iDirect Technologies Reviews | Glassdoor

iDirect Technologies Reviews

Updated February 20, 2017
76 reviews

Filter

Filter

Full-time Part-time

3.0
Star Star Star Star Star
Rating Trends Rating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
iDirect Technologies CEO Mary Palermo Cotton
Mary Palermo Cotton
44 Ratings

76 Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date

Pros
  • Good people to work with at the engineer-to-engineer level, they are smart people (in 5 reviews)

  • Good work life balance (for most) (in 3 reviews)

Cons
  • 7- No bonus most of the time due to unattainable sales goals (in 4 reviews)

  • Management believes that contractors can crank out value-add products, but have no one to actually understand what the customer wants (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Compensation"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Herndon, VA
    Current Employee - Manager in Herndon, VA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at iDirect Technologies full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good salary + 20% bonus annually based on company sales profit

    Cons

    No stock option, no punishment for the bad porformer

    Advice to Management

    Need do better on manage employee, like awarding and punishment


  2. "OK internal culture, rudderless company"

    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
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    OK work/life balance

    Great time off allowances

    Wonderful work culture

    A select few senior engineers and managers are very keen on grooming new talent - keep your eyes open for them; they are shining stars @ this company and genuinely want to see you succeed.

    Cons

    Management is incredibly bizarre. Some managers are downright deceptive and self-serving. Others are interested only passively in company advancement. There is a HUGE pay and respect gap between management and engineers; many managers play musical chairs to avoid admitting failure or assisting company with recovering from their own errors.

    Company feels rudderless at this point; just seeks to desperately jump from big contract to big contract, hoping to stay afloat for another 1.5-2 years. No unified vision; no overarching "we are moving towards X" concrete goal.

    Agile integration is ridiculous - company used waterfall strategy for many years; adopted agile and is now trying their best to shoehorn waterfall back into agile (which, of course, doesn't work.)

    Do not go into the company expecting bonuses any more. Expect a salary that is (competitive - 10%) - NOT the market average. Bonus program is touted as reason wages are competitive, but company's sales goals are becoming unrealistic & unobtainable. Bonuses fall short of target virtually every quarter these days.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of the layers of stagnant middle managers. Especially the ones that deliberately lie to their engineering staff to keep their job.

    Deliver on your bonus programs. We have families to support.


  3. Helpful (3)

    "Dead Sea Effect"

    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

    I worked at iDirect Technologies full-time

    Pros

    1. Good exposure to all areas: hardware, software, firmware. Even if you only work with 1, you pick up bits about the other areas.
    2. Good engineering coworkers - most full-time engineers are technically competent, and intelligent. There is a wide variety of backgrounds.
    3. Good work life balance (for most). This depends highly on your area of the business. The persons who are working weekends and until midnight are concentrated to certain teams.
    4. Innovative technology* - Very dependent on your department. iDirect is a market leader in ground infrastructure for satellite communications, and some aspects do use very modern approaches behind the scenes. As echoed in another review, there are quite a lot of legacy systems.
    5. Financials - working for a company that is a subsidiary to a public company is advantageous - there is a level of transparency in our forecasting and actual financial results.
    6. Engineering Process - Micromanagement is rare. The focus is on delivering a quality product. Company has undergone an agile transformation that works decently for a hardware-oriented company.
    7. Unification - Company has done good work in the past year to bring together groups that were previously unaware of each others' existence, which has increased knowledge sharing.
    8. Perks - PTO is slightly better than average. Dedicated sick days. Decent medical, dental, vision insurance.
    9. Lower and middle management actually care about quality.

    Cons

    1. Lost Souls - Many people left in 2014-2016 due to the lack of bonus for a period of time. The pay is not competitive without the bonus, and the people who left were in more senior roles, and understood the business logic. Very difficult to find good people genuinely interested in the sector, so people quit when they find something more interesting or lucrative to them. Even after the exodus, attrition in certain departments remains high.
    2. No Direction - Managers tout that iDirect is a market leader, and we are the experts, but we haven't been the experts since the massive brain drain. Management believes that contractors can crank out value-add products, but have no one to actually understand what the customer wants.
    3. Assumptions from management - Management assumes more junior employees know the long-term product-level vision for systems, but most specifications were written years ago. I once received more information about a product by watching a YouTube video than looking through documentation and asking around.
    4. Pay and career growth - Salary is OK for entry level, but raises and total compensation is not competitive above the lowest level. Hence, the company has a lot of turnover.
    5. Morale - It is dead zero. There is an incentive programme for referring employees, but I've never referred anyone because I'd have moral reservations about deceiving them.
    6. Training, even "on the job training" is inadequate - No real mentorship organisation, formal training is often irrelevant to day-to-day tasks. Training seems like an afterthought or a time suck rather than something that is built into career growth.
    7. Weak engineering culture - Being a part of iDirect is like being as a "has-been" company. The engineering department is large, but the culture is weak in comparison.
    8. Clueless contractors - as full time employees have quit, they are replaced by contractors, but the quality of work is below that of an undergrad computer science student. The company is having trouble attracting talent locally, due to other companies' more competitive compensation packages.
    9. Lack of team communication - at the lower levels, many employees have no idea how processes or code works from other teams, which are critically dependent on their own systems. There tends to be a bottleneck for innovation due to the high level of effort involved in contacting necessary parties to make even small changes.
    10. Mismatch between testing capabilities and the engineers - often times, testers are mismatched with systems and are not trained on how to use or troubleshoot systems to produce meaningful issue reports.
    11. Company is abusing agile - The company transitioned project managers to product managers and scrum masters, but really needs non-project product managers who can drive the product. Product managers and scrum masters are there to shuffle around work and be glorified secretaries without understanding of the industry or product.
    12. Metric-driven project management is misleading - unofficial project managers kill the engineering process by making sure that minimal-cost work is completed to show misleading progress to executives.
    13. Marketing of the bonus program - language used by HR makes it seem like there is a high level of bonus guaranteed - but this is not the case.
    14. Not Built Here syndrome - company tends to overengineer a lot - marginal gains are offset by having to debug proprietary code where obvious third party solutions could have done the job.
    15. Grafted software - Software is an afterthought, grafted onto the hardware division. Movements within the software industry are given a spin which is incorrect, and then given the excuse that it must be different for a hardware company.

    Advice to Management

    1. Better training for all - satellite telecom is a niche industry and non-industry persons may not understand business processes for months or years, when there's no excuse to hide this information. Engineers need comprehensive training on business level and hardware, firmware, and software areas within their first month. Company needs to be proactive in encouraging outside deduction opportunities.
    2. Hire business analysts, product managers, and user experience personnel with satellite or networking experience, who are technical to drive the company's product direction. Don't be afraid to poach, rather than trawl and see what comes up in the net.
    3. Divy out "interesting" work appropriately - it will keep morale up.
     Re-examine large parts of architecture - figure out if there's a simpler, less proprietary, and more unified way of doing things.
    4. Keep improving the agile workflows - do a check-up and see what is and what is not working
    5. Explore market opportunities from the perspective of a startup, encourage more experimentation.
    6. Encourage team harmony, don't encourage office politics and unnecessary componetisation to avoid personal blame.
    7. Reexamine total compensation to reduce the brain drain - don't promise what can't be delivered. The company should prevent catastrophic brain drain to competitors. Long term, this would make the organisation much more competitive to SaaS/IT companies, rather than SATCOM companies.
    8. Improve recruiting process - write better job descriptions, pose better questions at interviews to give people a better idea of what they're in for
    9. Consider a mentorship program - Newer engineers often don't know where to turn for industry specific knowledge and would benefit from a guide.
    10. Reverse the dead sea effect - create real incentives for people to stay, starting by creating a strong engineering culture and reexamining compensation competitiveness.
    11. Fix the contractor situation - hire for quality, not quantity.
    12. Company should become an engaged employer on Glassdoor. With almost 500 employees, why are they not engaging on this platform?


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. "Good place to start a career"

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

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

    Pros

    Great opportunity for new college grads to learn and work with latest technologies. People are very helpful when approached.

    Cons

    Constant re-orgs and lack of co-ordination between various departments hurts the entire product line.

    Advice to Management

    Should take more care while transition to Agile methodology is still in progress as many employees feel like being shoved upon them and lead to dissatisfaction. Upper management should have more visibility.


  6. "Very dissatisfied"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Herndon, VA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Herndon, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at iDirect Technologies full-time

    Pros

    Good health benefits, but contribution per paycheck is high. Good 401k options. Good place to work if you want to do nothing and good at people politics

    Cons

    Everything, very disorganized workplace. No proper planning or direction. Most of the developers are disqualified and low performers. Good developers are forced to work long hours. Management is greedy about their own career and does not care even about direct reporters.

    Advice to Management

    This is a professional place, stop being too greedy and use some common sense. Special appreciation to the new VP who is trying to make the things right at higher level, he should start looking at the lower levels too. Warn the developers whose performance is consistently below average and appreciate those who work hard.


  7. "Good place with good people struggling with Agile transformation"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Herndon, VA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Herndon, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Some very interesting problems to solve.
    Good engineers to work with.

    Cons

    Struggling with reorgs and agile transformations.
    Quality has gone done due to all the reorgs.

    Advice to Management

    Stop the reorg shuffles. Do agile right or dont do it at all.


  8. "Great Company"

    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

    Pros

    Great Company to work for in Satellite Industry. The amount of knowledge that you gain from iDirect is unbeaten.

    Cons

    I have been employed for years and there is not even a single thing that I can point out as Negative in the company.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "System Engineer"

    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 iDirect Technologies full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Flexible and friendly working environment

    Cons

    Many changes within these years among the management team


  10. Helpful (7)

    "Struggling Company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Herndon, VA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Herndon, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    None really if you are smart and ambitious.
    Here is the list in case you find any of them as an advantage:

    1- Job security since no matter what is your performance you never get fired
    2- 3 weeks of vacation, use it or lose it
    3- $89 Christmas party ticket in a cheap hotel
    4- Free Banana once a week
    5- Free Coffee
    6- Avid dedication to reinventing the wheel

    Cons

    1- Exclusively H1 Visa employees from India and China
    2- Communication barriers since no one speaks English or can write a sentence
    3- Constant re-organization
    4- Multi-level bureaucracy
    5- Pretending to be Agile and just cheating the system
    6- High employee turnover
    7- No bonus most of the time due to unattainable sales goals
    8- If there is any bonus, it has 50% tax
    9- No one knows what are they doing
    10- 90% of the employees are architects, principals and seniors for no reason
    11- Bad employee performance appraisal
    12- Bad employee benefits
    13- Non-competitive salary

    Advice to Management

    Is there any management at all?
    If yes, please step down and use a board of directors.
    New management, New friends, New relatives, New Agile! Dream on...zzzzz
    Use American employees with real resumes,work experience and education
    Get rid of Vice Presidents, Senior directors, Directors and Development managers
    Cancel your fake $20,000 employee referral bonus and instead increase the salary of current employees


  11. Helpful (4)

    "Hard to get behind the leadership"

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

    Pros

    - Benefits are good
    - Good pay
    - Good people to work with at the engineer-to-engineer level, they are smart people.

    Cons

    - Sr. leadership in engineering has big attitude issues (talking down to people, confrontational, very poor communication).
    - Company has way for putting highly technical people with no management or people skills in positions of developing a staff (it doesn't work, people will turn out like their managers, this is not good).
    - Sr. engineering leadership uses negative motivation. Tells us how much we suck at group meetings and that our products suck, hoping that will make engineers work harder for them (think about it, you don't believe in our products or your people and you think that will motivate people to work harder)
    - Sr. engineering leadership needs to be more proud of our accomplishments and our company; not showing this shows that you don't believe in the teams you are leading. Say "thank you" and mean it once in a while.

    Advice to Management

    - Stop hiring your friends, really, we're not a charity organization
    - Look within the organization to find the truly good managers with the right management and people skills and attitude to drive engineering and engineering teams. Use them to your advantage.
    - The senior leadership you have in engineering is really not a good fit for a company that needs to turn itself around. The culture and values used to be really good, now its getting worse because of this new management.
    - Stop the reorgs and the constant change in management and development models (let's get Agile right before scaling Agile. All your doing is scaling what's not working). It shows you can't make good decisions.



Showing 76 of 76 reviews
Reset Filters