Interactive Brokers
2.2 of 5 38 reviews
www.interactivebrokers.com Greenwich, CT 500 to 999 Employees

Interactive Brokers Reviews

Updated Apr 08, 2014

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2.2 38 reviews

                             

44% Approve of the CEO

Interactive Brokers Chairman, President, and CEO Thomas Peterffy

Thomas Peterffy

(27 ratings)

26% of employees recommend this company to a friend
38 Employee Reviews
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1 person found this helpful  

I wish I had left earlier.

Software Developer (Former Employee)

I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time for more than a year

ProsSalaries are good. You can learn a lot about trading. Co-workers are smart. New Year's party is nice.

ConsWork environment is poisonous. Communication is discouraged among employees; you are expected to solve your problems with minimal external help. There are no trainings no working from home. Tools and development processes are very old. Career advancement is very slow. Employee stock incentive plan seems good at first but it locks you in with the company. Once you announce to leave the firm they will screw with you wherever they can.

Advice to Senior ManagementTreat your employees with respect.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Good people but limited resources to work and internal tools always crash

Customer Service Representative (Former Employee)

I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time for more than 3 years

Pros-Majority of the people in customer service and technical support are very nice and helpful

-Free lunch (if you stay in office and work during your lunch hour)

Cons-Internal communication tools and systems constantly crash and could not get information to help assist customer

-Limited resources (more often no resources) and training to help customer, for example they expect you to assist a client to place an order in an iPad and iPhone, we don't even have these tools in the office! Constantly have to use personal phone and mobile data plans to help customer; they don't care how things are done as long as the customer is assisted.

-Management controls everything, they have the final say and if you are on the trainee system and you submit a reply, chances are you have to wait one or two days for approval. Chasing them is hopeless.

-Communication between regions is very troublesome. Colleagues from other regions are often bouncing between tasks claiming it is because customer is based on the closest region or because of time difference. Since the global routing, people may cold transfer calls back to the existing queues so that they can leave on time.

-Projects that are assigned are often random and pointless.

-Majority of the Technical Operations team are very unhelpful, when escalating an issue they either do nothing or waste your time, or wait 2-3 days to copy and paste your report on the bug report to escalate further.

Advice to Senior ManagementTrain employees and provide better resources to complete day to day tasks. For example, mobile devices and tablets so that we know how to walkthrough clients on placing orders.

You may also want to give more incentive for your employees to stay.

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

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rigid management and culture

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Interactive Brokers full-time

Pros- some great engineers.
- free lunch (at a cost)

Cons- free lunch at the cost of your lunch break.
- no growth and they don't care. same sh*t everyday.
- rigid management. you better be a machine that functions only to finish tasks.
- expect to work all time. eyes on you.
- don't expect help or communication. they are non-existent.
- many more....

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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simply wonderful place to work

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Interactive Brokers full-time

Prosgreat place to work. righteous mgmt. challenging stuff.

Consnot much to speak of

Advice to Senior Managementkeep doing what you are doing

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

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Time will tell

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Interactive Brokers

Prossalary is competitive to market

Consexpect to spend a majority of time there

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Stay away if you are not desperate

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Greenwich, CT (US)

I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time for more than a year

ProsHealth insurance better than at most large financial institutions
Reasonable hours compared to many financial institutions (approximately 9-6, work through lunch).
There are quite a few competent and pleasant people.. if only you could interact with them during business hours!..
If you are a mediocre c++ coder, you will be taught a minimal standard that will make you better.

ConsLow compensation, uncompetitive vesting schedules, unethical authoritarian management, substandard time off policy, and zero flexibility.

Your kid is sick and you need to be 2 hours late? Either take 1/2 day off (you get 16 days of sick+vacation), or work two extra hours in the evening. You choose between seeing a sick child, and a chance of a vacation. Sick with a fever? Take a day off. I have seen a lot of sick people putting in the hours.

The employer is likely to stick to the letter of the job offer - so read it carefully, and make sure you understand what you are signing.

There is no room for professional growth and upward mobility.
You are assigned detailed projects (specs) by your manager, and are given no freedom in their execution. The "managers" call and treat all employees as 'programmers' - it is irrelevant that you were trained as an engineer of a scientist. You will be coding to a spec, no matter what.

Your manager is your final arbiter. There are some "managers" who cannot stand up to their boss when issues arise. As an alternative, they blame their reports for failures (note the spec part above!), and repeatedly get their reports fired. The upper management did not question this pattern until a handful of people went the revolving door.

Interaction with anyone is discouraged. You are paid to type, not to talk.

And never, ever should you offer your opinion. Even as you walk in and see that certain areas are 2-3 years behind competitors - stay mum - IB managers already know that they are the best. Your input will get you nothing but trouble.

Advice to Senior ManagementGet modern management training.

Learn to respect your employees and show it.

Bring time off/sick leave policy in line with competition (3-4 week vacation, 1-2 weeks of sick leave). Bring deferrals in line with competition (0-30% for most, 2-4 years). Bring comp in line with competition. You are no longer paying well enough for people to disregard the issues. Your most desirable employees are snatched by competition. Who do you think is staying?

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Disappointing

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time

ProsFree lunch, open to other races

ConsOnly Swiss has a Promotion Chance

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Intense, originally challenging but later depressing and even debilitating

Software Engineer (Current Employee)

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

Pros- A few of efficient business processes, most well-automated
- A handful of worthy technologies to learn and think of.
- Fair-n-square business practices as far as I can say (not to confuse with "nice to clients")
- Acceptable pay; almost-guaranteed "raises" for raising cost of living
- Keep to the letter to their side of your contract (which does not include much good; but still)
- Free lunch that you usually eat at your desk (if you consider that a pro)

Cons- Self-righteous and rigid high management; initiatives and comments are effectively discourages
- Antiquated and ineffective-to-stupidity software governance (do not confuse with 'inefficient').
- Non-existent work/life balance (total 16 days for vacation, personal and sick days; you are mostly treated and managed as a resource rather than human being)
- Not only are free information and idea exchange not promoted but in many ways strongly discouraged. As an example, you won't even have an Internet access at your desk unless your function needs it. As one of the results, the company is stagnating technologically.
- No training/learning programs I am aware of.
- People are discouraged from talking

Advice to Senior ManagementNot that I think they would take any, but: consider formally training yourself in ethical people management (maybe try reading Stephen Covey's books?).

On a side note: I had to rank CEO "disapprove" for his failure to keep the management effective and adequate to the company''s scale. This is not at all intended to deny his technical and financial genius and ethical business practices that made this company possible. I would have selected "both approve and disapprove" if the Web side provided this choice. (I did not want to select "No opinion" because I certainly had one)

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Horrible place. Unless your kids are starving, look elsewhere.

Operations (Former Employee)
Greenwich, CT (US)

I worked at Interactive Brokers full-time for less than a year

ProsPaycheck and Health Insurance, Free lunch ( that isn't free at all )

ConsImpotent HR, Flawed review process, complete disrespect to employees, Blind following of orders is required, Dysfunctional atmosphere that could be damaging to mental well-being in the long run. Do not confuse this company with any other in the financial filed and do not get fooled by interviewers who are trying to draw a rosy picture, you will regret it later. Low compensation and bonus compared to industry standards.

Advice to Senior ManagementInvest into employees, review your middle management so that they do not abuse power, start acting like a $6B company. Interview employees and review their goals ambitions and general well being. Give employees ability to submit anonymous reviews of their managers. Educate your middle management, as they are mostly uneducated without any real management experience thinking bullying is an appropriate management style.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Show Me The Money

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Greenwich, CT (US)

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

ProsThe money is pretty good. They pay programmers very well and they pay managers very well, but everyone else is paid just okay, but you get annual bonuses and stock options. There is little or no bureaucracy, and very few meetings. This place is not bogged down in process. The non-management people who work here are very nice. The business can be interesting. If you're lucky, you get to work on interesting projects. Medical insurance premiums are paid for 100%.

ConsYou work here for the money. That's the bottom line. They pay for lunch, but not because they're nice, it's so you stay at your desk during lunch. They pay for medical benefits, which are ultimately insufficient if you have a major medical issue. You get 15 days off per year for personal, sick and vacation time, then an extra two days at five years. And you are discouraged from taking too much time off. It is for many employees, a sweat shop. The structure of the company is based on silos: each department is competing with other for the CEO's attention and favor; that is the sole motivator behind all day-to-day decisions. Only management is allowed to create projects and come up with creative solutions, in spite of their lack of real experience and training in many areas, such as software project design, marketing, user interface design, and so on. There is no career growth, no annual reviews, no promotions.

If you want to come and make money and work a lot for a few years, this can be a decent place to be. But it will not be personally or professionally satisfying in any way, and you will get cynical and burn out fairly quickly.

The CEO has surrounded himself with a bunch of long-time associates, most of whom are all from Eastern Europe like himself and have all become millionaires. If you're not in that club, you are simply a lowly employee treated disrespectfully.

Advice to Senior ManagementThese guys are hopeless. It all flows from the CEO's benevolent dictator management style. Until and unless he changes his personality, it will continue on this path. They really need to bring in people from other companies and allow them to challenge the status quo. And give employees better work-life balance.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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