Bell and Howell Reviews | Glassdoor

Bell and Howell Reviews

Updated April 19, 2017
78 reviews

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78 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Good people in Service, many long term employees that were always willing to help their fellow co workers when needed (in 7 reviews)

  • Amazing work/life balance since there are no deadlines for anything (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Only 2 raises over the last 8 years, No 401K matching, High Insurance costs, less and less support and parts each year (in 6 reviews)

  • They are struggling financially and have not given any pay increases in 6 years (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Unfocused Potential"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Durham, NC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Bell and Howell full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Mostly stable employer, with long history. Stabilized by a solid service department. Broad exposure to various packaging industries and the automation systems that go into them. Good collection of core employee talent to progress from.

    Cons

    Loss of focus and clear long term vision has left engineering and product development struggling to create successful products, which, in turn, threatens to starve the service arm. Subsequent grasping for markets has diffused product lines into several increasingly disconnected directions.

    Advice to Management

    Get a long term vision and express it to your employees. Decide whether you are in the business of creating or buying and integrating (AKA reselling) products. If creating new products be sure they have value in their chosen markets, or that they at least further a coherent long term strategy.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Apr 14, 2016 – VP of HR

    Thank you for taking time to leave feedback for us. We appreciate hearing your perspective, and it tells us we still have work to do regarding internal communication. We have had a number of ... More


  2. "Miss the people (but not the craziness!)"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bethlehem, PA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bethlehem, PA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Bell and Howell full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    My team was amazing. Immediate supervisor and department manager fought every day to give our team what we needed to succeed. Limited bureaucracy and red tape. Reasonable salaries. Felt like I was rewarded for my hard work even in bad times.

    Cons

    I worked at Bell and Howell through all the craziness of Bowe's bankruptcy, the BH spinoff, and then the BH bankruptcy. Those were not easy years - pay cuts, benefit cuts, etc. I feel like often we didn't get the full story and lost traction because of it. Lots of promises of improvement that didn't occur.

    Advice to Management

    I hope you realize how great your staff is! I moved on to a better opportunity but really enjoyed working at Bell + Howell. Such a great team.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Apr 14, 2016 – VP of HR

    Thank you for taking time to provide us with feedback! We agree that our people are amazing, and we consistently hear that the team vibe we have is what keeps everyone coming back. We feel like we ... More


  3. "Bell and Howell review"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Trussville, AL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Trussville, AL
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Bell and Howell full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great team of quality individuals doing extraordinary things everyday

    Cons

    Unclear future given losses in core market share

    Advice to Management

    Need to update internal processes to improve efficiency

    Bell and Howell Response

    Apr 14, 2016 – VP of HR

    Thanks for taking the time to provide feedback on Bell and Howell. We agree that our team members are the key to our success! We also remain committed to continuous improvement. If you have ideas ... More


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  5. "Certainly would not recommend"

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

    I worked at Bell and Howell full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    There are not much pros to share for working at Bell and Howell. Avoid Bell and Howell if you can help it.

    Cons

    Required minimum of 48 hrs for a 40 hr workweek (8 hrs extra unpaid per week required)
    Rampant use of foul language in workplace.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Apr 14, 2016 – VP of HR

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on Bell and Howell. It sounds like you did not have a very positive experience, and we wish you would have reached out to someone directly. We are ... More


  6. "Good company to work for"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Customer Service Engineer in Madison, WI
    Current Employee - Senior Customer Service Engineer in Madison, WI
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Company works hard to diversify to keep the company relevant. Good co-workers and good communications from management on what is going on with the company. Company will reward hard work and over achieving.

    Cons

    Would be nice if they shift service CSEs around so everyone is experienced most to all of the machines we service. Can get tied down to a set customer/customers which can get tedious and boring.

    Advice to Management

    Take more time to listen to the people in the trenches and maybe spend some time coming out and visiting some of your service people for moral purposes and to put a person/human behind the name. Also, get engineering to listen and honestly consider opinions or concerns on service items/issues.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Oct 27, 2015 – VP of HR

    Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences with Bell and Howell. We have been working to balance travel and have members of our leadership spend more time hearing from those in other ... More


  7. Helpful (3)

    "If you like a sinking ship..."

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

    I have been working at Bell and Howell (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The work was fun, so were the people.

    Cons

    The politics and direction of the company were damaging to everything and everybody, including morale, revenue, development.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Oct 27, 2015 – VP of HR

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience at Bell and Howell. Since it looks like you are a current employee, we hope you will share your experiences in more ... More


  8. "Administration"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administrator in Durham, NC
    Current Employee - Administrator in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Bell and Howell (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    People who work at the company are very dedicated

    Cons

    Closely evaluate corporate departments and see how top heavy some departments are and where there is duplication of effort.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on employees and take heed of their input.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Oct 27, 2015 – VP of HR

    Thank you for providing your feedback regarding your experiences at Bell and Howell. We are continuously looking at improvements across a number of areas of the company, including structure, and ... More


  9. "Good experience working with a good company."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Wheeling, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Wheeling, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Bell and Howell full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Bell and Howell was a good place for some solid experience. It is the kind of place that in which you must be resourceful. The corporate headquarters were once in Wheeling, IL, but moved to Durham, NC. It provided a great opportunity to travel back and forth and experience how things were handled in a different location.

    Cons

    When BH moved the corporate headquarters to North Carolina, the Wheeling location felt like it was really left behind. BH is also a company that tended to be a little top-heavy in terms of management.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the good people that work for you. There is nothing like being told what to do by someone who has no idea as to what you do in the first place.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Oct 27, 2015 – VP of HR

    Thank you for sharing your feedback regarding Bell and Howell. We are glad that your experience here helped you grow, whether personally or professionally. We do listen to the feedback we get and ... More


  10. "Once Great Company, Now past saving"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Wheeling, IL
    Former Employee - Director in Wheeling, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Bell and Howell full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    The finest people in the rank and file that you could ever hope to work with, most with decades of experience in support and relationship management with the same customers.

    Cons

    The company failed to effectively prepare for the continuously shrinking mail market by designing, developing and deploying new products and services that would have prepared them for growth going forward. This has been exacerbated by the revolving door of ownership and the repeated bankruptcies, compelling them to consistently reduce the size and scope of business operations and effectively destroying the very infrastructure that would have positioned them for recovery in the future.

    These issues are only compounded by the current ownership group, Versa Capital, who was very open about their intent to resell the company from the day they bought it. So while the focus should have been investment for future growth, it has been one of cost cutting, employee reductions and facilities closures.

    Senior management pays lip service to listening to their customers and associates, and perhaps they really believe they do listen and respond, however the response time to address any issue is too long, and the responses are too incomplete to be of any true benefit to the customer base.

    New product development is done "on the fly" and vetting is done in the field at the expense of loyal customers.

    The intellectual capital, once a mainstay of the company is now of entering retirement age, and given the treatment they have received over the last several years, have no interest in remaining with the company. Moreover, the company has very little means to fill these soon to be empty position with new associates having the knowledge to support customers effectively

    Advice to Management

    Sell what remains of this company as fast as you can under the fervent hope that the next owner is actually interested in being in the business, with a focus of the strategic direction the company needs to take to thrive in new markets.

    Bell and Howell Response

    Oct 27, 2015 – VP of HR

    Thank you for sharing your feedback. We understand that change can be difficult, especially in a 100 year-old company. Over the past few years, Versa has been a great partner to Bell and Howell in ... More


  11. Helpful (4)

    "Service Manager"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Service Manager in Durham, NC
    Current Employee - Service Manager in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Bell and Howell full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great people who truly do their best to get the job done.

    Cons

    Only 2 raises over the last 8 years, No 401K matching, High Insurance costs, less and less support and parts each year.

    Advice to Management

    Start taking care of your people before they all leave for companies that give raises!!


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