Digitaria Reviews | Glassdoor

Digitaria Reviews

Updated December 27, 2016
37 reviews

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2.8
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Dan Khabie
26 Ratings

37 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Cool company, great people"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Quality Assurance Analyst in Monarch Beach, CA
    Former Employee - Quality Assurance Analyst in Monarch Beach, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Digitaria (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great people. Exciting projects. Chance for your ideas to be heard and/or implemented. Fun atmosphere. Chances to learn new technologies, skills, programs, etc.

    Cons

    Not always a consistent 40-hour work week as a contractor. Every hour has to be accounted for.


  2. Helpful (6)

    "Digitaria is Dead"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Creative in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Creative in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    There are no pros. Digitaria is dead. Greed, politics and misplaced ambition killed it. The name will be changed in 2015, as it should be.

    Cons

    As others have written, Digi's four founders have completely checked out awaiting a big takeover payday from JWT at the end of the year. Morale is broken and there is no can-do spirit any more. it's all about maximizing profit for the founders.

    Projects are ridiculously padded but pay is low. The salespeople constantly over promise and the PMs take the fall for it. In the power vacuum, the most political, gossipy and back-stabbing people have done well, but none of them are much good at their actual job.

    Digitaria is in a sad place right now. It's going through it's death throes. What it turns into after the JWT takeover no one really knows, but all signs so far are bad. You'd be crazy to come here until at least six months after JWT takes over, because you have no idea what you're walking into other than a soul-sucking mess.

    Advice to Management

    None.


  3. Helpful (9)

    "Low Pay, High Stress, Very Political- Adult High School"

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

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

    Pros

    The view of the office is really nice. The majority of the people that work there are a young, smart fun group. They have a events every month or so which involve alcohol and free food. They throw the best parties for holidays. The clients Digitaria works with are high end brands, big names which look great on your resume. Digitaria on your resume looks good too because if you leave to another agency, they like to see Digitaria on your resume because it shows you know how to work really hard.

    Cons

    It's similar to High School, theres a noticeable "popular" group, they all hang out together during work, after work and weekends. I guess this is OK if you don't have any friends and your only friends are your co-workers, but that can often lead to drama!

    It's very political, you have to be best friends with your manager to move up. You also have to be part of certain crowds at work to really enjoy working there. Most people that work there are really burned out which causes a lot of backlash on the project integrity and quality. There's a lot of arguing and disagreements with team members. You can throw the creative out of the door because the creatives don't like to change their vision, and if they are forced to, the project pretty much gets hosed.

    Resources are high rates, budgets are low, projects get over promised by sales/ business development and usually the Project managers are the ones who have to take the brunt of all the angry people in between. There is very little work-life balance. You need to be willing to work almost 24/7 to make deadlines because of the way projects are sold and timelines are always tight.

    They also have high turnover and it's obvious why.

    Advice to Management

    Take a gander around and maybe talk to the mid level people to get a sense of why they are so miserable. Get a new sales team, they don't know how to sell projects efficiently and reasonably. Going for DAOR for so many companies is making the agency look desperate. Also, watch the upper management closely- promoting your best friends is not a good way to run a business.


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  5. Helpful (10)

    "Stressful, Political, Just Plain Sad"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Digitaria full-time

    Pros

    All the things you've already seen here, none of it which has anything to do with Digitaria as a workplace. The office is rad and right next to the Padres baseball stadium. There are two or three big parties a year. Most of the staff is young and fun. Blah blah blah.

    Cons

    Today was totally the last straw for me. The CEO sent out an email telling everybody how great our culture is. It was so tone death and phony. Everybody who works here is totally stressed out. The people that are still here anyway. It's really political and morale is terrible. The big joke that you hear all the time is that it's The Hunger Games. Everyone is fighting everyone for resources and help. Pay is low too, which I'm finding out as I interview for other jobs.

    Advice to Management

    Please stop telling us how great it is here. It's not great here.


  6. Helpful (6)

    "High stress, even for an agency. Extremely political work environment."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - California in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - California in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Digitaria full-time

    Pros

    Work with some talented people, for well known client/brands. The culture definitely produces some great work and allows creativity due to the level of talent. Pay is fair to good. Leadership promotes fun and encourages a collaborative atmosphere. Beautiful headquarters.

    Cons

    Some management is just plain awful, and frequently high pressure to the point of being abusive. Also, it's very political. There's lots of backstabbing. Project managers are expected to compete for resources and many go too far.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of incompetent managers. Work harder to maintain sanity and reduce conflict. Stop destroying morale by promoting the loudest but laziest people.


  7. Helpful (7)

    "Hit or Miss/ Had potential but didn't deliver"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior User Experience in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Senior User Experience in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Digitaria full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Location, Cool office building, great view, free snacks

    Cons

    project based billable, if they don't have work you don't have work and it's your fault

    Advice to Management

    don't over staff on deals that are not closed, then later lay off people because you don't have the projects to support the hire decision.


  8. Helpful (6)

    "A place where creativity goes to die. Churn & burn ..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior User Experience Designer in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Senior User Experience Designer in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Digitaria full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great culture, office, fun events. A great place to start out and establish your career.

    Cons

    There is no on boarding process. Be prepared to be thrown into a project halfway through with little to no explanation. With no formal training process you can easily find your self getting written up for not being 100% billable.
    Communication with managers is appalling. In 11 months the longest I spoke to my manager was during the interview process.
     Bleary eyed employees walk around the office, tired and (most definitely) overworked.
     There is no emphasis on "the big idea" and most of the work seems to be clients JWT has messed up & sent to DIgitaria to fix. The design work is mostly all production.
    Management is adept to straight up lying to their employees, I witnessed it more than once.
    There is little emphasis on growth as most employees don't make it past the first year mark.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees. Communication is important & there seems to be some political motivations for the way the office is run. Give feedback when asked, especially if an employee seeks it out about their performance.
    Don't make people managers that don't want to be, it's obvious who's a good leader and who's not


  9. Helpful (6)

    "Run Away If You're Not In Tech/Creative"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Nice co-workers, killer office location next to Petco Park, good benefits

    Cons

    I want to start this review off by clarifying that Digitaria's bread and butter is web development and design. So pending on the position you're in within the company... you will have a drastically different experience. My impression is that if you are in tech development, QA or the creative department-- you may be OK pending on your accounts/supervisors. If you are in strategy, planning, account, project management, analytics, or sales- it's a different story. Digitaria is trying HARD to build out their strategy offerings, but they're struggling and it's failing. They're unwilling to scope strategy projects differently from the way they scope development/design. (even though the offerings are two completely different things). It causes horrible inefficiencies which affects several departments.

    Because Digitaria runs like a web dev/design company-- naturally, all the work here is project based. Very very very few retained clients in which you can build a relationship with and build upon. I wish somebody had told me that when I was interviewing so I knew the projects they were hiring me for wouldn't be around for long. This is largely due to the fact that they charge insane prices by placing high pads on projects and charging upwards of $200/hr for a mid-level resource. They're just not structured to partner with clients long-term.

    Don't come to this agency if you want to work on cutting-edge, smart stuff. It's basically a production company for JWT now, for projects JWT wants to outsource (that means you have two clients: JWT, and the ACTUAL client who doesn't understand their work is getting outsourced in the first place). This is across the board from development, creative, and through to strategy teams. Honestly, all the clients that Digitaria says they work with on the website are from five years ago, or a very tiny piece of the current client-base. It's not innovative stuff anymore. Look closely at agency case studies and you'll be able to spot it.

    Lastly, across the board no matter the department, I can confidently say: work-life balance is absolutely horrific. If you're billable (which is all senior management cares about), you'll typically spend well beyond the hours that you were originally scoped. If you're not billable, you'll be in fear for your job and placed on projects you're not qualified for (or have an interest in working on) simply because you have availability. New business pitches (which the company proudly pursues whether or not they are truly valid opportunities), are not billable. So you'll be expected to work tirelessly on them in addition your billable work. Again, if you're NOT billable, you still can't count time spent on new business towards your day, so it looks like you're not busy on paper... and you'll be in fear for your job. It's a constant struggle.

    Mostly everyone I know at Digitaria doesn't plan to be working here one year from now. Do yourself a favor and don't be tricked by their "client roster" and sweet office view-- find another opportunity.

    Advice to Management

    Hire Sales people who know how/want to sell strategy and reward them accordingly (because right now all they care about is web because it's the only thing that pays out well).

    Implement an actual training/on-boarding program so you can retain some of the new hires and their learning curve isn't 12 months. Your insane turnover should tip you off to this.

    You can't just throw an awesome agency happy hour every now and then and retain top-talent. It comes from the top-down. Everyone sees the fluff in the agency-wide meetings where you promise things will get better but you continue to do the same thing.


  10. Helpful (5)

    "More of a workhouse to outsource web work to, than an actual creative agency."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Producer in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Producer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Fun, young, hip culture, great office, perfect experience for anyone early in their career.

    Cons

    Below industry pay, long hours, expected that the agency is your life. High turnover rates and burnout.

    Advice to Management

    Retaining valuable senior employees are critical to a mature process and professional interactions with clients. Not just about billable hours in PM tools that determines the value of an employee. Sunshine tax of SD is a lame excuse commonly used to explain the low wages even though client billable industry rates are 4-5 times that.


  11. "Dynamic high growth environment, Great Corporate Culture"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Vice President Business Development in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Vice President Business Development in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great experience and growth opportunities, Highly talented people, open and accessible management, Great client opportunities. Cutting edge work. Fun office environment and amazing office location.

    Cons

    lower than average starting salaries, work- life balance can get tricky (as with all agencies)


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