Creative Circle Reviews | Glassdoor

Creative Circle Reviews

Updated July 19, 2017
111 reviews

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Creative Circle
49 Ratings

111 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Have had great experiences with placements and have gotten lots of opportunities to experience different industries (in 9 reviews)

  • Thanks to Creative Circle, I'm now in a full-time position that I absolutely love (in 15 reviews)

Cons
  • They rarely ever transition to full time, so it is a complete waste of time (in 12 reviews)

  • Most of the jobs they offer aren't full time-- it ranges from a day-long job to a full year (in 21 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "EXPLOITATION and the resumé shuffle"

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

    I worked at Creative Circle (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    The automatically generated emails might boost your hopes and confidence. And, you might get lucky. But don't count on it

    Cons

    They just throw resumes from one side of the table to the next. No real effort is put into making or cultivating connections or opportunities. But what's most outrageous is how often they leverage the overblown temp-to-perm promise which leaves many talented (well-intentioned) individuals without a job after many months of exclusively dedicating themselves to one opportunity. This is great for the company or agency and great for Creative Circle. On the other hand, talented people are left chasing the fantasy of a full-time job with no guarantees or commitments. A vast majority of these situations result in job loss with very little notice or explanation and often well short of the so called contract. A contract that clearly states they can end the gig at any time. In addition, this no-obligation arrangement provides no incentive to properly train or develop talent. I know this because in the past I have found myself, shamefully and at times unwillingly (for a variety of reasons), on both sides of their table. Never again.

    How this company and others like it, have managed to cultivate this explorative business model is beyond me. And shame to the business and ad agency world for supporting this exploitation of talent.

    Advice to Management

    Get out of town! You've made enough money and you've exploited enough talent! PERIOD.


  2. Helpful (3)

    "Clients over People"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    There isn't much I can include here.

    Cons

    I have since moved on to a better opportunity. I've worked with many agencies. But this one though they pretended to be nice and helpful in the beginning showed their true colors when the role started. Their clients come first in every respect. They will feed you some BS about them wanting to help you and work with you. This is garbage. Don't trust them, don't work with them. Waste of time. I don't know how the other locations operate but Portland? Don't waste your time.

  3. "Many Empty Promises"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Creative Circle as a contractor

    Pros

    They appear to be connected to some awesome companies. The operative word is "appear."

    Cons

    I signed up with this agency twice to find me copywriting and proofreading work. Once in 2009, and this year (2017). The experience was disappointing both times.

    You go into the interview, and the recruiter offers you the moon and the stars. You leave, feeling really good about the chances of them finding you work. But lo, and behold; that's probably the last time you'll hear from your recruiter. My recruiter said she'd send me a proofreading test. Never did.

    They sent me emails for jobs, and I applied, but I never got a response. It makes me wonder if their jobs are bogus.

    Advice to Management

    Ensure that recruiters are keeping in touch with candidates. If you have no candidates, you have no business!


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Waste of Time"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Freelancer - Anonymous Freelancer in Indianapolis, IN
    Former Freelancer - Anonymous Freelancer in Indianapolis, IN
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    I liked that they had a focus on recruiting for marketing and creative agencies. A lot more niche than most recruiters I've dealt with.

    Cons

    Told them my specific salary range, that I was only interested in full-time, and the city I wanted to work in. They only send me potential jobs in Cincinnati, with low-ball salaries for freelance positions. Total waste of time and clogs up my inbox. Not to mention, every time I apply for a position that I am more than qualified for I never get a response.

    Creative Circle Response

    Jun 7, 2017 – Jackie

    Thank you for taking the time to leave a review. Our Indianapolis market is new and feedback like yours helps us improve. That said, we’re sorry to hear about your experience and hope we can make it... More


  5. "Freelancer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Job Seeker in New York, NY
    Former Contractor - Job Seeker in New York, NY
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Creative Circle as a contractor (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    This company has great connections to some of the biggest names in the business. Used to have decent hourly rates.

    Cons

    Hourly rates are ridiculously low. Recruiters don't know how to place you and waste your time. There must have been a huge turnover here because everyone recruiting now has no idea how to place anyone and are beyond rude. Don't make people work for free because you don't know how to represent them and take a giant chunk of their hard earned money. Don't go to them. There are other agencies that suck less out there.

    Advice to Management

    Find. Recruiters. Who. Know. What. They. Are. Doing.


  6. "Screen the Hiring Clients as Well"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Freelancer - Anonymous Freelancer
    Former Freelancer - Anonymous Freelancer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    They are able to schedule several interviews that lead to nowhere.

    Cons

    Require extensive information from potential employees in order to sign them up to an emailing system that provides opportunities. If you respond to the email, there is little likelihood that the recruited will reach out to you since this brilliant email system of theirs is completely manual. If you are going to screen the employees as much as you do, also screen the employers to see if they really are committed to hiring or contracting a freelancer. Several of their clients use the service to screen candidates with no intention of hiring.

    Advice to Management

    Screen your clients just as much as you screen the candidates. Communicate with the candidates. Don't waste people's time and effort.


  7. "Not interested in candidates, only the bottom line"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Freelancer in New York, NY
    Current Contractor - Freelancer in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Creative Circle as a contractor (More than a year)

    Pros

    Can't think of any right now.

    Cons

    They pretend like they care about your career and want to help, and then you never hear from them again, unless it's a crappy job they can't get anyone else to do. They charge the company you're working for almost 100% over what you are actually getting. It's the biggest scam in the world. Employers end up letting you go because they can't afford the hourly rate Creative Circle is charging and Creative Circle won't release you to bill directly even after a year of making tens of thousands of dollars off of you.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the great work of milking companies and talent to improve your bottom line.

  8. Helpful (9)

    "Run away from here if you want to get paid and valued"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Graphic Designer in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Graphic Designer in Portland, OR
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Creative Circle full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Is a good start for a recent graduate who is looking to gain initial experience in the field.

    - The initial process is quick from an introduction to getting your foot in the door.

    Cons

    I can only speak for the Portland office.

    - Recruiters would get upset if you don't want to take the job that they found for you. Technically forces you into it even if you are not interested. It's a desperate action.

    - They don't care if you get paid late or don't get paid at all. When following up, they ignore you. They take their long, sweet time and the pay supposed to be weekly. So beware of this!

    - Creative Circle takes a huge percentage of your money when you work, they never tell you this but pretty sure is not a secret either. This can affect since the employer would consider cutting hours.

    - When recruiters find out you are looking for another job on your own or if you have an offer they get to be incredibly manipulative asking a bunch of questions to talk to you out of it and how you are burning bridges with them and the employer, etc.

    - Their clients are "ok" not really big or renowned companies.

    - Creative Circle always tries to low ball your rate.

    - Most assignments are temporary.

    Advice to Management

    Train your recruiters right, I don't think most of them understand the field and the value of the different levels of creatives. Be more responsive, especially when it comes to paying. Don't low ball them, I know you guys have to make money but get in your candidate shoes, more experience is more money. If a candidate says they're not interested, please respect that... It can be for numerous reasons. There's no need to threaten a candidate, remember that your agency is not the only one in the market.


  9. Helpful (7)

    "Very disappointed with this organization"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Freelance Writer in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Freelance Writer in Houston, TX
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    I can't think of one benefit of signing up with Creative Circle.

    Cons

    Excessive emails promoting opportunities, many of which I am very qualified for, and never an opportunity to communicate with the organization about the, much less land an interview. The sales representative who initially interviewed me to sign on with this placement organization is no longer an employee, and no one else will return my calls.

    Advice to Management

    Be straightforward to candidates about their prospects of finding freelance work through your placement agency. I am a highly qualified copywriter with more than 15 years of experience and have yet to be interviewed by a prospective client. Totally non-professional.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "An Embarrassingly Sad Talent Agency"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Contractor - Designer in Atlanta, GA
    Former Contractor - Designer in Atlanta, GA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Creative Circle as a contractor

    Pros

    Beyond getting paid weekly, there really aren't any. Go to Aquent/Vitamin Talent. I've worked with them and they actually have good clients. CC seems to be unconcerned about their clients (the companies) and their creative talent (candidates).

    Cons

    I can't tell creative talent reading who may be reading this strong enough: CC will waste your time. They appear to be a legit agency on the surface, but aren't true professionals when it comes to hiring creative talent.

    I'm a professional contract designer/freelancer, and have been for the last 6 years. I have yet to see a company with recruiters who are so obviously incompetent, with so little business skill and background. It almost appears that they search job boards at random and try to see if they can find a candidate that fits the description.

    Just when you think CC may have actually done something right, they drop the ball yet again. After trying to be patient with the recruiters I've spoken to over the last year, I've simply had to determine that they've sought out people with no real business skill to be recruiters (and it's likely their management is much the same).

    Here are the Cons:

    • Contacting you REPEATEDLY for jobs that are NOT a fit for your skillset (after you've told them what your skillset is)
    • Having multiple recruiters from their own agency contact your about either the exact same job, or another job at the same company (recruiters don't seem to communicate well with each other, or don't have a software system to do so....)
    • Low-balling the hourly rate, but needing candidates with a great skillset
    • Recruiters actually READING and UNDERSTANDING what a company wants BEFORE they contact a candidate. I can't tell you how many times the job description and what the company was looking for was different, and not at all what I wanted. It's even worse when you go on the actual interview, and determine the recruiter may have paid zero attention to what the client wanted.
    • Getting an email 2-3 months LATER from a CC recruiter that a job is canceled or on hold
    • Noticing that the recruiter does not coordinate anything with companies in the midst of the hiring process (start dates, interview feedback, etc...)
    • All around incompetence. Recruiting is a skill, and it seems CC doesn't take that seriously

    Advice to Management

    Go to Aquent or Vitamin Talent and study how they place talent. CC is literally the worst agency I've ever worked with, and you seem to be getting worse all the time. If you took this advice seriously, you would:
    • Properly train your recruiters on work ethic, industry research, and the nuances of placing creative talent
    • Teach recruiters to CLEARLY understand a company's needs before seeking out talent to fill the role
    • Make sure recruiters properly follow up with companies and candidates after the job interview. I can't tell you how many interviews I've gone on with CC where it appeared that the recruiter could care less if it went well, or whether I had any feedback about the experience
    • Stop your useless job alerts and calling candidates for jobs that appear to be fake.
    • Use time to your advantage: Good Freelancers and Contractors are not on job market a long time because we're actually good at what we do. Create goals for companies to reach hiring decisions in a timely fashion.
    • Stop allowing companies to suddenly want a candidate to "get started" after having interviewed 2+ months ago. Real candidates are busy, and don't drop everything for an organization who has no respect for anyone's time.
    • Invest in an up to date time-keeping system that isn't old and clumsy.
    • Hire recruiters & leadership who actually care and are interested in connecting great companies and great candidates.
    • Take yourself seriously, and get recruiters who do the same. Every CC recruiter I've had contact with I couldn't take seriously, no matter how much I wanted to.

    Creative Circle Response

    Apr 20, 2017 – Jackie

    Thank you for the honest feedback. I regret your experience with us and assure you our team is taking it seriously. I’ve shared your review with all levels of management and if you’re open to it... More


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