Hotwire
3.7 of 5 93 reviews
www.hotwire.com San Francisco, CA 150 to 499 Employees

Hotwire Reviews

Updated Feb 20, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.7 93 reviews

                             

31% Approve of the CEO

Hotwire President Henrik Kjellberg

Henrik Kjellberg

(13 ratings)

71% of employees recommend this company to a friend
13 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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  • Disapproves of CEO

2 people found this helpful  

Challenging time at Hotwire

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

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

ProsGood work life balance. fun, friendly coworkers. vacation and travel benefits are great. plenty of opportunities for growth. interesting projects. innovative and agile. pool table and Ping-Pong, free sodas.

ConsHotwire is struggling through difficult changes (lay offs, new leadership, short staffed) with very poor HR support and below market pay.

Advice to Senior ManagementProvide better HR support and more competitive pay.

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

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3 people found this helpful  

Good times are over.. left with few good employees

Technical Product Analyst (Current Employee)
San Francisco, CA (US)

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

ProsGood co-workers. Free soft drinks. Jeans ok. Ok location.

ConsAs someone mentioned below " In my 8 years of experience never seen an HR so bad". Would agree with that. HR is not helpful and on top of that their attitude does not help. If you say you are leaving they will treat you like their family enemy. Work-life balance are non-existent depending on the group. Salary is not up to market.

Advice to Senior ManagementProvide some training to the HR. They are taking their job for granted.

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

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2 people found this helpful  

Run Far and Fast

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

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

ProsGood work life balance. (Most employees are in the office at 9/9:30 am and leave by 5/5:30 pm). Friendly Employees. Fun company events.

ConsLots of layers. Little communication among departments, everyone is very silo. Changes are slow. Analytics are very basic. Little career development and mentoring. No clear direction.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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4 people found this helpful  

Some sharp engineers. That's where it ends.

Product Manager (Former Employee)
San Francisco, CA (US)

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

ProsThere's a safety net from Expedia, which gives the company a relaxed form. Economies of scale apply as you have access to technology and accounts created by 12k employees at the parent company. There are some good and some great engineers at Hotwire, especially at the architect level. If you run a product, you get full ownership.

ConsIt's 2003 at Hotwire's Codebase, UX and risk aversion. It's 2008 for the rest: salaries, perks, etc. Times are tough for the company, and that's no secret. But HR is *extremely* sketchy here. In my 8 years of experience, I've never encountered a company that tries to take advantage of an employee already leaving. Also, LOTS of nepotism from the new president. Lots and lots and lots of nepotism. Copious amounts of it. Did I mention there's a lot of nepotism?

Advice to Senior ManagementStop lying. Employees will never judge good leadership for transparency. They will judge for lying. If you'd like to make Hotwire a 20 person marketing brand for Expedia, then just convey that. However, rapid changes are happening. Means we'll see how Hotwire shapes up in forthcoming months. It could be for the better.

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

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A lot of potential, but lacking competitive edge for San Francisco

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at Hotwire full-time

Pros-Some travel benefits
-From what I gathered, the lean environment used to mean a fun environment
-Great San Francisco location

Cons-New president made drastic changes, leaving a lot of recently hired employees completely confused about why they were brought on
-Could turn around but right now, is very behind the times in terms of a) company structure b) analytics and c) technology innovation
-Very, very lean. People may have a good work/life balance but, it comes at the price of innovation and morale because of minimal headcount
-Teams this lean also means most people are far from any type of management position
-Favor tenure over creative, promising new talent

Advice to Senior ManagementBe proactive when assessing market trends and what it will take for Hotwire to be competitive. Defend your new employees if they are more qualified than older, stale talent.

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

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Hotwire - The Ship that sank!

Senior Software Engineer (Current Employee)
San Francisco, CA (US)

I have been working at Hotwire full-time for less than a year

ProsWork culture was good and the company paid me well!

ConsThe management was too late to react to the downfall in business and they resorted to layoffs as the first option. Pathetic!

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

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Hotwire is not a place for you if you have a pulse. Cooperate passive aggressive culture. They just want yes men.

Project Manager (Current Employee)
San Francisco, CA (US)

I have been working at Hotwire

Prosgreat travel perks. Great SF financial district location

ConsCooperate passive aggressive culture. Agile but still very command and control with a lot of useless meetings.

Advice to Senior ManagementFire your middle managers and make them apply for their jobs again. Being able to schedule meetings is not a skill.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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3 people found this helpful  

boring and bland but with dangling carrot

I Tick and I Travel Over the Hotwire (Current Employee)
San Francisco, CA (US)

I have been working at Hotwire

Prosgreat place to have a child, very fair. great place if you really want to disappear so to speak. i.e. get little done and just coast. a ton of people have left so a lot of openings are there for people to rise into to. lax hours. some people come at 11 and leave at 4, even a the high up. great stock grants and options over there years to keep you chugging along. very generous bonus which keeps us around! clem (president) is really a great guy who i think is trying to handle things the best he can.

Conslot of management heaped on top of more management. it seems like there is a 1-4 or 1-3 ratio of managers to contributors in some departments. so that is a super big pain in getting anything done. way too much process. they tried agile and that did not work with those involved. so now they have a new thing called queues which is like mini waterfalls but is turning out to be just as slow and painful. but with just less people in each one. a lot of deadweight even at the high high up. they really can take any fun out of anything while getting big big salaries. a lot of people have been leaving as well which is really sad and ironically its a lot of smart people who are going. so the weak ones stay. ugh.

Advice to Senior Managementfire all those slackers. get rid of all the managers. flatten the org. get rid of that horrific waterfall structure. merge product and fd together and make people accountable. reward those that work. not those who kiss ass.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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dull.

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Hotwire

Prosnice location if you like the city.
non confrontational environment.
family friendly if you want to have kids
clean office.

Consso boring
very tedious
very process oriented,
stifling environment, a "just do as your told" type attitude
rigid inflexible managers.

Advice to Senior Managementallow more innovation and new ideas. Don't be so rigid with respect to process. And you are in an industry that is becoming more commoditized.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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3 people found this helpful  

more unfair as time goes on and no innovtion

Hard Worker Never Getting Promoted (Current Employee)

I have been working at Hotwire

ProsWork life balance is good for the most part. Good vacation and extra bonus holidays sprinkled in there. The office is clean and the location is nice. If you are in the clique you can get some nice stock and bonus. At least that is what I hear....

ConsOver time Hotwire has gotten more corporate and the culture has gotten very unfair in its promotions and transparency. Hotwire was my first 'non startup' job besides a small consulting job at a bank, and I came her to see what a mid sized company was like. Unfortunately the politics and policies are worse then at the bank I previously worked for. Here are some of the unfair things:

Promotions - A lot of the promotions are based on tenure and not productivity. Because of this some real rock stars have left over the last year or two

Transparency - Hotwire always talks about transparency. However this past review cycle (fall of 2010) a number of promotions were given and this was never communicated to the company. A number of these promotions are dubious as best and still have never been communicated.

Deadweight - There is a lot of deadweight here. Sadly these people keep moving up the ladder and create a self fulfilling prophecy of more deadweight.

Pay - The pay is below industry standard. Thus we lose the good people to other jobs. When startups are giving better salary/benefits these days something is wrong...

Advice to Senior ManagementGet rid of the dead weight. There are so many people making 0 or negative contribution here. Let them go. When the vp of product leaves later this year hire externally and bring somebody to shake things up. The same with other big positions. Make people accountable.

LAYOFF - Use any 'bad market' period of time to lay off the slackers and reward those who do not work hard.

Remember you will never get anywhere when the good leave and the weak stay.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Working with us is all about inspiration, challenge, collaboration and having a say in what you do. Hotwire’s got the energy of a startup, PLUS, the stability of being part of the Expedia family of companies -- the… Full Overview

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