CNL Software Reviews | Glassdoor

CNL Software Reviews

Updated June 23, 2017
18 reviews

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CNL Software CEO Keith Bloodworth
Keith Bloodworth
11 Ratings

18 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "Fantastic Company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Guildford, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Guildford, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great technology, nice team, exciting proudct

    Cons

    None, the business has come along way in the past 12 months and become an amazing place to work

    CNL Software Response

    Jul 12, 2017 – VP Marketing

    Thank you! It is great to hear that the changes we have put in over the last couple of years are having a positive impact on the team here in the UK, as well as the teams in the US and Middle East.


  2. Helpful (6)

    "Just awful."

    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 CNL Software full-time

    Pros

    Pay rate is above average, and if you're local the commute is ok. The business is in a very limited market, so its job security is assured if you can 'Hack it' to quote our CEO.

    Cons

    Stress is off the charts as unreasonable demands flow through this business. I don't entirely know how we stay in business, as the stack of unfinished work increases, and resources are stretched thinner and thinner.

    The offices are awful, and benefits are non existent.

    No one at the company knows how the whole product works entirely, and in engineering our key knowledge holders have all moved on, so we're often stuck trying to find a needle in a haystack when a problem arises.

    Advice to Management

    Give people the space to do what you ask, stop asking for every hour to be 200% effective. We cant bend time and space, and apparently neither can you.

  3. Helpful (9)

    "A true horror story."

    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 CNL Software full-time

    Pros

    The pay is excellent, very high rates for outside of London, the work matters it protects people in an ever more dangerous world.

    Cons

    The company don't take that protection seriously, rushed hacks and cut corners, projects cut short to close new business, new business becomes old business just as fast unless the customer is the golden child of senior management.

    The company treats staff the same way, there are the 'chosen few' who regardless of competence, can do no wrong, even in the face of overwhelming facts. Tyrannical executive management, lead to a culture of fear, where these chosen staff, can and will tell executives whatever they please, and better the management will believe it as gospel.

    The management response to any negativity, will be to systematically bully and exclude people, setting impossible targets, deliberately setting people up to fail then browbeating them for it. Whereas the chosen, especially of the CEO, will be hailed as a success, even as projects fall down around them.

    I've kept an eye here frequently, as reviews were negative when I joined, and there was what appeared to be a turnaround, but it appears history repeats itself, I can't wait to get out. Now the management have deployed the faithful to post here, once again trying to as one previous review puts it 'Manipulate the reviews here', and I can't stay silent.

    Not for everyone? Not the normal 9-5? Definitely not. Get ready to work extra hours, weekends, and travel at no notice, for no reward (other than that salary, for which your contract specifies you'll work..... 9 - 5 (lets not even get to the comical pension scheme which is treated more as a hindrance to the business, than an actual benefit) oh, and the 'mythical stock options' mentioned in other reviews still pervade.

    Oh, and the company is almost certainly circling the drain, late payments, un-paid expenses, we seem to be living invoice to invoice.

    Advice to Management

    You spend forever talking about the value of the work, and you just don't get it. You sell the sizzle, then swap the steak for mutton. You only care about how important the work is when you're selling it, or beating someone up for not delivering the cheques your egos wrote. It must be fun playing global executive. If only people could spend a day in the office and see how little substance there is at CNL.

    Still, don't forget to turn the lights out eh?


  4. Helpful (2)

    "A great chance to grow for some, too challenging for the others"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Knaphill, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Knaphill, England (UK)
    Recommends

    I have been working at CNL Software full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Quite a small company setting itself ambitious goals.
    I've been working as a developer for years, however there was a lot to learn in this place.
    But it very much depends on your attitude - if you're proactive, independent, there is always an open ear for new ideas and the seniors are there to help you out if they are not too busy.
    As far as I know, R&D process was not managed very well few years ago, but luckily since I joined I saw a recovery taking place, however not as fast as I'd want it to.
    If you like Server side, coding architecture, and to be professionally challenged - this place if for you.
    If you you like an easy going 9-5 job, this is not for you.

    Cons

    Despite the recovery mentioned earlier, the management side is still weak - not well-defined processes, ineffective planning, lack of requirements, lack of documentation.
    However, I've seen most of those in every company I ever worked for.

    Advice to Management

    Need better planning, especially between the teams.

    CNL Software Response

    Jul 12, 2017 – VP Marketing

    It is really good to hear from you. It takes the right attitude to succeed in any company, and we are lucky to have some great examples of people with the “right stuff” here at CNL Software. We are... More


  5. Helpful (9)

    "Glad to have moved on to a Professional Company that cares About Its Employees......"

    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 CNL Software full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    None that I can think of that have not already been stated by the other valuable contributions from Ex-CNL staff.

    Cons

    When six full-time staff leave a company in six months and take with them valuable experience and knowledge, it is pretty clear that something fundamental is wrong. Especially when you add these departures to all those full-time staff who left in 2013. For people reading these voluntary contributions, this is not about retribution, it is about sharing our combined experiences of working in an organisation that treats its staff in such a way that the churn rate is typically > 50%.

    Everyone knows that the US office for CNL Software Inc was a PO Box, until the entire US team resigned. As for the announcements regarding how wonderful everything is, maybe someone should ask previous and existing customers, some of whom who are still waiting for software fixes and upgrades about their experiences, in order to obtain an accurate picture.

    I am sure this review will result in more rhetoric from the owners of CNL, as opposed to reflection and positive change in their management styles or acceptance that they do not have the necessary skills to retain experienced, professional full-time employees. An IT software company without experienced, knowledgeable professionals, is unlikely to succeed in a growingly competitive market.

    Advice to Management

    If you change nothing you run the risk of losing everything.


  6. Helpful (12)

    "Don't put your life in the hands of this business"

    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 CNL Software full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Former reputation of business with large corporate customers looks good on your cv, even if you had little part of it, aided by the Sales and Marketing.

    Cons

    Sales and Marketing should be renamed to "Smoke and Mirrors" as we're told everything is going great when simple checks outside the business show otherwise. No wonder we're told who we can talk to and who we can not.

    Really bad blame culture, there are few friends here and back patting this week can easily become backstabbing the next as most people are simply looking out for themselves. This is not good for the business. If blame can't be passed internally then blame is aimed at those that have left - in some cases years ago. Failing that blaming the customer is always good in the hope that they will stop being a "difficult" customer and leave after paying upfront.

    There is no innocent until proven guilty in this business and unfounded accusations are often made with no investigation or few apologies afterwards.

    Lack of quality as many developers don't test and the same bugs keep reappearing. Some are all talk and state why they shouldn't be doing a feature, or that its too hard to do. You're paid well over the going rate so if you can't do it then go and do something you can - work in McDonalds where you're not endangering someone's life.

    Management have been badly appointed from internal and external inexperienced sources with no leadership skills and often poor technical skills. Combined with no training this is doomed to fail. Several potentially good appointments have been overlooked or made too late to stop staff leaving.

    With so many bad management appointments, widespread lack of professionalism and talent, and public domain checks I fear this business is way less than worthless.

    Advice to Management

    Grow up. Seriously.

    You're in a serious market place protecting lives - so act like you care and start with your staff. Lack of training, high salary expectations and poor attitude has left many that will struggle to get new employment when they have to.

    This is the security business not the protection business so stop running the family Firm, with your "adopted family" Management, with fear and mistrust. It's only Knaphill not London's East End in the 1960's.

    Understand that when staff leave quoting "personal reasons" its because you don't listen and being blanked for the last days rather than bullied just makes leaving more comfortable.


  7. Helpful (8)

    "It could have been a great place to work....."

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

    I worked at CNL Software full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great customers, exceptional staff (some of them). If you live within 10 minutes of the offices in Knaphill it is an excellent commute. The diversity of customers provides an excellent environment in which to learn about integrated security solutions across key vertical markets. If you have experienced life in a boarding school, the military or other such establishment, then the daily doctrine will be a breeze for you.

    Cons

    Ridicule and confrontation are daily occurrences in the office; regardless of whether you are a senior manager; manager; long serving member of staff or newbie. I have certainly not come across the sort of behaviour deemed acceptable by the family owners of this business, in any other IT related company that I have worked for.

    There is no such thing as a work - life balance at CNL, when you sign on the dotted line, you are giving your soul to the family cause. For instance, if during impromptu Q & A sessions, which can occur randomly on a daily basis without notice, you do not regurgitate answers to all questions posed to the satisfaction of the owners, be prepared for a verbal lashing. For at CNL, it is always some elses fault, and the fault always lies with the staff and not the family members!

    They say you can judge a book by its cover. In the case of CNL, you only need turn the first page to see what is real vs. prophesied.

    Advice to Management

    Accept that you have weaknesses and are not infallible, and stop looking for the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It doesn't exist! The most important asset you have are your people, when three experienced members of staff leave in the space of a couple of weeks of each other, you need to accept the reasons why and change.

  8. Helpful (8)

    "A bad life experience - learnt a lot"

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

    I worked at CNL Software full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The product concept was very exciting.

    Some lovely people to get to know.

    Your forced to learn very quickly, a great place to develop people skills

    Small office generally means you can find the people your looking for, unless your looking for management.

    Cons

    Extremely demotivating environment and management team.

    The company needs a lot of work, there were no solid processes, the company spends its whole time fighting fires which makes for a very stressful environment.

    The company hasn't got the strong foundation it needs to be the great company it was once capable of being. I've seen too many strong capable people come into that company and get crushed under the enormity of problems solving they are faces with without the tools the fix any of it. There are too many barriers in the current management for any manager to come in and make a difference, too many ego's.

    100% staff turn over in 3 years

    Advice to Management

    Stop trying to expand your company and instead work on getting your product stable. Look after your exciting customers instead of trying to acquire new ones.

    Look after your staff, at the end of the day they are the ones that keep you in business. Stop blaming your staff for your short comings and instead look at the management. Remove the blind and see that only a small handful of people left because of family and other reasons and see that the majority left because they were fighting a losing battle for which they received no appreciation or acknowledgement.

    Don't make favourites, you treated some members of staff above and beyond what I've known any other employer to do and by doing so you alienated them from their team and the rest of your staff, which resulted in their resignation also.

    You should not complain to your staff about the things you don't like, you are management, if there is a problem, deal with it professionally.

    Hire a cleaner! your staff are not cleaners and do not need the extra stress of being told off like school children then they make a mess.

    Let your staff go home early on a Friday once in a while.
    Being late isn't the end of the world, don't make a big deal of it.

    Keith - Don't email your entire staff when your in a tizzy about something, it demotivates everyone!

    Do not use the CCTV cameras to watch your staff, its wrong and demotivating - we know you did this!

    MOST IMPORTANTLY - Take your bad reviews seriously, its hard not to get defensive but it could give you the opportunity to look at your company and how you can improve it, if you can set aside your ego's and admit that some of this might actually be your fault I believe that CNL might still have a chance but it will take a lot of time, money and back peddling.

    There are a large number of us that have very deep scares left by CNL, we put in our blood sweat and tears for that company and now that we've left we're treated like spiteful children which is really sad.


  9. Helpful (10)

    "Worst company I've ever worked for."

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

    I worked at CNL Software full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    High tech product,
    Great connections to other businesses in the UK,
    No London commute necessary.
    High salaries.

    Cons

    Absolutely awful dictatorial executive management, who like to play favorites.
    Company is haemhoraging talent, very few staff with any deep product knowledge left.
    Complete inability to deliver anything on time, even versions of their own product.

    Advice to Management

    Sell up, and let someone who knows what they're doing run the company.

    I held on right till the end, but just couldn't swallow the false hype anymore. Stop pretending you're the big player, and accept that there are serious issues throughout the business, you're losing ground to your competitors, and no one is happy.

    You're barely retaining the talent you have left, by paying well above market rates, and they'll be gone as soon as the coffers run out.

    Stop strategically trying to massage the reviews here on Glassdoor, your ignorance of how the social web is demonstrative of your inability to grasp modern trends, which is why you still create software the way we did it in the 80s. I'd held off posting a review, until I saw the unbelievably rainbows and sunshine reviews appearing, and I'm afraid the truth must out.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Fast paced company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Management in Knaphill, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Management in Knaphill, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at CNL Software full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    CNL is a small fast paced company, which demands a lot from its team members, but offer a unique place to accelerate a career. If you have ambition and want to make a mark than this is the place to do it.

    I have seen lots of people come through the company, make a huge impact over a number of years and leave to find a role they would ever have been able to get without the experience they had at CNL. It is not an easy ride, some days it can be tough, but at the end of those days, I do feel that I have achieved something significant. If you are like me and want to work in a company that is trying to achieve something no one has done before and where you have the opportunity to push the boundaries of your abilities then consider CNL. If you are happier following a well-trodden path, then consider somewhere else.

    The company is fairly flat, so senior management have a good understanding of what everyone is working on, some people see this as negative, but others enjoy the fact that their efforts are seen throughout the company.

    Cons

    The office is not in the best location, traffic can be bad on some days. The office is also not the newest or best equipped, but it is a good environment to focus on work without distractions.

    Advice to Management

    You can’t please all of the people all of the time, don’t let the actions of a few change a winning formula.


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