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AO Reviews

Updated 18 April 2018
138 reviews

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3.4
StarStarStarStarStar
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AO CEO John Roberts
John Roberts
105 Ratings

138 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Fun and vibrant environment to work in (in 12 reviews)

  • Everyone is very supportive and they do as much as possible to keep their employees happy from free snacks to team & company outings (in 13 reviews)

Cons
  • It's a fast-paced business, so only join if you're up for a challenge (in 11 reviews)

  • Car Park is 10 mins away but that's the only negative (in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Great place to work and build a career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Frontend Developer in Horwich, England
    Current Employee - Senior Frontend Developer in Horwich, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AO full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great place to learn. Extremely knowledgeable colleagues, training days, investment in new technology

    Given the time to do work properly rather than a conveyor belt type system I've experienced elsewhere

    The company understands the importance of doing things right.

    Great team culture who all care about doing good work as much as you.

    Clear direction from the top down.

    There is great career progression and loads of opportunities within the business.

    Cons

    The testing process is extremely thorough which can be frustrating at times but ultimately forces you to become a better developer. After all, we want to create a great experience for the customer and that is every teams goal.

    Advice to Management

    Keep investing in the employees and the teams as much as you are.


  2. "Excellent place to work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Front End Developer in Bolton, England
    Current Employee - Senior Front End Developer in Bolton, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AO full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Really positive environment to work in where you are encouraged to try new technologies. Everyone has the same drive to make our website one of the top e-commerce sites in the world.
    There's no better place to learn, with investment in both technical development and enhancing organisational skills.
    W/L balance is spot and benefits are great too. Gym membership is great and in close proximity to the office - perfect for the lunchtime session.

    Cons

    Can be very fast paced occasionally but this is just a side effect of the dedication the team has. This is such a minor thing it's vastly outweighed by the positives.

    Advice to Management

    Continue with the investment in team development.

  3. "Highly Recommend as a Dev"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer
    Former Employee - Senior Software Engineer
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AO full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Opportunities to get involved
    Genuinely passionate people
    Nice working environment
    Interesting work
    Strong dev community

    Cons

    Lack of progression
    Pay could be better
    On call hours could be brutal


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Inbound Sales"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Inbound Sales in Bolton, England
    Former Employee - Inbound Sales in Bolton, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AO full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Nice Offices
    Good Company Events/Benefits
    Free fruit and drinks
    Good lunch menu

    Cons

    Unrealistic targets
    High pressure and silly expectations
    Dont disagree with a customer or face losing your bonus - will try to take it anyway they can
    No work/life balance, expected to work days off if behind
    Scare tactics rather than management
    Nearly impossible to book a holiday
    Employees arent valued at all

    Advice to Management

    Take the time to coach people rather than try to scare them with the loss of their job if they arent doing so well, it doesnt work. Its no wonder you have such a high turnover in staff.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Good company however they don't pay a livable wage."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Bolton, England
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Bolton, England
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AO full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Work colleagues are great people. Nice office with nice perks, such as canteen and spa. Great social events such as Christmas parties

    Cons

    Car park awful, expect a flat tyre every now and then. Don't expect pay rises either, your more likely to earn less each year. Any chance to take your bonus away, they'll so it. Care about the customer more than the employee

    Advice to Management

    Considering you sell yourself on customer service, maybe respect them more and pay them more to keep them happy. Maybe then people won't leave as often


  6. "outbound sales representative"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Outbound Sales Representative in Manchester, England
    Current Employee - Outbound Sales Representative in Manchester, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AO full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    there are some good company perks, there is a healthy holiday allowance and good earning potential on the kpi's the majority of the time.

    Cons

    The forecasting can be poor and leads can be difficult which then can throw you having consistent OTE. Holidays although are in a reasonable excess can be difficult to book without lots of notice. The procedures and targeting structure is complicated and at times unrealistic

    Advice to Management

    focus more on staff welfare and targeting structure to accommodate the teams and stop the hostile environment in which is incurs

    AO Response

    22 Mar 2018

    Thanks for your review

    In online retail one thing you can be sure of is change. We do everything we possibly can to plan ahead so that it doesn’t affect our AO’ers. It’s not something we can... More


  7. "Great staff - Lovely place to work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Culourin In Gud in Bolton, England
    Former Employee - Culourin In Gud in Bolton, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AO full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Lovely staff and directors ! Miss them all!

    Cons

    Inexperienced in HR and lacking support.

    Advice to Management

    They only live the values when you're of value to them. Offer professional support to all affected parties like all companies should.

    AO Response

    13 Mar 2018

    Thanks for your review

    It sounds like you have built some lasting friendships at AO, which we are really pleased to hear.

    Our values help to guide our culture within the business and our HR... More

  8. Helpful (5)

    "A ship without a rudder"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Acquisitions Team in Bolton, England
    Former Employee - Acquisitions Team in Bolton, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at AO full-time

    Pros

    Non-managerial staff are fantastic

    Discount lunches

    Free fruit - forget the sugary treats as you will pile on the pounds!

    Cons

    Inexperienced management teams

    Very cliquey

    Free crisps, chocolate and fizzy drinks but no healthcare cover offered!

    High staff turnover

    Poor salaries

    Expected to work extra hours with no overtime pay because you should ‘live and breathe the values’, any attempt to have a work/life balance means you are not seen as a team player

    Advice to Management

    Pay more attention to your staff. You act like gods gift to the work force and you’re doing your staff a favour by letting them work there. You are nothing without your staff, nothing. I saw some fantastic people get repeatedly trodden down by inexperienced management teams who were unfit for the roles they had.

    The role was offered as a “work hard, play hard” environment as there are recreational activities available to use during work hours. The reality is we weren’t even able to talk to our own team during working hours as this would apparently lessen productivity! Hours being sat in silence is not great for morale!

    There was zero support from management. They would always throw the team under the bus for their mistakes due to being unsuitable for the role. The wrong people in the right place as the company grew too quickly and friends of senior management were promoted to do jobs they weren’t fit for.

    I’m fairly sure if JR knew what was going on in most departments he wouldn’t be happy. Best advice is to restructure your management team and start looking after your staff, as you are NOTHING without them.


  9. "Autonomy and Progression"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Horwich, England
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Horwich, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AO full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great environment to work in, you are looked after and also challenged in your role. The biggest plus for me has been the autonomy there is not the attitude of 'we have always done it like this' in the business, if you've got a good idea, you are given the resources and time to run with it.l

    Cons

    I can not think of anything worth putting as a con, as an eCommerce organisation it is very fast paced with a lot of change which may not suit some people.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work, the people I work with all feel fulfilled in their roles and enjoy the environment


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Sadly disappointed"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in Crewe, England
    Current Employee - Engineer in Crewe, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AO full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    4 days off. I get paid

    Cons

    Sadly the most disappointing place I've ever worked. Lack of communication from management. Our doors are always open you are promised. However, the downstairs door is always locked. You'll never get an email reply from upper management. It seems to be... it's not my job. Ask someone else. Installation targets are hard to meet if you're a conscientious worker.

    Advice to Management

    Please communicate more. Don't look down on engineers, we're the actual face of the company. More time needed for installations, no room for leeway hence jobs get failed. Too many managers of different departments and none seem to take ownership. It's a great shame because it could be so much better

    AO Response

    16 Jan 2018

    Thanks for your review

    We always take feedback seriously, as it helps make sure we’re doing things in the best way for our AO’ers and our customers. If you ever feel like you aren’t getting the... More


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