Merkle FAQ

All answers shown come directly from Merkle Reviews and are not edited or altered.

36 English questions out of 36

10 July 2019

What is health insurance like at Merkle?

Pros

Work from home opportunities, unlimited paid vacation, happy hours and activities for employees, and the health insurance is great.

Cons

The job itself is mind-numbing, tedious, and stressful. Expect to work long hours and have more and more responsibility thrust upon you without recognition or pay raises.

Work from home opportunities, unlimited paid vacation, happy hours and activities for employees, and the health insurance is great.

10 July 2019

See 3 more answers

16 July 2020

Does Merkle give compassionate leave?

Pros

My review is specifically for the Merkle office located in Southfield, Michigan which was previously HelloWorld (and ePrize before that). - As an agency, there is an impressive roster of clients. It can feel very rewarding to work for brands and clients with noteworthy names. These high-visibility clients look impressive in portfolios and on resumes. - This is an excellent place to gain experience. With the right attitude and work ethic, the variety and challenges of delivering the work will force growth upon you. The pace of the work will cause you to find and create efficiencies. That said, this fast-paced tempo can leave knowledge workers with a wide breadth of knowledge without the requisite depth. - The culture is overwhelmingly one of acceptance, respect, and care for community. You'll rarely find a person in this organization with personal beliefs that detract from the rights and humanity of all persons. - There are some truly wonderful, hardworking people at the company. For every 1 problem, there are 2 people who want to fix it. - The company's culture is remarkably family-first. The people and processes support each employee's family needs. Maternity *and* paternity leave, bereavement time, etc is outstanding. - The execs were very transparent during the first COVID-19 outbreak (Q1 2020). I respect their decision to cut pay slightly across the board to maintain jobs. So far as of Q3 2020, the company has left their employees at home (targeting January 2021 for a return) and has done a decent job of enabling the transition to completely-remote work.

Cons

My criticisms of the company should be taken with the context that I was a developer. Depending on the kind of growth opportunity you seek as an engineer, I would consider avoiding this company. - This is a marketing company propped up by engineering. The lack of focus on engineering has caused the internal platforms, tools, and processes to lag behind the industry. Old technology and process continues to live on because the delivery of client work is always more important than in-house improvement. - Much of the senior and director-level staff has been at the company for more than 7 years. While on its face this may seem like a resounding endorsement of the company, it has also created a lack of growth opportunities. A lack of horizontal growth has made vertical advancement opportunities uncommon; to which a long line of candidates will have all been waiting for a number of years. Additionally, the absence of new blood fails to inspire and drive senior and director-level staff to higher expectations for the job and themselves. New experience, skills, and energy is rarely injected into the thought-leaders of the company, creating a vacuum back onto itself. - To deliver projects at a fast clip, the more challenging work that leads to skill growth is often left to more experienced developers. I have seen some very promising talent left to flounder on teams and projects with little to no opportunities for growth. This causes junior and mid-level developers to lack advancement opportunities and for the senior-level developers to suffer from burnout and complacency. - Project managers are tasked with an enormous amount of responsibilities - many of which should be outside of their domain. Project managers are responsible for scoping projects, rescoping projects, all client communications, *actual* project management, acting as scrum masters, negotiating between other teams for resources, maintaining historical knowledge of tens of projects, and so much more. This overload of project managers' responsibilities and a culture of unreasonable expectations disables project managers from being successful. I've worked with some truly dedicated, smart, and passionate project managers that this company burnt out. - As much as the product line claims to be "agile" in their methodologies, it is very much the opposite. Making adjustments and improvements to processes can be extremely cumbersome and political. The organization of client work is plainly that of waterfall methodology (waterfall in sprints, or "date scrum"). While this may align more truly with the reality of delivering marketing projects, this creates a cognitive disconnect for employees who wish to be more agile-oriented. Prospective employees accustomed to practicing agile software development in earnest may find it difficult to conform. - For the last few years in particular, the company has been chronically slow to backfill positions with equal or greater talent. This has resulted in an overload of work and a painful loss of knowledge around the many products, historical projects, and codebases. - Being an agency, the ebb and flow of work can be exhausting. One week may be a stressful slog and the next week may be completely devoid of meaningful work. This downtime is often filled with halfhearted initiatives that see no follow-through as soon as the client-related work ramps back up. - While it's not uncommon in any industry, it's often the case that title advancements do not yield a higher salary despite adding responsibilities. These additional responsibilities are often used by the company as leverage to withhold merit increases. For a company that is already not terribly competitive in salary, this leaves a lot to be desired.

Advice to Management

Invest the resources in improving the technology that delivers promotions and loyalty projects. Impeccable client relations won't forever hide the gap in technology with regards to efficiency, reliability, and scalability.

paternity leave, bereavement time, etc is outstanding.

16 July 2020

See answer

9 April 2019

Does Merkle offer unlimited holiday?

Pros

Work environment is cool Working with Big name clients for promotional/loyalty work Work hours are flexible, with option to work from home Everyone is friendly and supportive when needing help with work You get 3 “summer half days” (1 a month from June-August) Standard Holidays

Cons

Pay could be better. Raises are difficult to receive and then you get capped at amounts that other companies are providing as their starting salaries. Benefits are expensive for what you get They advertised unlimited PTO but have since changed the wording to “flexible PTO” with a cap at 14-18 days, anything past that needs approval by HR. Granted that’s a decent amount of days off, don’t advertise it as unlimited if it’s not. Quarterly mandatory Staff Calls where they toot their own horn/the Sales Teams’ horn for 2 hours

They advertised unlimited PTO but have since changed the wording to “flexible PTO” with a cap at 14

9 April 2019

See 8 more answers

13 December 2019

Does Merkle offer parental leave?

Pros

Some great people, high profile clients, valuable experience, etc, etc...

Cons

We’re constantly told that we’re one of DAN’s most valuable and best performing agencies, but we’re not treated like it. Workloads, pressure and expectations have increased but compensation and opportunity have not. As I’ve worked on more projects with other companies within the DAN portfolio, it’s become clear that Merkle employees are not compensated as well as our peers at other DAN agencies. For a while I’ve gotten the impression that salaries, healthcare and retirement are generally better at our sister agencies. But what is top of mind and has really angered me is that maternity leave at every other DAN agency is more than TWICE AS LONG as Merkle’s. DANs response to a Campaign US benefit survey: ”Dentsu Aegis Network- All U.S. shops including — and not limited to — mcgarrybowen, Carat, 360i and Isobar We have one policy for all genders called parental leave. U.S. Dentsu Aegis Network employees are entitled to take up to 16 weeks paid time off separate from our PTO within one year of the birth, adoption and or fostering of a child. This time may be taken in two separate occasions within the first year or on solid block of time. It’s effective day one that an employee starts here.” All US shops except Merkle, that is. We get seven weeks. When I asked why this is, I was told (kind of condescendingly) that our benefits and leave package was assessed yearly and is actually very competitive. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? It’s literally not competitive with what my coworkers on DAN projects get as we’re doing everything we can to make clients believe that we all work for the same company. You can’t put a price on an extra 2 months with your newborn child, but you can put a price on the paid time off and the additional 2 months of childcare and in my case that’s over $20 grand. I can’t even begin to explain how angry I am about this.

Advice to Management

I fell for your women and family friendly workplace propaganda before, I won’t fall for it again.

But what is top of mind and has really angered me is that maternity leave at every other DAN agency is more than TWICE AS LONG as Merkle’s.

13 December 2019

See 1 more answer

13 December 2019

Does Merkle assist with or provide childcare?

Pros

Some great people, high profile clients, valuable experience, etc, etc...

Cons

We’re constantly told that we’re one of DAN’s most valuable and best performing agencies, but we’re not treated like it. Workloads, pressure and expectations have increased but compensation and opportunity have not. As I’ve worked on more projects with other companies within the DAN portfolio, it’s become clear that Merkle employees are not compensated as well as our peers at other DAN agencies. For a while I’ve gotten the impression that salaries, healthcare and retirement are generally better at our sister agencies. But what is top of mind and has really angered me is that maternity leave at every other DAN agency is more than TWICE AS LONG as Merkle’s. DANs response to a Campaign US benefit survey: ”Dentsu Aegis Network- All U.S. shops including — and not limited to — mcgarrybowen, Carat, 360i and Isobar We have one policy for all genders called parental leave. U.S. Dentsu Aegis Network employees are entitled to take up to 16 weeks paid time off separate from our PTO within one year of the birth, adoption and or fostering of a child. This time may be taken in two separate occasions within the first year or on solid block of time. It’s effective day one that an employee starts here.” All US shops except Merkle, that is. We get seven weeks. When I asked why this is, I was told (kind of condescendingly) that our benefits and leave package was assessed yearly and is actually very competitive. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? It’s literally not competitive with what my coworkers on DAN projects get as we’re doing everything we can to make clients believe that we all work for the same company. You can’t put a price on an extra 2 months with your newborn child, but you can put a price on the paid time off and the additional 2 months of childcare and in my case that’s over $20 grand. I can’t even begin to explain how angry I am about this.

Advice to Management

I fell for your women and family friendly workplace propaganda before, I won’t fall for it again.

You can’t put a price on an extra 2 months with your newborn child, but you can put a price on the paid time off and the additional 2 months of childcare and in my case that’s over $20 grand.

13 December 2019

See answer
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

36 English questions out of 36