Needle Reviews | Glassdoor

Needle Reviews

Updated November 22, 2017
47 reviews

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1.9
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Morgan Lynch
28 Ratings

47 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Easy, fast paced, work from home on a chat online basis (in 24 reviews)

  • flexible hours, easy on boarding process (in 11 reviews)

Cons
  • Went from hourly rate, to pay per chat with weekly PayPal deposit to monthly deposit to work for merchandise/gift cards only (in 6 reviews)

  • 00 per hour, (I only order gift cards (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (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
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Needle full-time

    Pros

    Lunches, relaxed work enviornment, ability to make key decisions in your role, cool office, flexible schedule, work from home one day a week, great work/life balance, great people

    Cons

    Small, typical startup woes, leadership turnover

    Advice to Management

    I would hold more regular company update meetings to keep everyone "in the know" and focused on the same key objectives.


  2. "Worst Management EVER!"

    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 Needle full-time

    Pros

    If I could think of something positive, I would list it but there's really is nothing positive to say about this company.

    Cons

    By far and away, I have never seen worse Product Management leadership in my entire career than I have at Needle. It's an absolute disaster! They talk big, make a lot of promises, and then fail to deliver time and time again. All fake. All show. All hype. No substance. And other managers aren't much better. People are treated like garbage while they seem to never be held accountable for missing their own objectives. It's an absolute mess from a management standpoint.

    Advice to Management

    Fire every incompetent manager, starting with Product Management. Get some competent management in place. Only then will things change for the better.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Community Manager"

    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
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great work life balance, fun environment, typical start up feel, good pay, opportunity to be "thrown in" and be creative.

    Cons

    Upper management have no idea how to manage people or a business. Attrition is more than ultra high because the communication at Needle is absolutely terrible and unprofessional. A

    Advice to Management

    Treat those you manage with respect and listen to their ideas.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Needle was horrible. Unprofessional. They kept lowering pay incentives."

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

    I worked at Needle part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    nothing. if i could give a 0 on everything I would.

    Cons

    everything. pay, schedule, management, incentives. truthfulness. Switching managers on us. Lying. Sending out used "incentives" taking weeks to pay. Then they fired the whole community, except for a few select favorites who they moved to new jobs within needle. If you spoke up or said anything about anyone you were scolded.

    Advice to Management

    be honest. pay better, stop lowering peoples pay and saying "this is what you asked for"


  5. Helpful (3)

    "Company exploits labor"

    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

    - free products
    - incredibly easy job

    Cons

    - company doesn't value advocates
    -advocates basically work for free
    - pay went from amazing to non-existent
    - extremely difficult to get in contact with anyone


  6. Helpful (10)

    "Don't waste your time, energy, or effort."

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

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

    Pros

    Make your own hours
    Flexible
    Work from home

    Cons

    Where to start.

    Pay: there is NO PAY. Regardless of how they try to spin it you will not be paid. You can earn points for selling, (I was hired as a brand advocate and not a sales person), and under the most current point structure you are paid 14 points per dollar sold...which they did to "encourage the "power sellers" and motivate the rest". However one person selling one order can earn massive points and another who sells to almost every customer makes squat for points, but who is really the best seller? The one who brings in consistent sales every day or the one who gets a lucky one every so often?

    Points: I worked the math one day and I was/am making under $4.00 per hour, (I only order gift cards...I will get to that in a minute). The points structure is ridiculously hard on the advocates. It's hard to gain points, and when you feel like, "YEAH...I got a good one" you open your points calculations and you see squat. The points is a very sore spot with the advocates.

    Ordering: When you earn points you get to buy awesome stuff. YAY....NOT. If you order from any of the websites for tangible things rest assured that Needle has contracts of discounts in place with where they are ordering from. I ordered tangible product ONCE...and i got the confirmation email saying Needle paid $60 something dollars for my $100.00 dollar order...MAN did I feel RIPPED OFF. I was so stinking mad. So now I only order Gift cards...the thing with those is that they cost more points. So to get a $500.00 gift card I now have to work 20+ hours a week for TWO MONTHS before i have enough points for it. I wish I was kidding. So if you order a tangible item you get ripped off and pay more and for a gift card you have to save 30% more points, (cost wise a $500 gift card is about $900 worth of points) to get one. Not a win for anyone buy Needle.

    Management: WHAT MANAGEMENT??? We are consistently silenced when we bring up issues. If we ask questions "they" don't like posts are removed or comments deleted. The people who run the "communities" are condescending and act like we should be GRATEFUL to not be paid and have our points reduced by HALF. Don't bother emailing anyone as they DO NOT respond, if you have issues you better hope your fellow advocates have a way to help you, (which most of us "old school" workers have STOPPED helping as it isn't worth the headache, nor am I being paid OR recognized for this), because you will likely get no response.

    Extra Fun stuff: You would think we get cool discounts or something...NOPE. You would also think we get rewarded with prizes in lieu of pay...NOPE. When Tax season comes around be prepared to PAY for the privilege of "working" with Needle. I had to pay OVER $2,000 this past tax season and i made under $10,000 worth of "product" from Needle. Again I WISH I WAS JOKING. They also change program details on a whim, (to include pay, what you actually do, and what constitutes "an active chatter").

    I am SO done with this company. I am waiting until I get enough points to order a last gift card then I am done, I don't want to lose my hard work, (my points earned) because they have NO WAY TO PAY OUT A CONTRACTOR if they stop working or their contract gets terminated. If you lose $500 worth of points, "oh well" you should have followed our crazy business design.

    Advice to Management

    LISTEN TO YOUR ADVOCATES!!! Pay is demanded for the work we do...PERIOD. When all the "Old school" advocates go and all you have are untrained, unmotivated people, where do you think the Needle brand will go from there? You NEED the Advocates, that is your whole business model. Paying them less or sometimes nothing only ensures that you have the WORST qualified candidates possible, and how does that look to the brands you represent?
    A FULL OVERHAUL would be needed to save this company from itself.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Director"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Needle full-time

    Pros

    good company, good people, benefits

    Cons

    old culture, location, potential for growth

  8. Helpful (13)

    "Failed Miserably! Lack of management and direction is losing them money, so they are taking it back from the workers."

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

    I worked at Needle part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Work from home. Good concept , poorly executed.

    Cons

    Needle has gone from the once outstanding business that was leading the online chat world in innovation and a stress free customer experience, to a downright laughable shell of what it once was.

    If I were M.L. CEO of this company , I would seriously start to question how much longer this company can screw over it's Advocates on the front lines before going out of business. Advocates are the sole reason this company operates, without them, you have nothing.
    Needle has ZERO business ethics and has lost all sight as to what it once was trying to achieve. They have turned into just another online chat rep , with disgruntled, unprofessional, un experienced , un trained, un caring people on the line. This is due to the massive
    lack of management , pay , and operation

    When I started at Needle , it took me 2 full weeks to get my foot in the door after rigorous testing, training, and proving that i was in fact an expert in my field. Now there is no training or screening at all. They will hire any Heartbeat as long as they agree to not be paid . One advocate even said " i have no idea what i am doing , they just told me to come here and start taking chats." This, in a nutshell, is the direction you can expect Needle to be going. The path they are on is one pointing direct to Bankrupt in less than a year.

    Pay for this " job" is non existent . What once was outstanding, has now become an absolute nightmare. Leading you to question if the doors will be open the next day when you wake up, They have gone from paying cash weekly where I must say I was making good money ,To paying monthly , which certainly lead to some drastic reworking of the finances. To not paying cash at all and starting a " points system" where you can earn points and redeem them for limited products at full retail value . Each item of which you will be paying income tax on come January . You would think this nightmare of a story ends there, but it does not.

     Since the " points" have gone into effect, they have raised the price on all products and lowered the points earned a minimum of 3 times in 6 months. Each time the excuse is uttered " our
    research shows, human beings are not motivated by money ." or " we will be bringing you new and exciting things to come , stay tuned! " Which, you guessed it , never come. At the time of this review, Needle has once again , in a classless act ,on a Friday night at closing of the main office, Informed Advocates that they will be taking a 25% pay cut again. With a whopping 3 days notice. This is a prime example of how Needle cares for the sole reason of it's existence , THE ADVOCATES. They are losing money from Clients dropping them. This is because with the lack of payment for advocates they have no " experts " that the client is paying for. Ultimately giving the client a bad reputation and in turn not wanting to continue the contract with Needle. , So they turn to the Advocate to recoup the loss. This can only go on for so long before the money has all been stolen from the Advocate and bankruptcy is inevitable. In my time at Needle, my pay was cut in half from the start to finish dates, and you can expect this to only continue until the rock is bled dry.

    They at Needle told us " this is not a job. " They expected us to look at the work as a gaming system. That we can come and go as we please, Work when we want , Leave when we want , Do as we want, in the Online gaming system. Yet there were " managers " ( i use this term very loosely ) for every team. These Managers are there to tell you how to perform, what to do and not to do , When to perform . etc. Making the whole " gaming system" a false way to not classify Advocates as Employees. Hence a work around to not pay employee tax. Very shady !

    Now when i say these managers were there, i say this loosely , as the turn over rate for a group manager is very high. A new one about every 3-4 months or so. Each not knowing where the last left off. Not knowing the ins and outs and trying to rekindle moral with false promises . Which leads to failure , no respect from the group, and ultimately confusion for the group. Then the " manager " being replaced for cheaper , less knowledgeable, less caring , person to take the place. Downward spiral at it's finest . Getting in touch with ANY of these " managers" is impossible. You can not , to save your own life, get in contact with anyone , EVER ! They show up , Give you bad news and say hang in there ,then disappear. Emails and messages go ignored 100% of the time.

    This leads me to point redemption. In the system you were given points based on performance. This in effect is the demise of the Needle as a whole. This Company was started by Morgan Lynch to be a way for online shoppers to receive real time , un pressured , expertise about products that they are interested in. By moving to a performance based points system that only pays on making sales. You have completely contradicted the reason for this companies existence and turned all Advocates into high pressure salesmen ( or saleswomen) . If the person on the other end is not going to produce a sale. There is absolutely no reason for the advocate to waste the time talking to them. The pay per chat is 0.27 cents. If you would like to talk to a person for an hour on chat for 27 cents, by all means, enjoy. But realize that it will take you a full year to build any points to redeem. For sales, questions asked, how fast you are , etc , you earn points. Sales being the only one that makes any substantial difference. Without sales , you are going nowhere fast .

     Was ML dream of this company to be yet another provider of high pressure sales people to online customers ? If so, He nailed it !!

     Now to redeem these points you have points brackets , each with a monetary value. For a product ranging in the $1-$50 range it will cost you 12,500 points. By the old math that is $62.50, so for a $4.99 product you will be paying $62.50 plus shipping, plus sales tax, plus taxes on it at year end with the Federal Govt as income. If that is is not a red flag to run away as fast as your feet can carry you, then be warned that to redeem these points it is like pulling teeth . I have seen it take literally 2 months for one order to be redeemed. Excuse after excuse pours out as to why your orders are not being received by you . There is no management to respond to your personally , just blanket excuses. The system was promised to allow for orders whenever you chose. But as you guessed it , another lie, and that has changed to one single day a week . Which is mind blowing as the orders are never placed anyway ,so why does it matter when they come in ? In short , if you are one of the lucky ones, you may see the $4.99 item that you paid $62.50 for in about a month .

    A little info for persons thinking this may be an opportunity for them , the 12,500 points stated above will roughly take 9 hours at first start. Once you are comfortable and taking up to 5-6 chats at a time. You can see that time cut in half or even less for the power players.

    Now I was an Advocate for a company that in the most polite term possible, treated us like garbage . We would spend all day helping customers with sales, giving promotions, offering discounts , cross selling , up selling, pulling teeth to get the sale for the company. This company would set so many rules for our points redemption that it was on the verge of Hilarious . Almost like they wanted to see what they could get away with from Needle. As a Sales Advocate making the company easily thousands upon thousands in sales weekly. You would think there would be some perks . Wrong ! They would not allow us to use any promotions, buy at any sales prices, and a slew of other outrageous stipulations , leading you to only wonder if they did not want you to have their products . Again, this is where the 2 months time frame comes in , literally 2 months from product order to product received from the company that you bust your butt in the trenches for to make them money . It always baffled me why Needle would even allow them to make rules. It was a simple situation that was made remarkably complex for no reason at all. The company is an online retailer. Needle gets our order and places it , the company sells the item to needle on our behalf and ships to us, just like buying online anywhere else in the world. Yet Needle felt it ok for the companies to make a mess of this and make rules and stipulations on how we could make our purchases. We should have been seen as a regular customer placing an order, but instead Absolute Absurdity at it's finest .

    To sum this up , As i could go on for days as to how this Company has lost all sight and will be out of business by year end. It is absolutely imperative that i strongly caution you against getting involved with Needle. They are in the business now , not of providing exceptional customer expertise with zero pressure, in a fun and interesting work environment that you would be happy to be a part of, but instead, of throwing a monthly wrench into the gears of the platform with sole directive to screw over the advocates that perform the job to recoup their losses for mis-management .

     Run as fast as you can away from Needle. You can thank me later . Let me also add that any of the "Good" reviews you see about this company on here are obviously from the internal Needle Company and should be disregarded. After talking extensively with Needle Advocates. Not a single one thinks this company is great , treats its employees good, or is on the rise to better things. On the contrary, without the added internal Needle boost reviews. This company would be rated where it really stands , at 00 !

    Advice to Management

    Do you really think that any one of your Advocates buys into your " money is not a motivator " excuses ? You get what you pay for, And in this case , you get a losing business that will be irrelevant and obsolete in a year .

     You had such a good thing going that with time would have made you Billions, While changing the way Customers look at online Customer Care. Instead, Whoever got greedy and could not wait to watch the company grow., has ruined the last shred of decency from Needle,all to cash in the few bucks and run. Very poor business practice, no ethic at all , and by continuing to screw over the Advocate ,Which without them you have nothing, you have crashed any sense of moral in the company.

      Advice ? not really. it is too late for this company to rebound. Hind sight , Pay your EMPLOYEES , and realize without them , You do not EXIST !! Get management in place. Stop trying to skirt federal taxes and EMPLOY the people. And simply enough, just have some business sense! You have failed miserably !


  9. Helpful (6)

    "HORRENDOUS COMPANY TO WORK FOR!!"

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

    I worked at Needle part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Flexible work schedule is the ONLY positive about this company

    Cons

    Communication with upper management is atrocious!! Turnover in upper management tells you a lot about the corporate culture. They are deceitful, and went from weekly pay, to monthly pay, to NO pay at all. Pay almost every community in points, that you can exchange for product and giftcards. You will have to pay taxes on the FULL retail value of any products received, even though they get everything at wholesale. Their model is that you are a brand advocate, yet they will hire ANYONE that will work for points, with or without any experience for that brand. No training, you have to learn on your own. No monitoring of chats or advocates, so there is a lot of cheating in their "gamified" point system. This not only creates animosity & divisiveness within the communities, but reflects poorly on their clients. Someone is making money, and it is NOT the advocates.

    Advice to Management

    Understand that advocates do not just do this as a hobby, and deserve to get paid in REAL money instead of the crazy point system & redemption policy you have in place. Utter madness, and dishonest & unethical business practices. Losing client after client after the change in compensation. One would think they might figure it out that the only way to get quality people is to treat them fairly, and pay them for the work they do.


  10. "Advocate"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Brand Advocate
    Current Employee - Brand Advocate
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    -You get to make your own hours
    -You're able to work from home
    -It's rewarding; customers really appreciate your input

    Cons

    -The pay isn't the best. You're paid by the number of chats you get
    -Working from home can get boring
    -Really no communication with management
    -A lot of the time you work with someone who hogs up the chats

    Advice to Management

    Get to know your advocates. Sometimes I wonder if my the manager of my community knows who I am..


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