FilterChicago, IL Area
I have been working at Strata Decision Technology full-time (More than 3 years)
- There are quite a few good hard working co-workers that keeps the company going.
- Strata has a great list of client organizations that will give a boost to your resume.
- Employees can learn a lot in a very short amount of time. There are always opportunities to take on more work and responsibilities.
- Insecure and incapable leadership team
- Strata is always short staffed which accounts for terrible work life balance
- Work/responsibilities not distributed properly with the team and company which disproportionate amounts of work
Advice to Management
Leadership team needs to stop pretending that they care because they really do not.
I worked at Strata Decision Technology full-time (More than 3 years)
Being an SME who was recently bought over by a private equity firm, this company is focused on growth but has maintained some of the start-up feel. It is a young, fun firm with opportunities to take on various responsibilities as long as it doesn't get in the way with management's insecurities (more on that later). Although not many, I have met a handful of genuine people that I truly respect and hope to cross paths with again in future.
Many of the existing reviews are spot on (the ones with low rating) and yes, management have been told to write (positive) reviews to bring up the score. Most of senior management consist of mediocre employers straight out of school, who stuck around and got promoted very quickly which stunted their growth and development leaving behind an inapt team of insecure, poor decision makers inhibiting company growth and improvement that the current CEO is trying to achieve.
It is extremely discouraging to see that even with a seemingly level-headed leader injected into the company, the team of young, inexperienced, overly sensitive and insecure management continue to compromise good intentions, hard work, team spirit and optimism of some of the rare bright talent (a couple within management, mostly below management but who usually perform management duties, coaching of their team and exceptional work but cannot break through the ceiling management has created with their insecurity).
But don't get me wrong, the young team of inexperienced managers are not bad people, they are great do-ers who were placed in leadership roles they weren't ready for which causes a detrimental impact to the company. The only thing I blame them for is not having enough self-awareness or concern for the greater good to step down from their role and let more adequate leaders unleash the business' full potential. This has cultivated a toxic environment that rewards brown-nosing, contentment with status quo, personal (and inappropriate) relationships, blaming others, hiding/lying about mistakes, where honesty, trust, openness and integrity are punished.
No room to grow with very few respectable, honest people you can confide in and learn from. If you stay at this place too long it can be soul crushing. When you leave a company, people say you are leaving your manager. In my case, this is absolutely true.
Advice to Management
To CEO: You owe it to the company and the dwindling number of hopeful bright talent to make some difficult decisions (it's not exactly difficult when it's obvious to 75% of the company) to either terminate or demote non-performing VPs, AVPs, Directors and Managers. How many years do they get to "prove themselves"? Where is the accountability that has been constantly preached about when you joined?
I had the opportunity to work with some very intelligent and driven people. The company allocated appropriate funds to technology.
Management was a closed box. Managerial level decision would be made that directly affected the operation of the company with zero notice to employees. If employees did not agree 100% with management then they were not allowed into the "inner circle". Management sought yes men/women and did not like to be challenged.
Advice to Management
Be more open regarding what is going on within the company. Inform employees of company decisions, why they are made etc.
The pay and benefits are excellent if you're willing to work long hours and navigate the politics of the organization.
Opportunities to become a client lead on the consulting side are excellent if you can quickly learn the software and some basic financial concepts. Opportunities to work with senior leadership at hospitals and health care organizations are numerous.
Small company means less red tape around a lot of administrative functions.
You can move into a 'management' role quickly.
This is not a consulting firm, it is a software company. The job titles are deceiving. Employees either create and test the software (development and SQA), or implement and support the software with clients (consulting and tech services). There is no advisory work being done at this company.
Room for professional growth and experience is limited for consultants. Most skills gained at the company are specific to the software at Strata (although client interaction is frequent).
There is extremely high turnover at this company. Many people start at Strata right out of college and move on to something relatively soon after. The turnover is exacerbated by a lack of a formal training process and stretched resources.
Managers are generally inexperienced. Most are under 30 years old and have no other job experience other than Strata. There is a lack of vision and direction from the CEO, who is generally disconnected from the actual operations of the company.
Performance metrics are vague and seemingly arbitrary at year-end.
Advice to Management
Hire experienced management to run the company.
Don't hire consultants to implement financial software.
Focus on supporting current clients, solidifying the software, and creating a core of strong, experienced employees before trying to grow.
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