HotChalk Reviews | Glassdoor

HotChalk Reviews

Updated March 20, 2017
92 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

2.2
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Larry Lenhart
5 Ratings

92 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Goes to great efforts to ensure compliance and create a welcoming, collaborative, and friendly work environment (in 6 reviews)

  • Work-life balance - Never will take work home (in 3 reviews)

Cons
  • High turnover, very hierarchical, everything goes by manager's way (in 5 reviews)

  • Senior Management has made a series of bad decisions over the past two years (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "enrollment specialist"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Enrollment Specialist in Phoenix, AZ
    Current Employee - Enrollment Specialist in Phoenix, AZ
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at HotChalk full-time

    Pros

    people, pay, environment, food, culture

    Cons

    lack of communication with other departments

    HotChalk Response

    Mar 14, 2017 – Senior Director HR

    Thanks for taking the time to evaluate HotChalk and glad you find so many positive aspects to the company!


  2. "Good luck..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Enrollment Specialist in Tempe, AZ
    Former Employee - Enrollment Specialist in Tempe, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The camaraderie with other employees is the only strongest support and hope that is positive here. With the 4+ layoffs and the recent mass exodus employees have each other to count on and listen.

    Cons

    Beyond the 4+ layoffs for business sense, stripping all incentive (including calling OT incentive) there really isn't much that was positive I can add in the last quarter. Lip service of hang in there and its going to get better, surveys that are still regulated by upper management that is currently in question of their authority run the feedback.

    Advice to Management

    If you are going to improve a far removed and lost culture in once a culture rich environment, you might want to create a culture committee that is comprised of peers...not management. Take that data and feedback, create skip level surveys so management manages down, not up in fear of their positions. That would make sense so floor reps are in fear of a hostile work environment. If nothing changes nothing changes. I made a change for you.

    HotChalk Response

    Mar 21, 2017 – Senior Director HR

    It's encouraging that you recognize the reductions of the workforce were done for reasons that made 'business sense'. The elimination of incentives (excluding overtime) had to be done as a result of ... More


  3. Helpful (2)

    "Worst company ever!!!! Read before you apply..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Enrollment Specialist in Tempe, AZ
    Current Employee - Enrollment Specialist in Tempe, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Food
    Cool desks
    You need to write at least 20 words in this section, but I dont have 20 words to put in the Pro section.

    Cons

    This place is an obsolute joke. Manager(s) one in particular, who walk around like they own the place. Nice to your face, then go talk negatively about you to everyone in their "click". Who ever heard of it being ok as a manager to tell non management or leadership about everyones personal business!! Management or shall I say DOA's or ADOA's, are terrible people. They lead by being threatening, demeaning and straight up liars. They say it will get better, meanwhile their resumes are out there! If they say it will get better than why are they looking??

    Ive experienced the worst days of my life here. Waking up sick because I have to go to work and I never felt this way about my job before at other places.

    The company laid off hundreds of great folks and then have the audacity to put out an ad for hiring again for the same positions at a lower pay!

    Your not valued at all. Your looked at like your their slave. They have little spies that suck up and the managers ask, no tell, you to tell them things about other employees.

     The HR department is a joke. Ive experienced, first hand, how they tell others about the conversation you have with them it is supposed to be a safe zone to express issues. Issues I never shared with a soul in that place except for HR. Somehow my business was put out there to a manager who had the nerve to come to me and say "so i heard you think im a terrible manager..." I was shocked because my conversation was very specific and was told it remains confidential. If I told no one and I mean no one, how did they know?? I was mortified. She got right in my face in front of coworkers and put her fake nails right in my face! Go to HR about that, yeah right..

    There is so much more, but Id need a publisher to publish the novel I could write.

    Dont let your guard down. Managers are not your friends. Dont think they are
    Even if they seem to be friendly to you. They will turn on you in a minute. If your one that thinks this way, be very very cautious. Dont say you werent warned when they walk you out the door with a smile.

    Advice to Management

    Just shut the darn place down. Put it out of its misery. I dont even want people in the industry to know where I work bacause the Hotchalk name is an industry joke.

    Look at your Tempe leaders carefully C-TEAM. A couple of your supposed leaders can cause you ANOTHER lawsuit so you will be shelling out more money.

    I dont think Hotchalk will ever be great again. Sad because it used to be a place to be proud to work for.

    Your partnering university are pulling contracts. Doesnt that tell you anything?

    HotChalk Response

    Mar 21, 2017 – Senior Director HR

    A culture is the comprised of the behaviors and attitudes of the people who live in that culture. I'm sorry that you continue to stay in an environment that you feel so antagonistic towards. We are ... More


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  5. Helpful (3)

    "Want to get laid off? Come to HC!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Littleton, CO
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Littleton, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at HotChalk full-time

    Pros

    Food, food, food, food, and food.

    Cons

    Initially, HotChalk was a great company. They opened an entire site in Denver. Spent thousands upon thousands furnishing the place, and hiring employees. Many employees left great jobs because they were promised growth. Fast forward 9 months later and just like that, they dissolved an entire office of employees. My guess is, Bertelsmann forced them to make this decision. Regardless, this company, along with C-level executives left me with severe anxiety (true) around the whole situation. To open and staff an entire office of 40+ employees to just shut it down without even a year is beyond me.

    Bottom line: Layoffs are imminent with Bertelsmann in charge. Look elsewhere.

    Advice to Management

    There are more C Level executives you should get rid of.

    HotChalk Response

    Mar 14, 2017 – Senior Director HR

    It's a great disappointment to all of us that the Denver office was not a successful venture and the decision to close that office was not Bertelsmann's. I'm sorry that your time at HotChalk has ... More


  6. Helpful (8)

    "Warning: Recent positive reviews are planted - this is what's REALLY going on"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Enrollment Specialist in Tempe, AZ
    Current Employee - Senior Enrollment Specialist in Tempe, AZ
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    The building is nice and spacious and the desks are cool to sit or stand at. Break room is spacious and there is an attempt to celebrate holidays with events like cookie decorating (just recently for Valentine's) and Christmas trees for Christmas. The atmosphere from an outsider's perspective looks refreshing and inviting - up to date and forward thinking. Pay used to be higher than industry standards, not sure what they're offering incoming employees now.

    Cons

    Middle management (at the local level) are egregiously lacking in people skills to motivate. This company is not concerned with turnover. Management are only concerned with one thing - enrollments at all costs -- even if the programs we enroll for are not the best ones for the students we service. We're constantly getting dinged by Compliance because our manager told us something that is not in line with policies and then we are graded on this unfairly. You never know when you'll be laid off because layoffs are not by merit or tenure. They don't understand that we're miserable and if they do, they don't care because they are too. No 401K Match and insurance sucks.

    Advice to Management

    Higher management is inept at seeing that middle management are qualified at managing processes, not people. Their bottom line/end result personalities have killed what little morale the company had. They pay well here, but they treat you poorly and with a lack of respect. They don't appreciate the people that they have that are/were working hard to push this company to greatness. The parent partner needs to come in and get in the trenches.. not just sit on the board. Human Resources is useless and uninformed. People have been written up and made example of - they put their name on a sheet in the break room that shows who got written up and what for! The best example I could think of is an abused spouse hiding bruises and cuts under their clothes. That's what this company does... mess with your spirit. Many are experiencing PTSD and worse as a result of the culture. The money is not worth it. People are leaving in droves without jobs to go to, and management does not seem concerned with people who have been here for years leaving abruptly. Get a clue, HotChalk/Bertlesmann!


  7. Helpful (8)

    "Non student-centered practices..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Campbell, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Campbell, CA
    Doesn't Recommend

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

    Pros

    Ability to work remotely
    The team (your colleagues)
    Work-life balance - Never will take work home

    Cons

    Transparency and Communication - HUGE lack of transparency from upper management. Sometimes, our managers are the last ones to know about things.
    Collaboration - Difficulty collaborating across departments and partners
    Performance Evaluations - Have not seen any employees receive performance evaluations in the 8-10 months I have been employed here.
    Turnover and change - lots of turnover in the last few months (double digit) and lots of change.
    No career path - No upward mobility, even though during interviews, management tells you there are tons of opportunities. Some employees on my team have been with the company more than three years and have not advanced at all.
    Vacation policy - PTO (all the time off you want), BUT you cover others' work and they cover your work while you're out.
    Non-student centered practices - a company that works with HE institutions that says its student centered practices are NOT student centered. For example, do not delay processes in an effort to retain students.


  8. Helpful (4)

    "New management with focus and stategic mindset"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at HotChalk full-time

    Pros

    Confident that new mgmt and bertelsmann can take this co to the next level
    I'm passionate about education and the co supported my continuing learning via a professional certificate with a hotchalk partner institution
    Friendly team focused on student outcomes
    Data driven approach and focus
    Large market and growth opp

    Cons

    Quite a bit of turnover but hopefully that is all behind now
    Historically lacked focus, pursuing too many directions but new ceo seems to have team focused
    New ceo has improved communication which was lacking
    University partners can be difficult to work with and potentially be limiting factor

    Advice to Management

    Try to make the place more of a meritocracy and recognize strong performance. Stay focused on the core business. Develop more programs to support employee lifelong learning so we can in a good way " eat our own dogfood"

    HotChalk Response

    Jan 31, 2017 – Senior Director HR

    Thank you for your insightful feedback and advice. We are indeed making efforts to narrow the focus back to our core business and clients. In addition, we are developing people programs which will ... More


  9. Helpful (7)

    "No different then the rest"

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

    Pros

    You get 3 breaks. Company will provide lunch in attempt to bring back a culture they destroyed with dishonesty and no loyalty

    Cons

    Company has large lay offs even after stating they do not. They will move your position without asking or any incentive. 2016 they had two major lay offs. Culture has fallen and no looks of it going up. CEO recently stepped down because the company is not producing. Get out while you can

    Advice to Management

    Management needs to respect their employees.


  10. Helpful (11)

    "Run Away Fast - Constant Lay-offs"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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 HotChalk full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Some really great people work there
    Relatively new building, bright, airy, clean
    Catered lunches to try to bring back a sense of community and loyalty

    Cons

    Too many to mention but I'll try to add a few.
    No commissions, bonuses, or incentives
    Constant layoffs, there have been at least a couple hundred people laid off in the past couple of years, almost 70 laid off in November, a week before Thanksgiving. What company does that when they claim to care for their employees.
    Several laid off last week, AGAIN.
    Do not trust their people to work from home. Prefer to micro-manage
    Financially unstable, they're broken and in a free fall. Where they land nobody knows.
    The list goes on but I should stop there, that's enough for now

    Advice to Management

    To start, get rid of Mark Z. He prefers to manage by intimidation and humiliation of his subordinates. He yells at and humiliates his subordinates in public and in front of their peers. He should NEVER manage people.
    Hire someone that knows how to manage money and people and most of all stop lying to your employees about the stability of the company.


  11. Helpful (4)

    "Admissons"

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

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

    Pros

    Free Food - great co-workers

    Cons

    Horrific Company- Bad service to partner college....



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