IvyMax Reviews | Glassdoor

IvyMax Reviews

Updated November 20, 2016
16 reviews

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2.7
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16 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Good for short-term work"

    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
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Flexibility in setting hours/choosing classes

    Cons

    Very little room for career progression


  2. "Not a bad place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    They treat you well; food is good; students are okay.

    Cons

    Not much structure or oversight - if you teach, you have free reign.


  3. "Instructor"

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

    I worked at IvyMax full-time

    Pros

    Students are friendly and fun to work with. If you enjoy teaching, the students will have fun in your classes. Decent part time job for tutors who are not in administration or management.

    Cons

    Management is disorganized and unethical. They often make promises that they never fulfill. A lot of the issues stem from the work culture.


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  5. "teacher"

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

    Pros

    The students are good to teach.

    Cons

    company culture not great to work under,


  6. "Growing company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Graphic and Web Designer in Cupertino, CA
    Former Employee - Graphic and Web Designer in Cupertino, CA

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

    Pros

    Growing company so there is job stability.

    Cons

    HR is not helpful to their employees.
    Pay is lower compared to others companies. Work a lot of over time.


  7. "Instrutor"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    It's a great place to work for. People working there are very nice and friendly.

    Cons

    I had to work on weekends.


  8. "associate director"

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

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

    Pros

    Sales training everyday, so you will at least get something when u leaving.

    Cons

    Have to work both Sat/sun with unfair pay.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Ethically Questionable Company"

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

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

    Pros

    Most of the staff at IvyMax is quite nice and easy to get along with. You also have a lot of freedom and little supervision, but this is mostly due to poor management (see Cons). They provide lunch on weekends, but it's always from the same restaurant.

    Cons

    If you are the type of person who doesn't particularly care about making a difference or helping people, IvyMax will be just fine for you; the office environment is pleasant and the job is quite easy. If, on the other hand, you want to educate young people or get some sense of fulfillment from your job, seek employment elsewhere.

    IvyMax's philosophy seems to be "let's find ways to trick schools into admitting underqualified applicants." Most of IvyMax's students are first-or-second-generation Chinese immigrants, so that mostly involves faking a proficiency in English. You'll notice, if you look at their website, that IvyMax uses the language of a school: they call themselves an "academy," the head of the company is called the "Principal," and they do offer classes. Some of IvyMax's instructors are great, to be sure, and they legitimately teach their students about important subjects. But the management's focus is on producing appealing college and job applications, not on education in any meaningful sense (more on this later).

    My position is/was "Senior Editor*," which meant that during application season, I helped students with their essays and applications. This part of the job was alright, as I got to help genuinely bright young people. However, on many, many occasions, I was asked to behave unethically. Once, I was asked to "edit" (read: re-write) a letter to a private high school on behalf of a student who spoke very poor English. The goal was to convince the school that the student should be placed in the non-ESL track, even though the student very clearly belonged in the ESL camp. On another occasion, I was asked to "edit" a job application cover letter, again to convince the recruiter that the applicant was proficient in English - when they clearly were not. In general, I was pushed to polish students' pieces, but not to teach them how to write better.

    Furthermore, IvyMax trades in nonsense "experiences" that pad college applications, but provide no real edification for students. Ideas like "leadership" and "service" are tossed around as if they have some significance. Meanwhile, the materials for our English classes are in complete disorder, and no one puts the slightest effort into or shows the slightest concern for genuinely improving the skills or understanding of the students.

    In a similar vein, company meetings center around advertisement and sales, with no regard for providing a quality service. As an instructor, I constantly had to apologize to students for things that any professional company would have thoroughly taken care of: workbooks were missing pages, or were not put together consistently from student to student, lessons were painfully outdated and/or incoherent (because they are cobbled together from grammar books with expired copyrights), our office lacked basic supplies like whiteboard markers, LINED PAPER, and staplers.

    In fact, a basic sense of professionalism is lacking in all of IvyMax's administrative staff. I routinely had students show up with no prior knowledge on my part because I had not been told that a student had been scheduled. Students became (understandably) furious with me because administrators mishandled their college application materials. In general, no one seems to communicate or pay any attention to serving our students in an orderly and responsible manner.

    As a final complaint, the management is stuck in the past, and has very strange ideas about classrooms. The best example of this is their cell phone policy. Cell phones are not allowed in IvyMax's classrooms (even though the staff are on their phones 24/7, including the "Principal," who runs the company and originated this policy), despite the fact that the rest of the modern world has gotten over its trepidation of having them in public. Before this policy was implemented, my students had their phones in class, but did not use them when I was talking because they tend to be well-behaved, respectful young people. There were quite literally no problems. After the policy, the students felt disrespected (because they were being disrespected), and went to great lengths to smuggle them in and use them when they weren't supposed to. Moreover, because so many of the students are ESL learners, they had previously used their phones to look up words that were new to them. After the ban, responsible students who could have been using their phones as learning resources were forced not to, and the irresponsible students (who are less inclined to follow rules) were MORE inclined to be disruptive. When I brought this up with the Principal, I was told they could bring laptops, which is ridiculous because those are just as potentially distracting, if not more so.

    Sorry for the long rant, but this is a genuinely terrible company.

    *This was a farcical job title. I was "Senior" on my first day, and my job duties were much closer to that of a tutor or teacher than an editor.

    Advice to Management

    Spend as much effort (or more even) on providing a quality service as you do on finding more customers.


  10. "I love it here!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Temporary Instructor in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Temporary Instructor in Irvine, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at IvyMax part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The center director is very professional and my supervisor is very nice and helpful. I am not Chinese nor American but I am treated with respect and dignity. Very professional. Since part-time I do not get much of a salary but still I like here since I can teach a bunch of really intelligent and smart students. This always keeps me polished with my knowledge and I really like it!

    Cons

    Its kind of new so need sometime to get on top of things, bonus for part-time faculty.

    Advice to Management

    A good marketing strategy is needed to attract more students.


  11. Helpful (1)

    "Lots of promise, but too crazy to deliver on it."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Staff in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Staff in Mountain View, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Working with students is rewarding (mostly).
    Lots of opportunities to develop skills (since you won't be trained) - curriculum planning, program development, teaching, tutoring, sales - whatever they need done, you can do it.
    Few repercussions if you mess up, as long as you keep your head down and do as you're told and don't ask for a raise.

    Cons

    Zero training; lots of "we trust you" and then the potential of getting in trouble at the monthly meeting or a round-table session because you didn't meet expectations (generally less of an issue for white hires; as another review mentioned, there's racism but it goes either way depending on the issue or mood).
    Erratic management - can't keep priorities straight.
    Erratic work environment - very hard to focus because of negative interactions between other staff members (the sales team generally feels a lot of pressure) and other office issues.
    Unpaid overtime.
    Regular gaslighting/guilt-tripping.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on providing a quality service for the services expected of you, THEN try to innovate and create groundbreaking programs. Focus on retaining quality staff.



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