Kainos Employee Reviews about "growing pains"

Updated 26 Feb 2020

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4.2
81%
Recommend to a Friend
93%
Approve of CEO
Kainos Managing Director Brendan Mooney (no image)
Brendan Mooney
133 Ratings
Pros
  • "Great place to work overall with great people who are understanding of personal circumstances(in 17 reviews)

  • "Flexible working hours, good company culture(in 16 reviews)

Cons
  • "The back-office teams in Belfast are hugely under-resourced and therefore disorganised(in 16 reviews)

  • "Has grown quickly and is experiencing growing pains in Corporate teams/processes and communication but these are recognised and they plan to fix these(in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
Pros & Cons are excerpts from user reviews. They are not authored by Glassdoor.

Reviews about "growing pains"

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  1. Helpful (4)

    "Great people and projects"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior DevOps Engineer in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kainos full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The people on-site at clients are generally great fun to work with and there are plenty of social events throughout the year. People on-site tended to be hardworking and I enjoyed the focus on doing the "right thing" rather than the quick fix within public sector projects. The personal development opportunities are fairly good if you have the drive to go after them. Managers seemed to genuinely care about the people they were supporting and were always happy to help improve things where they could or to offer guidance on where else to go for help.

    Cons

    The back-office teams in Belfast are hugely under-resourced and therefore disorganised. As of late 2019, they were totally unable to keep up with handling the number of projects which were on-going. I had a number of issues around expenses and other related issues. Messages from HR/finance were inconsistent, slow and often times proved to be incorrect. Whilst there is a large amount of noise made about fixing growing pains and improving the company culture, I didn't see any actual progress and this was a common theme amongst the people I spoke with. There's a issue with Belfast-biased leadership in the DevOps area which has resulted in some fairly inexperienced people getting into positions of influence. This has certainly caused some negative opinions (due to poor hiring decisions and guidance) of the company as a whole, which engineers on-site are then forced to disprove.

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  2. Helpful (1)

    "A company that "trys to the do the right thing" for their people and customers"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - People Manager in Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Great Perks - free shares annually to all staff - excellent healthcare packages - £250 personal skills training allowance - free fruit & cereals/excellent coffee machines/free juice and selection of teas - Social events - pay day drinks, free xmas party (amazing) and summer event Challenging work - work that really impacts the citizen - cool tech Promotion Opportunities - Twice a year - Feedback to help you improve - Invests in training and development programmes to support progression

    Cons

    Has grown quickly and is experiencing growing pains in Corporate teams/processes and communication but these are recognised and they plan to fix these NI office is not fit for purpose...tired and too cramped, but new office underway Inexperienced managers as the company has grown - investing through new manager programme

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  3. "Really great place to work"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Workday Consultant in Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Right approach to people who want a great career, with fair rewards while also enjoying the right work/life balance

    Cons

    Very few - the company has been growing very quickly so the normal growing pains exist but they acknowledge this and are pretty good at fixing the issues and communicating to staff during the process.

  4. Helpful (5)

    "Excellent company"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Decent salary, an abundance of benefits, every day is a learning day, work with the most amazing people, great holidays, flat structure (on many occasions I have had relaxed conversations with board members), travel if that is your thing

    Cons

    Currently growing at a massive rate and due to this is experiencing growing pains, but the company has acknowledged this and is acting on it. Some clients are managed poorly making the project experience painful. Hiring has been poor due to growing at such a fast pace. Instead of giving the current employees the opportunity to step up into the position, it seems Kainos would rather recruit someone into the experienced role.

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  5. Helpful (7)

    "An Exciting company"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Undiclosed in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    - Excellent intelligent and social teams. I've worked with hundreds of people and these are truly the best in the business. - Great senior management. Some of the best professionals and managers i've worked with. All levels within the company are approachable and you can happily socialise with outside of work. There isn't the social hierarchy which you may see within other companies. - An expanding company with some great, exciting opportunities. - They listen. This is why i'm writing this. Kainos actively ask you for ideas and suggestions and will listen to what you have to say. Which I appreciate is extremely difficult in a company which is growing to 1000 employees. - Great Culture and Values (However this can be a con, mentioned below). - Generous holiday allowance. - You never know what is around the corner. With opportunities coming in constantly at Kainos, you do not know what project or which location you may be working in next. This may prove difficult for some however. - An encouraging recent drive on charity work and donations allowing employees to take leave to attend charity events every year. - Flexible working depending on your project and management.

    Cons

    - Failure to utilise peoples skill-sets. - New starts & recruitment - I applied for the same role as some of my colleagues when we joined Kainos at the same time and was surprised to find that i joined in at a junior level, despite having the same experience. If this was made clear when I got the job offer, I would probably not have taken the job given that I have 7 years industry experience and joined from a management position. - Career management and promotions seem to be a box ticking exercise. Promotion applications go to a senior management who do not necessarily see your day to day work and therefore you have to word a promotion application to fit the role you are applying for. Alternatively, even if you are doing a job well and have been recommended for promotion by your colleagues and management, this will be rejected if you do not complete the form correctly. - The career path, despite moving into a lattice that allows people to move into a variety of new roles, still appears to be a set ladder for you to go up and if you do not see yourself as a part of this ladder, you can feel you've hit a dead end with nowhere to go. - Growing Pains. Kainos are still an expanding company and as they continue to grow globally, they need to look more into how best to arrange travel and compensate those wishing to work away from home for long period of time. - The 'Kainos way' and culture can be difficult to understand and imbed yourself into if you have not come from Queens University and for those who have worked for much larger organisations. This is especially the case if you are not based out of Belfast. - Benefits system is limited. We use an online co-operate service that provides benefits to a number of companies so these benefits are rarely specific to employees at Kainos. - Expenses - For younger colleagues without access to credit, sometimes spending large sums of money each month can cause some difficulty for them. Kainos are actively pursuing new ways of managing this however and do have a Travel team which will pay in advance for your travel to customer locations and accommodation.

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    Kainos Response

    May 8, 2017Managing Director

    That's a really impressive set of feedback - thank-you for taking to consider the feedback to provide such comprehensive comments. And I much prefer to hear about the things that we can do better than hear about the things we are doing well (don't get me wrong, I do like the 'good stuff' as well!) Last year we had 203 people who were promoted - that's not to say that the process is as good as it needs to be. I know that we have made changes to the process in the past weeks and I would really like to hear your experience after these changes - perhaps you could chat that over with me? And as for BBQ weather in Belfast? We've not been lucky on that front over the past couple of years! Thanks again for all your feedback. Brendan

  6. Helpful (6)

    "Best in Belfast."

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Great company, great people, great culture.

    Cons

    The company is growing pretty rapidly which comes with "growing pains" but the senior management are very intelligent and pragmatic, they proactively solve any issues they are made aware of.

    Kainos Response

    June 28, 2016Managing Director

    I appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback - and possibly the most succinct description of the company on glassdoor! As we continue to grow, we do encounter new problems - when we don't get the answers to these quite right, please keep telling us - here on glassdoor, on our suggestions platform, on Slack, MangoApps, our employee surveys - or just call into my office! Thanks for the feedback, Brendan

  7. Helpful (1)

    "Good company, great experience"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Kainos full-time

    Pros

    Great opportunities and experience to move around different roles. You are treated with respect and management care about the staff.

    Cons

    Growing pains of lots of exciting business, and needing to scale appropriately. The company however are working through this and putting the appropriate initiatives in place.

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    Kainos Response

    January 7, 2016Managing Director

    It's great to get feedback, so thanks very much for taking the time to post your views. Although you describe the Pay Day drinks and Free Fruit as 'incentives', in truth they were suggestions from our colleagues about how we could improve Kainos. The suggestions just made sense (OK, there is some expense associated with them), so it became obvious that we should do them - this management thing is not that hard. OK, that last remark was tongue-in-cheek! Thanks again for providing the feedback - delighted that you are enjoying yourself. Brendan

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Great company"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Kainos full-time

    Pros

    Kainos has the advantage of feeling like you work for a small family run business while in fact being a growing company of 500+ people (and counting) which enables it to offer opportunities across lots of different types of project and business types. The people are exceptional - I've never worked for a company where almost everyone would go out of their way to help you if needed. The atmosphere is fun but hard working and you really have to know your stuff!

    Cons

    It's going through some growing pains trying to figure out how to manage the number of people it now has in the company and across so many different sites, which means that information doesn't flow quickly and frequently, although if you ask I've always been given a straight answer. The work is silo'd into business units and there isn't enough sharing of information across these divides

    Kainos Response

    September 25, 2014Managing Director

    Great feedback. I completely agree about the people - it’s clearly our internal view, but it’s also what our clients say as well in our satisfaction surveys. On your point about the information flow, I think that sharing information is, first and foremost an attitude - and I think there’s a great culture of collaboration in Kainos. But our underpinning technology has failed to match our attitude. On the cards before the end of 2014 is a single collaboration platform to replace the various 'point' solutions (Yammer, SharePoint etc) we have deployed over the years. This will make a real difference to sharing information between individuals, projects and office locations - and is long-overdue. Thanks for taking the time to post. Brendan

  9. Helpful (3)

    "Generally great company to work for."

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Variety of work. Opportunities for those that have ambition. Ethical culture. Friendly and approachable management. Lack of "politics". Coworkers help each other.

    Cons

    Occasional overwork - senior managers have tendency to be workaholics. Information is siloed. Not deliberate but there is a lack of collaboration across projects. Growing pains. Becoming a big company without a big company mindset, processes and systems. Compensation is below average for the talent.

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  10. Helpful (2)

    "Definitely one of the better IT companies to work for, with a very positive ethos, culture and realistic plans to grow."

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Belfast, Northern Ireland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Kainos full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Always a large variety of projects to work to keep you challenged and on your toes. Great opportunities to work directly with some very high profile organisations throughout the UK and Ireland, and experience first-hand how you can make a positive difference to them. A great company ethos and that genuinely takes pride in its people and is definitely putting much more focus now on nurturing the talent that it has to really get the best from them. Good opportunities for career development.

    Cons

    Growing pains - to be expected over the last couple of years but sometimes (although decreasingly so) too conservative and risk-adverse in adopting ideas that will make staff’s working lives a bit easier.

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