Bardel Entertainment Reviews | Glassdoor

Bardel Entertainment Reviews

Updated September 15, 2018
73 reviews

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3.1
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Rick Mischel
1 Rating

73 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Alongside the great shows, Bardel has great people" (in 11 reviews)

  • "They have the coolest shows to work on hands down" (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • "They often demand unpaid overtime and are unwilling to address bad professional practices including sexism from stronger animators" (in 12 reviews)

  • "Shows are often under-staffed causing people to work long hours in order to meet tight deadlines" (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Chairman"

    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

    Pros

    Great family friendly work environment and the opportunity to work on some of the best animated tv series in the world

    Cons

    There can be long work hours if you are need more time that others to be productive


  2. Helpful (6)

    "Get Some Experience, Then Get Out"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    -Studio has a fairly consistent stream of incoming projects to potentially join, and some are really desirable

    -Some great people; super hard-working, talented, and friendly

    -Studio's putting in effort to create positive company culture/community through events and such

    -My first project was a good learning experience; the second was quite tough, but I learned a lot through it

    -Some opportunities to potentially advance through leadership tracks if you'd fit those types of roles

    Cons

    Summary: There's a word a lot of Bardel employees associate with the studio but are scared to say out loud...sweatshop.

    -The culture the company's trying hard to create and project contrasts the reality, which is that employees are too overworked to take part in any of the fun community-building stuff. I would've loved to partake in it, but I was too busy putting in tons of unpaid overtime to meet unreasonable expectations for a tiny paycheck.

    -Experiences can vary REALLY wildly depending on your project/team. On my first project, expectations and deadlines were reasonable, I almost never worked overtime, and I made a small but livable wage. Second project we were all burning out fast trying to hit insane standards and making barely a livable wage in such an expensive city. Some of my friends were on projects so easy that they were bored out of their minds; others worked every single weekend for no extra pay and it was entirely expected of them to do so.

    -Unpaid overtime was presented as our own issue that we had the power to control; if we didn't want to work nights and weekends, we just had to magically work faster and better and be more organized, even if we were already doing those things to the best of our abilities. As if it had nothing to do with the studio leadership and the client.

    -Same thing as above applied to a quota-based paycheck; management acknowledged that the "base pay" that we were guaranteed every week for hitting quota was not a professional salary, and that it was up to us to go above quota enough to make a decent amount of money. That's okay when going above quota is actually doable, but for some projects, it's just not. Especially since footage-based pay and deadlines didn't adjust to different difficulty levels of scenes.

    -Studio is not set up to be conducive to socialization at all. The old Beatty Street location was, since it wasn't too huge and had a big common area for lunch and special events, but the way West 3rd is set up, it's hard to naturally have interactions with your coworkers.

    -You may have to work completely in the dark. Beatty was in a basement, and the first floor of West 3rd is like a big warehouse space with only windows in one little section. No natural light, plus they keep it dark for the 3D lighting teams, which should just have their own dark space to work in.

    -Low-key sexism which is kind of inescapable in this industry, but there was a certain degree of bro-y culture which definitely favored male employees and gave them more opportunities to rise through the ranks.

    Advice to Management

    People know this studio's reputation, and it's not a positive one. Address that. Address the actual core issues in the company's culture and management and treatment of employees instead of surface-level stuff. It seems like the studio doesn't care about its high burnout and employee turnover rate because there will always be eager, young artists willing to put up with poor working conditions to get their resumes started. But you shouldn't rely on that; it's going to keep this bad reputation growing, and eventually artists will just stay away.

    Focus on fixing core values, abolish the punitive, awful quota system, treat your employees like people, and put those funds pouring in from big-name projects into areas that actually need them.

    Bardel Entertainment Response

    Mar 13, 2018 – Senior Talent Acquisition Advisor

    Thank you so much for this review! Honestly! It is so helpful to know what your experience has been and to see the areas that are opportunities for us to grow as a studio. We hear you. We do care... More

  3. "Solid studio"

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

    I have been working at Bardel Entertainment full-time

    Pros

    good projects and great people

    Cons

    clear direction from top is lacking


  4. Helpful (3)

    "Saving the world one cartoon at a time"

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

    I have been working at Bardel Entertainment full-time

    Pros

    Bardel has great shows - there's no other way to put it. They work with some of the best brands in the industry, and offer artists creatively challenging opportunities to grow in their careers and learn from experienced industry professionals.

    Alongside the great shows, Bardel has great people! The company culture is friendly, engaging, and fun. People make jokes in the hallways, walk for coffee together, carve pumpkins together, trouble shoot technical problems together, eat cereal together. It is a very collaborative environment where artists are encouraged to share their opinions and bring forward solutions. The Senior Management team is also a good group of people who genuinely care about the studio.

    If you want to be challenged in your career and work on great shows with great people, Bardel is the place for you.

    Cons

    Every company has room to improve. Bardel could implement a few structural improvements that would benefit the studio as a whole, but as far as animation studios go, it's a good place to work!


  5. "Good place to start out as an animator"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Fast but manageable pace, fun crew, good coworkers, good shows to work on

    Cons

    Pay isn't that great - probably due to the double-whammy of working in BC and working in TV.


  6. "Adequate. Not great, not terrible."

    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

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

    Pros

    The people are genuinely friendly, it can offer a good opportunity for someone to learn depending where they are in their career and the projects produced are relatively high quality. It's a small studio feel but at a large scale, which can be nice.

    Cons

    The upper management is a mess, there's absolutely no unified vision and the company is in a constant state of chaos, unprepared and last-minute decisions that end up hurting employee morale, client confidence and the studio's ability to consistently bring in work. The working conditions aren't great either given cramped spaces, inadequate furniture and mediocre wages. Not to mention the illegal practice of not paying overtime (which almost all studios have moved away from already).

    Advice to Management

    Figure out what kind of a studio you want Bardel to be, get a clear unified vision of the marketable strengths of the studio and actually invest & support your staff to make those characteristics great. Things like, having extra head count in between projects to help prepare for the next one and simple things like, buy good office equipment so people don't hate their day to day lives.


  7. Helpful (7)

    "Not the best"

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

    Pros

    Great people, nice location, there is work

    Cons

    Bid too little on shows and demand over time.

  8. Helpful (10)

    "stay far, far away"

    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
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    inspiring people, interesting projects, they now have benefits, and the locations of both studies are nice. Beatty is right by skytrain and west 3rd has granville island.

    Cons

    Super cramped desk spaces, lots of growing pains, constant server problems, bad communication from production, weird pipelines (yes, they do reinvent the wheel on every project), conflicting direction for artists from the creative lead vs your producer, and a general sense of complacency because the people who want to make things better either leave or get booted. Oh and they will tell you their projects are solid and will last for years, but don't believe them. They can get pulled with no warning. Because of the working conditions, people are leaving like crazy. And make sure you know what you're worth going in, or they'll walk all over you. Overtime is expected without compensation.

    Advice to Management

    You have a lot of really talented people who care deeply about what they're doing, but if you don't listen to them and help them do their jobs, they'll keep leaving. And if the quality keeps dropping, the big name studios will drop you guys. Looks like it's already started...


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Not a place worth working at"

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

    Pros

    Close to the Skytrain
    I cant think of much else to say

    Cons

    Everything else about the place, pour management, Sweatshop, Don't care about their employees and long hours

    Advice to Management

    Give up and let someone with knowledge and experience take over


  10. "Great place to work despite missteps from management."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - 3D Animator in Kelowna, BC (Canada)
    Current Employee - 3D Animator in Kelowna, BC (Canada)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    -Ample opportunity to work on many diverse, fun projects with big name companies.
    -Engaging and personable immediate leadership. (Leads/Supervisors)
    -Willing to teach
    -Amicable atmosphere on floor with artists
    -Studio located in a great location (Kelowna)

    Cons

    -Mismanaged production schedules put considerable pressure and stresses on artists.
    -Tight production schedules doesn't leave room for artists to practice, learn and grow.
    -Miscommunications on past projects between production and artists/leads/supervisors lead to negativity. However, Bardel has learned from those missteps and seems to be doing better.

    Advice to Management

    -Be Transparent
    -Fight for the artists
    -Work with us from the trenches, your example speaks volumes.
    -Be realistically optimistic. You don't have to be smiling all the time, but be realistic about the situation while optimistically seeking solutions.


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