IDS (International Decision Systems) Reviews | Glassdoor

IDS (International Decision Systems) Reviews

Updated September 19, 2017
50 reviews

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3.4
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Michael Campbell
33 Ratings

50 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Product based company Well balanced life (in 2 reviews)

  • Good benefits, especially now that there is (finally) a 401k match (in 2 reviews)

Cons
  • In my 3-4 years at the company, we hired a handful of new executives, all of which either worked with the CEO in the past or were friends with trhe CEO (in 2 reviews)

  • there is no training at all, none (in 2 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "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 IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time

    Pros

    Great daily work environment and company culture.

    Cons

    Nothing major, great place to work.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Dying company fueled by greed and arrogance"

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

    I have been working at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good existing market share, but this will soon change as the competition is gaining.

    Cons

    IDS's growth plan is fueled by gouging customers and forcing them into upgrades. There are a few select individuals who matter and everyone else is expendable. Senior leadership is a revolving door and if you have differing ideas you are shown out.
    IDS does not care about their customers, only interested in themselves. Since it's a private company the investors look for ways to simply get more money from clients without providing new or improved solutions.
    Culture does not exist. Everyone is unhappy, overworked and under extreme stress.

    Advice to Management

    None because they won't listen. They think they have it figured out and do not welcome feedback.

  3. Helpful (4)

    "Isn't the company it used to be"

    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

    Small company with global presence
    Lots of opportunity to work with other departments
    Employees are a great team to work with

    Cons

    For many years company was a revolving door for leadership - still shows today
    Little opportunity to advance in the company
    Company does anything to make a sale
    Little regard for employee satisfaction


  4. Helpful (6)

    "Long slow decline"

    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 IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time

    Pros

    There are some excellent employees and a lot of loyalty among a group that has been together for 10, 15, or more years. There is also a lot of flexibility related to work hours and working from home. Unfortunately this flexibility is more due to the lack of HR policy or any workforce management process, than it is any identifiable employee-centered policies.

    Cons

    There are no new customers coming in the door (when is the last time a new customer has signed on to use IDS products?) so the company focus is to look for new ways to pull revenue out of the same old shrinking customer base. This is a recipe for a long slow decline. Just ask any of those 10-20 year veterans and they'll tell you how big and dynamic the company used to be. The executive team spends much of their day attending tactical meetings and there continues to be a lack of a strategic plan being built or executed on. Layoffs continue at a trickle and any employee with less than 5 years tenure is a potential casualty. Meanwhile, the long tenured veterans are used to seeing a continual parade of new executives so they simply duck and wait for current initiatives to pass as they wait out the inevitable next round of executive turn over. All of this creates an atmosphere where change happens slowly, if it happens at all.

    People are correct when they mention how busy it is. However this pace isn't due to the pains of a growing business. It is due to a stagnate or slowly shrinking base of employees trying to manage their work load in an atmosphere where costs are being managed so tightly things like technology and other time savors are being thrown to the curb in favor of old school busy work.

    Advice to Management

    A business model centered on lowering costs and farming the same customers in hopes they continue to resist change (and competitors) will continue the long slow decline. Focus on strategy and finding ways to grow the customer base (perhaps by developing new products, not just upgrades to existing ones).


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Having Fun"

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

    I have been working at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The employees. I stay for my co-workers. Even though we are crazy busy, we are having fun most days

    Salary is great for those employees that have strong work ethic.

    Cons

    More employee are needed to sustain the growth and needs of the business. Team members (certain teams) are stretched way to thin.

    Advice to Management

    I cant think of any, maybe try and be available in the office more.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Tale of Two Companies (Avoid if you can...)"

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

    I worked at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    IDS is the tale of two companies: A market leader that offers a stellar product currently unmatched by any competitors, one that is starting to make better decisions that will keep IDS on the upswing for some time to come, AND a company that doesn't know how to address an increasing morale issue, high-turnover, and an age gap that keeps knowledge in silos.

    I think they are starting to make better business decisions that should see them on the up-swing. They hired a new CTO and he is working on a better release model. He is also listening to the working managers and making decisions that will help going forward.

    The biggest pro is the people. For the most part, the people you work with are wonderful, smart, and make the place worthwhile. Because of the cons at IDS, it is easy for everyone to have the same mentality to work and the culture. You soon realize that a lot of you are in this together.

    The work is challenging. There is no training, so you are immediately placed in a sink or swim environment. If you can utilize others around you, try to work above the toxic environment, and meet (or even exceed) your expectations, then you will walk away with more experience in 3 years than you usually gain in 5.

    If you're a self-starter, then you can really manage your brand and your work. Managers don't seem to care much for your development, so it falls on you. If you're good at managing your work and time well, then people will recognize those skills.

    The EAC (events and activities committee or something) is a group that sets up fun happy hours and parties. Those events can help make the job really fun.

    Good benefits, especially now that there is (finally) a 401k match.

    Good working from home options.

    Cons

    Where to begin...

    Moving #11 first because I think it is important.

    11) Last but not least, they are using outdated software and creating a lot of Technical Debt. This is a problem and will bite them in the butt soon!

    1) there is no training at all, none. The company develops and supports a leasing software. So you might expect there to be both Leasing training (for those that don't have a leasing or financial background), training for your actual position, and then a training on the software itself. But there is no training. You have to learn all these things on your own, but then there is no one to help tell you if you're getting it or not. This is a HUGE problem for the company. It can explain the high-turnover (because people aren't set up for success to actually perform their job, so either their self-confidence falls or they don't know how to actually do their job), which leads to a toxic environment. Then more work falls on the people that stay or know what they are doing, so they become too bogged down to be able to teach anyone anything. Often times your workload will go up but your deadlines or expectations stay the same. So you constantly feel like you have a mountain of work to do.

    2) There is a significant age gap in the company. You either have people that have been at IDS for 15-20 years or you have people that have been there for less than 5. So when there are company events, the attendance is abysmal. And this again creates a toxic environment and tension between the groups due to a bottleneck when it comes to sharing knowledge. The people that have been there for 15-20 years keep their knowledge to themselves as a way to remain indispensable, fearing they will be let go (just look at the BA team where you have really knowledgeable experts that don't want to help you out). So the newer people rarely get trained (see #1) because no one wants to share the information. This creates an interesting culture both socially and work-wise.

    3) Management will do everything in their power to please the customers, even at the expense of the employees and company morale. Here's an example: IDS will tell clients that the last day to submit an issue to a patch is on 10/1/16 (just an example). Then on 10/9/16, a few days before the patch is supposed to go out, a client will complain about an issue or several issues and to please the client, IDS will re-open the patch and include those issues. Developers have to do more work on a patch they thought was ready to go out, Support has to work with the client on these issues and forgo working on pressing issues, and then everyone has to refocus their work on those issues. But then management won't communicate this decision to the rest of the company. This creates resentment across multiple teams for having to do more work on a patch everyone thought was closed.
    Note: I am not saying that it isn't good for management/company to please its clients, but to not communicate this across the impacted teams is not a good sign.

    4) There is a general sense that no one cares about the actual employees. Things are not properly communicated. Or execs will say one thing in the all hands meeting, and then do another. Management and even the board knows about the morale problem at IDS, but they have not addressed it in years. This means that either management does not care about the morale problem, it isn't a high priority (so we continue to bleed talent), or they don't know how to address it.

    5) It seems that most people are underpaid vs the industry standard. When I spoke to my boss about my salary not being competitive vs what I am seeing in the industry, their response was "of course we aren't competitive." It is a fact that we underpay employees. What is interesting, however, is that a few executives don't actually live in Minnesota. So IDS pays for them to fly in and out every week, and they pay for their hotel rooms every week. So think about that for a second. Think about being told by a boss that "we don't have the money for" X, but that we are paying for the CTO to fly in and out of Chicago or San Fran every week. And that we are paying for their hotel room. Needless to say, they're not staying in a Holiday Inn Express.

    6) Executive team hires their friends and not the more qualified option. In my 3-4 years at the company, we hired a handful of new executives, all of which either worked with the CEO in the past or were friends with trhe CEO. And recently the COO position was given to an existing exec that was already stretched too thin, putting more pressure on already struggling teams.

    7) HR doesn't seem to actually do anything besides benefits. There isn't even an employee satisfaction or engagement survey (we had 1 in my 3-4 years at the company and it was only when we asked for one that we got it).

    8) No one cares about your personal development. They only care about what you can do for them, even if it isn't something that fits your job or your career.

    9) Management plays favorites way too often. Going back to the age gap, another problem exists and it is that of tenure. There are a lot of poor managers that have been there for 15+ years that seem to get special treatment, even though they can't see the forest from the trees. They make bad decisions, or they are too affraid to stand up to their friends in higher positions and fight for what is right.

    10) Some people are really unprofessional. Piggy-backing off #9, the people that have been at IDS the longest tend to become demanding, rude, and unprofessional. They think that they can get by being like that because they have been there the longest. They have this feeling of being "untouchable" which only breeds worse behavior.

    11) Last but not least, they are using outdated software and creating a lot of Technical Debt. This is a problem and will bite them in the butt soon!

    Advice to Management

    Take the time to address the morale issue. Actually look at the problem and work with employees to make solutions.

    Stop caring only about the customers. Stand up for your product. When it needs work, or it needs X to be fixed, listen to the developers and take their advice (for example, releasing 1 major release in a year where there is more risk of putting too much in vs. releasing 2 major releases and splitting the work).

    There needs to be training for your product, your job, and the industry. This is a must! You need to invest in an actual training department.

    Take the time to focus on support, not PS. PS is burning to the ground already, let it burn, and focus on the talent in Support.

    Communicate more often and be more open/honest about what is going on. Don't say one thing in an all-hands meeting and then do another in practice.

    Don't make "budget" an excuse when the executives are flown in each week, get "manager breakfasts," and get to stay in hotel suites each week.

    Recognize that you are a 30-year-old company, not a startup. Hire more people! Everyone is overworked, every department is understaffed.

    Clean house where you need to. If there are managers that don't actually do anything, or make poor decisions, don't reward them because they have been there the longest.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Trending upwards"

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

    I worked at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time

    Pros

    The new product is gaining traction and sales are looking good. Now that the company has restored the 401K matching, the benefit plan is top shelf.

    Cons

    Not much that I can think of.

    Advice to Management

    Keep investing in the India team now that they are gaining some good skills. There are some very good people there. Also, time to invest in the product roadmap now.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Niche software - strong market position"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Minneapolis, MN
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Minneapolis, MN
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Cohesive team, decent work environment, collaborative

    Cons

    Doesn't always seem to be the most innovative or have a strong sense of urgency to evolve


  9. Helpful (7)

    "I'm not sure why people stay"

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

    I worked at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time

    Pros

    Sometimes I miss being at a smaller company. The large company I left for is very cumbersome. When my computer needed reimaging, our Systems manager told me not to bother his people--that it wasn't their problem. Huh? At IDS when my computer stopped working, their systems folks had a replacement to me in half an hour. And there are some very nice people there who take pride in their work in a way I just don't see in my present job.

    Cons

    There is no 401k match. I'm reading reviews of folks currently there hoping they will come through with one. Are you kidding? That got axed 10 years ago. As did bonuses. As did decent raises. Once they started offshoring to India, they didn't care about what happened to US workers. There is a hard core group of folks who have been there since long before all of that went down, and they are utterly loyal to the place. It was once a place worth being loyal to. They're also better compensated than I ever was, as I showed up just as things started going south. Once that old guard starts retiring, I'm not sure the company will be able to keep it together.

    Advice to Management

    I don't think giving advice to management would change anything. The place is owned by a venture capitalist that tosses out the CEO every time someone sneezes.


  10. "A bit shady and stingy, but overall not terrible"

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

    I have been working at IDS (International Decision Systems) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Competitive salary, laid-back and respectful culture.

    Cons

    Employee retention is low. Benefits package a little weak, especially with no 401k (it's been in the works for 3+ years now, I doubt we'll ever see it judging by how everything else goes). Board members have left the company without a trace recently, with very little information given to the employees. Leads to low morale. Company is currently trying to grow but consistently struggling to succeed. Future doesn't look grim, but it isn't exciting.

    Advice to Management

    Lower overturn of executives, more upfront information with the employees, retention is good.


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