Transvideo Studios Reviews | Glassdoor

Transvideo Studios Reviews

Updated November 30, 2016
18 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.2
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Raymond Clark
11 Ratings

18 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "Loved it Here, Was Sad to Leave"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Receptionist/Accounting Administrative in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Receptionist/Accounting Administrative in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Exciting and interesting, family friendly, decent benefits

    Cons

    Not many advancement opportunities in administrative or accounting positions due to size, but a great place for core talents needed


  2. Helpful (5)

    "Great facility, employees, and opportunities!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Motion Graphics Artist in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Motion Graphics Artist in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    I cannot recommend this place enough in terms of opportunity and potential. Because there is such variety in work type and difficulty, it is the perfect environment to challenge and progress an artist's skill-set while also giving much needed times of respite. If an artist ever wants to develop a new tool kit, management is very encouraging and provides paid time to train, and gives them opportunities to use these in future projects. This can often lead to promotions or title changes if desired. Further, Transvideo leads a very collaborative environment that includes its artists in the creative and client calls through actual delivery of a project. This helps keep everyone from getting locked into roles, and creates a well rounded experience no matter what position.

    I've also been happy with all of my co-workers. Because of the collaborative nature of the company, its easy to share ideas and techniques on a daily basis. Friendly banter was encouraged, and created a lighthearted, ego-free environment to work in.

    The company is also very serious in regards to a good work/life balance. I never had an issue with being over worked or out of office time being denied. When they can, they like to organize company wide activities like BBQs and recreational sports.

    In the end, I had a very positive work experience at Transvideo. Artists get the whole deal there: the equipment, the software, the team, and the work they need to support their creative drive and lifestyle.

    Cons

    Similar to other agencies, often the client determines how exciting a project can be. Content is sometimes out of Transvideo's control, but the boring projects also have to get done.


  3. Helpful (2)

    "Sweet gig"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Producer/Writer/Director in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Producer/Writer/Director in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    I enjoy my work at Transvideo. The company itself is abnormally intentional about promoting an environment with little drama and no corporate politics. It’s really nice to actually focus on bettering the work at hand rather than getting in with a clique -- not to mention the people are really solid.

    They're intentional about cultivating talent. They purchase online resources (plugins, courses etc.) when needed to refine or develop new skill sets, as well as allot personal training time on work hours. They also make their equipment available for personal projects.

    The studio has been intentional about pushing to the next level of growth, the end game being to develop original content. They’ve reduced equipment rates to take on more live action projects as well as began stockpiling funds for pilots and independent films developed internally. This is the future direction the company. I would be remiss to not give that credit to Ray, the owner, who is now utilizing annual profits to fund original content.

    There is a lot of collaboration. This is something management has done a great job of changing from when I first started. Before work was very independent -- you could skate by a day without saying hi to anyone. Now we pitch teams on concepts to develop better ideas – like a writers room. Artists are also always teaching each other new tricks and better ways to achieve certain effects.

    Upward mobility. You’re given the reasonability you show you can handle -- as well as what you’re willing to take. It seems management is always looking for ways to discover new talent within the building -- even people who aren’t initially hired for creative. This provides new opportunities all around.

    Transvideo pays a fair price for quality talent. Benefit packages aren't the best, but I'll admit I'm a bit bias after working at a university with excessive benefits.

    Personally I think it's a sweet gig. The work is getting better everyday and the future direction of the company isn’t something common at a major agency.

    Also, it seems worth mentioning I'm not in management.

    Cons

    Something we don't have right now is a booming social presence, which will be more and more important as the medium of storytelling becomes a dominantly digital enterprise. Like many companies, we need to find an audience. Biggest challenge on the creative side can be clients having too much control. That's not true in every case, but we can do better on limiting their choices and keeping them more focused on content.

    Advice to Management

    I've witnessed the company taking bigger and bigger risks over the last year in an effort to yield bigger rewards. They've been eager to listen to employees in an effort to syphon great ideas for expansion. Keep it up!


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  5. Helpful (5)

    "Take advantage of the employees for the sake of the owner"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Production Specialist in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Production Specialist in Mountain View, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Transvideo Studios full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Mountain View is a pleasant city.

    Cons

    Employees are expected to take full responsibility for the operation of the company, while getting paid less than the minimum wage. Working 12 hours a day is common.

    Advice to Management

    Treat your employees like you would like to be treated. Pay a fair wage. Stick to what you promise.


  6. Helpful (10)

    "Not a good place to work. Period."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous in Mountain View, CA
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Transvideo Studios full-time

    Pros

    They have a sound stage and a downtown Mountain View location. Despite the obstacles, many of the people who have worked there were talented and great to work with.

    Cons

    The atmosphere at Transvideo Studios is beyond oppressive. There is zero creative vision and marketing. The executive management actually reads your every email and chimes in as a "management" technique. What company policies there are change at whim. They are married to a hopelessly antiquated home-grown database/tracking system. All efforts by employees to grow or change the company are invariably hamstrung. The pattern: people work there for awhile, get frustrated and eventually leave. Three (and possibly more) of the glowing reviews posted on this site are written by the same person in executive management. I agree 100% with the person who said they would give this company no stars if they could.

    Advice to Management

    The owner is not open to advice, but here goes. Give up and cash in on the much more valuable real estate.


  7. Helpful (5)

    "My Dream Job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Producer in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Producer in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Transvideo Studios full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The opportunities and potential are greater than any place I've ever worked for. My own story is not necessarily unique, but I have advanced from being hired as an Editor to promotions as a Post Production Supervisor, Producer, Senior Producer, and finally to Executive Management. Hard work in combination with devotion to clients and the company has always been rewarded.

    Few companies are so guided by the desires of their employees. Several years ago, due to the aptitude and inclination of a few of our artists, we started branching out into different types of projects and soon established ourselves as leaders in design and animation. For those who can seize the advantage, the absence of top-down mandates is a godsend.

    As an artist, having access to incredible facilities and equipment is invaluable. We are not limited by the tools that we use: everything is at the top end of the industry. The technical maintenance is so good it's easy to forget how difficult that achievement is. We've been very blessed with dedicated technical staff who ensure that artists don't have to spend their time troubleshooting or getting mired in compatibility issues.

    Most co-workers are multi-talented, each with their own specialties and expertise. For younger artists there's a great mentoring environment, and almost everything we do is a collaboration of some kind. The whole company is very team focused.

    Finally, I have to mention how family-oriented the company is--and it's not just the fact that the company bends over backwards to accommodate employee hours, especially those with difficult commutes or family responsibilities. A couple of years back, my wife and I were beginning the adoption process. Out of the blue, Ray Clark, the CEO, gives me a call and says he'd like to pay for our adoption expenses. As I come home to my beautiful daughter every night, I remember what a huge impact that has had on our lives, and I can't express my gratitude enough.

    Cons

    The location in Mountain View has taken its toll on acquiring and retaining top talent. The commute can be a difficult grind for a lot of employees who live throughout the Bay Area. The studio is located close to a CalTrain station, but sometimes you're simply at the mercy of CalTrain.

    Very honestly, the lack of top-down management or creative gate-keepers is not for everyone. While some people thrive in an environment that promotes self-motivation, there are others who require a level of guidance, instruction, and direction that neither managers nor co-workers can really afford to maintain. And when people are given opportunities beyond their experience, there can be failure. Some people translate those failures into learning experiences, others become embittered by it. Those people are not awesome to work with.

    Advice to Management

    Let me preface my comments to say that as someone who has advanced to management this is an issue that I have struggled with myself and have been a large contributor to the problem.

    In the past we have spent way too many company resources on underperforming employees, frequently at the expense of our high achievers. Transvideo's legendary forgiveness has not always served us well. Keeping around those who are not contributing or who are even detracting from the core mission of the company has had a big impact on the quality of the work and the morale of those who have to clean up the messes left behind by their co-workers. We've had underperforming staff stick around for years, getting 7th and 8th chances after catastrophic mistakes with clients and internal projects. Sadly, with these co-workers the response to this forgiveness has not been appreciation, but more of a license to not improve, or worse. (the negative review below is one example of a particularly unremarkable former co-worker)

    We've made some great strides at improving this situation recently, and the staff are loving it.


  8. Helpful (15)

    "Transvideo Studios is the worst company I have ever worked for. If I could give zero stars I would."

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

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

    Pros

    Most places are a mixture of good and bad. No place is perfect and it's only fair to be balanced when giving a review. Transvideo however is unique in that it has in all honesty no redeeming qualities.

    Cons

    Transvideo has the highest turnover of staff of any company I have ever worked for.
    It's people are its least valuable asset.
    The atmosphere is oppressive.
    There is no culture here other than fear and insecurity.
    The work is the same they are unable to move forward.
    This is a quote from the CEO " Give me any ideas on how you think we can make the place better and I'll give you 10 reasons why they won't work."
    Wages are hourly and your time is subject to arbitrary fluctuations.
    It is so bad here that many of the people that left did so without having another job to go to.
    Every single employee that tried to make a difference was shut down, and in many cases, demoted to prevent further attempts.

    Advice to Management

    They are beyond advice.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "It's a pleasure to review our workplace"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Professional in Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Professional in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Transvideo Studios full-time

    Pros

    Producing projects for clients like Google, Box, NASA, CBS, CNBC is rewarding. But working at a company that also cares about a balance of personal and family life - now that's really important to me. I love to work, and we do work hard. Clocking in at about 40 hours, my work week is practically unheard of in an industry that's usually much more demanding.

    Being part of one of the largest production companies in Northern California brings other benefits too. There's a lot of talented people on your team here. And all the latest technology and tools, with an IT department that really rocks!. We're talkin' millions of dollars in the latest toys, and experienced people that know how it all works. Red Epic 5k & Black Magic HD & cinema cameras, Da Vinci color correction, render farm, dozens of editing, graphics, animation stations and suites.

    And as if that wasn't enough to make for a mouth watering nurdville digital design creative experience, there's also two acoustically designed sound stages providing the ultimate live video creative environment. Stage One is 4800 sq ft, and has a huge 2 walled cyc that can be painted white or green (for effects work). This is more space to create than in almost any other Bay Area studio.

    The building is a great space, designed by Studios Architecture (Googleplex, SGI, Apple) . A long semi-circle wall houses edit suites on the first floor, and graphics, creative and producers suites on the second floor. A modern lunch room is also a "hub" for gatherings. The main graphics department is surrounded in glass with a view of the mountains. The downtown Mountain View location is great. The Tied House Brewery is right next door.

    Cons

    The money could always be better, but beyond a need to be comfortable, I'm not in it for $ alone. Pay may be less than many area corporations, especially giants like Google and Apple. But compared to the TV industry norm, it's actually quite good, and I'm happy.

    Mountain View has a small town atmosphere, but a big city rush hour. Its population expands to the breaking point each weekday as thousands of coffee injected motorists descend on the hundreds of Silicon Valley corporations headquartered here. Commuters beware.

    Advice to Management

    Awesome leadership. Forward thinking... Management has its finger on the pulse of where video is going. But at times it seems we're a "best kept secret", except to our current clients, who perhaps like it that way. We are better today than we've ever been before. An awesome team. An amazing facility! Let's tell the world about us! I'm doing my part here.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Great management & growing company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Director in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Transvideo Studios full-time

    Pros

    Great management, strong culture, fun place to work, very creative environment, well known identity, leader in the industry.

    Work hours that are sensible - way below industry average. Silicon Valley's largest film/video production company. A foundation built on more than 30 years of success. Strong ethics, responsible support for staff and work-family-life balance.

    Cons

    Stages too big, Silicon Valley location

    Advice to Management

    Thanks for great leadership and defining roles for for both staff and management


  11. Helpful (2)

    "A good place to build a career for the future"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Professional in Mountain View, CA
    Former Employee - Professional in Mountain View, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Transvideo Studios full-time

    Pros

    I thought I knew the industry pretty well. And Transvideo Studios was not the first job I'd had in film/video. But since I left Transvideo and took advantage of "a better opportunity" I'm realizing in hindsight that my new work may not be quite as satisfying as I thought it was going to be. I really do miss working at Transvideo. A bunch of really creative good folks. So I'll share this retrospective review.

    Pros?
    Flexible reasonable hours, frequent opportunities for advancement, wonderful talented people, with pay and benefits actually on the high side of the industry norm, all things considered. And we were working on projects for clients like Google, Facebook, Intuit. Pretty cool.

    The location in downtown Mountain View was very nice, plenty of parking, and we were just down the street and walking distance from about 50 restaurants. Lots of places to eat lunch, or meet with friends after work for a drink. And being at the center of Silicon Valley, it's a vibrant dynamic culture and atmosphere, with startups and entrepreneurs everywhere.

    At the time I didn't always agree with the direction of the company, or the management decisions that were made. But I've certainly seen a lot worse since. Perhaps they actually had it right. Because in the long run, the strategies were innovative and successful. They've been in business for like 30 years. And I learned that during that time they only had one period of layoff's (the economic crash of 2008). They then invested all their remaining savings keeping as many folks on board as they could during those hard times. That's commendable.

    So if you're considering working there, I say this: Work hard at investing in the company for the long term, and they will invest in you. This opportunity simply does not exist as readily at some of the other companies in the industry that I've tried since.

    Cons

    Bay area traffic is a bear. Silicon Valley is the absolute worse commute destination from any place north or east of San Francisco. And if you live further away, as some do, the stress from spending three hours each day in traffic will take its toll. A few employees arranged for different commute hours to help ease the pain. My advise is to move to Silicon Valley, or if you can't, carpool, take the train, or get a different job closer to home. Otherwise, you'll spend a large portion of your life behind the wheel. Some folks can deal with it. Not me.

    If you want to just advance your career for the short term, this was not the best place. They are looking for a long term attitude. This may also be a plus however, depending on your goals.

    The project documentation systems in place can be just plan scary. Especially at first. Over a period of time I understood they were put in place to serve client needs and lessen the need for greater numbers of administrative staff, but it did add some overhead to your work day. I managed to get used to it, and eventually saw the benefit. But a couple of staff never seemed to like it. Paperwork man, what a bummer! I'll say this tho - compared to what I'm using now, it was just plain elegant.

    Advice to Management

    You may manage one of the largest and most successful studios in the area, but don't let that make you too complacent. Keep at improving it and yourselves!

    At times Transvideo seemed to accept projects at budgets that customers could afford, rather than budgets that were more realistic. But of course we'd still want to deliver the highest quality product. So the project would inevitability go over budget, and if the customer could not afford more, often times they were not charged more. Resulting in awesome videos, but little profit. Company growth and benefits may be improved if more realistic budgets were agreed to from the start.

    And for your staff - don't let one bad apple ruin it for everyone else. If they really don't want to be there, do them and everyone else a favor and let them go. Workplace satisfaction may improve because of it, and you'll have less stress.


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