Fandom Reviews | Glassdoor

Fandom Reviews

Updated May 22, 2017
58 reviews

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2.8
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Fandom CEO Craig Palmer
Craig Palmer
31 Ratings

58 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • The work/life balance is usually good (in 9 reviews)

  • Great location in SF, close to BART stations, plenty of restaurants and Whole Foods (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • Senior Management is visibly unable to work well together (in 8 reviews)

  • Complete lack of trust between teams leads to a lot of blame, finger pointing, and clique culture (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (5)

    "A fun and enriching place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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

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

    Pros

    * Collaborative atmosphere
    * Lots of flexibility
    * Plenty of interesting areas to work on, particularly around scalability
    * Opportunity to collaborate on MediaWiki, the platform that powers Wikipedia (there are definite avenues to get your changes into core MediaWiki, which means they would be live on Wikipedia)
    * Fantastic SF office, recently expanded, with great location across from South Park in SoMa
    * Easy commuting from Caltrain, BART; reasonable private parking nearby
    * Friendly environment
    * Wikia's code is open-source, so you're getting paid to work on an open-source project
    * The company is growing rapidly, meaning there's a lot of opportunity to take on new roles and responsibilities

    Cons

    * Commuting can be a pain any time there is a Giants game
    * MediaWiki's coding conventions are fairly old-school as far as coding style and architecture goes.
    * There is significant technical debt in certain parts of the product, but not much time presently allotted to work on addressing that
    * The backend is mostly Perl scripts, so those used to "younger" scripting languages may have a hard time getting acculturated
    * The company is growing rapidly, which means that growing pains can arise

    Advice to Management

    It would be nice to emphasize not only product quality but code quality as well. Investing time into refactoring and testing would be time well spent.


  2. Helpful (3)

    "Perfect place for me"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    Wikia has a beautiful office with excellent support staff keeping things well maintained. The location is nice, right in between bart/muni and caltrain. The product is open source and has millions of enthusiastic users.

    Cons

    Every job has it's downsides, but the good far outweighs the bad for me here. One challenge at Wikia is maintaining a very large product with a ton of features that sometimes aren't as well maintained as they would be if there were less features.

    Advice to Management

    It's nice to have democratic processes but often things are too democratic and decisions just need to be made. This company can err on the side of democracy over getting things done.

  3. Helpful (3)

    "Great place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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

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

    Pros

    Great work-life balance, fun people, fun activities, fun product. There's tons of information at your finger tips with all of the wikis.

    Cons

    Older technology, but they're working on that.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Stable company with big opportunity"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    Overall, a great place to work. Smart people, open source technology, big scale. Good opportunity to make an impact and work on something that millions of people will use. Great work/life balance. Decent perks. Almost everyone gets to travel to the Poland office, which is fun.

    Cons

    Can be slow-paced sometimes. Working with a big open source project can be great but it can also add a lot of overhead.

    Advice to Management

    Delegate a little more to the individual teams.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Great company culture, explosive growth, top notch leadership."

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

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

    Pros

    The San Francisco headquarters is a fun, vibrant environment where smiles abound and the kegs are always tapped. The employees are a fun crew, well educated with extensive experience in their respective fields. The company is growing, so there is much room for career advancement.

    Cons

    This is a dog friendly office. Sometimes dogs bark. That can be annoying. Also, there are people who leave their dirty dishes in the sink instead of washing them or putting them in one of the two empty dishwashers. Gross.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing all the right things.


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Smart people, good leadership."

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

    I have been working at Fandom full-time

    Pros

    If you are thoughtful and present your data-driven arguments well, you can get things done rather quickly. The CEO and the rest of the execs are incredibly approachable and with it.

    Cons

    Tough to keep the culture in tact when you grow 100% in a few years but we've done a good job moving from startup to fun, agile, but real company.

    Advice to Management

    Intra office travel is great... Keep it up and maybe increase it for select positions.


  7. Helpful (5)

    "Lots of positive change in 2015!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    A strong CEO with a vision of where to take the company. Good environment, leadership AND getting better! Lots of new energy to re-factor and modernize the UX and platform. Great people in nearly every department. Dead wood and caustic personalities are finally going away! Management is open about the problems and has repeatedly engaged the employees to understand and improve and is open to criticism. I've never seen a CEO who was more willing to hear criticism or is willing and accessible to talk to anyone in the company. Few death marches! You're not going to have to sacrifice your life to "save the world" through a "ride sharing" app.

    Cons

    People are claiming the positive reviews on GlassDoor are fake or a PR effort by HR. No place is perfect. Most reviewers who are happy filter out the bad and most who are unhappy filter out the good. It's human nature. Even good companies have problems. Most aren't willing to hear or do anything about them but the management team at Wikia is.

    The truth:
    Growing pains. Communication problems with a globally distributed organization that's nearly doubled in size in the last year. Hampered by old tech and small thinking in some of the middle management levels.

    People in roles that grew faster than they have. Management by the last "Management Self-Help" book read by a junior manager is frustrating. The company has been trying to make some big organizational and technical changes and there have been mistakes that hurt morale.

    A junior Engineering team that can't estimate and developers who think they're "Engineers", an Ops team that takes forever to get anything done because they're still using their own hardware and they want every test or proof of concept to be "production ready", Designers who want the improbable, Product Managers who don't know enough about their product space and what's going to move the company forward, a Business Development team... Ok, I don't know what they do, a Marketing team that's incapable of independent thought, a Sales team that can't close a deal without giving away the kitchen sink and a Community team that runs around screaming the sky is falling because 0.0001% of the 15 year olds contributing to the Five Nights at Freddie's community are unhappy and the business is going to collapse because of it.

    Almost every one of these issues is actively being worked on. I've been in a bunch of startups and this is still one of the most fun places I've worked, with some of the least stupidity in "pivot of the month" executive management.

    Advice to Management

    - Change and growth are hard.
    - People don't like change and change is a NECESSITY.
    - People think they want something right up until they get it.
    -Listen, take action, evaluate, adjust, repeat.
    -Don't tolerate brilliant a-holes, ESPECIALLY when it's you.

  8. "Awesome growth company"

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

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

    Pros

    Company making all the right decisions to evolve into an entertainment media company. The wrong people are getting managed out and great new people are being added all the time. There is an exciting growth strategy that is clearly working. A fun and rewarding time to work at Wikia and the future is bright.

    Cons

    There is not a 401k match yet. Other than that nit pick, not much negative to report. Lots of exciting things.

    Advice to Management

    Carpe diem. The evolution from a platform company to a mainstream ad sales based entertainment media business means making some hard decisions, especially as it relates to people, expectations and culture, and these are the decisions that are being made today. Focus on ruthless execution.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Great company, only getting better"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Vice President Design in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Vice President Design in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    A year ago, I would not have been able to write such a positive review of Wikia. Today, however, the company is much different. Our CEO has continued to make hard, but good decisions about with regards to his leadership team and the outcome of that today is that we have a much stronger culture and our growth trajectory is constantly leveling up.

    - The company has put in place a strong vision for the future over the last 6-9 months and is executing better than ever

    - Strong work/life balance. Work hard, play hard, but the hours are reasonable for most folks in the company.

    - Evolving leadership is more and more focused on a high-performance culture that knows how to have fun.

    - Fun product to work on at the intersection of pop-culture and online communities

    - Significant new product development in the last year has led to big improvements to our culture of shipping high quality product frequently and often.

    Cons

    -Some of our legacy products or features have been difficult to evolve and improve over the years due to combination significant tech debt and feature negotiations with communities. This is improving, but still offers some challenges.

    Advice to Management

    Stay focused on improving the quality of our overall team and set the bar higher with every hire. Continue to educate everyone from top to bottom on how we're going to achieve audience and financial success as an evolving media company, and how we're going to make the tough choices to get there.

    Fandom Response

    Aug 24, 2016 – Global Talent Operations Leader

    Thank you for providing such insight into the evolution of the company - particularly with regard to prior product challenges, product roadmap, and the steady improvements to our management and ... More


  10. "It's all about the people."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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

    Pros

    The people! A great company is all about the people and the employees at Wikia are fabulous.
    Lots of opportunity to grow in your career and learn new things.
    Work life balance is great.

    Cons

    With the company growing so quickly communication between teams is can sometimes be slow.

    Advice to Management

    Keep helping employees grow and learn.
    Over communicate with your teams and empower them to take on more.

    Fandom Response

    May 2, 2016 – Global Talent Operations Leader

    Thank you for your positive comments! As a growing company we are looking for effective, thorough, and creative ways to keep our employees informed. We are investing in some great tools where ... More


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