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POP Reviews

Updated January 31, 2018
74 reviews

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3.7
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RJ Hilgers
2 Ratings

74 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Interesting client work and for the agency world, has good work/life balance (in 9 reviews)

  • Most people there are fun to work with (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Project managers don't always give sufficient hours to complete projects, so I sometimes had to complete work at night (off the books) (in 6 reviews)

  • I also didn't really see that work/life balance several people refer to here (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Great place to come each day"

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

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

    Pros

    POP is going through changes, which on the surface seem all positive. It is highly collaborative and the people you will work with each day are some of the brightest in the industry, not to mention, just great nice people all around. The work is fun, being in the agency world for some time, it's more innovative then prior agencies which is refreshing to be a part of.

    My favorite part of POP is that they hire mainly senior+ level staff and are extremely family oriented.

    Overall, I enjoy coming to work each day, you can't ask for more these days.

    Cons

    No parking offered. (Bus passes are though).

    Advice to Management

    Keep communicating, keep being accessible.


  2. "Good people"

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

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

    Pros

    I enjoyed my time at POP and met some great people. If you like business-to-business advertising, (which I do), you will get the opportunity to work on blogs and ebooks for Microsoft Cloud Computing, design business blogs for Adobe and more. Culture committee does a great job of boosting morale. It's a good vibe kind of place.

    Cons

    Every agency has problems. The problems here aren't bad enough to really dwell on. There is a lot of change going on at the moment, but that is largely true at any agency. The seniot leadership team know about the problems and more to the point,they actually care about fixing them.

    Advice to Management

    Good luck.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Collaborative Agency; Employee Focused Employer"

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

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

    Pros

    The environment here creates a collaborative work space. Cool office in a great location, seems to have a good focus on creating a fun space to work through employee events, complete with a team dedicated to creating new events and initiatives (happy hours, annual events, holiday events, etc.). Interesting client work and for the agency world, has good work/life balance. Flexible work schedule and great technology to allow opportunities to work from home but still staying fully connected.

    Cons

    None really. With the first new CEO in over 20 years, the agency is going through some changes and it may be a bit bumpy at first, but exciting to see where things go.

    Advice to Management

    Keep moving forward, continue shaking things up, and keep striving for the best.


  4. "An agency that cares (People + Clients + Work)"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Director, Software Engineering in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Senior Director, Software Engineering in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at POP full-time

    Pros

    POP is a great place to work, the people and the work make it somewhere I enjoy spending my time. Leadership cares about the people, numerous times I’ve seen decisions made that put people ahead of margins. There is a solid range of project diversity; over the last few years I’ve worked on marketing campaigns and products across platforms including, email, web, mobile, chat bots and VR. There are great brands to work with from gaming and entertainment to technology to retail to healthcare and more. People are encouraged to be curious, to be leaders and to help one another. People embrace these traits and make POP a great place to work.

    There is a lot of opportunity for career growth. Self-motivated individuals can advance their career quickly. Leadership encourages individuals to learn new things and to think and act beyond their responsibilities to make the work great. Actions by individuals are acknowledged by managers and leadership.

    The technology team is truly brilliant. I have learned a ton from my peers and hope they have learned a few things from me as well. Everyone on the team is passionate about engineering and about doing the right thing for our clients. With new technologies coming out every day it can be overwhelming to keep up on trends, the team does a great job of helping one another keep up to speed. We’ve established a best in class engineering team that uses modern DevOps and Agile practices and processes that have elevated engineers in the organization. We are included up front at the start of the project and help shape the work as it’s being defined. Our opinions are respected and accounted for in the product development lifecycle.

    Cons

    Best fit for self-motivated individuals who want to learn and grow.

    Advice to Management

    Continue sharing openly, we appreciate it.


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Stay Away"

    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 POP full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Work / life balance is it

    Cons

    Poor management makes this place a nightmare for both employees and clients.


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Minor League Development"

    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 POP full-time

    Pros

    Great downtown location now sullied by the construction of a massive building across the street which will destroy the narrow but nice view of Elliot Bay. The rank and file employees are friendly and nice. An almost equal population of women and men is refreshing. As usual, men dominate the technical areas, but the creative and project management disciplines are almost equally split, with women in more than a few non-technical management positions. The open offices are nice and your equipment depends on your discipline. They do a lot of Microsoft contract work, and those folks tend to have increasingly faulty Surface devices, while the creatives and PMs have Macs. Unlike many companies, the IT department is actually first rate, and the reception and support folks are some of the friendliest anywhere.

    Cons

    The company concentrates on web development and those developers are some very technically competent folks. Unfortunately, they are managed by a cadre of project managers who know little about what really goes on and are wedded to their Atlassian agile project management tools. The schedule and budget are everything to these people, regardless of the technical or creative issues involved, and real problems are routinely swept under the rug. They are assisted by "Technical Architects", who are not actually solution architects but rather are the keepers of the accounts, cloud and customer data, and rarely contribute technically to projects beyond "advice". There are some who do, however, and their work is usually excellent. At a large company like Microsoft or Amazon, they would be thought of as "technical PMs"; the interface from management and schedule PMs to the technically-focused developers.

    The creative design people are very good, and are usually cognizant of the limits of the implementing technologies. The quality assurance people are manual testers, who follow their scripts well and do a good job, but are not actually Software Development Engineers in Test (SDETs) with an understanding of the underlying toolchain and software issues. That said, they are an excellent resource and work very hard in maintaing the quality of work. Little gets by them without thorough scrutiny, but only an inch deep. There is no testing automation or other tools, because these cost money and require dedicated test developers. So, everything is done manually and deep flaws are routinely missed.

    This is a service company, not a product company, and revenue is generated through billable hours. The PMs have a secondary role as salesmen, trying to get more hours and money from the customer. Thus, flaws that would never make it through a product cycle at Microsoft or Amazon are freely released because the customer won't pay more, or they can charge more for "upgrades" that should have been part of the original product. Quality is job two here, despite the rigorous efforts of the QA people at finding and documenting flaws. If it looks good and mostly works, it gets delivered, because you can always charge for version 2.

    One problem the company faces is a lack of technical depth. Developers and creatives routinely "graduate" from this company and find jobs at Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook, and similar firms. There is extreme title inflation here, and it seems everyone is some sort of "Director" or whatever. There are a lot of "Vice Presidents" whose function and contribution is unknown.

    Bottom line: It's a nice place to work and develop expensive websites for corporate customers who don't know any better. The technical depth is an inch deep, and if the project involves anything but a website, a real developer is brought in under contract and let go afterward when the maximum value is extracted from the customer. Don't expect any continuity of people or expertise. This is a great place to spend some time, but don't plan on a career here. Instead, use it as a springboard to something better.

    Advice to Management

    There are acres of unused open space left over from better times. You have a lot of software you've developed that could be productized and made into vertical solutions and would provide upward mobility for developers that have outgrown you. I know you won't do any of that because you are now owned by Advance Publications, a huge media conglomerate that owns newspapers and the Condé Nast magazine empire, and developing actual technology is an afterthought. You have a new CEO, because the old one was checked out managing his soccer team and other ventures after the sale. Maybe he'll make some changes.

    Clean out the PM ranks. There are some very weak people here. Top technical managers are actually pretty good, but the middle layer is deeply flawed. Provide incentives to good people to keep them and establish some continuity of expertise or you will continually lose them to the "major leagues".

    Also, hire some people of color. I saw two the entire time I was there.


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Chaos"

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

    I have been working at POP full-time

    Pros

    Great downtown location and some stalwart individuals.

    Cons

    The place is in a management free-fall, and the values are thinner than the paper they are written on.

    Advice to Management

    Give it up

  8. "A wonderful 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 POP full-time

    Pros

    Beautiful office in Downtown Seattle, amazing talented people, and tons of free food and fun events!

    Cons

    We only serve Starbucks coffee


  9. "Frontend developer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Front-End Developer in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Front-End Developer in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Good environment, geek people, good salary, wii, xbox and parties, pop rules

    Cons

    More trainings and qualified seniors in CR

    Advice to Management

    People in CR office need more attention and guidelines and being more code lovers


  10. "Physical Therapist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at POP full-time

    Pros

    It's a very nice place to work. They care about their staff.

    Cons

    I can't think of anything.


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