Forrester Reviews | Glassdoor

Forrester Reviews

Updated June 15, 2017
29 reviews

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Forrester Chairman, President, and CEO George F. Colony
George F. Colony
24 Ratings

29 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Work life balance is exceptional (in 86 reviews)

  • Surrounded by smart people who challenge each other's thinking (in 84 reviews)

Cons
  • Demanding work with lots of A-type personalities - hard to strike good work-life balance (in 24 reviews)

  • Not enough support from senior management (in 23 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (7)

    "Forrester´s good days are over!"

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

    Pros

    Reputation of the company, although declining.
    The analysts are very smart people
    Fun to work with your colleagues
    Nice customer base and you learn a lot.

    Cons

    very high employee turnover, sometimes almost 40% per year !!!! People disappear suddenly (voluntarily or laid off)
    Unrealistic targets for almost everything
    Once you a hired, then almost nothing is possible.
    Lots of talking, vague promises to employees.
    HR is the worst I have ever seen in my life, the Employee Experience is really bad. I noticed some other review, stating that HR is trying to get more (positive) Glassdoor reviews!! That is correct they try it in a very sneaky way.

    Advice to Management

    In the early days, companies could really learn from Forrester, nowadays there is so much (free) content out there, that Forrester really need to change their business model. Furthermore true innovation is missing, we got the message CX is important for too long now. They need different management to change the company strategy as the results for the last couple of years are declining.

    Forrester Response

    Jun 19, 2017 – Chief People Officer

    Some facts:

    First, Forrester’s employee turnover rate is significantly lower than you allege, in fact, more than 50% lower. Attrition is running on par with that of the industry average for... More


  2. "Mixed at best"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Forrester as a contractor (More than a year)

    Pros

    Smart people, good research, nice focus

    Cons

    As a contract employee do not expect to get paid on time - ever. Ever, ever. Actually you will need to badger them for payment.

  3. Helpful (5)

    "Business Development Director"

    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
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Forrester full-time

    Pros

    If you are looking for a place with a good deal of input, this is the place for you. Daily oversight by local manager with direction every few hours. Training program is exceptional - it the day to day experience mirrored the training, Forrester would be set for success. The location is in a great old building in San Francisco with easy access to/from both freeways, so the commute is a breeze. Nordstrom Rack, Bed Bath Beyond and Trader Joes right across the street, so it's easy to run errands over lunch. .

    Cons

    If you are at all creative don't expect to be able to use it in this job. The levels of sign-off on contracts, even low budget, reach to the highest titles in the company bogging down response time and requiring by-th-book offers to keep the wheels in motion. In this age of competitive media streams the ability to offer and execute creative contracts will make you a top tier solutions provider or constant inhabitant of the industry "losers". No matter how creative or knowledgable you are, Foresters hierarchy will doom you to the looser category time and time again.

    Advice to Management

    Nationally - Stop asking for creative solutions when the company is not able, or willing to enact them. Lower the requirements for VP level sign off on contracts. You'll be more nimble in the field and customers WILL notice. For the West Coast management - You hire excellent workers - let them do their job and stop hovering. Looking over your employees' shoulder will not make a contract magically be approved - it will cause employees to resign. Lastly, yelling at staff because you are unable to manage your own anger is not doing anyone any good other than keeping HR busy.

    Forrester Response

    Jun 17, 2015 – Chief People Officer

    I'm glad to hear your experience in our training program was exceptional; I am disappointed that more of what you learned wasn't evident in your direct management experience. I am also disappointed... More


  4. Helpful (15)

    "Get out why you can"

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

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

    Pros

    After hours you can play ping pong, the drums, electric guitar, and foosball in the cellar.

    Cons

    My managers are a work of art. Unfortunately I have nothing pleasant to say about them in how they personally treated me. Analyst have a burnout rate every 3-4 years. PCG (the consulting arm) doesn't look it will survive to see the light of Q2 in 2016.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of George. George lays off a group each year and talks about how people need to shed skin and reinvent themselves. I'd argue that George needs to do the same. Stop changing the sales structure and their compensation every other quarter. Age of the customer starts with voice of the employee. Don't announce promotions just after you laid off half of your team. Lucia is trading coffee machines for variable compensation and mandatory work from the office policy - this is going to drive away talent. Or as the executive puts it, get the wrong people off the bus and put the right people in their seats. When I first came to Forrester I felt like I joined a home and I was apart of a real team. I was proud to stand with my colleagues and managers, yet 6 months after I was quickly jolted out of that honeymoon phase. I had such a negative experience with Forrester that if it wasn't for the friends I made throughout the company, I would have wished I never applied. When I become a manager I vow to never treat any of my team members the way I was treated.


  5. Helpful (14)

    "Job Seekers Beware"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Forrester full-time

    Pros

    The perception of a known local company on the resume.

    Cons

    What a disappointing experience. Misleading representation of positions posted and compensation presented. Terrible management style and communication. Misrepresented office culture. The company boasts about "being direct" but colleagues are down right rude, unprofessional and often abusive and many act like it's normal behavior. I am a seasoned professional and I have never come across more unhappy people in my career.

    Advice to Management

    Have a vision, a point of view and execute. I don't understand what value you bring to companies and you certainly only pretend to value your employees.


  6. Helpful (11)

    "Senseless HR policies and poor leadership will destroy the company's previous great people culture."

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

    I have been working at Forrester full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    There are a lot of great people to collaborate with.

    Pros used to be great work-life balance because the company allowed analysts - who have to travel a lot - to work from home when not on the road. Unfortunately, the current leadership seems obsessed with changing this. But, if you can land an analyst job as a home worker, it has a great work life balance.

    There is now a policy where you can request to work from home no more than 1 day a week. (A significant reduction in home working for many).

    It's a great place for young people to gain experience.

    Cons

    Lots of travel and now that analysts also have to commute to work and lose productive time in commuting as well as traveling nights and weekends, the analyst job is really only great for young singles without a home life or people who already live near to one of the offices. (San Francisco, Dallas, DC, NYC or Cambridge in the USA). If the current "policy" is enforced, expect to see any analyst with a long commute to seriously look for work elsewhere. (It's one thing to take a job with a long commute knowing what you are getting into - it's another thing altogether when the policy is changed after you take a job based on working mostly from home and then they change the rules). 

    The "leadership" team below the executive level is young, inexperienced and hyper-focused on managing up - looking after themselves and not on empowering and inspiring the talent below. There appear to be constant political battles in leadership. 

    There is a culture of fear of speaking out. Leadership talks about supporting open collaboration but the ugly truth is that people are afraid of voicing any opinion that is not in line with leadership for fear of reprisals. 

    Advice to Management

    Learn what it means to inspire people to follow you.

    Forcing people to do anything is never good. Insisting people come into the office when they are already productive working from home is demoralizing and counter productive. Forrester used to put its employees first. This latest changes signal the opposite. The goal is laudable - to increase collaboration. But the assumption is you need an office to collaborate. It's so twentieth century thinking.


  7. Helpful (6)

    "Management skills or lack there of!!!"

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

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

    Pros

    With the inclusion of consultants to take the place of advisors who write the research things are at least in the right direction.

    Cons

    Management is all over the board in terms of strategy and the Human Resources department is useless and can't be trusted. BEWARE. Consistent change of direction makes it difficult especially for the customer facing employees

    Advice to Management

    Stop drinking the Kool-Aid and train your managers to be good managers that understand that the on-boarding experience and on-going communications for best interest of the employees is their a major focus or the revolving door will continue. Boomerangs come back only when they see positive change.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Lagged competitors for years, now stuck its' own echo chamber"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Billings, MO
    Current Employee - Analyst in Billings, MO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Forrester full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Analysts are easy for clients to work with and will bypass management barriers where they can.
    Some of the most decent people to work with, including senior leadership. They care about their people.
    Disciplined in how they manage money and they have lots of cash
    Front line managers say what leaders want to hear, but behind the scenes will try to give what clients need.
    Some great research on consumer side.

    Cons

    Very inside/out oriented. CEO and leaders know what's best for clients.
    Slow to realize something's not working. For years, internal structure hurt collaboration and confused clients. Only now is it dying, slowly.
    Deep cynicism among research directors, analysts and salespeople around 1984 like speech requirements. Clients are quietly told "when you read this, don't worry, it really means this"
    Amping up the provocative and what sounds cool over solving problems could erode a long term advantage we had.
    Compliant leadership team. Those who really disagree with CEO, lose influence or leave.

    Advice to Management

    CEO needs to find out what's really going on. Given current tone, it'd have to be anonymous.
    Stop doing things that are obviously silly.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Worst sales environment ever"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Executive in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Sales Executive in Cambridge, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Forrester full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Very interesting work. Great opportunity to learn about technology and marketing trends.

    Cons

    While changing environment can be exciting, Forrester changes for change sake. We have a bunch on middle managers that have been able to stop growth of the company for five year. Yet, they are still in their positions.

    Advice to Management

    Clean out middle management especially if they have been there for more than five years. Company "guys and woman" have failed this company for too long.


  10. Helpful (3)

    "This company is going down hill"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Account Director in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Account Director in Cambridge, MA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Forrester full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Good work life balance. The hours aren't long and there is flexibility with the job and fun perks and activities for employees like beers every quarter to celebrate new hires, company and team outtings. The people are also great - smart, fun and cool.

    Cons

    The morale is at an all time low right now for sales and the research community. THis company likes to constantly change and creates major issues. The analysts are over worked, the sales department has a unachieveable sales goals and a horrible new comp plan that is paying less than half it did the year before. The attrition is at an all time high.

    Advice to Management

    Attrition will continue unless you fix the sales plan and comp plan. Management gets paid more if the cost of sales is lower but guess what when you lower salaries and bonuses - sales people leave and the new ones you hirer are of lesser caliber. You can get the company to grow by investing in your products not by tweaking the sales comp plan so it's impossible to make money.


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