Credit Karma Reviews | Glassdoor

Credit Karma Reviews

Updated July 17, 2017
104 reviews

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3.5
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Credit Karma CEO and Founder Kenneth Lin
Kenneth Lin
82 Ratings

104 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Not a big deal, but the company is growing fast so space is an issue (in 6 reviews)

  • Maybe I was spoiled at my last job where I could work from home whenever I wanted (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (13)

    "One of the best late stage startups"

    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 Credit Karma full-time

    Pros

    - People are passionate, focused, and hungry to learn and do more
    - Eng. and product teams have done a great job hiring great leaders; you can clearly see the leadership difference compared to previous years
    - Business is doing great!
    - Great work/life balance
    - Onsite barista and lunch
    - Politics compared to some other companies is non-existent; if you think otherwise, then you haven't been around
    - Lots of interesting challenges
    - Executive team (VPs and above) are very approachable

    Cons

    - A fast-growing company that is experiencing growing pains, so you need to be patient
    - Lack of experienced leaders or no leaders in some teams are causing scaling challenges
    - A better company gym program or gym reimbursement program

    Advice to Management

    - Invest much more time and effort in finding top talent in key areas.
    - Do a better job with managing out the low performers


  2. Helpful (3)

    "Less Software Engineer Culture Compared to Other Bay Area Tech Company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    great work life balance, great office.

    Cons

    infrastructure is a pain. No stock refreshers

  3. Helpful (10)

    "Know what you're getting yourself into"

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

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

    Pros

    - Most people are very nice
    - Decent work-life balance
    - One of the few companies out there with massive customer scale

    Cons

    - Horrific tech debt
    - One-trick pony. Up until recently, the business has thrived off of the same product it came out with in 2007. Most of the engineers spend their time making sure old services don't fall over and shuffling around the way we present our main product.
    - Suffers from extremely bureaucratic culture that involves tons of meetings and tons of trouble making decisions because every team has a million cooks in the kitchen.


  4. Helpful (7)

    "Awesome place to work"

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

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

    Pros

    If you would have asked me last year, I would have given a much harsher review. Things have changed in the past year, however, and it's (for the most part) for the better.

    - The company has split (generally) into verticals. This makes it a lot easier to figure out whats going on with what you'll be working on and more structured. Before, I was working on a lot of different things and it was hard to context switch and figure out who to ask about questions/issues I had. Splitting into verticals has solved a lot of this.

    - I work with some really great and smart people. While there's always some dead weight, there doesn't seem to be as much at CK as I've seen at other places I've worked (on my team and the teams I work with, at least). Everyone seems to be very passionate about what they do. People are very nice as well. There's a few jerks in engineering, but 99% of people are pleasant to work with.

    - Perks are pretty good. The events team works really hard and always sets up fun offsets and outings for us.

    - Senior management really seems to listen. It sometimes takes a while to take action on issues, or they may not be addressed 100% to my liking, but they seem to at least acknowledge our feedback and truly take it into consideration. A concrete example: a number of us complained that the PTO we were getting wasn't competitive with similar companies. Ken, the CEO, brought up this issue at the company wide meeting, shared his research and announced that FTE employees would be getting the week between Christmas and New Years off, as well as some other PTO additions for brand new and long time employees, which I feel is a fair compromise.

    Cons

    - The bi-annual review process is super confusing. Last time, there was two different peer-review systems: one for CK as a whole and one for engineering. I felt like I was spending more time writing reviews for other people than doing work. I did get some useful feedback from others out of it, but I don't know if it was worth like the 15 hours I spent writing reviews in two separate systems.

    - The WFH policy is lacking still. Maybe I was spoiled at my last job where I could work from home whenever I wanted. However, a large number of us travel in from far way (i.e. San Jose, and farther!) and it would be able to work from home once in a while. I find I get a lot done working from home because I can work uninterrupted without people coming up to my desk to ask questions or chat.

    Advice to Management

    Keep on listening and responding to feedback. Please keep considering the WFH policy.


  5. Helpful (43)

    "It's in decline in spirt, the business will be fine."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Credit Karma full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    If you're coming from a job at a more traditional company, you'll easily be wow'd by the coffee bar, snacks, and overall lax environment in terms of accountability regarding your personal time. People come in super late, leave whenever, and it's easy to enjoy your time there and have fun if you sort of "zone out" regarding the systemic issues that the company has internally.

    The raw cash component of compensation is really high. If you even twitch that you might be leaving for a new job they'll rush to up your salary or give a spot bonus because they're trying to stem the tide at the moment. Also, you do get a lot of money to spend on personal development.

    Cons

    Onto those systemic issues...

    1. All the original talent has left or is leaving. About the only thing keeping anyone from employee 1-200 days is finding a way to deal with stock exercise price and taxes since the 409A has gone up so much. This is a con because they people who actually cared personally about the success of the company are gone. The people remaining will care as much as you pay them to care, but their concern stops as soon as they head home. One day this will come back to bite you them in the ***, like it did when there was that last major site outage.

    2. The whole Executive Team thing is a disaster. I don't know if it's one of those Team/Leadership/Career consultants that fed this group the notion that they need to bond at expensive offsites and operate at a class higher than the rest of the company, but it's done nothing but breed resentment at the disconnect between those on the EC versus the rest of the company. The hypocrisy in terms of how various policies apply to the rest of the company vs. EC is widely known. Things like "No Work From Home" while one of the EC members is notorious for never being in their office is a big one. On the financial side, employees talk about both big and little financial inequities. Big would be EC getting extra stock like it's no big deal while equity for employees now it s a total joke. Small would be EC getting to expense a lot of things employees can't and also getting company branded gifts for EC family members.

    3. Twitter, Google and generally a head in the sand attitude regarding the root cause of people issues. There was a period of fascination to hire people from Google and Twitter. Unfortunately, the leaders they brought in from these two companies created a toxic environment in a number of ways. One is just absolutely patronizing in how they communicate to others. Compounding matters, they took over a responsibility that the CEO used to personally manage and the decline is morale was drastic. The other one isn't quite as high up, but up there enough that they could basically torpedo an entire group with their personality, shadiness (that's being polite), and how they nefariously snuck in all their "own people" under the guise of whatever job listing was posted then switched their titles and promoted them to positions of power quickly.

    4. It's not a startup. Just please stop trying to push that notion in all the messages around culture and careers. Startups actually give out real equity. Even if you assume Credit Karma is a late-stage and soon to IPO company, they don't even give out equity at an RSU level that is comparable to what public companies would. Bottom line, the equity component is laughable.

    5. The whole song and dance about when they company will IPO at every company all-hands. Everyone knows the real reason for the delay and rolls their eyes when they hear the story they're being fed. Do you really think the departments entrusted to keep secret whats going on actually kept it secret...?

    Advice to Management

    You could probably fire 3 people and get massive positive goodwill and "addition by subtraction" in terms of impact on the company. But, you won't, because people at a certain level are protected in ways the rank and file aren't. Just look at the finance department, where it's obvious to the whole company who the culprit is but nothing gets done despite numerous employees pointing out issues to HR and giving feedback in their exit interviews.

    Now, 3...2....1....before people start getting tapped on the shoulder to leave some 5-star reviews about how great the snacks are and really the only thing wrong is the "usual growing pains because we're growing so fast".


  6. Helpful (19)

    "Soul-Smushing"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Credit Karma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Arcade
    - Drinking
    - There are a handful of cool people

    Cons

    - The self-reviews are soul-smushing. Maybe I'm just sensitive, but having to rate myself 1-5 on 5 traits and write an essay about why I deserve a promotion, even if your manager has already decided to not put you up to the hiring committee is just feels farcical and dehumanizing.
    - I think management is awful at assessing who's a good engineer and who's not.
    - Had a string of bad managers (or managers who were forced to be bad due to requirements placed on them, unclear). I had about 5 managers in less than 2 years, most of whom were focused on "getting out the door faster."
    - I worked in a vertical that made no money, so regardless of how good my code was I wasn't seen as on a "star team" because the product side couldn't make it work.
    - Obsession with Google/Twitter is true
    - The CTO admitted to reading private slacks. And engineers in general would be careful what they'd say on slack because they were concerned about privacy, which I think had a real "chilling effect" on the ability to acknowledge management problems.
    - Once had a manager rewrite my API calling code into 15 classes + 15 interfaces "for reusability" (introducing bugs in the process). The code was never reused because the vertical was basically shut-down, but he was "from google" so I guess I'm wrong....
    - When I left I got more than 30k more. They didn't even try to match my offer. I understand why, I called it like I saw it and that style really didn't fit in there.

    Advice to Management

    I don't know where to begin.


  7. Helpful (10)

    "Creative and brand talent beware."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    -Most employees are supportive and friendly, except for a few bad apples
    -The c-suite are genuine and really strive to make it a transparent culture
    -The digital marketing team is top notch and the leadership for these verticals are incredible
    -The internal professional coaching is incredibly helpful.

    Cons

    -Most of the creative team came from a bank and have tried to force fit old processes that work for a modern fintech company.
    -Toxic leadership on the creative team has led to a lack of collaboration cross functionally and the departure of most of the brand team
    -The commercial spots don't reflect the values of the company and are often deemed in poor taste or offensive. Agencies are hired to help, but not given ownership resulting in more of the same.

    Advice to Management

    -Have frank discussions about your brand and creative with industry experts.
    -Attitudes are contagious - don't let one or two bad apples destroy the culture.

  8. Helpful (4)

    "The Best Company I've Ever Worked for"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Product Designer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Product Designer in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Credit Karma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    From my first interview to my last day in the office, everyone at Credit Karma was incredibly supportive, warm and passionate about their work. I've worked for many different companies over the years, but this place is special. The HR staff and executive management, in particular, are top-tier. They allowed me incredible opportunities and the flexibility to work on projects I was most interested in. The benefits are in a class all their own, especially their focus on continuing education and encouraging employees to go to conferences, travel and keep growing as well-rounded people.

    ~ Jacob Wilen, Product Designer ~

    Cons

    This is barely a "con" but there was a constant stream of Credit Karma sponsored social activities, parties, yoga classes, happy hours and team building events. Personally, I was already happy (and very busy) with the people and projects I was working on during the day. Maybe I'm getting old and boring, but the number of extracurricular activities sometimes felt excessive for my tastes, but I understand that some people enjoy that and consider it an important benefit. No shame in that :)


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Great place to work with lots of upside"

    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 Credit Karma full-time

    Pros

    strong culture, great benefits, competitive pay, managers are more than willing to provide some time to help you grow in your role

    Cons

    sometimes too much autonomy can lead to laziness


  10. Helpful (11)

    "Needs improvement on hiring better, more qualified candidates!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Credit Karma full-time

    Pros

    1) Company wants to promote growth - not just in Bay Area.
    2) Good location in downtown area near transportation hubs.
    3) Trying to find more avenues for greater profit margin.
    4) Late stage start-up that has survived financial melt-down and is trying to maintain & grow it's market position.

    Cons

    1) The hiring of newer employees, while pushing out the older employees, who helped build Credit Karma is not good for employee morale.
    2) Many new hires do not have enough management experience and are causing chaos between departments. Too much "fighting over territory"!
    3) Unfortunately, malicious gossip (or rumor mongering) is allowed and no one does anything about it. This hurts employee's reputation and provides a "green-light" for more bad behavior.

    Advice to Management

    Please hire more experienced candidates that actually have real management or work experience. Some of new hires you currently have are actually hurting the company because they don't know what to do and are laying the blame on others. Stop trying to silence people who speak up!

    Credit Karma Response

    Jul 11, 2017 – CEO

    Thanks for taking the time to post. One of the most important and impactful activities we take part in at Credit Karma is the interviewing and selection of our fellow Karmanauts and I’m proud that... More


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