Belvedere Trading Reviews | Glassdoor

Belvedere Trading Reviews

Updated January 3, 2019
50 reviews

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3.5
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Thomas Hutchinson
30 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "On the trading side, the work-life balance is unmatched by any other job in the financial industry" (in 5 reviews)

  • "Fun and relaxed work environment" (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • "Furthermore, a lot of the growing pains that belvedere is experiencing now is because of lack of experience" (in 4 reviews)

  • "Very laid back culture, so everyone doesn't work as hard as they could" (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (7)

    "Entrepreneurial and empowering"

    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 Belvedere Trading full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I've been loving my experience at Belvedere so far. This company defines collaboration. The leadership truly gives you the autonomy and ownership to make an impact at the firm. Ideas are embraced and every employee has multiple avenues to share ideas and opinions.

    Cons

    Nothing specific. With any dynamic company you have to be comfortable shifting gears quickly, however, that's what makes the work exciting and more impactful.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up. These are leaders that care about their people and demonstrate what it means to be a team.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Best company I’ve worked at"

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

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

    Pros

    -Freedom to work on the projects that I want to work on
    -Good compensation
    -Relatively low stress environment

    Cons

    -Some projects that are highly prioritized are not in line with business goals

  3. Helpful (7)

    "Great Place To Work"

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

    I have been working at Belvedere Trading full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Each day that I go to work, I feel lucky. The environment is supportive, but focused. I can work on whatever is interesting and I know that the product of my work will be implemented to make the firm money. The firm operates on the cutting edge of technology and finance, where the stakes are high and competition is fierce. Still, we are not afraid to try new things and failing fast can be better than never trying at all. I have received nothing but support from the company for making the right decisions, even if they did have the ideal outcome. Any innovative company follows that approach, and Belvedere has been and is a very innovative company in the trading industry. I would highly recommend Belvedere for the stimulating work environment and not just for the generous compensation package.

    Cons

    We are adding more layers of middle management, which is natural as a company grows and formalizes business processes. We should try to keep the entrepreneurial spirit of the company going which got us to this place.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work in motivating new employees and making sure that everyone knows the vision and knows that they are valuable in executing that vision.


  4. Helpful (7)

    "Good Place to Work"

    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 Belvedere Trading full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Lot of freedom to dictate your path; younger firm relatively speaking so there isn't a way you have to conform to in your work for the most part; successful place building itself for the long term; great co-workers; more than fair compensation especially given the work life balance

    Cons

    Culturally not a fit for everyone, although no different than any other firm - better for some than others; growing pains as firm continues to expand but being worked out; management working to be more transparent with decisions but not all the way there yet


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Flexibility to Grow"

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

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

    Pros

    - Opportunities to explore new skills and truly self-improve if motivated
    - Fun coworkers
    - Approachable Management
    - Autonomy through flat structure
    - Culture exist, but isn't forced into something that feels unnaturally pushed on you by management.

    Cons

    - Flat structure and autonomy can also result in poor focus on goals
    - Poor documentation of systems leads to knowledge being largely transferred through inefficient verbal communications


  6. Helpful (7)

    "Happy to work here"

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

    I have been working at Belvedere Trading full-time

    Pros

    I couldn't have imagined a better place to work out of college. The culture/team/work-life balance made me feel right at home from day one.

    Professionally, the work is interesting - I continually am writing in all three of our predominant development languages (C++, Python, C#) and I've had a variety of training/support/opportunity throughout my time at BT to grow to be a better developer. Furthermore, working in the trading industry leads to a litany of truly interesting applications that still make me excited to come to work almost every day even after I've been at the firm for almost three years.

    Culturally, Belvedere is a very welcoming place. I was actually motivated to write this review because I saw comments along the lines of "If you don’t go out drinking with the “in crowd” you will be left behind." I won't speak to other peoples' experiences, but I will say that I personally haven't found this to be the case. I don't particularly enjoy drinking nor do I go out with people from work on a regular basis, but I don't think that's either stunted my relationship with my coworkers or negatively impacted my career growth. Belvedere certainly enjoys having a good time and often throws many celebrations honoring different occasions (all time highlight 15th year anniversary trip to Bahamas all expenses paid for the entire company - join now before the 20th - end shameless plug) and I've always both enjoyed them and found them welcoming to the whole company.

    Work/Life Balance, Unlimitted PTO - can be hard to navigate what this means as a New Hire, but generally after you work for a couple of months you can take anything off within reason. I've taken multiple weeklong vacations basically every year along with a bunch of extended weekend by grabbing a M/F here and there and no one bats an eye. More than anything it's nice to have the freedom. Almost everyone works ~8/9-5/6 every day with an occasional stay late day. There's less of a pressure of being in the office than there is on getting your work done which I personally am very grateful for.

    Cons

    Not a very diverse workforce. This is more emblematic of trading/tech in general because I know BT is trying, but it's still mostly white males in the office. It'd be cool to see us make more progress on that front.

    Advice to Management

    I know people have gotten worked up over the changes that have been made to embrace EOS (our new process system) which was rocky to varying degrees across teams, but I think things have really settled and the benefits of it are starting to show. I think across the board quality and performance have improved significantly, the level of efficiency has risen, and people have adjusted well. People always hate change, but then they get over it. My advice is to not change it again. It's going fine, people are getting stuff done don't overthink it and let's just keep it moving.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "A challenging but fun and casual environment that is a great place to learn fast and grow."

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

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

    Pros

    Belvedere is a quick moving environment with a relatively flat structure that allows people to move and grow into roles throughout the firm. Unlike many larger firms you do not wind up pigeonholed into a team or role and can learn and rotate into many different roles. Belvedere has formalized training BTU as well as a very relaxed and open culture where there is a lot of information sharing and many cross-training opportunities. Many people start on one team or group and wind up finding where they really excel somewhere completely different.

    One of the better and in some ways unique parts of Belvedere’s culture, especially compared to large banks and less open environments is that people genuinely like their co-workers and team members and often socialize and develop strong friendships both after work and outside of work and are in sport leagues, go for drinks etc together. I have developed many strong friendships with current and former Belvederians that I hope to maintain for a lifetime.

    There are no closed doors at the firm, everyone from every position has the ability to interact with the owners, partners and let their opinions be known and often acted on. “Passionate discourse” is something they claim as a core value and people are encouraged to challenge conventional wisdom. The result is that anyone can create change if they can prove they have a better way forward. Belvedere management also seems to be able to take constructive criticism, new ideas better than most places I have worked, can still be improved, but still considerably better than many other environments.

    Work life balance is always a challenge in this industry and if you are looking for a quiet 9-5 job with little accountability, BT is going to be a very poor fit. People are expected to take ownership and in a pinch assist with things that are outside their direct responsibility and change course on a dime if the market dictates it. However, Belvedere does a pretty good job encouraging work life balance and have an open vacation policy and are fairly flexible with scheduling. People have taken sabbaticals and longer trips and been able to fulfill lifelong personal goals while being able to maintain their career.

    Cons

    Management made a serious mistake in mid- 2017 – spring 2018 and undertook a total office renovation and a total reorganization simultaneously that created a period of communication misfires, frustration and created an overall chaotic experience. While the adoption of EOS is really improving communication and has been positive, the rollout should have been done in isolation with managements total attention given to it.

    I will echo a complaint from a previous reviews is that we recruit from to narrow of a base of mostly big 10 and Ivy League schools and that has caused many of the recruits to be cut from the same mold and lacking the racial, age, socioeconomic, gender and diversity of life experience that would be really valuable to create a dynamic and innovative environment.

    Sometimes I feel like as a firm that has a very high skilled tech group that we fall into a “Not Invented here” mindset and take on projects that are outside our wheelhouse that we would have been better off focusing on core trading technology and gone for outside resources and products to solve.

    Advice to Management

    Work harder to recruit people from a wider racial, age, socioeconomic, gender and diversity of life experience.

    Make sure to maintain an environment that is casual, comfortable and welcoming enough for every employee to feel they can provide ideas and input and will be rewarded for speaking up and suggesting better ways forward. Passionate discourse should always be a democracy, not a tyranny of the loudest or most vocal.

  8. Helpful (5)

    "My View"

    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 Belvedere Trading full-time

    Pros

    Belvedere is a place that really values its employees, for better or worse they give a lot of freedom to choose your path to excel. There are those who recruit, teach btu, get involved in culture, or simply work hard at their day job. Belvedere doesn’t prescribe one way to contribute to the firm (more on this later).

    For someone who has been here a while, it is amazing how much move transparency we have now compared to before. There is a firm vision and we can see rocks across our organization on what people are working on. We have many venues to speak up about issues: L10’s, Ask Hutch & Yezdaan, Surveys or Advisor Meetings. We are even having a town hall to speak about our questions.

    What I really love about Belvedere is the people. And more than that is how many people genuinely care about each other at the firm. There is a sense of community and employees are friends outside of work, even to the point where people will room or take a trip together.

    Cons

    One of the drawbacks of choosing your own path makes it hard to relate how well you are doing compared to others. And since we are a company of competitive, overachievers it is hard to watch others get promoted without really knowing why or what could I have done better.

    Honestly, I think we sometimes over complicate things. From how our systems work, to how we compensate, to some of our office policies, we allow too many options. It is great for some individuals but detracts from the overall team

    Advice to Management

    We need more why are our 1-year goals important and how will they make sure successful. 2019 is your chance to give a compelling vision and why it is necessary and important to our success.


  9. Helpful (7)

    "Pixie dust"

    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 Belvedere Trading full-time

    Pros

    Amazing that this company has figured out the solution to what ails it. This magic pixie dust is called EOS and will fix cultural, motivational, and leadership issues. It may also cure cancer and give us world peace.

    In all seriousness, the company has grown a lot because of 1-2 teams and it is trying a lot of other things that may or may not work. Some of the people are trying really hard while others are just coasting. Change is good IF, and this is a big IF, IF it can be managed competently. This is an open question....

    Cons

    So how does a company that is a one-trick pony join a circus with other tricks. By NOT doing what management at this place has been and continues to do. They promote the wrong people, use unnecessary sport analogies in just about everything, and try new "fads", thinking that it will give them cover or promote the idea that something is being done. This place is run like a college frat which just actively promotes drinking. Just quickly look at our social media and you will see two things. Which campuses we are going to go to and what drinking event did we partake in. Nothing else.

    The problem here is very simple - lack of leadership and vision. Just saying we want to be the best trading company, is neither (those are just words). Just hiring people because they check some box, is neither (those are just politicization). Just taking your CTO and making them a CEO, is neither (that is called not making a tough decision). Hiring a COO without trading experience, is neither (it is called checking the box). These are all just cop-outs and will not grow the firm.

    And then the magic formula of EOS. What a joke this has been. The entire future of the company has been staked on this 3 word acronym. This is similar to an obese person eating a double steak burger with mayo and ordering a diet coke. In this case, the diet coke is EOS and will fix issue that are clearly more deeply embedded within the culture of the firm. The so called culture carriers are a big part of the problem. Blinder based decision making is another.

    Advice to Management

    Give it up and add a new structure with new and old leaders. Let them fight it out and in the end, this is not only be more entertaining, but it may just be what needs to be fixed here. EOS be dammed.


  10. Helpful (7)

    "Options Trader"

    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

    I worked at Belvedere Trading full-time

    Pros

    Lots of alcohol, work events fun, good work parties

    Cons

    Technology fees very expensive, get stabbed in the back but not said to your face, have to be buddy buddy instead of talented to get to the top, need to go to Rice and/or play rugby to run a product regardless of intelligence, all the talent left as politics wins out

    Advice to Management

    Put people in charge based on ability, not ability to suck up