The Bradford Group Reviews | Glassdoor

The Bradford Group Reviews

Updated August 13, 2017
101 reviews

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3.2
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Richard Tinberg
50 Ratings

101 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Extremely casual work environment, minimal stress, nice people (in 10 reviews)

  • Casual work environment, flexible hours, good location (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • Horrible management, no work life balance, no goals given, everyone is in horrible moods because they are under appreciated (in 4 reviews)

  • The treatment of certain employees by upper management was pathetic in certain departments (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Best Place I Have Worked At"

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

    I have been working at The Bradford Group full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Some of the nicest people and some of the best marketing minds I have had the pleasure of working with. Truly are devoted to growing the company and ensuring owner-employees are rewarded for their efforts. Because we are an ESOP, we not only benefit the company, but we benefit ourselves through added value of the shares we continue to receive as employee-owners. People are dedicated and I have seen many people advance in their careers throughout the organization. Hard work, dedication and passion for growth are definitely rewarded to those that truly exhibit this versus just being here and expecting it to come without full effort.

    Cons

    At times the overtime can be needed, but when not a necessity, flexibility in amount of time here is a benefit.

    Advice to Management

    Keep looking forward and we will all follow. The growth we are experiencing comes from your direction and vision and our ability to develop the plans and actions to initiate our growth and thus provide it.

    The Bradford Group Response

    Jun 1, 2017 – The Bradford Group

    Thank you very much for sharing your experience working for The Bradford Group! We are proud of what we have built here and excited to shape our future.


  2. "Amazing Opportunities if You're in the Right Area"

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

    I have been working at The Bradford Group full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    I can't speak specifically for all divisions or teams, but, based on my experience at the Niles headquarters...

    - Good work-life balance
    - Competitive compensation
    - Solid insurance plans
    - Annual profit-sharing
    - Convenient transportation options
    - Strong digital growth
    - Annual salary raises are very achievable
    - Ambient and sleek atrium design

    Cons

    - Outdated conference rooms and equipment.
    - Far from sexy location.
    - Less than desirable clientele/target market.
    - There is a stiff ceiling on title promotions after a certain point.

    Advice to Management

    Overall, the company continues to show fantastic growth. But, given that the location isn't very attractive and most departments have a very thin hierarchy of titles, I foresee a continuing struggle of retention for young talent.

    I would strongly suggest giving the conference rooms an update and also expanding the opportunities for title growth. It would probably be fair to even consider a satellite office somewhere in/near downtown Chicago for some of the emerging divisions.

  3. "Great place for a creative professional"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Product Development Manager in Niles, IL
    Former Employee - Product Development Manager in Niles, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at The Bradford Group full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Working at the Bradford Exchange gave me an opportunity to grow professionally and personally. I learned how to be a better team member and a better artist. I was very fortunate to have an AMAZING manager. We worked very closely on all the aspects of the job - from conceptual to manufacturing. It taught me to be very critical and discerning. She pushed us to be creative and practical at the same time, and to always try to do our best. Having worked at Bradford for over 5 years, I became a much stronger professional. In addition she was able to negotiate a 30 hr week schedule to help me better manage my work and family time.

    Cons

    Working in a corporate environment can feel a bit stagnant at times.

    Advice to Management

    The employees can benefit from more professional development and activities that stimulate creativity. In order to provide fresh and innovative ideas creative professionals need to be taken out of the routine. Trips to the museum, problem solving workshops, art classes, etc can be extremely beneficial.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Good place to start.. but that's it unless you never want to grow professionally"

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

    I have been working at The Bradford Group full-time

    Pros

    A good amount of the people working there are friendly and helpful. They really break up the day to day tediousness and are always willing to help out when you need it.

    Cons

    A lot of data entry with outdated systems, very Excel based for marketing. Certain managers burden their teams with overwhelming amounts of tasks and criticize them if they want to leave on time. The culture overall isn't great and it's hard to move up because people have been there for 10+ years and don't seem to be retiring any time soon.

    Advice to Management

    Update the systems! It is so hard to actually take them time to dig through data and find solutions when you have to spend 20+ hours a week entering things into Excel sheets. Also, listen to the younger people's ideas. We are much more intelligent then you give us credit for.


  5. "Company in Transition (back in 2006)"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Product Developer in Niles, IL
    Former Employee - Product Developer in Niles, IL
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at The Bradford Group (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Unique work environment
    Creative job with good pay

    Cons

    They were sending a ton of work overseas in 2005-6. A lot of people lost jobs in the call center, and illustration jobs started getting sent to factories overseas instead of to local illustrators.


  6. "Head of Product Development"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Marketing Director in Niles, IL
    Former Employee - Marketing Director in Niles, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at The Bradford Group (More than a year)

    Pros

    Exciting, creative and fast paced which allowed me to use all of my direct-to-consumer/CRM/product development experience to increase new product launch success ratios.

    Cons

    The Managing Director, who is no longer with the company.

    Advice to Management

    Ensure the role is EXACTLY what you want.


  7. "Good place to start your career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Niles, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Niles, IL

    I worked at The Bradford Group full-time

    Pros

    yearly bonus checks, health benefits, onsite small gym, 401K, salary

    Cons

    company lacks diversity. location is inconvenient.

    The Bradford Group Response

    Jun 1, 2017 – The Bradford Group

    Thank you for your review!

  8. Helpful (4)

    "Marketing Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Marketing Manager
    Former Employee - Marketing Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at The Bradford Group full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The place seemed like a modern workplace environment. However, what you quickly learn is that it is frowned upon to be away from your desk for long periods of time. For example: went to the bathroom the got caught in a hallway conversation. I was told by my manager that it would appear to others that I was not being productive. Really? No talking allowed? I was told we had FREE parking as a benefit. Well I hope so being in Niles.

    Cons

    Almost everything. Poor management all the way to GM/Vp who are essentially not involved. Director level is attained through long tenure. Just ask how many departments they have worked in while interviewing. I found out my boss moved so much because they were not liked and is an extreme micro-manager. I agree. While you think that free pizza is a good idea, it is a plot to keep you working during lunch. Don't fall for it. Take your hour and run. Run far far away. I wish I was a smoker, the same group was outside every hour. Just know that you are selling worthless goods. These items are junk and have no value. The target is older stay at home women. Cat ladies. They will tell you this. Do not drink the kool aid. The pay for entry level is laughable. You can make more at the mall across the street. Your work will be stolen by your manager.

    Advice to Management

    Retire.

    The Bradford Group Response

    Jun 1, 2017 – The Bradford Group

    Thank you for your feedback. We are disappointed to hear about your poor experience during your time working for Bradford. In the future, we would highly recommend you take your concerns to our... More


  9. "Supervisor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at The Bradford Group full-time

    Pros

    Make Fun and interesting or products

    Cons

    Old school at times - tired systems


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Good people, challenging business"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Niles, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Niles, IL
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at The Bradford Group full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The people are top notch. I really enjoyed working with everyone there. The cafeteria was great as was the inside garden. It was really peaceful and serene. I always felt well supported in my role and had a direct manager and department lead that made me feel that my input mattered.

    Cons

    Location. Unless you leave in the area, there's just no real way to get there quickly. An hour plus stressful commute is not how you want to start your day.

    1 Person. 99% of everyone there was great. Really helpful, funny and friendly. I don't know if it was me or this one person on my team, but we could never really click. I just couldn't read this person. They were cool (not cold) and aloof. I get that some people are all about the business and that's all they want to do, but you'd think that working with some one for months you'd know a bit about them. Nothing, I knew this person was married, but not their spouse's name. We had a small team, but in all that team I just never connected with this person. I had great relationships with people who I didn't even interact with on a business level that were good friends and I knew about them. It's not really a con against the company, just that one person definitely didn't provide a feeling of camaraderie and support that you need from your team.

    Work/Life Balance. In my role, I was expected to work on Saturdays and Sundays. Granted it was only checking on things a couple of times a day, but to me Saturdays & Sundays are sacred. Time for family. I do my best to keep work at work and home with family. I didn't like having to stop or remove myself from recreational or family time to do work. That may not be a con for everyone, but it was con for me.

    Advice to Management

    The department I worked in, the industry is dying. It just is. I felt their success metrics were unattainable and should have been adjusted to reflect the changing business. I wish them nothing but success and I actually left because I felt they needed a person with more experience in the role for that industry.


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