SMART Technologies Reviews in Calgary, AB | Glassdoor

SMART Technologies Calgary Reviews

Updated December 11, 2017
95 reviews

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Calgary, AB (Canada)

3.7
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SMART Technologies CEO Greg Estell
Greg Estell
2 Ratings

95 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Good flexible hours - Work Life Balance (in 20 reviews)

  • Had some great people working there (in 24 reviews)

Cons
  • Many in upper management with a software background don't understand hardware development as well, leading to poor decisions (in 14 reviews)

  • Senior management have an unhelpful habit of venting their frustration via negative emails to all staff (e (in 11 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Getting better"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Talented coworkers, and work-life balance is very good. Looking forward things were looking bright

    Cons

    Previous executive team were terrible. Clueless, lying, did nothing but almost sunk the company chasing BS products that didn't sell. That's left some things to fix and clean up. Luckily they were ousted by Foxconn and more competent people put in charge.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees. Company is years behind where it could be because of prior executive ignoring employees.


  2. "Great Place to Build Skills and a Career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at SMART Technologies full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The pace is quick and stressful at times, but a collaborative work environment makes it fun. I laugh at work a lot, and have colleagues and leaders who are truly supportive and good to work with. Seeing the ways our products impact students and teachers is amazing; it makes coming to work easy and makes marketing feel authentic. There is lots of new stuff coming, and it is exciting to be here while the company moves forward once again. There is encouragement to experiment, and assistance in building skills and a personal career path.

    Cons

    Defining the company's path after some turmoil has taken time, but has improved a lot.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "A great place for new grads or short term work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at SMART Technologies full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Located near transit, gym and daycare facility inside the building. Interesting multi-touch work for developers on certain teams.

    Cons

    Recent buyout by Foxconn, a company known for using the cheapest labor possible. Continued layoffs and new parent company make it seem unlikely that this company will continue to employ expensive Canadian developers in the long run.

    Advice to Management

    Accept that making good hardware takes time, and that properly compensating and rewarding your employees is key to keeping this company alive in Calgary (if that is a priority).


  4. "Good mentorship with great pay"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Software Developer Intern in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Intern - Software Developer Intern in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at SMART Technologies as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - Developers were willing to work with you at all times
    - Encouraged independent learning but gave you help as needed
    - Interesting product
    - Good pay

    Cons

    - Nothing too bad to speak of.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "A learning experience"

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

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

    Pros

    Time off is generous to the point of being detrimental to the running of the company. Some employees are only working 9 months of the year...

    Usually opportunities for advancement

    Cons

    The biggest issue is the inability to stop making the same mistakes over and over. This is partly due to the employee churn caused by the financial volatility (caused by short sighted decision making) and partly due to telling customers what they want from a product because it sounds cool rather than listening to what the market actually wants (right price, ability to provide products on time, and educate customers on how to use the products). New leaders come in and make the exact same mistakes as the leaders before them. This won't stop unless someone takes the time to come up with a strategy that makes sense instead of flailing to stay above water.

    Advice to Management

    Take a serious look at why things are failing in the marketplace or aren't gaining market share. Customers don't want to be force-fed something. They don't want software because you feel like selling software or a new hardware product because you want to be innovative. Answering the basic needs of the customer in the space that you're trying to sell in will get you there. Brand loyalty is a thing of the past.


  6. "Good for my short stint"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Recommends

    I worked at SMART Technologies as a contractor

    Pros

    Great team, friendly staff, nice office.

    Cons

    There aren't enough employees for the work expectations which leads to burnout.


  7. "Excellent workplace and people"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Employee - Integration and Systems Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Employee - Integration and Systems Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at SMART Technologies full-time

    Pros

    I was part of the IS team and genuinely loved working there. I also worked occasionally with people from PD .
    Both teams have outstanding skills and part or SMART's success is owed to their excellent skills, professionalism and understanding of success as being teamwork.
    Peers are easy going and good listeners which makes it easier to ask for help, get work done and deliver.
    My manager is very knowledgeable, initiated discussions that helped us make good design and touch base frequently to make sure we are on the same page.
    Occasionally had to do long hours, because I chose to, wanted to finish and start something else the next day and I enjoyed work, not something I was asked to do.
    Good location, parks around, clean building with flex hours, a gym and a daycare in the building basement.
    I highly recommend +1

    Cons

    More RRSP matching would have be great, since the company does not have a group retirement plan.

    Advice to Management

    Regarding senior or exec management, I didn't have contact with them directly so I can't comment.
    Regarding my direct manager, you're in the right direction, keep up the good work, implementing a governance model and unifying SMART's back end will bring great value and financial savings

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Analyst"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Current Employee - Analyst in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great location, lots of days off, casual dress code

    Cons

    Constant change and not a lot of job security


  9. "Great so far!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Talent Advisor in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Current Contractor - Talent Advisor in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at SMART Technologies as a contractor (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Very friendly teammates that actually work as a team! Good work-life balance.

    Cons

    Sometimes reactive but we are working on being more proactive.


  10. Helpful (9)

    "Lacking direction and focus"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at SMART Technologies full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great opportunity to work on interesting software projects

    Cons

    Culture of an "Old Boys club" that permiates everything
    directionless and leaderless
    no long term plan or vision
    no idea how to take money from customers

    Advice to Management

    SMART needs a strong vision with leaders who are dedicated to fullfulling it.


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