AKQA

  www.akqa.com
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AKQA Reviews

Updated Jul 28, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.9 179 reviews

52% Approve of the CEO

(no image)

Ajaz Ahmed

(25 ratings)

50% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • You'll get to work on some massive clients and work with some great people (in 16 reviews)

  • Lots of great clients, good budget and wonderful people to work with (in 14 reviews)


Cons
  • I know some other departments have a much less favorable work life balance (in 21 reviews)

  • Low pay, long hours, 2 weeks of vacation for the first 2 years (in 19 reviews)

More Highlights
179 Employee Reviews
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Great company culture and amazing people, but does not set you up for success

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) New York, NY (US)

    ProsVery talented and smart people, best company culture I have encountered. Can work across different accounts. This is a place where age doesn't matter, you can climb the ladder really quickly if you have the right skills and are in with the political circle. If you are interested in digital experiences, this is the place for learning - it moves fast and the projects can be quite exciting.

    ConsHours are very long, little work-life balance. This is the type of place where people will judge you if you leave work before 6 pm. Management is awful - if you are the person that seeks mentoring and teaching, forget it. It's very much sink or swim and if you don't know how to do something, you're on your own. Resourcing is disorganized and salaries are unimpressive considering the quality of work.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTake more time to mentor and teach your employees. Invest in them if you want them to invest in the quality of work. You cannot expect employees to work so hard for you and strive for your pillars of velocity when you are not making them feel as if you're investing in them, and willing to nurture the necessary skills they need to succeed.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Blue chip clients. No investment in people.

    Associate Media Director (Current Employee)

    ProsBest in class clients and projects. Smart, good, and cool employees. Able to touch and be exposed to a lot of different types of work.

    ConsNo investment in people. Little vision from the top. You're sort of on your own here, there's no proactiveness towards retaining best people. It's only when you are out the door when they try to incentivize you.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInvest in people. Invest in emerging disciplines. Commit to a vision and direction. Proactively reward top performers so they aren't forced to leave/job hunt. Provide career opportunities and paths.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    Made amazing friends, but creativity is dismal.

    Designer (Current Employee)

    Pros- Great people, made amazing friends
    - Okay salary (Warning, they will always try to undercut you)
    - Nice office spaces

    Cons- Dictatorship with being fun and creative around the office, the office manager once hid all fun toys and signs when Ajaz was coming in for 20 minutes.

    - Agency thinks they are creative, however 9/10 they will do whatever the client wants, project mangers will take any kind of terrible work from client, just to keep their time allocation for every creative packed.

    - You work in a call center, because no one wants to make the environment fun

    - They hire people who bring nothing to the culture of the company, who love to do their 9-5 and go home.

    - They will show you a demo reel, watch closely as all the creative work are digital leaderboards.

    - Technology Innovation agency. You're kidding. IT gives incorrect, outdated, slow machines. Refuse to buy industry standard displays that every single creative agency uses, because they believe that Dell make the best displays. Even though, they are more expensive that the industry standard Apple Cinema Displays. The colors don't show up right. One time, our client made a observation that the white, was pink. during a presentation.

    - Don't even bother doing reimbursements. They take too long, and sometimes take two months to get to your account.

    Advice to Senior ManagementAllow creatives, to be creative.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

  1. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Premium from the outside, quick and dirty from the inside

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Berlin (Germany)

    ProsSalary, friendly colleagues, tech stack

    ConsThe company only cares for satisfying brands by meeting deadlines, one after another. No consideration usually given to ever-growing technical debts. Getting things done quick and dirty is always preferable over doing things right. Technically incompetent management and so called "architects", very few of them can actually inspire and lead, some lack the very basic social and communication skills.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTry being premium for your own employees, not only for brands. Stop doing quick and dirty work in order to please customers and meet deadlines.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Great team, great technologies

    Senior Software Engineer (Former Employee) Berlin (Germany)

    ProsInnovative, Good salaries, nice people to work with

    ConsNot very good technical project management strategies

    Advice to Senior ManagementNot only the manager attitude is important

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • No Opinion of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Great place to learn, but not much growth opportunity. Very hierarchical and political.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA (US)

    ProsWent from having zero knowledge of the industry to becoming highly competent. Perks include yoga on Wednesdays, mouthwash in the bathrooms, fancy coffee machines in the kitchen. Tuesdays and Thursdays also offer runners a chance to get a sweat in during lunch hours.

    ConsIf you aren't working as a director of some type, you'll get dirt pay. Hours are typical of an agency - long and with the exception of a pitch, uncompensated.

    Teams are very siloed. Very low opportunity for advancement. Promotions typically are within 5-10% increase in salary and come every 3-5 quarters - not enough really to move the needle.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInvest more on the employees you have!

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

    4 people found this helpful  

    horrible experience

    Creative Developer (Former Employee) San Francisco, CA (US)

    ProsNone. Horrible experience, horrible company, horrible people.

    ConsEverything. Horrible experience, horrible company, horrible people.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Monotonous, mind numbing place to work.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) New York, NY (US)

    ProsPay and people are good. Everyone is friendly, which make it a comfortable place to be.

    ConsWithin a 6 month span I saw 80% of the creatives leave the New York office for other gigs. That says everything you need to know. Why is everyone leaving? The work is mind numbingly boring. Senior leadership caters to what the client wants, which is usually garbage. A paycheck doesn't make up for feeling like you're selling your soul. People that worked here for years left with MAYBE one mediocre book piece to show for it.

    Advice to Senior ManagementRespect and promote your creatives. Push for interesting work. Pitch an interesting client for once instead of another bank. Having "AKQA" on your resume isn't good enough, the only thing that matters is doing good work.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Ok company

    Motion Graphics Designer (Former Employee) New York, NY (US)

    ProsGood people working in the company.

    ConsBut not a good people management.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Inspiring place to work, lovely people and great work.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsYou'll play in the major league of digital, where everyone works incredibly hard to deliver outstanding work for world-class clients.

    ConsDefinitely hard to combine with a normal life. Often too much work to deliver outstanding, award-winning work.

    Advice to Senior ManagementUpper management should invest more time in talent, chase the work AKQA wants to do, rather than accepting everything.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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