Rubicon International Reviews | Glassdoor

Rubicon International Reviews

Updated February 22, 2017
29 reviews

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2.7
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Roger W. Smith
19 Ratings

29 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "Interesting"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Relatively good pay, descent bonus, good 401k & health insurance

    Cons

    Weird office politics; be wary of falling on the 'wrong side'; people tend to be lifer's or survivors (could be a pro too)

    Advice to Management

    Build a more open culture


  2. "Associate"

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

    I worked at Rubicon International (More than a year)

    Pros

    Beautiful workplace. Flexible work schedule. Management is very cooperative. Very nice on boarding process.

    Cons

    Monotonous work. Not much room for Career building. Not effective work experience for employees who do not have teaching background

  3. "Accountant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Accountant in Lake Oswego, OR
    Current Employee - Accountant in Lake Oswego, OR
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Rubicon International (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Amazing office environment, Great benefits

    Cons

    I do not see any bad thing in Rubicon


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Good place for interns"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Beaverton, OR
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Beaverton, OR

    Pros

    4 week vacation from the first year. This company is good for interns.

    Cons

    small company and micro-management.


  5. Helpful (24)

    "Great people languishing under terrible leadership"

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

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

    Pros

    The recruiters have done an excellent job filling the office with really smart, friendly, well-intentioned people. The firm gives 4 weeks of PTO and has a really beautiful office with great views right downtown. The kitchen is stocked with wine and beer, and there is a closet full of Costco products to snack on. There is a real camaraderie amongst the firm that somehow persists through a very high turnover rate.

    Cons

    The only company in which I've seen worse morale was one that had filed for bankruptcy and was laying off people to outsource their jobs to China.

    Ostensibly, this is an organization that wants to improve education, but this facade is only paper thin. Really, they are making money from private schools who use their software for accreditation purposes.

    The firm is run by one individual who has surrounded himself with powerless yes-men. This would be OK if he were Steve Jobs (as he seems to think he is), but the truth is he is anything but visionary and innovative. I'm trying to think of professional, respectful was to say this, but that would be doing a disservice to all potential employees. The truth is that he is a paranoid, micromanager with an extreme temper and an aversion to change. He believes his product is perfect and fails to either listen to his clients' requests or create a vision for its future based on the changing world of education.

    This flows down through the entire organization and creates a culture of fear and hopelessness. Employees are regularly ranked against each other with arbitrary statistics. People with vision and inspiration are pitted against each other and sometimes even sabotaged in order to keep them in their place. Before interacting with their leader, employees consult with each other about his current mood to see if the are liable to get screamed at. If he doesn’t like the way a particular meeting is going he will storm out in a huff.

    Sadly, the leader is unable to see how his employees are attempting to help save his firm, and instead treats their ideas and innovations as challenges to his authority and “position of strength.” I began to hear stories about leaders coming in with grand hopes, only to be forced out. Sure enough, this happened just as a new partner left to "spend more time with his family” this September after only a year. They hired an entire team to design new products, but they all quit within a year when it became apparent that there were never going to be any new products because the partners couldn't commit to a vision.

    Losing clients left and right, the firm refuses to acknowledge that this could be due to an antiquated product that is built on a database original created by amateurs in MS Access 12 years ago, which supports education processes that are losing favor in the industry. Instead, blame is placed on the employees not managing their "relationships" with clients well enough.

    There is a myth amongst employees that they cannot leave because the salaries are so good and anywhere else would pay them less. Having talked with several people who've left, this is completely untrue. Salaries are indeed high in comparison to the teacher salaries many of their employees used to make, but in the private sector they actually pay less than average.

    I happened to be sitting near the recruitment team when they were discussing what to do about “The Glassdoor problem,” and their solution was to add their own positive reviews. A short time later the two reviews from March, 2015 appeared.

    Advice to Management

    I'd hoped that the leader could learn to trust his employees and respect them as professionals, but it became clear that this is never going to happen. Therefore, the senior partner needs to retire and pass the reins on to someone with vision.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "A place to grow, but be ready to make a contribution"

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

    Pros

    As a 10 year member of the Rubicon team I look back in amazement at the firm’s work over the past 20 years. From a company known only to a few schools in Oregon, we are now recognized as leading educational consultants in teaching and learning in over 100 countries. Colleagues come from amazingly diverse backgrounds. What this means for those who have an opportunity to work here, is an ability develop a deep understanding of educational practice across cultures, across public and private schools of all sizes, and the widest range imaginable of pedagogues. Rubicon is place to thrive for those interested in making a difference in the lives of teachers and students and to work with a team that is talented and engaged.We are a place to grow your career and develop deep knowledge about the education industry. People who thrive here want to make a different in teaching and learning.

    Cons

    We are growing and have an aggressive business plan. Those joining the firm need to be prepared for rapid on boarding with a commitment to learning and making a contribution from day one. Be prepared to work across established teams and ready for continuous learning. Education is a complex industry. We do have human resources and professional development staff, but this is not a place for individuals who are looking for extensive hand holding or a narrow job description. We are also not a good fit for folks who are not flexible. We do change desks locations fairly frequently as we build teams and provide the opportunity to work across boundaries based on firm needs. Our themes change so be ready for new vocabulary. Yes, we do have families and lives, but this is not a place for a 9-5 attitude.

    Advice to Management

    Don’t let go of the firm’s unique culture. Individuals may like some things better than other, but a little quirkiness makes this a special place to work, learn and contribute to something bigger than the corporate bottom line. Keep working to prevent silos and encourage more team interaction. Hang on to the goal of having every individual in the firm have time in the field to interact with our clients. Don’t take feedback personally. The glass is half-full not half-empty.


  7. Helpful (12)

    "Is Salary enough?"

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

    Pros

    Some wonderful colleagues, however difficult to watch the enthusiasm and morale burn out so quickly, first-rate clients, salary and benefits

    Cons

    HR violations galore, disparaging environment, lack of vision, bizarre office culture imposed - reign of fear

    Advice to Management

    Learn to evolve. Treat your employees with respect. Learn to be ethical.

  8. Helpful (13)

    "Beware! Don't get trapped at this ludicrous company."

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

    Pros

    Like others have said, they offer a competitive starting salary, cell phone, tablet, free snacks, good PTO, a lot of well educated, smart employees

    Cons

    Most of the employees there are either people looking for another job and are deeply dissatisfied, interns or new hires that don't know any better yet, or those that have been with the company for too many years and have so many non-transferable skills, that no other company would want them. There are a lot of cliques and it reminded me of being back in grade school. Employees can get away with bullying others and writing gossip to management in their joke of a review "tool" called twitter. There's no HR and absolutely no experienced managers (if you can even call them that) - instead, management is comprised of those that have been with the company since its inception or a few that have "worked their way up" that don't have any business leading others. Really, management is an illusion anyways because this whole circus is run by the CEO. There are "partners", but they have no ownership or power - they are figure heads. The focus is on absurdly expensive company parties and themes that have absolutely nothing to do with what we do as an organization. Priorities are completely out of whack, with everything is secretive, there's no business planning, no direction, wasted time in pointless meetings, and zero respect.

    Advice to Management

    The culture is toxic and is deeply ingrained. I would say to trust your employees, be more transparent, have consistent performance measures, and prioritize better, but I think it's a lost cause. If the CEO is still sooo much in the weeds that he's still deciding everything from what type of granola bars to have as snacks, where people sit in the office (which changes every couple months), and salary (which is not at all tied to performance or reviews), I don't think there's hope.


  9. Helpful (7)

    "Brilliant people. Bright future."

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

    I have been working at Rubicon International full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Rubicon is full of brilliant, well-intentioned, staff members who look out for each other and the best interests of the firm. While Rubicon has gone through some growing pains and needs to update some process and roles to match the firm’s size, I’m optimistic about the firm’s ability to grow and innovate in the future.

    Cons

    Rubicon is still catching up to its growth in many ways and still operates like a smaller firm in terms of both business processes and culture. As Rubicon continues to grow and scale, it will need to rely on a little more structure and strategy (as opposed to personality and opportunity) to be successful.

    Advice to Management

    Prepare for growth. Take care of your staff. Be transparent with firm strategy and goals.


  10. Helpful (3)

    "A highly educated and diverse team"

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

    I have been working at Rubicon International full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The team at Rubicon is highly diverse and educated. The culture in the office is highly cooperative and every associate is invested in the success of new associates.
    The atmosphere even though is very formal, the team is very laid back outside of the office and very active.
    Associate lunches are encouraged by the firm to be able to build relationships between team and feel connected and successes are celebrated firm wide.
    Overall the work is fulfilling because of the service we provide to teachers and personally is also enjoyable because of the people I work with.

    Cons

    Given that it's a rapid growth organization there are growing pains but that also provides great potential.


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