Interactive Brokers Reviews | Glassdoor

Interactive Brokers Reviews

Updated February 27, 2017
24 reviews

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Interactive Brokers Chairman, President, and CEO Thomas Peterffy
Thomas Peterffy
17 Ratings

24 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Free lunch from area restaurants is a nice perk (in 28 reviews)

  • no nonsense" philosophy & no politics / red-tape (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • Work from home option almost non-existent (this has to do mostly with security concerns and the nature of business) (in 4 reviews)

  • little to no usage of third-party products (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Worst Company"

    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
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    No Pros for this company

    Cons

    No training provided to freshers
    bunch of liers sitting in HR Department
    Too much pressure from day one

    Advice to Management

    Stop speaking lies and be honest and helpful


  2. Helpful (2)

    "New Account Specialist"

    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
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Interactive Brokers full-time

    Pros

    They have good benefits

    Cons

    Poor middle management, they need to all get re-evaluated. Stressful environment.

    Advice to Management

    All managers need to get re-trained and need to change the environment.


  3. "Worst employee ever"

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

    Pros

    There are no pros, company treats employees as idiots

    Cons

    There are too many contras which are not even possible to mention here

    Advice to Management

    Get rid off your employees and run your company on your own


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  5. Helpful (3)

    "Narcisissm is a company value"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Budapest (Hungary)
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Budapest (Hungary)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Free lunch. I.e. it's part of the compensation.
    The fellow programmers are very smart. Sometimes compenetent too.

    You can learn how to deal with legacy code.

    Cons

    In some teams it's expected to pull 50 hour weeks. Too bad that I was working in such a team too. That team was wickedly infelxible when time came to personal issues, like visiting my wife in the hospital.

    We had to use ancient technologies. We had to reimplement the world 'cos it was extremely hard to use 3rd party software. We had to request the library first, and experiment with it later.

    All the managers are ex-developers. Too bad that most of the good developers are bad managers. Command-and-control and micromanagement are the mostly used tactics. It's also common that managers tweak the code a little, mess it up, and then balme their underlings.

    Time-pressure is high most of the time. Quite often this pressure is a false negative, but ppl still work long hours.

    The CEO of the Hungarian subsidiary just won't say hello to the coworkers.

    Advice to Management

    Accept that developers are people too.
    Create a HR department.
    Trust the employees and be flexible when they are in need.

    Estabilish 360 degree reviews so you can get some decent feedback about the leaders.

    Hire real managers who can talk to people. Define some company values otherwise the management will be full of narcissists.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Es gibt kein kostenloses Mittagessen"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Employee in Zug (Switzerland)
    Current Employee - Employee in Zug (Switzerland)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    (Translated from English)

    Pros

    Man musst keinerlei Geld in die Hand nehmen fürs Mittagessen. Erleben Sie wie es sich anfühlt, gebraucht zu werden.

    Cons

    In meinem Vorstellungsgespräch erzählte mir der Mitarbeiter vom Personalwesen, dass Mitarbeiter ein kostenloses Mittagessen erhalten, wenn sie durch Mittagspause hindurch arbeiten. Auf dem ersten Blick klang das großartig, aber nach einer Weile ist es nur noch anstrengend und mühselig. In den meisten anderen Jobs habe ich manchmal die Mittagspause hindurch gearbeitet, weil ich so motiviert war, aber die meisten Mitarbeiter hier sind nicht so motiviert oder glücklich, und das Unternehmen erfindet ständig neue Regeln, um die Leute zu kontrollieren. Die Manager sind ebenfalls Kontrollversessen wenn es darum geht, dass Mitarbeiter Urlaub nehmen oder irgendwas anderes tun wollen, das dem Chef kein Geld einbringt. Es gibt keine Zeit für Fortbildungen, niemand vertritt sich die Beine in der Mittagspause, es ist wirklich wie ein Schritt zurück in die autoritäre Ausbeutung der Arbeitskräfte im 19. Jahrhundert. Im Büro in Zug in der Schweiz, gibt es viele ehemalige Mitarbeiter, welche glücklicherweise keine Ahnung davon haben, dass das Mittagessen in den meisten anderen Unternehmen bezuschusst wird oder ganz kostenlos ist, ohne diesen Unsinn, dass man den Schreibtisch nicht verlassen darf.

    Advice to Management

    Nichts - ich glaube nicht, dass sie erwachsen genug sind, um sich zu verändern. Sie sind völlig versessen darauf zu beweisen, dass autoritäre Managementstrukturen funktionieren.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Senior managers are the 1%, everybody else treated like plebs"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Developer
    Current Employee - Software Developer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

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

    Pros

    If you are hired into senior management, you can make a lot of money and have a lot of fun. If you like to crush your subordinates' ideas under your heel you will love this place.

    Cons

    Company decided to recalculate bonuses after Swiss franc disaster in January 2015. Employees left hanging, the mood is really bad, another month waiting for managers with big egos to throw down some pennies for the rest of us.

    At least half the bonus is paid in shares that vest over a 6 year period. This has an insidious effect, people who are not happy or not productive stay with the company longer and longer because they have a big pool of unvested shares that they don't want to lose by going to another job. If you are a programmer, you will find yourself working with programmers who have been in the company for more than 15 years and never had 1 day of external training, still using legacy technologies like SCCS version control or Java 1.4.

    The CEO, Petterfy, talks a lot about his love of the Republicans and giving people opportunity (as opposed to communism) but the reality is that he has built a horrible culture here where somebody who has been here 10 or 15 years without keeping their skills up to date has acquired a lot of shares in the company and acts like they are superior to a can-do developer who just came in from a successful startup.

    The only way to get the unvested shares is by waiting for retirement, waiting for redundancy or hoping that you find a new job where the next company agrees to give you an up-front allocatiion of unvested shares to compensate for the shares you forfeit by resigning from IB. This is only possible if you plan to move to another company with similar characteristics.

    When you try to value your bonus shares, look at the cashflows: if shares are $25 each on the market and your bonus is 600 shares and 100 vest each year then it is more like the company has agreed to a pay rise of $2500 per year for 6 years. If you can find another job that gives an initial annual salary that is $2500 higher than the Interactive Brokers salary then it completely offsets the value of the unvested IB shares you are giving up.

    As an extra burden, the shares vest in May or June, 6 months after the bonus round. So if you don't like your bonus in January and you resign in February then you won't get any of the shares that vest that same year, including the new shares from the bonus round.

    Advice to Management

    You need to bring in a new generation of IT skills, both by training existing staff and bringing in new staff. This needs to be applied in every team and office in the company. You need to get these skills to propagate throughout the company, if you think that productive developers with modern skills will work side-by-side with the existing dinosaurs entrenched in the company then you will be disappointed.


  8. Helpful (15)

    "Hostile Work Environment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Account Manager in Greenwich, CT
    Former Employee - Senior Account Manager in Greenwich, CT
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    I joined for location and the salary. I thought is was a great lateral move at the time.

    Cons

    Manager was an ignorant jerk who knew less than I did. It is unclear how he kept his job. He seemed particularly offended because I went to a great university and had academic credentials in addition to time in the trenches.

    Advice to Management

    I wish I had filed a law suit. I now regret taking the high road.


  9. Helpful (13)

    "Horrible! Real devils in here!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Greenwich, CT
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Greenwich, CT
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    There is some really good engineering work being done

    Cons

    - No internet at all. Not even restricted/moderated internet. You cannot get a glimpse of what is happening in the outside world from morning 9am-6pm for a near 365 days a year. In today's world, this is like stringing up a person without allowing air to breathe.
    - Adding to the internet policy, the culture is one of the worst. The managers are horrible with absolutely no humane feelings. They expect you to be like slaves, no question asked, no issue raised against your head. With the internet policy, I feel people who work for a few years will loose any sense of emotion and become extremely apathetic. People this will have very adverse affects on your personal lives. So please read this and do not take an offer at this company even though the money they give is somewhat above the average market value.
    - The head of the one of the departments even sometimes makes this explicit when hiring you: "Being social is not good in the company". So not take this lightly. The culture will drain any life from you. You work in the company for 10 years and not know anything about the guy sitting next to you.
    - H1B/Work visa permit holders... READ THIS!!: They only give 10 days of vacation for the whole year for the first 5 years! Yes just 10 days a year! So, you will have no time to prepare for interviews leave alone actually interviewing with companies to get out of the place if you don't like the culture. I have seen many people who are stuck there because of this situation. This will drive you crazy leading to many psychological problems.

    Advice to Management

    Give your employees internet if they need. You can give them the tradeoff of reducing their salary for having their internet monitored if security is a concern.
    Get a life guys. Treat your employees like they are humans and remember they have feelings too. They need to get a life where they can smile once they get home and not think about why they ever got stuck at this company.


  10. Helpful (3)

    "I wish I had left earlier."

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

    I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Salaries are good. You can learn a lot about trading. Co-workers are smart. New Year's party is nice.

    Cons

    Work environment is poisonous. Communication is discouraged among employees; you are expected to solve your problems with minimal external help. There are no trainings no working from home. Tools and development processes are very old. Career advancement is very slow. Employee stock incentive plan seems good at first but it locks you in with the company. Once you announce to leave the firm they will screw with you wherever they can.

    Advice to Management

    Treat your employees with respect.


  11. Helpful (10)

    "rigid management and culture"

    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
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Interactive Brokers full-time

    Pros

    - some great engineers.
    - free lunch (at a cost)

    Cons

    - free lunch at the cost of your lunch break.
    - no growth and they don't care. same sh*t everyday.
    - rigid management. you better be a machine that functions only to finish tasks.
    - expect to work all time. eyes on you.
    - don't expect help or communication. they are non-existent.
    - many more....


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