Shutterstock Reviews | Glassdoor

Shutterstock Reviews

Updated March 24, 2017
131 reviews

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3.4
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Shutterstock Founder & CEO Jon Oringer
Jon Oringer
83 Ratings

131 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Location & Perks - How many folks get to say that they work in the Empire State Building (in 17 reviews)

  • Free Lunch, Massage, Nice people (in 24 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons

  1. "Great place, fun and exciting"

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

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

    Pros

    Exciting, fast-past environment.
    Really amazingly smart people.
    Great location--Empire State Building.
    Breakfast, lunch and snacks. Snack-athons. Open Mic Night.
    Donating left-overs to charities.
    Free massages.
    Cutting-edge technology.

    Cons

    Company is in transition (infrastructure, executive team, etc.), so there is some initial misalignment ... but nothing that cannot be overcome.

    Advice to Management

    Empower your VPs, Directors and Managers.
    Be more inclusive in strategic decisions.


  2. "Good employee work-life balance"

    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 Shutterstock full-time

    Pros

    The company is going through some transitions, but has continued to focus on keeping talent and maintaining a track record of providing work-life balance for employees. People are genuinely good and there's a culture of kindness. The company has good process in place so employees understand how to ship and have the tools/personnel to make it happen.

    Cons

    Better retention would help to show employees that this is a stable place to work and grow.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work!


  3. Helpful (14)

    "Opportunities for promotion, but not for growth"

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

    I worked at Shutterstock full-time

    Pros

    Free breakfast and lunch, so you don’t need to leave the office. Smart coworkers. Free 15-minute massages in NYC & Denver. Surprise snacks.

    Cons

    You can do well here, and thrive, but you need to understand some things.

    For one thing, you should like it when management tells you what to do. Lots of command & control, and you should accept that. The directors and VPs who focus on people over deadlines get fired. Deadlines are the most important thing.

    The CEO is also the company’s founder. He cares passionately about the company and his vision for it. Everybody is equal, in that he will get rid of anybody at any level (including C-level) who he thinks is in the way. Does that make everybody nervous about losing their jobs? Yes, so you should get used to it. If he doesn’t like you, you’re gone, because if someone disagrees and tells him that you should stay, they’re gone too. To give a different opinion is to be fired. Better to go along with what he says.

    The CFO gives a lot of the talks you’d expect to hear from the CEO. That’s weird, but at least you understand what’s important to the company: money.

    You should also be very self-directed in your career. You won’t get mentorship or guidance. Those people are gone. If you want to learn something new, take your own time to learn it. During working hours you should be doing things to help the company, not to grow your skills.

    This is not a smiling company that looks after you; it’s a company that freaks out when something goes wrong and looks for people to blame and get rid of. But that may not be you, and you might be able to get promoted when someone you like leaves the company. If you get the politics right, you can climb the corporate ladder. If you get it wrong, there are other jobs, and you have plenty of company in people who were forced out.

    Advice to Management

    Broadcast your values and priorities more clearly. Don't rely on side conversations - write e-mails.

    In private meetings, people get told that they need to work more hours if they're going to get promotions. This shouldn't be a hush-hush things. If you believe that, write about it clearly, instead of just having it trickle down through individual conversations. This was also brought up in some meetings of managers - talking about how many hours the high-level people are working, and that more people at lower levels should be putting in more hours. Don't just tell the managers and rely on them to tell other people. Own your beliefs. Write about them.

    Similarly, stop firing people in such a hush-hush manner. The folks who are left don't understand why you fired them. If you think a manager wasn't squeezing enough out of their team, the other managers need to know that, so they know how to avoid getting fired.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    "Past the worst"

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

    I have been working at Shutterstock full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great colleagues
    Challenging goals
    Strong compensation
    Thoughtful perks
    Data oriented
    Culture of kindness

    Cons

    Challenging goals
    Slow dev progress
    Tech Debt
    Outdated focus on e-commerce
    Dearth of ownership of org flaws

    Advice to Management

    Focus on the customer and focus on innovation not parity.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Real person - Not from Product team"

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

    I have been working at Shutterstock full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Listen to feedback
    Award based on achievements
    Management does listen, the consider, evaluate and then weigh options

    Cons

    Too many cooks in the kitchen at times and way too many internal meetings.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your customers - go on meetings and actually talk to clients.


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Not for the faint of heart"

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

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

    Pros

    - AMAZING growth potential that could create a step function change in the business
    - Fast paced, non-hierarchical culture
    - Some of the best people I have ever worked with. They are passionate about life both inside and outside the office

    Cons

    - Company had to get through (and is still completing) a significant tech migration. That was a very tough time, but we are now coming through to the other side
    - Demanding. Shutterstock is for people who want to be challenged.

    Advice to Management

    - Continue to improve communication within the organization. We are growing rapidly and changing quickly. Often times those changes aren't communicated well to everyone.
    - Create stability in the executive team


  8. "Poor Management & Sales Environment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Customer Success Manager in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Customer Success Manager in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Free coffee, Free lunch (overrated), decent benefits, and a company holiday party.

    Cons

    Growth opportunity
    Management
    Corporate Structure
    Goals
    Learning opportunity

    Advice to Management

    First and foremost treat employees with respect. If you would not do it to your brother, mother, sister, son, or daughter then do not do it to your colleague/employee.

    Make good on your promises or don't make those promises.

    Shutterstock is no longer a start up so please recognize that and address it accordingly.

    BE RESPECTFUL, BE KIND, BE POSiTIVE, AND REWARD THOSE WHO REWARD YOU.

    All in all my commission plan was held over my head after I worked my plan and presented supporting data. My manager(s) told me to go jump off of a bridge because of my age. Good cop bad cop scenario was played and it was just extremely immature.

    Overall just a terrible experience and environment.

    Jon Oringer found out about my situation was in contact with me and then told me what his management team did in "go jump off a bridge". Personally, I would not recommend working for him or anyone on his management team and I know a lot of my colleagues felt the same way.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "VP Data Governance"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Vice President Data Governance in Orlando, FL
    Current Employee - Vice President Data Governance in Orlando, FL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Shutterstock is a high growth Technology Company with smart and passionate leaders. Jon Oringer's (Founder/CEO) vision is evident throughout the hallways and the executive leadership's direct interaction with every employee breaks down the "Ivory Tower" mentality seen in other organizations. While the pace is fast the accomplishments are rewarding.

    Cons

    As mentioned in the Pros section, the pace is blistering and as such it can be overwhelming.


  10. Helpful (16)

    "Has potential & promise but is limited by resources, retention, and overall misalignment."

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

    I worked at Shutterstock full-time

    Pros

    • There are lots of dedicated, hard working, friendly employees who are full of passion and potential.

    • Great perks, health benefits, and PTO.

    • Free lunch, snacks, and drinks (although the menu items can be somewhat bizarre, it's still free!).

    • Prime office location (in NYC) that makes for a relatively easy commute.

    Cons

    • Frequent "knee-jerk" reactions from Senior level executives lead to persistent confusion, misdirection, and misalignment.

    • Difficult decisions are not thought out thoroughly taking into consideration all individuals who will be affected by the results.

    • Very little respect to work/life balance. You will ALWAYS be working & tethered to your email, gchat, and Slack (expect plenty of weekend / 9 pm messages).

    • An unsettling amount of turnover. Respected, highly valued employees with and without seniority frequently “vanish” or “transition” out of the company with little to no explanation.

    • Severe lack of tech resources for a “tech” company. Be prepared to continually file bugs only to have them sit and gather dust while the tech department is led to focus on bigger things (which then only generates additional tech debt).

    • No clear career paths within the company with little work done on employee growth, development, and retention. I've seen glimmers of hope when it comes to this only to see the hope just die out just as quickly as it appeared.

    • The "open office" environment is very LOUD and finding a quiet spot to concentrate on work is extremely challenging (“pop-in” rooms have been taken over by executives). Overall this attributes to wasted time trying to get work done.

    Advice to Management

    • Focus on retaining your hard working employees that bring considerable value to the company, and concentrate on growing all employees. You have some amazing people there. Keep them.

    • Figure out what the precise focus of the company should be and stick to that mission. Don't enforce goals that aren't aligned and expect things to get done. Clear up the confusion.

    • Solve the work/life balance issues and clearly communicate expectations. Burnout is quite common, and it's not helping overall morale.

    • Beef up the tech department & get creative with finding resources. Find the balance between attention to bugs & reoccurring site issues (some of which have been going on for years) along with new products and services.

    Shutterstock Response

    Feb 17, 2017 – Shutterstock

    We’re disappointed to hear about your experience with us. Last fall we shared our company vision, strategy, and values with all of our employees and began integrating these principles into everything ... More


  11. Helpful (22)

    "Best to avoid under current leadership & management"

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

    Pros

    - Many talented and passionate front-line/mid-level employees.
    - New York office in the Empire State Building is visually impressive and comes with some cool perks.
    - Brand name recognition helps open some doors.
    - Shutterstock remains one of the last big companies in the stock photo industry.

    Cons

    - Company culture has grown increasingly toxic. Morale is low. Uncertainty and instability abound. High turnover.
    - There is a revolving door in the C-suite. It seems like there is always a new CMO/CIO/CTO/C-3PO/etc which results in very little and/or confusing executive accountability or leadership.
    - The executive team/company seems to be run by a bullying CFO with equal parts of arrogance, willful ignorance and shouting (yes, this should sound familiar).
    - Technology is aging and increasingly challenged to keep up with the competition and capitalize on emerging/changing client need. This is a shame as Shutterstock’s technology at one time was a true disrupter in this space.
    - Incredibly poor internal communication and cross-functional alignment. Many people work in silos so there is little understanding of how their work fits into a bigger picture or impacts others. This problem is exasperated by weak and/or new managers who don’t understand the business.
    - Work/life balance can be very hard for some. Be prepared for A LOT of forced meetings and late night/early morning video chats. It’s an aggressive, overly meeting-centric culture with lots of confused cooks in the kitchens and very few chefs.
    - Some departments are woefully understaffed.
    - Many employees have unrealistic workloads and/or a lack of clear job responsibilities which undermines their ability to be successful.
    - There is an overall “sink or swim” mentality made harder by weak onboarding, resources and support.
    - Employees are often fired without cause and with little to no warning, regardless of their performance. This has a negative impact on co-workers, partners and clients as there is often no plan in place to deal with the aftermath.

    Advice to Management

    - Actions do indeed speak louder than words. “CEO’s and their leadership team must exhibit the behaviors that they expect of others within the organization.” It starts at the top. YOU are the top. YOU are responsible for the culture.
    - Be honest about failures and challenges. Stand by your leadership decisions and hold the right people accountable for success and/or failure (including your leaders). Take a hard look at your management/leadership teams and ask yourself if some of the high turnover is a result of poor or incompetent management. Stop using lower level or new employees as scapegoats. It undermines your credibility.
    - Value and invest in your employees and contributors. They are PEOPLE. They are your most important asset. Cultivate talent both internally & externally. Set your people up for success. Work with your employees, not against them. There are talented, smart, passionate employees/contributors at Shutterstock that are struggling and/or not achieving their full potential. Some of the most talented people are in the wrong roles. Find the right place for them.
    - Do not forsake quality for quantity. The world has changed. You can’t be all things to all people. Focus.
    - Clearly (re)define, communicate and execute your plans. Make sure that global teams are aligned and working toward shared goals.
    - Finally, don’t post fake positive reviews on Glassdoor to counteract the negative ones. Don't ask/get current employees to write forced positive reviews. Glassdoor readers are smart enough to know the difference.
    - Good luck.



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