I worked at Livio Radio full-time (More than a year)
Motivated and a friendly work environment
Building was way too small...lol
Advice to Management
Company is doing great!
I worked at Livio Radio full-time (More than a year)
- Engineers at Livio are the best of the best in the area and are truly a pleasure to work with. Everyone is self-motivated, hard-working and easy to get along with. The team is very close-knit and social amongst themselves. Most engineers will hang out after work, go to lunch together and work on side projects together.
- All engineers get a say in the hiring process for new engineers and all engineers must unanimously say they want a person to be hired or else they do not extend an offer (this can also be a con - see below)
- Engineers get 1 day per month for "Lab Day" where they are not allowed to work on regularly scheduled work tasks and must create something tangible and preferably cool using new technology before going home for the day. We would regularly get wrapped up in our projects and sometimes stay until 10pm or later working on it.
- Engineers typically get to attend at least a couple software conferences throughout the year, although that opportunity is greatly dwindling since Ford has taken over.
- Free drinks and bagels every day as well as Timbits and pizza on Lab Days.
TL;DR: Ford is the worst.
- Ford is the biggest con of working at Livio, by far. They have no concept of properly managing an elite software team. Ford has basically turned Livio engineers into merge-monkeys for approving and merging Ford's closed-source development efforts into the open-source project on Github (because THAT'S what elite developers should be working on). Ford still has a stranglehold on the open-source projects and refuse to accept any contributions except those made by Ford employees or contractors.
- Ford's software team, who works closely with the Livio team, is an absolute abomination. These are some of the worst "developers" I have ever had to work with. They don't accept constructive criticism, they are always looking for quick-fix hacks to make a feature work instead of addressing the underlying software issues causing the bugs in the first place, which, in turn, leads to more bugs. Most of their developers don't have engineering degrees, and have no business leading technical development efforts. Their work is an embarrassment and whenever I had the displeasure of showing it to other developers, I always felt obligated to explain that I had nothing to do with their work. Go checkout the SmartDeviceLink page on Github if you want to see the results of their engineering efforts.
- Management is absolutely useless. Nobody is aware of what the engineers are working on and nobody cares. If the engineers weren't so self-sufficient and motivated, the company would be long dead because management doesn't do anything to address employee concerns or violations of policy. Management wants your butt in that seat for 40 hours per week and aside from that, they don't care what you do. They will look for absolutely any reason to screw you over if you "rock the boat". Welcome to the "Ford Family". I filed complaints about safety hazards in the building, sexual harassment, salary concerns and several other issues; all of my complaints went unanswered and were never addressed (aside from HR sending out a stupid survey).
- Ford illegally back-dated my termination date in order to steal my bonus from my bank account after it had already been paid out and they refused to pay for my unused vacation days after I left the company. This amounts to over $4,000 that Ford stole from me in retaliation for my leaving the company. They do some very shady and illegal things to any employee who dares to challenge the status-quo while simultaneously allowing other employees to play Words With Friends at their desk for 8 hours per day (I wish I was joking) as long as they don't make a fuss.
- Ford has a special budget set aside for giving raises to people who have turned in their 2-weeks notice. They can give up to a $10,000 raise from this budget to motivate people to stay on with the company. What they don't tell you is that they will refuse to give you a raise if you ask for one until you put in your 2-weeks notice. This is their strategy for paying people as little as possible to stay at the company. They readily admit that they pay their engineers well below market average.
- Ford has numerous required "trainings" that all employees must take, regardless if it is relevant to your work or not. For example, all employees must take a manufacturing training, even if you don't work at a manufacturing facility. The answers were written on the whiteboard for us to copy down for perfect grades. You have to take a "ethics" training every 3 months, which basically tells you not to accept bribes of more than $50 increments. If, however, someone offers you a $2,000 box seat at a sporting event, that is perfectly legitimate as long as that person is present at the event as well.
- Ford treats employees like children. Ford IT will regularly send out emails featuring a cartoon character named "Cyber Steve" who explains that you should use secure passwords, not leave confidential paperwork sitting around and other common-sense policies.
- There is absolutely no diversity on the Livio team - everyone is a 20-something white guy. No female engineers, no engineers of any other ethnicity, no engineers older than 30 years old. This is in part a consequence of the "unanimous" hiring process (if a single person holds bigoted beliefs, no person they are bigoted against will be hired, regardless of merit or talent) and the attitude of management, who I consider to be misogynist and racist.
- Livio has adopted Ford's "bonus by merit" policy where 20% of engineers (there are only 6 engineers, so read: "1 person") are given a higher raise and annual bonus than others, supposedly based on merit. However, it is well known that this "high performer" title is basically just rotated around the employees each year and actually has nothing to do with merit. I was arguably the highest performer in 2014 and my associated merit increase was 1.7% - less than the rate of inflation.
- Livio's building only has 1 unisex bathroom serving 10-20 people.
- You only get 10 vacation days - 4 of which are "mandatory vacation days" during Ford's 4th of July shutdown. So, in essence, you only get 6 vacation days for the entire year.
- During CES crunch-time, you are expected to work through any vacation you have left and you are not allowed to carry-over vacation days to the following year. So, saving vacation days for Christmas break is basically a waste. Take them throughout the year or lose them at the end of the year.
Advice to Management
If you want Livio to survive and succeed, you should either get your act together and start contributing or just pack your stuff and leave. Start treating employees with dignity and respect. Start living up to the "One Ford" propaganda that you push on your employees.
I have been working at Livio Radio as an intern
basic questions for the interview, like palindrome
no proper reason for a reject
I have been working at Livio Radio as an intern (Less than a year)
- Traveling opportunities
- Treated to lunch, dinner and coffee several times
- Loads of experience in event planning, media relations, graphic design, product reviews, writing/blogging, marketing research, social media, communication plans and promotions.
- Gas stipend
- Free to be creative, ask questions and if there is something you want to do management is there to make sure you get experience doing just that
- Your supervisor will make sure you are introduced to the right people so you are able to get hired after graduation.
- There is a 100% job placement rate for interns
- Casual dress (jeans)
- Unlimited coffee, water, soda, bagels available whenever you feel the need for a snack
- Breaks away from your computer are encouraged to clear your mind
- You work hard and play hard. I was rewarded multiple times for my hard work with some sort of compensation.
- Many recent college graduates work at Livio and the management is young too.
- My portfolio is bursting at the seems with work that i've done just this summer
- A resume/portfolio workshop is held at the end of your internship to insure you are able to sell yourself correctly to a future employer.
- Your supervisor is the mentor every student dreams of.
- The CEO helped me achieve my dream of getting another internship in New York. He is very smart, helpful and encourages a fun, healthy work environment.
- You do not get paid hourly
Lots of visibility within the company (there are only 4 or 5 people there)
Great computer hardware for each employee (if you like Mac)
You don't have to fight for parking
There's a subway restaurant across the street (get used to it, because you'll be eating 3 solid meals a day there)
Where to start? This is a business run by a very vocal, eccentric individual who will control every second of your life. First off, you will NOT have a personal life whatsoever. You are expected to spend every waking minute of your week at the office. If you deviate from this, your job will be in danger. Don't expect to see your kids, wife, friends or family unless it's via a text message saying you won't be able to make any event you have planned.
Management will try and control every single aspect of your life- personal and professional. Be ready.
You will be paid 40-50% below market value, and work from the moment you wake up, to the moment you sleep at night (if at all). You'll be expected to participate in 3am conference calls after having left the office at midnight and then be there bright and early.
The office is an entirely Apple computer office. Management believes that windows computers are inferior, and shouldn't be allowed on the corporate network. So be prepared to learn an entirely new system (trust me you'll have training classes on how to use it OS X, another hour of your day that could be spent doing other things).
Management is known to burn relationships with every single employee that walks through the doors. There is extreme turnover. Consider yourself lucky if you make it 6 months.
As far as benefits, you'll get OK health insurance, they will pay for your cell phone (you'll need it, management will be calling you any time you're outside the office), dental, and no 401k options. Vacation time is given based on negotiation coming in, not that it will matter. Management states "vacation days are a vacation from the office, NOT a vacation from work. You will be expected to work from home the entire vacation day". Basically you will not have a day off in your entire stint at Myine.
For product and company direction- it's all the ideas of one guy. If you disagree or it's not his idea, then it wont happen.
Management is again, VERY eccentric. Do a quick google search of the company leaders and their blogs. Check out the job postings and how their written? You do not want to become involved in this dying company with that type of leadership. "Hip and laid back" are not how the company really is.
Oh and as for the fooseball table in the office? Management will play wtih the employees throughout the day, wasting productivity time that results in zero personal time outside of work. Get your priorities straight so that employees can see their families.
Finally- DONT DONT DONT DONT take the employee stock option. Consider it wasted money on your part. Management will do everything they can to keep you from ever seeing a dollar of that money. They have legal teams for just this reason.
Advice to Management
Oust management. They have clearly lost touch with reality and what it feels like to be an employee. Keep treating your employees, contractors, suppliers, etc. in the same manner and you will eventually burn every bridge available.
Livio Radio is a young, fun, entrepreneurial atmosphere. It has been exciting to be part of this start-up where there is room for growth and trying out new ideas.
This position is at a start-up, which means management demands you be able to move quickly, commit to working hard and producing awesome work. If that’s not for you, then please keep on searching.
Advice to Management
Livio Radio has an exciting future as they turn to car Internet radio with new products and accessories. Best of luck to all involved in the next phase of Livio Radio!
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