Four Winds Interactive Reviews | Glassdoor

Four Winds Interactive Reviews

Updated August 18, 2018
120 reviews

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3.5
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David Levin
80 Ratings

120 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Work life balance is something that was a big consideration when I switched to this company" (in 8 reviews)

  • "Great People, Great Product, Fun" (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • "The company is growing, and with growth comes growing pains" (in 8 reviews)

  • "The company has incurred a lot of technical debt because upper management has too often overruled the product and development teams" (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Great Company for Employees and Tech"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Middle Management in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Middle Management in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Four Winds Interactive full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Huge focus on developing good employees and freedom to move into roles that are a better fit, or on a desired career path. Leader development programs. Lots of internal promotions and transfers.

    Cool, flashy, interesting visual technology that the company believes is having a positive effect on customers.

    Our customers are the biggest corporations in the world. Huge, successful, important customers want our stuff.

    Cons

    As a company, we move fast and take on things that are a stretch (potentially unreachable). This can lead to downstream difficulty with support, upgrades and maintenance. But, it is good if you like solving puzzles and be challenged.

    Advice to Management

    You've done great things in the last 3 years. Keep on this path, and you'll retain all the top talent you have.


  2. Helpful (7)

    "Lacking a culture of respect"

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

    I worked at Four Winds Interactive full-time

    Pros

    • Four Winds has an excellent client roster and will allow you to interface with some great companies, so it can serve as a stepping stone for young, eager employees.
    • Depending on who you befriend, you can move up the ranks quickly and take on jobs that you might not have otherwise been qualified for.
    • In certain departments, you can take part in some of the "fun" initiatives that are designed to attract new talent and build a "cool" culture. These can be nice ways to break up the work day and meet new people.
    • The CEO is personable enough to try and get to know all employees at least on a superficial basis. It is nice that he makes an attempt to get to know everyone's name.
    • Certain departments have a very strong, respectful bond and those people seem to love coming to work.

    Cons

    As stated in previous reviews, there are some great people at Four Winds, but just like everywhere else, there are also some shady characters who are only out for themselves. They will throw their colleagues under the bus in a heartbeat if it will make them somehow look good or protect them if/when something potentially goes wrong. This kind of behavior is very much rewarded by senior leadership, who value a "hero mentality" and use every opportunity to recognize individuals, rather than the teams that worked together to achieve any success. If you make a mis-step, or have a colleague who chooses to spread gossip about you (because, sadly, gossip -- both personal and professional -- runs rampant among employees here, and it seems no one is safe or given the benefit of the doubt), you'll spend a lot of time and effort attempting to counteract it. As much as Four Winds is trying to build a strong, happy culture, they need to address the way they encourage employees to actually treat each other and work together vs. focusing on the occasional Friday beer keg or donut wall.
    As far as a product, the software is woefully out of date and has some very large roadblocks that are not always made clear to clients before they sign a contract, and leads to some pretty tough and uncomfortable conversations when the implementation team must manage expectations. There are some initiatives to strengthen the software, but enhancements take so long that it often feels like one step forward, two steps back. Competitors are advancing quickly and leadership takes a very reactionary approach, leading to changing/conflicting business goals and initiatives all the time.
    As far as work/life balance, I think overall Four Winds purports to do this very well -- people generally seem to work flexible schedules. However, there are some departments and roles in which this balance and flexibility are nearly obsolete. Depending on your role, you may be expected to work through nights and weekends and be available to address issues at any given time -- the urgency of these issues getting way overblown by management. They just switched to a "flexible" PTO plan, which they are advertising externally as "unlimited" but make very clear to employees that it is not truly unlimited and is instead "take what you need". Employees are allowed to take time off at the discretion of their manager, which, depending on your manager, may include a guilt trip or might not be approved at all based on business needs. There is no official record kept of days off anymore, but you can bet they are keeping track and will tout your time off (or lack thereof) if needed when it comes to recognition or career advancement.
    Overall, leadership truly puts clients' satisfaction -- no matter how difficult to attain and how unreasonable the asks -- at a much higher priority than employee welfare. I had colleagues who were inappropriately berated, deceived, and threatened by clients, and yet our leadership team bent over backwards to make sure that the clients' ridiculous demands were met, often punishing the employees further for "allowing" a situation to escalate. This is, again, a culture issue that is encouraged by the company in continuing to allow their employees to be abused and rewarding clients for this kind of behavior.
    Finally, the tangible benefits really leave a lot to be desired, as many others have stated. Many employees choose to purchase their own insurance as the coverage and premiums provided are so bad. Compensation is still not up to par with industry standards, and seems somewhat arbitrary.

    Advice to Management

    Take a harder look at the departments that have high turnover and compare them to the few that are strong and stable, and consider how the employees are treated differently. Value the employees who are quiet, dependable contributors, vs. rewarding those who make the most noise but leave a path of destruction in their wake. Similarly, I know clients (and therefore income) are the lifeblood of any organization, but consider the mental and emotional well-being of your employees as an even more important component, and stand behind them with respect. No one wants to fire a client, but stop rewarding bad behavior with free goods and services at the cost of your employees' welfare.

  3. "Exceptional place to work."

    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 Four Winds Interactive full-time

    Pros

    Four Winds invests a lot of time and energy into taking care of its employees and customers. The culture is upbeat and the product line is exciting. It's an exceptional place to work, and I would definitely recommend it to a friend.

    Cons

    Can be a bit noisy if you're not used to a common working space.


  4. "This place is amazing!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Technical Recruiter in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Senior Technical Recruiter in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Four Winds Interactive full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Small company, which allows you to have a large, and tangible impact. Senior leadership is available and accessible, from the new CTO, to the CEO and original founder. Everyone who works here is extremely talented, and also genuinely nice. I have never worked for, or heard of a better employer!

    Cons

    I don't like working in downtown Denver, but that's mostly a personal thing. I wish there was more/better parking.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work!

    Four Winds Interactive Response

    May 7, 2018 – Director Talent Acquisition

    Thank you for taking the time to write a review. We appreciate your feedback and we are so happy that you are happy :)


  5. Helpful (6)

    "Some great pros, some tough cons..."

    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 Four Winds Interactive full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Office: the new, swanky office is a nice, bright place to work.

    Co-workers: most employees are great and bring a lot to the table in terms of work ethic and being fun to be around on the daily.

    Flexible PTO: if used properly, this will be a really nice benefit. It was just implemented so it's hard to say how accepted it will be to take off, say, more than the 3 weeks "most people usually take". Work from home days are also something many people are allowed to take.

    Work/life balance: I love that most people are encouraged to work 8-5 and to not work insane hours. I've been in workplaces where it's expected to work way more than 40 hours, even if you don't necessarily need to (just to keep up appearances).

    Fun at work: we have Fun Fridays, product release parties, and other similar events to mingle with co-workers and to have a break from our desks. These are usually fun events and I appreciate the groups of volunteers who put them on.

    Wellness: while I'd love to see $$ in our paychecks for a gym membership, it is nice there is a gym/classes/showers. Hopefully in the future that's something FWI will consider.

    Cons

    Sexual Harassment: unfortunately, I can personally vouch for sexual harassment in the workplace. Reporting it does nothing except to embarrass you and give the HR girls things to gossip about with literally everyone they know in AND out of the office. I would never go to HR with anything ever because it 100% does not stay confidential.

    HR/People Opps: our relatively new VP of People Opps is really trying hard to cultivate a better culture for women, increase benefits, and help employees understand their value. Outside of her, it's hard to get responses from them...sometimes waiting weeks to hear back (or sometimes, never). They come and go as they please, usually coming in late and leaving early, and like someone else said...they seem to always be drinking wine and being loud/disruptive.

    "Boys Club": can agree with other reviewers here that, even after a few new women in leadership roles, this is a total boys club. While I do think it's important to take breaks from time-to-time while on the job, the good ole' boys are constantly watching golf on their computers, playing on the putting greens located throughout the office, and talking about future golf trips. The same men keep getting promoted and keep getting perks.

    Work ethic: while some employees work exceptionally hard here, it's not hard to walk around and point out the slackers. I've personally seen the same group of people over and over and over again doing things AT WORK such as taking naps on couches, watching Netflix on their laptops/iPads, browsing Facebook for hours, etc. It's SO frustrating knowing how hard so many work, then to see employees like this slacking off and always getting away with it. I'm too hard of a worker to stoop to slacking levels, but there are times I want to just because I know I can! We've been doing a fair amount of "fat trimming" but there are still plenty of people that I simply cannot grasp why they still have a high-paying job here.

    Pay: the pay discrepancy is HUGE not only between us and competitors, but also between employees working in similar roles. I'd love to see women promoted more, paid more, and for the company in general to up the level of pay. The top dogs are getting paid huge sums of money, while those lower on the totem pole are often living paycheck-to-paycheck.

    Parking: we have to pay a boatload for a monthly parking spot. It IS cheaper to obtain a spot through HR vs. paying for surface lots/meters, but I think we pay something like $90 out of pocket each month for a spot - OUCH! I know many similar companies that absolutely cover parking for their employees OR pay them to not park to encourage human-powered commuting.

    Advice to Management

    Take a good hard look at each and every one of your employees and try to understand what value they offer. If they offer a lot and "bring their best self" (like one of our company values states), do yourselves a favor and promote them/bump their pay. If they are napping/social media-ing all day/causing issues with co-workers, why are they still here? Why do they get a million and one chances to improve their performance? While the efforts from upper management to hear out those lower in the company are nice, try actually implementing suggestions vs. just *hearing* them out.

    Four Winds Interactive Response

    May 21, 2018 – Director Talent Acquisition

    Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback. We have taken some significant strides this past year to ensure a healthy work environment and we cannot correct concerns without employee... More


  6. "Collaborative, Fun, and Fast Paced"

    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 Four Winds Interactive full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Financial transparency, exciting products, reasonable wages, good work/life balance, encourages wellness/fitness, TONS of growth opportunity for new hires

    Cons

    The health insurance is more than my previous employer, but FWI continues to make improvements to the overall compensation package.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up. Keep the communication coming. Keep empowering your employees for success.

    Four Winds Interactive Response

    Apr 30, 2018 – Director Talent Acquisition

    Thank you so much for your feedback!


  7. Helpful (12)

    "Still needs major help...."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Four Winds Interactive full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Co workers are great. Flexible PTO is great. Potential to be a good company, but still driving over speed bumps at full speed after a few years here.

    Cons

    There have been 3 sexual harassment employees employed here. HR was notified and never did anything. One of them (also a registered sex offender) was let go but on the basis of "not hitting sales quota anymore", another let go because he was caught hacking into computers, the most recent they actually let him RESIGN instead of being let go due to his tenure with the company. To make it even worse, the communication that he had resigned was sent out in an email and they thanked him and sung his praise for his work here at the company, hiding the fact that it was for more serious past allegations. They're just trying to save their face now...

    Advice to Management

    I think it's great you're cleaning house of the garbage, but what makes you look more respectable is to stop singing praises for people that dont deserve it. The HR department is a joke, they spend more time gossiping than actually doing what they are supposed to do, and they are bias... part of the boy's club we all dismantled. Enough is enough!

  8. "Great coworkers, iffy management, sorely outdated product."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Four Winds Interactive full-time

    Pros

    A lot of the people were great, made for a good environment, generally.

    Cons

    Never really felt set up for success, struggled against an ancient platform that would never catch up.


  9. "A company with heart and the employees to match"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Four Winds Interactive full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Four Winds is a great place to work, where you can make a difference. There have been many initiatives in the past few years to improve on the product, people culture and career development. It’s a place where you can have ideas and actually drive them with support from leadership.

    The investment in people is growing. Work life balance is something that was a big consideration when I switched to this company. Flexible PTO is wonderful, having the freedom to make your schedule work for you. This doesn’t mean we don’t work hard, and sometimes long hours, we all do. It’s in your hands to make sure you get that mental break and time off. There are a lot more conversations happening around diversity, a sign that leadership is growing.

    There are lots of fun events and teams working on people culture. You may have to work during some, but with many choices you will still be able to enjoy a good amount of the events.

    Most large companies have internal training for their employees, but it’s not as common in smaller companies. Four Winds not only invests in internal trainings like Anti-Harassment, Curiosity, Emotional Intelligence but also manager training for new managers and 360 programs for leadership. The company recognizes the impact that managers can have on their team and is dedicated to continually improving on those leaders.

    The software is very robust, andy far the leader in the industry though not as user friendly as it could be. The company has invested in improving the software with a more focused development team and a ux team that is dedicated to the software. Is it perfect? Nope, but it’s making progress.

    The transparency displayed here is better than any other company I have worked for. The numbers good or bad are shown monthly in the company townhall. If you are unable to attend, it is recorded for you to watch when you can. New initatives have more recently included focus groups from the people they would effect, and also stages of the initiatives are communicated to teams to keep them updated.

    There are many opportunities for career advancement at FWI. Personal development plans are encouraged by managers for their team members to map out where they would like to go. People have the chance to transfer to other parts of the organization. I can honestly say that I have seen more promotions and internal advancement here than any other company I have worked for. The HR team is also working with leaders to create career path matrix that will align job responsibilities and the path forward not only for people interested in management, but individual contributors as well.

    The greatest thing about this company is hands down, the people. It’s people who are driven at work, but also at life. A work/life balance culture only works if we all participate so managers are also encouraged to take time off so their teams feel like they can as well.

    Benefits are getting better. The People Ops department is really great. There have been strains on that department because of the workload a few have had to carry. That is all being improved with our new VP. That is not an overnight fix, but there is great progress already. The People Ops team has been leading new initiatives like the career matrix, competency mapping based on roles, more transparent communication and diversity. Our candidate pool has become much more diverse and it’s making us a better company.

    As with any company, it’s what you make it. If you have issues but don’t make anyone aware, the issues cannot be addressed. If you aren’t willing to be part of the solution than I’m not sure how you expect anything to improve. Some reviews claim that all women at FWI have been sexually harassed multiple times. I am a woman and I have never been sexually harassed here. I also have seen leadership listen when people voice that there should be more women represented. They will make changes, if you actually speak to them and bring some solutions. If you are really wanting to know what it’s like here, come visit and meet the people who work here. If you look at the PM team you will notice a lot of strong women, some of the best developers are women and there are several women on the executive board. There are badass women throughout this company. I would be weary of reviews who refer to women as “girls” while trying to defend them. We don’t actually have girls who work here, we have smart and talented women.

    The CEO still gets in the software. He still visits clients. He brings ideas and he gets excited for people’s success. He also puts a lot of money back into the business because he wants people here to succeed and stay. He doesn’t want a team of yes people - if you are doing that, you are doing it wrong. Does he get everything right? Nope. Neither do any of us, because we certainly don’t want that culture. We want a culture where we try and fail and learn.

    Cons

    The scope of what we do is very broad. Unlike technology that focuses on web or mobile, this involves mobile, tablets, screens of all types and sizes and if every type of environment. It’s very complex and we serve many industries. It makes for a challenge but if you thrive on that, you will do well.

    Advice to Management

    Continue the people first strategy, the improvements there are making our work life and outside lives better.

    Four Winds Interactive Response

    Apr 9, 2018 – Director Talent Acquisition

    Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a thoughtful review!


  10. Helpful (9)

    "Start here then take your experience elsewhere"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Denver, CO
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Denver, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Four Winds Interactive full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The average co-worker. By and large some of the best co-workers I have ever known. A lot of fun events and parties planned and paid for by the company. On site workout facilities.

    Cons

    Product Rollout - Non-existent. There is insufficient planning that goes into the rollout of products. Operations/implementation teams are left to pick up the pieces of over promised products that have not been tested or vetted in a customer environment. New products are haphazardly sold before the Operations team has been made aware of their existence leading to an inability to properly plan a successful implementation. There is a lot of flying by the seat of your pants with little to no direction.
    Undervalued - Hard work will get you more work and likely no recognition. The system for employee recognition is akin to a high school popularity contest. The same people are recognized by the same people over and over again, if you are quiet and work hard you will not be recognized by your peers or your management. Inside jokes between managers and some of the inner circle employees are rampant and will be brought up in team meetings where only half of the team will get the joke. You will be grossly underpaid for your role unless you negotiate a competitive salary on the front end. If you try to negotiate a higher raise you will be told there wasn't money in the budget for it.
    Processes - There are few to no processes and what processes do exist have been so overengineered to try and act as a bandaid for the broken processes which only serves to further break and muddy the waters.
    Training for your role - don't expect anything substantial.
    Management - be cool - make friends - get in with the bros and go far in this company. Managers only seem to interact with the team members they "like" or are friends with, if you aren't friends with your manager expect to be ignored unless you are in trouble or having a scheduled 1 on 1, and even during your 1 on 1 your manager will probably be on his computer only giving you half of his attention.
    Benefits are not competitive with other tech companies.
    Skewed data - at company meetings it would constantly be touted how amazing the tech support team was doing and how high scores on surveys were, yet clients would frequently comment on how badly they were treated by tech support team members. When the tech support team members and managers were given this feedback it was dismissed and the person providing the feedback chastised for making a manager uncomfortable.

    Bottom line, big issues are swept under the rug because they make people uncomfortable and it isn't what executive management wants to hear. Company meetings are stroke-fests where employees are encouraged to drink the company kool-aid and ignore glaring issues.

    Sales Reps- while improvements have been made on the sales team, many sales reps are difficult to work with, lazy sellers and toxic.

    The work environment, under-compensation and lack of true leadership turns positive, skilled and motivated professionals into jaded and frustrated employees.

    Advice to Management

    Value your people. Go to bat for your team members. Management hires currently lack in true leadership - being skilled at a role does not necessarily make someone a strong leader. Being everyone's friend does not make someone a good leader. Invest in leadership qualities and training for all levels of management. Be honest about operational shortcomings and allow products to be fully developed and tested before pushing them out the door.

    Four Winds Interactive Response

    Mar 14, 2018 – Director Talent Acquisition

    Thank you so much for the feedback. I am sorry to hear your experience at FWI was not as positive as we would have hoped. Lots of work has been done to make improvements in our compensation and... More


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