6)

    "Forward-thinking, tech-leading company with great benefits"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Axosoft full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Great employees and thought leaders. Employees are encouraged to fully engage and give their feedback. Company is completely transparent with it's overall #'s, which is helpful, knowing overall how one's work is (or isn't) paying off. Great benefits, with insurance mostly paid by the company, paid trips, and office snacks, lunches and outings.

    Cons

    Not very good at being transparent when it comes to turnover. It's kinda strange to not know someone is no longer working and ask about them. If we can be transparent about #'s, let's be transparent about people coming and going. Stuck in the old "9-5" schedule. They are so great at other benefits, but in today's competitive market, a more flexible schedule would be nice.

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    Axosoft2018-06-28
  5. Helpful (13)

    "Vote of "No Confidence" in Company Direction"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Axosoft full-time

    Pros

    I worked at Axosoft for 5+ years. I am giving Axosoft a 2-star rating as an average. Clearly myself and many of the others who quit last year would individually give a 1-star rating, but I feel that 2 stars is a proper average for this company. To descibe the Pros and Cons of Axosoft one must first understand that the owner of the company and the company itself are synonymous. Because it is a singularly-held entity, all of the good and the bad points of the company flow directly from the owner. Pros: ---- The owner has many positive qualities: smart, understands technology, charisma and energy can be infectious, one of the most motivated individuals I have ever met, can be generous, can be friendly and personable.

    Cons

    #1: Owner in a Bubble "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." -Lord Acton As much as the owner individually has many positive points, the owner has lived in a bubble of absolute power for far too long. There are no vice-presidents who challenge the owner's authority, no board to keep them accountable, and (as far as I am aware) no Axosoft investors to question decisions. Such an environment breeds potent toxicity and arrogance. Despite the best intentions, the owner sabotages itself (and thus the company) at regular intervals. The owner's word is law and employees must accept that to survive. Anyone who does not abide by this or questions the owner is belittled and attacked. For example, in one heated meeting an employee was being screamed at by the owner regarding a simple disagreement. The employee put his hands up and gently said, "Do you hear how you are speaking to me right now? Can't you be nice?" The owner pointed at an iPhone on the table and asked, "Do you like the iPhone?" The employee, confused at the question, simply nodded. The owner retorted, "Do you think the iPhone would have been created if Steve Jobs was NICE to his employees?" What to expect: --- Expect that many good ideas that can help the company will circle the drain and disappear. Because there is only one person who decides (and who believes themselves wiser than everyone in the room), anticipate bad decisions being agreed upon by the group and good ones being tossed on a regular basis. I have watched countless advisors spin through the revolving door at Axosoft. Many of these individuals were smart, high-powered thinkers and strategists. Inevitably one of two things would happen: -the advisor becomes a "yes-man" (or "yes-woman") -the advisor quits (this is the usual case) You will witness an evolutionary aspect at work here--the people who have stood up to the owner have either been fired or quit out of frustration (hence the barrage of people who quit in 2017). Expect that the people remaining behind in the Axosoft graveyard (while quite friendly) are either too tired of conflict or too lackadaisical to move on. #2: No Trust in Employees "Trust is the lubrication that makes it possible for organizations to work." -Warren Bennis A captain of a ship has great authority. But when one ship becomes many ships, the leader must assign out other captains and trust them to make the right decisions. If the leader jumps from ship to ship adjusting courses themselves, then the fleet never moves anywhere. This truth made me realize that Axosoft will never grow to a large-sized company. That kind of growth requires trust in employees. One man cannot make all the decisions. That's why the company will always flounder (unless some crazy stroke of luck occurs). What to Expect --- You will wonder why the owner micromanages so many decisions...even decisions that you were hired to make. This is because the owner does not have faith in your ability to do your job. Embrace it. Or prepare for mental anguish. #3: No remote work "But Axosoft, I'm sick and I can work on these web tasks from home easily..." Nope. While the owner sometimes talks about remote work, it is only an illusion at this company--the owner does not believe in remote work in any capacity (which is directly related to #2 above). Mixed-messages like these are typical: "Yes, work from home" "No, why did you work from home" "We are flexible here" "This is not a remote-work company" What to expect: --- Either use a PTO day or drive in to the office. Period. If you are considering working here, be prepared to drive in every single day and to get chewed out if you work from home for any reason. The mentality here is stuck in the past and will not be moved while the current management is in charge.

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    Axosoft2018-05-01

    Axosoft Response

    July 31, 2018

    First of all, thank you very much for your review and for your 5+ years of service to Axosoft. I'm sure that I thought very highly of you and that we most likely had some great times working together over the years. So I want to take a moment to respond to some of your criticism... --- You're right about Axosoft being wholly owned by my wife and I, and I'm sure we've made a lot of mistakes over the years. I do believe not looking for investors (or debt) has enabled us to remain profitable and to make a lot of great decisions for our customers and employees that would have otherwise been off the table. We are able to focus on customers, employees, people and community, without worrying about maximizing investor returns at all costs. --- In regards to decision making and trust, leaders of both private and public companies eventually have to make tough decisions and choose to move in one direction or another. In the absence of complete information, the perfect decision can't be known in advance. We have built a leadership team comprised of diverse perspectives and backgrounds, and we operate with the assumption that everyone will make mistakes, including the leadership team. Therefore, we operate with the mantra of making decisions quickly, moving fast, evaluating our decisions and correcting as we go. It's definitely not easy, and we tend to be super critical of everything we do, but that’s also what makes the end results so great! I hope you experienced the positive side of this process many times during your tenure at Axosoft. Even since your departure, the results continue to speak for themselves - our products are growing faster than ever! --- Sometimes, when someone on our leadership team makes decisions that aren't aligned with the visions of some team members, it can come across as the leadership team ignoring good advice. Some would even describe such incidents as the leadership looking only for agreement from their team members (“yes-men”). Nothing could be further from the truth. When a leader makes a tough choice, naturally, all the options except for the one that is ultimately chosen can appear to be ignored. --- I believe great leaders move fast! Great team members recognize that it’s not possible to build 100% consensus—that’s just not how great products are made. I celebrate disagreement and discourse, sometimes heated, before a decision is made. After the decision is made the team can only stay strong if everyone gets on board and does their best, pushing forward contributing in a positive way. --- While working remotely has never been a perk at Axosoft, we do focus on offering work/life balance in other ways. We work normal 40-hour work weeks and rarely more. We have a 75% work-week option for parents (with 75% pay, but 100% of other benefits), and everyone is welcome to bring their well-behaved dogs to the office with them. --- Again, thank you for your review. Best wishes in your future endeavors. -H

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  6. Helpful (21)

    "Red Flags Abound"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Axosoft full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    If there is one piece of advice I can give to a potential employee, it would be to look elsewhere. Like others have said, you will work with some of the smartest, brightest people there are in AZ. Being a tech company, it's great that you will have the option of working with the latest technology, but that is not something you wouldn't find with any other tech company in town. They claim that the salaries are competitive but again, you will find going almost anywhere else as a developer or technical person that you will get paid more. From personal experience, I promise you this. They have a large office but it is located in North Scottsdale, away from the excitement of the Phoenix tech scene. This would be fine if there was a remote work option, but there isn't. They will tell you that their culture, or Axo Life, is soooo unique and we are soooo cool but don't buy into it. Again, these are things that are the norm in most places, other companies just don't feel the need to cram it down your throat constantly. You can take workout classes, but you are expected to be at the office 9 hours a day. So, if you workout, you miss a lunch, FYI. If you are someone looking to start out your career in tech, this might be an ok fit, but I'd encourage you to give other places a try. If you are an experienced developer, go anywhere else.

    Cons

    I should have known when I got hired here that there were red flags EVERYWHERE but I accepted with excitement thinking "But this place created the It Was Never a Dress campaign. And they offer workout classes?! Awesome!" But no. No. No. No. Any company that constantly promotes "culture culture CULTURE!" or brags about not having an HR department, you should run for the hills! I witnessed everything from bullying by the Founder, CEO and department "Directors" to the very inexperienced CEO flip-flopping on her "CEO strategies" to the accounting department (also referred to as HR, mind you) gossiping and flat out yelling at other employees. Being different is not celebrated here, no matter what the facade of the company will claim - this is NOT a safe place to share your uniqueness or ideas. There have been multiple former employees I have spoken with that claim they, no joke, experienced some sort of PTSD or developed anxiety from working here. Ultimately, if you decide to work here, you have been warned. They will love you at first, but the second you disagree with the Founder and his wife, AKA the CEO, be prepared to get pulled into a room and be convinced that you are small and they are very VERY big. Finally, and the biggest red flag of them all, the Founder appointed his wife as the CEO. She defers to him on everything and he still oversees the developer team. Their collective micromanagement is a major problem. THEY MICROMANAGE EVERYTHING. They love to remind you that the CEO is "a doctor" but that isn't true either. Due to the CEO's inexperience, she relies solely on reading books and articles, then "trying out" new methods and this had made Axosoft crumble. Her experimentation and bad judgment led to major overspending and the company went quickly from "Flat management" to having inexperienced management or "Department Leads" and then having to let many employees go as a result of overspending...the list goes on. It's really sad that it's all just such a mess and I'm glad I got out when I did. The final red flag, is that the company has failed to scale in the last 10 years. They were founded in 2002 and even though the founder likes to consider himself a smart businessman to the likes of an Elon Musk or Steve Jobs, he has failed to scale and in 2017 lost a massive amount of staff after giving the entire company an ultimatum. As a result, in 2018 they have the least amount of employees they've had since about 2013. Major red flag.

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    Axosoft2018-05-16
  7. Helpful (5)

    "It's with a measure of pleasure I give you this treasure"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director of Customer Success in Scottsdale, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Axosoft full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Hey Glassdoor feed scroller! I've been working here for years, and have flourished in terms of skills and leadership. I was initially hired straight out of grad school into their sales team. They took a chance on an enthusiastic kid with not-much-work-experience, and I've been grateful to return the favor ever since. I'ved gained oodles of knowledge in sales, account management, technical support, customer success, and eventually leadership over the years. The company here recognizes your skills, and you have real say in how you define and expand your role, especially as you continue to grow and learn more. The people here are marvelously competent, and charming. I love talking and connecting with the friendly faces here, especially when we play Smash during lunch or join in on game nights.

    Cons

    You won't do well here if you're used super formal, corporate structures. You also won't do well here if you can remember the last time you did something for the first time.

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    Axosoft2018-03-23
  8. Helpful (4)

    "Thought-leaders, hard-workers, fun-loving"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Axosoft full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    You're given the tools, resources and autonomy you need to do your job right. I truly enjoy coming to work each day. You're encouraged to share your opinions and ideas. Tasty catered food, fresh fruit & snacks, workout classes, intelligent & self-motivated people surround you. It's a great place to work!

    Cons

    It's not a con for me personally but if you're not a self-starter, then this may not be your ideal company.

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    Axosoft2018-03-23
  9. Helpful (3)

    "One of the best places to work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Scottsdale, AZ
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Axosoft full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Axosoft has actually been named one of the Best Places to Work in AZ for multiple years. -CULTURE: The culture at Axosoft is amazing. There is a rigorous interview process that screens for skill and cultural fit; the result being a company of highly-talented, motivated and friendly people. -BENEFITS: Axosoft offers great benefits like travel, 401k matching, on-site instructor-lead workout classes, plenty of vacation time, catered lunches and snacks, and so much more. -COLLABORATION: Departments are not in silos because Axosoft has literally broken down physical barriers (like walls) to bring teams together. Communication tools such as Slack also help keep everyone connected. Because of the collaborative nature of the company, every employee is able to have input on company-wide strategy. DIVERSITY: Axosoft started the #ItWasNeverADress campaign as a response to the lack of diversity in tech. This campaign initiated a global conversation about the under-representation of women in our industry. This campaign aligns with the values of the company and is reflected in the hiring.

    Cons

    -No job/company/person is perfect, but any time I've encountered an issue at Axosoft, I've felt my voice was heard and changes were made when possible and appropriate.

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    Axosoft2018-03-22
  10. Helpful (14)

    "A culture of mediocrity"

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

    I worked at Axosoft full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    - The office is very conveniently located off the freeway in North Scottsdale, and has some great views of the nearby mountains - The amenities, equipment, and furnishings of the office are in line with the stereotypes you'd expect to see out of a Silicon Valley-influenced "startup" - When I worked there, lunch was catered twice a week - When I worked there, there was a lot of great, smart people, in all of the departments.

    Cons

    - The leadership doesn't seem to actually grasp what makes a good product/company. Paradoxically, they chase trends that appeal to them (fitness initiatives, for instance) without fully understanding whether they are a good fit for their company, while shunning actually beneficial ideas for absurd reasons. (They outright refuse to do any sort of remote work system because they feel they've invested far too much into the company office, while ignoring the many benefits remote work provides.) - The leadership believes in agility to an almost harmful degree. Initiatives are designed, partially implemented, and abandoned at an aggressively fast pace, creating a lot of waste and providing zero meaningful measurement. Some examples include hiring for specialized yet crucial roles and then eliminating those positions within a year, and changing product pricing at least once a year. You learn at Axosoft that nothing you may be working on is guaranteed to even stick. - The founder of the company has proven over and over to have a poor understanding of a good user experience in products. It's not even clear he actually uses the products he oversees. The main Axosoft product languished for years because he was not willing to address how difficult it was to use for new users, preferring to instead experiment with pricing and product configurations instead. Employees that bring up these concerns are brushed off, with the rational that because he managed to have Axosoft last for 15 years, he knows what he is doing and they do not. Sometimes this results in 1-on-1 meetings behind closed doors which is usually just him berating and verbally abusing the employee. - The founder is also clearly user-hostile. Many product decisions, especially recently with GitKraken, value revenue well above what users want. This is likely because the founder sees himself as similar to figures like Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, and acts accordingly. Among other things, this means he comes across as dismissive of user feedback, even going out of his way to tell users that much in public forums. (Google "GitKraken Reddit" for some great examples of this.) He also insists on keeping the product roadmap completely secret which has consistently frustrated users. (This also comes off as a hugely defensive approach, after dealing with much more capable competitors like Atlassian.) - Note that the founder acts like a CEO because he basically still is. The actual CEO, his wife, shies away from product decisions, focusing more on marketing and customer service initiatives. (Her first action as CEO was to have the marketing team spend the better part of a year on a social campaign that ultimately accomplished nothing for the brand, instead of actually working on marketing for the Axosoft product.) In summation, Axosoft is a toxic, hostile atmosphere. In the past year alone, over a third of the entire workforce have quit or been left go. Many of those people were critical members of all parts of the company, including product, sales, marketing, and customer service. Most of the GitKraken development team left within the span of 1-2 months. After I left Axosoft, I interacted with a lot of local companies in the Phoenix area and elsewhere, and it was clear what a difference it is working at Axosoft versus pretty much anywhere else. Fortunately, the public perception is catching up-- one recruiter I spoke to even believed that Axosoft was already out of business, which I firmly believe is still likely in the next few years.

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    Axosoft2017-10-07
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