Plivo Reviews | Glassdoor

Plivo Reviews

Updated April 3, 2017
25 reviews

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3.9
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Venky Balasubramanian
14 Ratings

25 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Great Place work and Learn"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Intern Software Engineer in Corvallis, OR
    Current Employee - Intern Software Engineer in Corvallis, OR

    I have been working at Plivo (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Had fun time as intern
    learnt a lot of new stuff
    was able to work code that actually went into production

    Cons

    No cons it was an amazing place for me to work.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Good ideas with poor management"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Plivo full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Excellent team members, good work environment and perks, convenient location

    Cons

    Poor management, tunnel vision, micro-management at all levels in the organization, jail-like security cameras (unnecessary), poor asset management

    Advice to Management

    Think about actually reviewing the talent pool available. Stop giving high positions to people incapable of them.


  3. Helpful (3)

    "Growth is (almost always) painful yet valuable."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Technical Marketing in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Technical Marketing in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Plivo full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Disclosure:
    I gave 5 stars to balance off some reviews that I think are unfairly skewing the overall review. I may have given 4 stars otherwise, acknowledging no startup is perfect and also that there's a reason only a fraction of newly-founded technology startups ever survives for years. One of the reviews mentions the core members who left the company on a bad note. The comment is largely gratuitous. (I am one of the members mentioned there and I had to leave to graduate from my university.)

    Among many, I want to drive home the two strengths of the company which would be very useful for the kind of people who are ambitious, intellectually curious and determined to create success. If your profile does not highly correlate in those three dimensions, you may not thrive in the company. And I doubt you will anywhere else in the world of startups.

    Meritocratic culture
    - Working at Plivo was challenging for me in the sense that I felt there was no upper bound on how much responsibility I could assume and in turn how large impact I can have on the company's performance. If you work hard and get things right, you will be graciously rewarded by both external and internal incentives. Admittedly I have made not a few mistakes along the way. However I have never been treated unfairly or unfavorably by the team for these mistakes. Of course, you will have to own your mistakes by being willing to hear negative feedback. Hey, honest feeback is certainly bitter to swallow but that's the only way for you to grow and get better at what you want to be excellent at.

    Growth of technical expertise
    - The technical front Plivo is interfacing with is not a joke. The company has a very strong technical backbone/culture which has sustained itself for years. Even if you're an engineer coming from strong network/signaling or back-end backgrounds, there will be enough non-trivial and interesting challenges for you to work on. Even if you're not an engineer, you will naturally grow your technical understanding, interacting with highly skilled engineers. Tip: I did not mind asking questions. None has given me the impression "why are you wasting our time by asking such silly questions?". Hint: after a year's worth of stint at the company, I decided to minor in CS in my university. Even though my major was Business, pulling the straight A's from the CS study was fairly straightforward. I even won an award from an app development competition organized by a global technology company. All thanks to the skills and experiences I had acquired at the company.

    Some minor things:

    No office politics or BS
    - the culture does not encourage office politics. The management team has made concious efforts to crowd out any political or simply unfair behaviors that may affect the moral of other members.

    Open culture
    - the culture well accomodates benign eccentricity of members. i.e. rarely have I been at "hey that's politically incorrect" situations.

    Brutal honesty and transparency
    - If taken emotionally and personally, honest feedback might hurt you. If taken professionally, which takes time and some getting used to, you will ever more appreciate it. I realized pretty soon it is in MY best interest to seek honest feedback whether it's negative or positive.

    Cons

    The company shares challenges other high growth companies, run by a team of ambitious, smart and relatively young people face. For anyone who knows at least a bit about how startups look deep inside, this fact should come as no surprise.

    high expectation/pressure for performance
    - for those who just want to work somehwere, this characteristic might be a no-no.

    Advice to Management

    continue promoting people determined to take the company forward.
    continue building on the company's strength.
    continue obsesssing over growth.


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  5. "Great people + great values."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I came to work at Plivo right after graduating from one of the top business schools in the world (hint: it has a 3 letter acronym). I was very specific about the experience I wanted to have post-MBA, so I had a long list of criteria similar to VC type due diligence. Here are a few things I looked for in a startup:

    a) Strong leadership with direct industry knowledge. Plivo's CEO's have a combined 16 years of telecom domain expertise. The team is stacked with talent, but they're also willing to admit what they don't know. This has been a critical aspect of positive decision making. The two co-founders Mike and Venky also have solid work ethics. They are always working 3x more than anyone else and to watch them build this company has been inspirational.

    b) Open-minded culture with clear transparency. I've worked at companies where the leadership would "listen" to suggestions, but never act on it. Even during my interview process, I had active and transparent discussions with the CEO about Plivo's marketing initiatives. Since I joined, those discussions have actually turned into real strategies that we've deployed. This transparency and openness has allowed us to make swift and informed decisions every day.

    c) Solving challenging problems. Plivo isn't the biggest fish in the sea and it's good that way. It means that we have a fresh perspective on tackling incumbent industries and seemingly unsolvable problems. Even in product marketing, I'm constantly finding new methods to hack our growth and improve our market position.

    d) Disruptive technology. On the surface, we may seem like another telecom API startup, but the team is extremely focused on delivering more than that. They have been focused on delivering uncompromising quality every single day. Can't really say any more about what we're working on, but it will be a game changer.

    e) Sustainable growth. Not only is Plivo's leadership focused on growth, but they're also focused on building a sustainable company with healthy revenue streams. Plivo has been strategically quiet in recent years, but we are set to making some huge impacts in the next little while.

    Cons

    A startup is hard work and this should not come as a surprise. It should also not be surprising that because of this, startups have a high turn over rate and Plivo is no exception. However, those who stay understand that in order to truly change the world, you have to work through the highs and the lows.

    For those considering working at Plivo or any other startup for that matter, know that the glory of growing company profits 5x year-on-year does not happen automatically. If you work at Plivo, you will face challenging and stimulating problems on a constant basis. Plivo is not the company for you if you just want to just hit the cruise button. But also know that you will be surrounded by smart and dedicated people who will inspire you to achieve more and help you when you need it.

    Plivo is also a place of transparency and it may take some getting used to. Most companies will leave their employees in the dark, but the co-founders take it upon themselves to go through the company's financial standing every 2 weeks and perform weekly 1-on-1s with your direct reports. This transparency aligns everyone's goals and helps us push the envelope and shoot for higher objectives. 1-on-1s are direct and constructive, which also means that if you're dropping the ball, then you're likely to get feedback about it during the review. Even though some feedback maybe hard to hear, it has always been constructive. Not only do we go through the positives and negatives of each week, we also work on actionable initiatives to help reduce negative outcomes and boost positives ones.

    Advice to Management

    We often get so focused on work, that we sometimes forget to have fun. Though that is starting to change. So far on our agenda this year is go carting, wine tasting, Napa Valley tour, and many more!


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Lead Generation"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Plivo (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Small management structure, fast paced

    Cons

    Lacks Professionalism, high turnover of people.


  7. "Great place to work but can be better"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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 Plivo full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Plivo has a lot of good things going for it. The product is innovative, the people are very hard working and the company continues to grow in customers, revenue and team size while still being profitable. Monthly team calls are great and very transparent, but can sometimes be very long.

    CEO is very hard working and always full of energy. Expects the same from others, which pushes everyone to do better. It's definitely the type of environment for those that are driven, ambitious and willing to work hard.

    Cons

    Typical start up growing pains where more infastructure needs to be put in place and processes developed. Lots of things are very unorganized and adhoc.

    Though I do not work in support, I think that the overall quality of the team in support is poor. While some people are good there, Plivo needs to improve the overall support team quality and have more smart people in the team.

    And yeah, food quality has gone down in the last 3 months :)

    Advice to Management

    The founders have done a great job building the company, but as the company grows get more folks to own various responsibilities. Focus on culture of the company as the team grows.


  8. "Good Company, Competitive Pay, Lean Team"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Manager
    Current Employee - Account Manager
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    Telecom API Space is HOT.
    Nice Product, Lots of Customers Globally.
    Lean Team.
    No Politics, Very Transparent Culture.
    PROFITABLE Company!!
    Able to see impact of my work.

    Have been an employee at Plivo for almost 2 years and I specifically disagree with some of the comments against the CEO. He is very transparent and fair and knows what he wants out of the team.

    Cons

    Needs better communication culture.
    Very minimal branding externally.
    Can get hectic sometimes with work schedules.

    Advice to Management

    Founders should be more external facing and communicate Plivo's vision, growth and success. Hire faster, we tend to hire pretty slowly.


  9. "Lots of work, but comes with great learning"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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 Plivo full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great place to build a career. Its hard to find such a company where there is this level of experience.

    There is a lot of focus internally to drive core culture and values, unlike some of these reviews online. I don't agree with some of them.

    Founders and senior management knows what they are doing. Something its hard to understand it initially, but it most of times makes sense at the end.

    Cons

    It is a lot of work day to day. We are a small team, and because of that everyone ends up working lot. As we hire more folks this should be resolved.

    Have more travel between offices for teams to mix. Currently missing.

    Working hard is good, but team needs to have more fun.

    Advice to Management

    What we have at Plivo is good, but we should do more externally to brand ourselves better. We lack this today.


  10. Helpful (3)

    "Awesome place to work!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer
    Current Employee - Engineer
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    One of the best company cultures I've experienced. Great communication between teams to get things done.

    Cons

    Engineering driven team with focus on the product.


  11. "good place to learn new things"

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

    I worked at Plivo full-time

    Pros

    as fresher if you have the drive you can learn a lot

    Cons

    better not expect good management. consistency absent mostly.

    Advice to Management

    .


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