Babylon Health Reviews

Updated 7 Jul 2020

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2.5
37%
Recommend to a Friend
40%
Approve of CEO
Babylon Health CEO and Founder Ali Parsa
Ali Parsa
209 Ratings
Pros
  • "I have been working for babylon from the beginning , i(in 56 reviews)

  • "Some very interesting, smart people(in 21 reviews)

Cons
  • "I have had no issues since starting at babylon(in 55 reviews)

  • "Tech-deaf senior management: We market ourselves as a tech start-up/scale-up, but we're not really tech-driven(in 17 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. "Amazing company to work for."

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Product Manager in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    It is a fairly fast pace place, People are genuinely nice and tones of opportunity to show your skills.

    Cons

    Lack of relevant experience in some positions.

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  2. Helpful (146)

    "Neutral, depends on a team you join"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Will try to be as neutral as possbile and skip the Cons part and write everything up here. Criteria I will use: Mission, People, Culture, Management, Product, Company Outlook - Mission: without a doubt amazing - People: I'd say lower average bound. Worked with a few really smart engineers, but a lot are just bad/incopetent/slow/unmotivated/political (yes political engineers..) - Culture: relaxed, but I guess depends on the team you're in and how high up in the ranks you exist. Working hour wise, again depends on the team, but really anything goes. I've seen people doing 9-4.30pm without any complaints and those people weren't great performers either - Management: again, depends.. I've seen both, good and bad. I have seen some tech leads that should have been junior/senior engineers and of course the other way around. Same with engineering managers and engineering directors. - Product: I am a bit more opinionated on this topic. I think if all the products were spun up to separate startups only GP at hand would survive, everything else is just not working. Having said that the product suite overall has potential to be great, as it does collect data about your health journey in various stages, ie data collected when you're healthy (health check, monitor), data collected when you're sick (AI, GP at hand) , and with all this data better diagnostics and healthier lifestyle decisions can be made - Company Outlook: this is where I'm the most sceptical. I think Babylon has a valuation of a tech company (it raised 500mln recently) and is valued ~2bn. I would argue that it's not a tech company. First of all, the only product that is great (in my opinion) is GP at hand, which has a high cost base (doctors, support, engineers to support the system), AI/ML stuff just does not work, even though there are smart people working on this. Let's be honest, GP at hand is nothing new - it has been around in the US for some time, it does not change the healthcare experience much (you can get an appointment quicker, but the doctor consultation is also much more limited) thus there's nothing really exciting about the tech. So what we have is a great mission, average people, average culture, average management, weak product and hard times ahead. I cannot be anything, but sceptical about the future of the company. I hope it succeeds because the world needs a better/integrated health care system, will that be Babylon? Time will tell.

    Cons

    Check the Pros section as I like to create my own rules ;)

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  3. Helpful (118)

    "Product is a mess"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Android Developer in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Babylon Health full-time

    Pros

    The tech team is strong. They just can't figure out the product

    Cons

    Needs product focus... a lot!

    Babylon Health Response

    May 1, 2020People and Performance Team

    Thank you for your review. Over the past two months, Babylon has carried out the vital process of reviewing our engineering platform, technology tribe structure and general capabilities to ensure the product is more scalable and to support long-term global delivery. The COVID-19 crisis has obviously also had a huge impact on both our clients’ needs and delivery requirements, and we have had to review our structures to reflect our short-term delivery needs. This work resulted in around 5% of our workforce being furloughed in the UK as they were not critical to current delivery while others have left the business as they fell outside of the scope of our renewed longer-term focus. During those same two months, we have seen a resultant upturn in the number of negative reviews, with March and April now representing nearly 50% of the total reviews Babylon has received in its six years history on Glassdoor. Within Babylon we have a strong safety culture across our engineering, product and clinical operations teams, and closely monitor all aspects of safety, so that we comply with best practice in all areas. We don’t just rely on our internal processes; we are audited, inspected and reported on by numerous external bodies, and we score highly, i.e. in the recent report by the CQC we were rated outstanding for being well-led. None of our products get released without passing safety testing, that is done every time, whether it be for the release of a brand-new product or a minor feature change. Safety approval is required for all changes in the live product.

  4. Helpful (195)

    "Poor management caused disruption and confusion in what is a good company goal"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Babylon Health full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Flexible working hours Free breakfast and drinks

    Cons

    No career progression High turnover of management No working objectives No incentives Bad management communication Work not reflecting job description

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  5. Helpful (50)

    "Some good points, but overall mediocre at best"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Administrative 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Babylon Health full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    There were some good perks (free food, great WFH options), which were better than other similar orgs I've worked at. There's also a lot of smart, passionate people working there, which can be really stimulating. The fact that so many employees care about universal healthcare helps to make up for the poor management and ensures that at least some of the output is what it should be.

    Cons

    This may not be the case for every team, but it can be a toxic environment where people burn out because the pressures being put on them are not reasonable. The biggest issue is the upper management: they are forever going through 'reprioritisation'/goal setting activities designed to micro manage and cover the poor direction. The need to constantly drag your managers through objective setting/review processes should be a pretty big red flag that something isn't working as it should be, as it prevents people from actually getting any real work done. Imagine working somewhere where it's impossible to get into the flow of a daily routine because your goals and even the products you're working on change so often... It gets extremely tiring and demoralising. This is an alright place to work if you enjoy playing company politics or are very early career and looking to add some big projects to your CV, but I wouldn't be able to recommend it to a friend.

  6. Helpful (65)

    "okay if youre happy not to progress"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Pharmacist in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Babylon Health part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    you can work from home

    Cons

    not very clear and strategic

  7. Helpful (58)

    "Great mission and engineering, okay culture, poor senior management"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Babylon Health full-time

    Pros

    - Great mission: "put an accessible and affordable health service in the hands of every person on earth" - Great engineers. The vast majority of engineers I've worked with are very smart and very good at their jobs - Great product, ux design, etc: there's a lot of beautiful collaboration between all the different parts of engineering - Some interesting technical problems with good space to grow technically - Good salaries on entry compared to average rates for London

    Cons

    - Mixed culture: some teams have a very good culture. Some don't. - Internal career reward and progression: compensation and benefits are good when you first join, but career reward and progression once you're inside are awful. There's no career ladder for engineers. The feedback process changes every 6 months or so. Feedback and pay aren't clearly linked. People go 1+ years without even incremental pay rises. People are often promoted without also being financial rewarded. - Tech-deaf senior management: We market ourselves as a tech start-up/scale-up, but we're not really tech-driven. Tech-enabled: yes. But not tech-driven. We're steadily moving towards a style of top-down, sales-led development that often ignores engineering concerns, including the concerns of product people on the ground. - Unpredictable CEO: other company directors disappear without warning or explanation. He often talks a very good talk, but he also often doesn't walk the walk. Transparency is an example that people often bring up: he talks a lot about it and tries it (we have weekly company stand-ups), but it's often missing when people need it the most.

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  8. Helpful (161)

    "From 5 star experience to dissatisfaction"

    2.0
     
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Babylon Health

    Pros

    Some interesting challenges. Had some fun and productive time for about a year.

    Cons

    Lots of politics and the more important you become the more of it you get, so stay low and don't perform your best if you want to be at peace, or make sure you play the political game at the same time. Cliques are common. Some managers create a hierarchy of incompetent "yes man" who don't know what they are doing and are faking it until they make it and they get away with it because they are someone's right hand men. There are friends of friends but some people don't disclose that fact and abuse it instead. Performance reviews are farcical. The attitude of some managers towards engineers is very unprofessional. CEO says nice things in a style reminiscent of Obama but doesn't follow up on them at all. I felt bullied by some managers: I felt like if I didn't agree with them I would be in trouble, and indeed I observed some people get into trouble cause they raised their voice and spoke their mind. I got a feeling of corruption from this place. But there are many teams and squads and tribes that seem to be doing well too, so I wouldn't be surprised to see other people enjoying it like I was until recently. PS: they mislead candidates by giving an impression that they will be doing AI by joining.

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  9. Helpful (93)

    "5 restructures in 10 months!"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Product Designer in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    - The whole design team is really supportive and helps each other out - The misson is great—it's the reason most people are there

    Cons

    - Team resources and structures that were promised in my interview never ever materialised - "Chaos" is how I would describe my first impression when starting and it only slightly improved in the time I was there - The team I was in was in a forgotten limbo-state in every restructure of the org - Overpromising and then never delivering seemed to be part of the Babylon experience for me—though other people seemed to have the opposite of what I experienced - Any negative PR was swept under the carpet and never confronted internally (or publicly) by leadership

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  10. Helpful (67)

    "Started off nice then went downhill"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Engineer in London, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Babylon Health full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great tech stack, you get to work with the latest technologies and concepts, everybody is very knowledgeable and nice and eager to help, you get to learn a lot from your peers. Management, at least for our team, was one of the best I ever had. One big pro is that adding this company to your profile manages to give you some cool points in the recruiting world, as Babylon used to be known at some point to hire only top talent.

    Cons

    I have read some of the other reviews here, I have somehow managed to shield myself from the toxicity, so I will not pass judgement on that in this review, I will refer strictly to personal experience. Really bad at organising work, I often found myself sitting on my hands and when I pointed that out was only told that yeah we'll look into it and that was it. There was an aggresive hiring campaign in our team at least that I think was completely unnecessary, we could have very well done what we had to with the people we had, if they'd have been managed better. Everything is wraped in buzzwords. People like to talk about work more than doing actual work. Priorities change often and sudden, no calrity to what you're supposed to do or to what end. Watching the CEO during the standups is a cringe worthy experience as all his speaches are a chain of buzzwords and in the everything is awesome style. All the talk about caring for their employees goes up in smoke when they just tell you hey you're not going to work anymore from tomorrow. Complete lack of transparency in this matter as well, people had to insist on getting details. Looking at how this company is bleeding talented people and money, and topped with the utter lack of consideration for it's employees, I don't see any valid reason why anyone would want to work here anymore.

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