Hobsons Reviews | Glassdoor

Hobsons Reviews

Updated February 8, 2019
242 reviews

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3.2
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Hobsons Chief Executive Officer Kate Cassino
Kate Cassino
32 Ratings

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Pros
Cons
  • "There is zero upper management, C-Level and only a couple "VP's" on location in their headquarters" (in 14 reviews)

  • "Last year, sales lost half the entire team with most quitting and few getting let go" (in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (3)

    "A Great 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 Hobsons full-time

    Pros

    Great company to work for. They are dedicated to creating a platform that can support students needs. The departments are well managed and supported (as long as you speak up). They provide a positive work life balance!

    Cons

    None that I have experienced

    Advice to Management

    Continue listening to your clients to develop your products and your employees to encourage positive change.

    Hobsons Response

    Sep 25, 2018 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us!


  2. Helpful (2)

    "If you are deciding if Hobsons is good for you please read"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Vice President Sales Operations in Cincinnati, OH
    Current Employee - Vice President Sales Operations in Cincinnati, OH
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Hobsons full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    I hope that by not remaining anonymous for this review it gives some credibility to my comments. I also write this not in response to other people who have posted reviews, but to those who are reading this deciding if Hobsons is the right place for them. I am entering my 12th year with the company and have seen it go through the natural "ups and downs" that companies will experience over an extended period of time. The first point to make is that after all of these years I still enjoy "going to work" and the reason for that lies in the fact that this is one of the few companies you can work for in which the mission of helping students is prevalent in everything that you do. In most of the interviews that I conduct I get the question "Why have you stayed for so many years?" or "What do you enjoy most about Hobsons?". I thought this would be a good platform to share my answer (If you are interviewing with me soon here's a little cheat sheet).

    Answer: Culture (I know that this is cliche, but hear me out)

    The culture present today is a combination of team collaboration, high performance with good integrity, and solid data driven decisions. The competitive landscape has changed so much in the ed tech space over the years that this culture puts us in the best position for success. The feeling is now very much a sense of "team" and knowing what your role is on that team in order to make it successful. The Sales Development Rep performing at a high level is equally as important as the Enterprise Account Executive doing the same. The standard though is that we expect them each to perform at the highest level that they are capable of reaching. The celebration of a "win" is many times not isolated to a single sales rep, but encompasses a group of individuals who came together to make the deal happen. The sharing of success is a growing part of our emerging culture and it drives a lot of the energy we see happening now within our business.

    The result that comes with that approach is blowing through sales quotas to achieve top line growth across our business lines as we did last fiscal. This then enables our high performers to achieve the top tiers of their compensation plans, product teams to go and start pumping money into development, operations to get creative on additions to systems, and we are able to go out and look for additional top talent to come onto the team...

    So why should you work here? From my perspective this is a place you come if you know that you have the ability to be "excellent" in your role and you have a team based mentality. This is a place you would love if there is a passion to be a part of something that truly does impact lives and you enjoy putting in the hard work to see a goal attained.

    I'd love to see you here....

    Cons

    There are three business lines that lie within Hobsons: Naviance, Intersect, and Starfish. There are times where you will feel as if you don't have enough exposure into the other teams even though you are reliant on their success to be successful in your job. This is an ongoing problem that has finally started to be addressed at various levels across the business. It takes time to find the spots where the bridges can be built, but I have noticed a strong swing to the positive over the last six months here.

    Advice to Management

    I believe that we need to continue to push for understanding on how people view us when they get hired (the positive) and how they view us when they depart (many times the negative). The truth obviously lies somewhere in the middle and getting our heads around the perceptive realities of those that leave is extremely important. Look to address publicly whenever possible...

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Sales Review: Great mission, great people and great culture."

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

    I have been working at Hobsons full-time

    Pros

    Flexible PTO, great benefits, easy to get behind the mission. Recently renovated Cincinnati office with long term commitment to keep growing and developing products.

    Cons

    Not that many! There has been a couple years of change, but it was necessary. It is always sad to see people go, but direction and focus needs to evolve in order to stay thriving. Most of the negative reviews about sales are incorrect as the quotas are not unattainable. We sent a ton of people to presidents club, which wouldn’t happen if goals weren’t attainable. Sales careers require accountability for quota. You have to hit your number anywhere you work in that type of role.

    Advice to Management

    Be more visible. We have remote folks and 2 offices, split your time accordingly.


  4. Helpful (4)

    "No Diversity!!!! High Turnover!!"

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

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

    Pros

    Hobsons makes a difference and the work they do is great. The impact on students and educators makes the job rewarding. Unlimited PTO and the company "had" some great and talented people.

    Cons

    Only 5 out of over 100 employees across all of the sales team are of color. There is no diversity at all in the sales department. The only diversity is within customer support (hardest working department), which offers the lowest salaries in the entire company. The company did not invest in the product which has allowed competitors to have more of a presence in the market. Many of our existing clients have had terrible customer experiences. "There is a reputation amongst many users for Naviance customer service not replying fast enough to the users and not making updates to the product as needed or requested.".

    Advice to Management

    Create a culture and environment that match your client's. The management team has to look beyond the "numbers" to get a better understanding of the market.


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Low Integrity, High Turnover"

    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 Hobsons full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    They have flexible PTO, great health benefits and mission to help students succeed.

    Cons

    The mission to help students succeed has taken a backseat to revenue numbers. Everything is a number, including employees who are viewed as disposable. Last year, sales lost half the entire team with most quitting and few getting let go. There is zero upper management, C-Level and only a couple "VP's" on location in their headquarters. Some even work from home and have no clue what is going on with the employees who are in the office. Ideas and opinions are not to be voiced without first checking to see if they are exactly what your leader thinks...stay in your lane. Products are overpriced and provide little results as data and market-share are exaggerated. The company took a huge negative turn a few years ago when all new C level people were brought in. They turned what was a tight knit and innovative company into a numbers driven bottom line culture. If you're looking for a place that leads with fear, threats and intimidation, this is it. If you plan on having a career...keep looking.

    Advice to Management

    Nope....if it isn't their own advice, they aren't listening.

    Hobsons Response

    Feb 7, 2019 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. We have certainly undergone many changes as a company over the past few years and understand our new strategic direction is not a fit for everyone. We... More


  6. "Representative"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Call Center Representative in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Call Center Representative in Arlington, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Amazing work environment, great team work. Company provides lunch. 50+ calls a day. Company takes pride in what they do and treat their employees fair.

    Cons

    Need a more structural training course, They teach you the basics; learning environment is hands on experience and shadowing other representatives. Live calls begin in a week after training.

    Advice to Management

    Yes, 1-2 yr. time and how well you know the company and their policies.

    Hobsons Response

    Dec 13, 2018 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    Thank you for taking the time to share your experience thus far, we value your input.


  7. Helpful (8)

    "Not all change is good"

    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 Hobsons full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Unlimited PTO, casual work environment, awesome coworkers, flexible schedule

    Cons

    Hobsons used to be a place I could never see myself leaving. Every day we felt uplifted and energized coming to work. The company culture was top notch with events that fostered a sense of community, inspiring senior leadership, and employees were fueled by the company mission. It just felt "home." Things took a turn when Hobsons made a poor product decision, and encouraged clients to move to a new product that was still way too much in its infancy to support the many dynamic needs of the clients we served. As a result, Hobsons lost a competitive edge in the market and trust with long-time customers.

    Eventually DMGT brought in the Boston Consulting Group, and although Hobsons has never been a stranger to change, the changes ushered in by BCG were catastrophic to the morale and heart of the company I loved. There was a major divestiture in half of the company portfolio, massive layoffs, and a new wave of stuffy, elitist senior leadership that never made an attempt to earn the respect of the employees they serve. Additionally, there is very little transparency in the company now and no clear understanding of why certain decisions are made - lots of repeating of past mistakes.

    Although I loved my coworkers, once the voices of the employees were drowned out by The Good Old Boys Club, I knew it was time to go. The grass has definitely been greener on the other side. There are plenty of tech companies out there with the great culture that Hobsons used to have with much better leadership, direction, and still value and respect their employees.

    Advice to Management

    Say hi to employees when you see them. Make an effort to be relatable. Take a class to learn how to capture and inspire an audience. A CEO should not need to read from a note card or stumble over their words when delivering a speech to “thank” their employees.

    Hobsons Response

    Dec 13, 2018 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    Thank you for sharing your experience with us and investing many years of your career with Hobsons. We understand change isn't easy and our new strategic direction isn't a fit for all. We're... More

  8. Helpful (14)

    "Remote Sales for 4-years: Ups and Downs"

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

    I have been working at Hobsons (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good work life balance and the pay is pretty decent. Also a great stepping stone job especially if you want to get into EdTech or tech sales. Met some really smart people here and got some good opportunities with other companies after putting in my time and finding success.

    Cons

    Where do I start? Management has no idea how to sell the product since they never have and it translates, so you better know what you are doing coming into the role.

    Finance also messes up quota estimates for sales-reps every year, since financial goals aren't in alignment with the actual market (they fall short every year). They overestimate quotas and this is why less than a quarter of reps hit goal. They are also shady if you hit quota early. EXAMPLE: I hit quota in Q2 one year and got a call from the president of sales telling me finance made a "mistake" and they would be increasing my quota by 10% with only 3 months left in the year. Apparently working hard and hitting your number early will just get you an arbitrary quota increase without the time or pipeline to fulfill the request, just so they can make extra numbers and keep your bonus from you. This is a great way to treat your top reps, right?

    Hobsons will also give you a finite list of accounts in the same territory year-over-year and expect increasing sales as your account list grows smaller. This is why they are moving to an account management business (they already work with all the top districts so there's no whales left). I have been the top rep more than once, but as soon as you slip a little it becomes an environment of fear.

    I also don't understand how some of the sales reps get credit for being so "great" when all of their leads are inbound or from an SDR and they make less than 100 phone calls in a year. What this tells me is you don't need to do any work if you are in the right place at the right time, great message to your other sales people! Keeps morale really high!

    Advice to Management

    Learn how to sell the product (go into a hard territory and actually close a sale) and then you will know how to be a good sales manager. Some of the managers are good and this doesn't apply, but upper management this definitely applies. Please stop treating reps who make 100 calls per year and get all inbound leads like they are the greatest, it's insulting to the other reps that actually do their job and work hard to close deals. It also makes management look like they have no idea what goes into closing business.

    Hobsons Response

    Nov 9, 2018 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback. We're proud to share Hobsons hit an all-time high in the 2018 fiscal year across our sales and client retention teams, and over 60% of our reps... More


  9. Helpful (9)

    "Going down in flames"

    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 Hobsons full-time

    Pros

    Not much anymore, it was once a really good place to work but now its just losing steam and I would be surprised if they lasted much longer.

    Cons

    Horrible pay, no growth, lots of turnover and people not trustworthy.

    Hobsons Response

    Nov 9, 2018 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    Thank you for sharing your feedback. While Hobsons has gone through some change over the past few years, we strongly believe we're on the path to continued success and growth but understand our new... More


  10. Helpful (9)

    "Sales"

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

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

    Pros

    Good work life balance
    Good training

    Cons

    One of the worst places I've ever worked - no inclusivity, management changes direction monthly which leads everyone's head spin, product is outdated and management doesn't listen to anyone

    Advice to Management

    Clean house!

    Hobsons Response

    Dec 13, 2018 – Sr. Talent Acquisition Partner

    We want to thank you for taking the time to leave a review and spending 3+ years with Hobsons.