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Vital Findings Reviews

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3.4
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Jason Kramer
20 Ratings

22 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Quality shop, market research for researchers"

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

    I have been working at Vital Findings (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Vital Finding has a smart and motivated team who care about research and the market research profession. I feel we’re at the top of our profession, and we have some of the best in the business. Other research companies I've worked for seemed more like a report factory - reports moving down an assembly line with no real line of sight to the end product. However, management here is always pushing for a better end product, and we have a team of designers that makes the work really stand out.

    We seem to get really interesting work, and there’s lots of variation. Clients come to us with their tough business questions so the team is encouraged to try new methodologies, or create new twists on established methodologies. We also seem to get a good mix of qual and qaunt, so there’s always an opportunity to do something new and different. I like that it’s not the same thing over and over again.

    I think the best thing about Vital Finding is we’re really starting to get recognized for our work. I’ve been told multiple times in the past year I’ve delivered the best report or proposal the client has ever seen, so that feels really good. More than one client has voted us their #1 research vendor in 2015, too.

    The pay and benefits are good. I received a bonus every year (3 years), and sometimes double bonus. We’ve also had profit sharing kick in 2 of the last 3 years. We have a peer rewards program where we get cash for being recognized by our peers. Everyone gets recognized, and I’ve bought some nice things with that extra money :)

    Cons

    The first few months were tough for me here because it’s very different from the big box research companies. I was challenged to not be lazy with my research, and to have excellence throughout the process (even in the parts the client probably wouldn’t see). It was honestly challenging, but I’m a better researcher because of it now.

    The hours can be tough, but management has recently instituted flex time and comp time for weekend work – so that helps.

    Advice to Management

    Keep focusing on building the skills of the team. You’ve got some great development programs, but continuing this will ensure Vital Findings stays top notch.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Intellectually driven, fast-paced, innovative custom market research company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Analyst in Culver City, CA
    Current Employee - Associate Analyst in Culver City, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Vital Findings offers a unique commitment to collaborative, forward-thinking market research. The small and nimble organizational structure allows Vital Findings to take on challenging consultative market research projects. As a result, employees are constantly encouraged to develop their skill sets and move beyond their comfort zones. Vital Findings is a place of rapid employee development and high ambitions.

     Further, the company's stubborn commitment to quality, academically-rigorous research instills a confidence in one's research skill set. Though the company's values are still developing, the core research values of Vital Findings make for an excellent education in professional market research.

    Peers at Vital Findings are top-notch market research thinkers. The company has drawn in intelligent minds from various academic backgrounds.

     But, perhaps the most valuable quality of Vital Findings is the kind, fun-loving people. Come for the market research, stay for the people. Vital Findings is committed to building a research family, as opposed to cold research operation. The company has employed a peer recognition program in which employees leave "Caught in the act" thank you note cards for peers that have gone above and beyond the call of duty in their work effort. These cards each carry a dollar amount to be redeemed at the end of each quarter! (Awesome Program! Treat yourself!)

    Vital Findings is poised to become a major force in the custom market research world. With it's strong commitment to innovative, fun, and fast-paced research, Vital Findings seems like THE place to be in the market research community.

    Cons

    Vital Findings' ambitious projects will often require long hours of hard work. Work/Life balance can suffer as a consequence. (Though, hard work is always met with both high-praise and tangible rewards/compensation from management.)

    The smaller size of the company will often require work outside of one's comfort zone/skill-set. There is a double-edged sword here. You will be required to step-up your game to meet challenges. There is vey little room to hide from challenging work.


  3. Helpful (2)

    "A Talented and Ambitious Company That Offers Amazing Opportunities to Those Motivated to Succeed"

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

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

    Pros

    Vital Findings is a company that caters to motivated individuals. Give, and you shall undoubtedly receive, in ways that other companies would never even consider. VF offers opportunities to advance your career like no other.

    The company is run by a true visionary, one of the smartest and hardest-working people I've ever met. He's a guy who will stop at nothing to deliver the finest, most actionable research possible. And beyond this, he's very kind and generous. He expects you to work hard, and truth be told, you will absolutely have to to make it here. But if you do, I can promise, you shall reap the benefits.

    I also have nothing but high praise to say about the rest of the staff either. They are truly outstanding individuals, both in their personal demeanor as well as their intelligence. I'm very lucky to have crossed paths with them in life.

    In my ~2 years of employment at this company, I can say with utmost certainty that I've never grown more as an individual.

    Cons

    Occasional long hours/weekend work, but other than that, I have no qualms with this company. Employees must be dedicated and hard working.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to be supportive of your staff, while allowing them to exit their comfort zone


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Exceptional Place to work - consultative, collaborative and FUN!"

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

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

    Pros

    Pros: amazing leadership, exciting projects, team atmosphere, regular parties/happy hours, personal achievement and job fulfillment.

    Vital Findings is an exceptional place to work. The people are amazing - each hand picked to collaborate well as a team and to be able to function well autonomously. VF does very high level, consultative research engagements with clients. Senior management makes it clear that VF doesn't take just any type of project for the sake of revenue. Hence, the company actually vets the type and kinds of projects and clients it pursues. It's all about building relationships, externally and internally. And that's why VF is in demand.

    A lot of resources are utilized to ensure that the staff is properly engaged and motivated at VF. Regular in-depth performance reviews reveal clearly what employees must do to move to the next level. Continuous recognition and reinforcement programs (peer to peer) mean terrific incentives for every day successes. The culture at VF is all about true teamwork - from the top down. Project teams collaborate and participate in brain storms regularly. People are not pigeon-holed into one client or methodology. There are daily staff meetings to align projects with resources and ensure that staff utilization is appropriate.

    The work is intense, at times, but extremely fulfilling. Some days are long, but all days are rewarding. This is a company that has top people, amazing clients, a team-based culture of quality and a commitment to work-life balance. It is financially solid as a rock and enjoys amazing leadership. The managing director of this company "walks the talk" - he works as hard as anyone at VF and he is the first to pitch in when a hand is needed. He is also a superb, visionary leader with great plans to continue the growth of this company. My personal motto at VF - Work hard, have fun, and GROW!

    Cons

    Cons: like any other excellent research firm, days on deadline can be long, Vital Findings is growing fast but is extremely selective when choosing new personnel

    Advice to Management

    As the company grows, keep the same unique culture. The skies the limit for Vital Findings!


  6. Helpful (9)

    "Run--Don't walk"

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

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

    Pros

    Many of the people that work there are nice. The pay is alright--though there are some huge discrepancies within the pay bands for each title.

    Cons

    This company is trying to box well above its weight and it simply fails to accomplish its goals. Unfortunately, a lot prospective employees are fooled into believing that this company is something that it is not. The website and even the meeting room in which they interview candidates share photos and graphics of exciting research projects (done years ago and largely outsourced)--types of projects and research they don't do anymore.

    Plain and simple: It's all just...smoke.

    The Practicals:
    The management has a condescending attitude and often puts employees down.
    Workloads are poorly managed.
    Turnover is extraordinarily high.
    There is very little difference in the skill/experience levels between the upper management employees and the lower level employees, so the reporting structure is a joke

    Advice to Management

    Take a look at other start-ups. See how they organize and treat their employees with respect.


  7. Helpful (8)

    "Great perks but no growth opportunities and management style is dictatorial"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Culver City, CA
    Current Employee - Analyst in Culver City, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    I have worked at other market research companies and the hours are long. Not so at Vital Findings. Schedules are flexible and lunches are free. Cool location in Culver City so you are close to great movie theaters, restaurants and with short hours, every night is an opportunity for happy hour at a Culver City watering hole.

    Cons

    Management is dictatorial-style and unfriendly. There has been a lot of turnover since I started here. More people have left than actually work here. The daily office atmosphere is very tense which makes escaping to happy hour all the more necessary. I think the hours are short because there are not as many clients as management states there are on the website.

    Advice to Management

    Learn to trust your employees and stop being so oppressive and imperious in the way you manage. It's no fun going to work and worrying all day if you are going to be humiliated in front of your co-workers.


  8. Helpful (6)

    "A Young, Constantly-Evolving Company; Lots of Opportunity"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Culver City, CA
    Current Employee - Analyst in Culver City, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    - Nice office
    - Young company powered by smart young people
    - Lots of opportunity for growth and new experiences
    - Dedication to training and to educating employees
    - Being a small company can be a bad thing at times socially

    Cons

    - Being a small company can be a bad thing at times socially
    - Manager has big ego
    - Promotions seem unfairly focused on amount of time in a job role

    Advice to Management

    Promote those who are deserving faster.


  9. Helpful (7)

    "Unprofessional & Inappropriate"

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

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

    Pros

    -Easy to move up because promotions are not merit based but rather given to those who cooperate well with management
    -New office supplies weekly, frequent coffee runs & extravagant moral boosting events

    Cons

    - Open book policy shows carelessness with money ($10K couch?), questionable "donations" and an uncertain future for the company
    -Management is constantly scrambling to fix errors due to incompetent employees, desperate bidding prices and poor project decisions
    -Upper management naps frequently even with clients in the office and wakes groggy and behind on work

    Advice to Management

    Vital Findings had a great team and lots of potential when I started. However, controlling and irrational behavior has driven away every single member of that team. Treat your employees better. Listen to others' onions and stop hiring minons to support the dictatorship style office.


  10. Helpful (8)

    "Great Company, Great Experience"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Tons of opportunity for growth
    Ability to work on lots of different projects
    Great compensation
    Smart leaders/managers who want to grow the company and staff
    Interesting clients and cool approaches to presenting data and findings
    Instead of just giving topline powerpoints, they do a lot of video presentations and ask you to think about creative ways to present data. They also do some product design work, instead of just handing info off to clients.

    Cons

    Some colleagues don't carry their weight
    If you're not motivated, they generally don't want you to stay on like dead weight.


  11. Helpful (6)

    "Huge turnover speaks for itself, more people have left since 2010 than currently work there"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If you are not particularly ambitious or a go-getter type, you might enjoy the freedom and easy work
    A good job to have while searching for other ones
    Helps you decide whether market research for you
    Management likes spending a ton of money on random perks in an attempt to keep people happy

    Cons

    Senior management is insecure and puts people down in order to feel better, also seems to be afraid to hire assertive personalities now that so many people have quit
    With such a small staff, standard processes like having someone check your work often gets skipped
    Inexperienced people are doing what managers or directors would do at a normal company, which made it feel like we were constantly winging methodologies (even the owners act like they know more than they actually do)
    Doesn't look good on your resume as Vital Findings has acquired a pretty bad reputation in the market research and design community
    Working with management can be degrading, especially when they dictate to you rather than let you think for yourself

    Advice to Management

    Don't take advantage of those who aren't speaking up, they still know what's going on



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