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9 people found this helpful  

Great work culture, repetitive work

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Senior Analyst  in  New York, NY (US)
Former Employee - Senior Analyst in New York, NY (US)

I worked at Digitas

Pros

1) Excellent work culture - The work culture is very cordial, people are overall very nice and work well in teams. People work and have fun.
2) Focus on professional development - You can take courses and the company will pay for them up to a certain amount. There is also some training offered internally.
3) Promotion - The company promotes people every 1-2 years.
4) Career growth - You can direct your career to some extent by voicing your opinion on projects that you want to work on and promotions desired.
5) Raises - Before recession set in, I got a raise twice a year and it was a significant raise.
5) Strategic input - You get to work with top level management in top companies, and you get exposure to strategy and innovative ideas, and can give input in top level strategic decisions.
6) Autonomy - There is a lot of autonomy in the workplace and you can work independently on your projects.
7) Casual environment - You can dress casually as long as you are professionally dressed before clients, you can work from home when required, and you can come in later and leave earlier on some days as long as work is done on time.
8) Time off - You get 4 additional Fridays off during summer, and 3 personal days to take during cultural holidays.
9) HR listens - This is the only company I have seen where HR actually listens and does something about it.
10) Ability to move - Digitas is very open to your desire to move between groups.
11) Good brand name - Digitas has top companies as clients and is well-respected in the industry. Having the brand name on your resume does help.

Cons

1) Promotion challenges - You get put up for promotion only if there is no competition in your team and/or you create a certain impression about yourself. Perception is reality.
2) Recruiting - The recruiter I interacted with misrepresented a few critical things to hire me. This happened to a few other people as well. We voiced our concerns and a few things were rectified, but it is best to be careful and speak to the hiring manager directly to verify promises made.
3) Inconsistency in levels - There is no consistency in the level of experience required in certain positions. People with say 5 years experience came in at the same level as someone who has been at Digitas for 1 year after undergrad. Since Digitas can promote people almost every year till the Associate Director level, people with more experience were unhappy with the inconsistency in levels.
4) Less competent managers - Since very young people got promoted and became managers of people, they were not as competent as say someone with more experience would be at that level. In addition, if you are new to the company, the Director (your hiring manager) would not be the one to train you - you would get trained by an Analyst or Sr. Analyst (a colleague). At that level, people are very young and may not know how to train or manage well. In addition, due to 360 review they do a performance review about you, and may reflect their personal feelings in a professional review.
5) Fluff - Sometimes what you talk matters more than what you do. Some people act funny and talk well, hence are well-liked and more likely to get ahead.
6) Heavy workload - Due to employee turnover and periods where client work is more demanding, you end up working very long hours.
7) Monotony in the job - Some work is very manual and tedious. At a lower level you can end up doing monthly reporting, and at a higher level you can end up churning decks which is what consultants do anyway. Hence the work can seem boring and less challenging.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Develop some consistency in the levels that experienced people come in at.

Recommends
No opinion of CEO

Other Reviews for Digitas

  1.  

    Project management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager - Project Management  in  New York, NY (US)
    Current Employee - Manager - Project Management in New York, NY (US)

    I have been working at Digitas

    Pros

    The people are smart, helpful, great to work with.

    Cons

    The hours can be too long.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Help people find work life balance

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 4 people found this helpful  

    Digitas Employee Review

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Art Director  in  New York, NY (US)
    Former Employee - Art Director in New York, NY (US)

    I worked at Digitas

    Pros

    Good compensation, goodstandard benefits package. Good location (New York Office). Comfortable work environment. Friendly co-worker environment. Good name to have on resume.

    Cons

    NOTE:
    If you do not want to read this laundry list please go to paragraph marked with for summary.

    Long hours. (longer than comparative Agencies). Confusing / odd file management and art resources structure. To the point of painful/frustrating. Be prepared to manage by sheer memorization and intuitive file structure. The Agency server is called the D.A.M.(sorry don't remember the names for the above acronym but after using it you'll understand why it's called the D.A.M.). It is based upon how the Clients and Marketing manage their file structure.

    Question:
    What's wrong with this?

    Answer:
    In every Agency I've worked large or small, any resource could be found utilizing three pieces of information. Client, product, and job number. With this any memo, art, layout, presentation file, video, etc was easily obtainable. Digitas server management does not work this way. It is impossible to find resources unless you MEMORIZE individual job resource paths or keep a list on your computer for reference. This is unacceptable.

    Upon entry very structured workflow operations, but upon closer scrutiny structure breaks down due to lack of communication/intelligent procedure between departments.

    Very tight scrutiny of billings. Best described as conflicts between Finance dept, Marketing dept, and Creative dept. More so than other agencies.

    Jobs where often incorrectly spec'd for billing hrs or changes in output and/or direction coming from the client. They where not modified with the client for a more accurate budget. Meaning Creative is often pressured by Finance/Marketing to keep within budget despite radical changes to work output specified by the client. ie a job spec'd at 40 hrs bill time is expected to retain that billing number despite changes that would require a 60 hr output flow to complete the job.

    Meanwhile Creative is pressured by Creative Management to bill accurately. If the client asks for an addition 20 hrs and those hrs where worked Creative should bill 20 additional hrs. This puts creative teams in a conflict with opposing views between Creative Management and Finance/Marketing. Often leading to Creative teams having to justify every hr spent despite official memos from Client side requesting additional work. It was found by me that most Creative teams to avoid this conflict and stress just under billed the additional hrs as opposed to getting into a feud between departments. Because in the end it seemed easier to blame the Creative teams than to re-negotiate a budget or work flow with the client. Again, the degree of this problem was more unusual at Digitas NY than at comparative Agencies.

    The root problem lays with specifying the job and budget with all the departments involved as correctly as possible before getting sign off with the client. This I found lacking and frustrating.

    Company routinely outsourced for developer resources. Not bad in and of itself, but criteria was based on price (cheapest bid). This was of course kept from the client. Poor management of Department responsibilities. Example: Marketing bypassing Art Buying department in procuring Art. Along with not knowing Art/Music resources are not just about physically acquiring production ready resources but licensing, contract, and liability issues. Don't get me wrong. I like the crew at Digitas, they are by large good people. But there exists a lack of proper training within Departments across the board. Situations that should be checked and balanced can often fall to the wayside not for lack of intent, but lack of knowledge. This puts pressure on those in the know (usually older, or employees with experience with other large agencies) to trouble shoot issues that are unseen to them and crop up last minute. I call this the case of " I thought you did it?" syndrome. Basically poor training with new to the industry employees. Again this is across the board between Departments. Employees burn out and go elsewhere.

    Digitas is a "Marketing Agency" that does Creative Advertising, not a "Creative Agency" that utilizes good Marketing skills/resources. There is a huge difference between the two if you happen to land a job here in the Creative Department. Please be prepared for this.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A million rules are meaningless if they do not work in harmony and if they are not actually implemented. In short, departments need to be on the same page and speak with one voice procedurally. As well meaning as the structure is, it is not practiced.

    Better training of employees, especially new to the industry employees. We all work together for one goal, on an assignment. It all falls apart when we quite don't know our individual and department roles. I hope this is not too harsh. I really enjoyed the vast majority of co-workers and managers during my stay at Digitas. I just often felt frustrated that I could not do my job in the fashion that I was actually trained in school and prior experience to do. ie I felt I could have done more under different circumstances.

    No opinion of CEO
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