Cengage Reviews | Glassdoor

Cengage Reviews

Updated December 7, 2018
1,143 reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • "Shifting of upper management as well as titles for positions is frequent" (in 69 reviews)

  • "Work-life balance can quickly become unbalanced if you're not careful" (in 27 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Great vision, and commitment to excellence"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Systems Analyst in Rapid City, SD
    Current Employee - Senior Systems Analyst in Rapid City, SD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The leadership of the company has been jaw-droppingly motivated, visionary, and transparent. They have turned a company haunted by downturns in the market into a trendsetter that is adapting profitably. Along the way they have been committed to employee growth and job satisfaction. I am thrilled with what we are doing for learning. Cengage is a good company with a good purpose!

    Cons

    The education market is highly scrutinized by media and government.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you are doing. In 20 years with the company, you are the only management group tackling the real problems, and doing so successfully.

    Cengage Response

    Nov 21, 2018 – CEO

    Thank you for an impressive 20 years of service. I am personally grateful for the leadership from our Executive Team and from leaders like you at every level across the company. Our focus on access... More


  2. "Digital Success Specialist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Digital Success Specialist in Florence, KY
    Current Employee - Digital Success Specialist in Florence, KY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Relaxed, modern environment, excellent employee treatment, always improving and asking for feedback

    Cons

    training seemed rush and a bit intimidating when you first start

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you are doing. I've never been happier at a company.

  3. "The Most Rewarding Job I've Had"

    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 Cengage full-time

    Pros

    -Collaborative environment
    -Surrounded by intelligent, devoted and passionate people
    -Lots of great leadership
    -CEO I trust
    -Fair pay
    -I feel recognized and valued for my accomplishments and contributions
    -Believe we're paving the way with innovative solutions for our market

    Cons

    -A lot of meetings; sometimes leaving little time for actual execution work
    -Too heavy on the contract labor, not hiring folks we should have on-board full-time
    -Work-life balance can quickly become unbalanced if you're not careful
    -Workload can be unnecessarily heavy with jobs whose efficacy hasn't been sufficiently measured
    -Not enough holidays


  4. "Manager"

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

    Pros

    People people people they make it work here.

    Cons

    Starting pay not as competitive as it could be.

    Advice to Management

    On the right track


  5. "Cengage Boston, Digital"

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

    I worked at Cengage full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Enough people who care about what they do.

    Cons

    Too much contractor churn; resulting product is a mess.
    Salary not too competitive.
    Too much middle management.


  6. Helpful (4)

    "High turnover rates and death marches"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    You most likely will work with nice and friendly people.
    Company sponsored social events.
    Ability to work from home 1-2 days a week.

    Cons

    Death marshes all the time.
    Very, very high turnover rate among GPT (technology).
    Extremely low merit increases in the past 2 years. Company considers 1% merit increase as normal and 2% for exceeding expectations employees.
    Culture where Contractors and Professional Services people are treated better than Full Time Employees.

    Advice to Management

    Stop replacing FTEs with contractors
    Send all those high payed contractors home and grown your own engineering department.
    Invest in people.
    Stop those death marshes where people are working 60 hrs a week


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Unusual and Unstable"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Digital Production Manager in Clifton Park Center, NY
    Former Employee - Digital Production Manager in Clifton Park Center, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

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

    Pros

    Excellent work colleagues
    Work from home policy
    Flexible scheduling
    Decent healthcare/401k

    Cons

    Low compensation
    Super high turnover rate
    Zero accountability for failing products
    Management is out of touch with reality
    There are literally no raises given (2% at most)
    The hope for any type of promotion is slim to none
    General confusion among departments; no culpability
    Company is suffering with regard to digital production
    Full time employees are being replaced with contractors at an alarming rate

    Advice to Management

    From a purely social perspective, Cengage was a great place to work. The people are truly wonderful and so many of them are trying their best to accomplish the lofty and somewhat strange goals that management has developed as a business plan. The digital production, which is front and center in today's market, is sub-par at best. Entire departments are being let go and contractors are being brought in to manage products - including proprietary Cengage software - that were never quite working correctly in the first place. The digital platforms used are weak and outdated and cannot accommodate the demands of users. One quick look at the Cengage Twitter or Facebook feeds from users paints a picture of frustrated students whose questions and critical concerns largely go either unanswered or unsolved. The entire company seems to be in a quick spiral downward because the products simply do not work, and when they break (which they frequently do) there are no experts left to fix them. I cannot see how the new Cengage sales initiative, Cengage Unlimited, can benefit the profit at all when students and instructors for the most part hate the products. I was on a team that developed MindTap and I have never witnessed such chaos and stress in my life. Due to a recent overhaul of job descriptions and duties, followed by very little viable (or understandable) training in the new roles has left the digital content managers scrambling to understand their next moves, which delays the content from getting to the production teams, and once it's available to the digital producers it's usually filled with errors and in a panicked rush to get published. Basically, no one knows what he or she is doing and the mounting stress and panic is making for a very tense and unhappy workplace.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Mid-Year Review (Sales)"

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

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

    Pros

    There are plenty of things to love about this company. Great people (if you're lucky and end up on a great team), decent summer and winter hours (working from home if you're in the sales field), and ok benefits. Company car for sales reps out in the field with gas allowance, professional development that includes a yearly week-long sales summit to network with your peers from all over the country (although if you are not a manager you have to share a room with someone which is a huge downside to perks). With the launch of Cengage Unlimited, everyone is excited and optimistic for the future. People here in general are mission driven and goal oriented and really do care about the work they do. It's a challenging, ever-changing environment but that's what makes it exciting, in my opinion. You truly do feel good about the work you're doing to help students learn.

    Cons

    As mentioned above, it's an ever-changing industry and one that has to keep re-inventing itself constantly to keep up. Customers know this and are very stand-offish even with the launch of Unlimited which lowers the cost of materials significantly for students. I haven't been here long enough to see any high turnover but have heard from a number of others that re-orgs happen often. Technology does not align with that of the company's ethos. Cengage is still far, far away from its goal of being "85 percent" digital. Instructors don't buy it. Platforms are old and dated, and, no matter how great the benefits, instructors already have their minds set and aren't willing to change. Cengage's internal CRM (Magellan) is terrible and no one seems to be doing anything about it. Trying to update one opportunity can take up to 15 minutes. This doesn't seem like a lot but when you have 100+ to work on and the system is constantly freezing and running slow- it adds up. Sales reps are constantly having to apologize to customers for tech issues. Training was inefficient and didn't cover at all what you needed to learn before selling season started. For reps completely new to the industry, this can mean missing their bonus(es) as they are only paid out twice a year. Many professors are now pressured to turn to free educational resources (OER) and are very stand-offish toward publishers. It's very much a customer service job and you will be wearing MANY hats and encounter lots of rude customers who will try to make you feel low because of their own bias toward publishers. During selling seasons be prepared to work ridiculously long hours and somehow be expected to plan for 4-day campus visits (like writing detailed lesson plans which can take hours), spend long hours on campus while trying to juggle 20+ emails, update CRM and conduct follow ups all in the same week. Not to mention learn new products, platforms and processes all at the same time. It can be mentally draining. Vacation is not competitive when compared to other publishers and "tech" companies, and neither is base salary.

    Advice to Management

    Please advocate for a better CRM system. If not Salesforce, then one that can be highly functional without crashing and freezing in the middle of work because 1,000+others are on it at the same time. Additionally, managers have just as heavy of a workload as reps do hence they should understand that pointless 1-hour team calls and end-of-the week updates only disrupt out performance, not enhance it. We are adults who know how to do our jobs and if we don't, you wouldn't have hired us. Please loosen up all the corporate procedures such as unnecessary team calls and other busy work so that we can focus on our customers and ensuring we are being efficient with our time.

    Cengage Response

    Dec 3, 2018 – Vice President, Sales Strategy and Operations

    I’m happy to hear that you are as excited as I am about Cengage Unlimited and the momentum we have. These ARE exciting times as we take the lead on providing affordable access to high quality... More


  9. "Learning Consultant"

    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 Cengage full-time

    Pros

    Great Company, salary, benefits & management.

    Cons

    If your not a manager you have to share rooms at NSM


  10. "Cengage Review"

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

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

    Pros

    Challenging, engaging, excellent training and growth opportunities, strong leadership

    Cons

    I have none to list at this time.