First Utility Reviews | Glassdoor.ca

First Utility Reviews

Updated 5 December, 2017
111 reviews

Filter

Filter

Full-timePart-time

3.9
StarStarStarStarStar
Rating TrendsRating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
First Utility CEO Ian McCaig
Ian McCaig
77 Ratings

111 Employee Reviews

Sort: PopularRatingDate

Pros
Cons
  • No real maternity/paternity pay means that it is a hard ask to remain at the company if you want to build a family (in 17 reviews)

  • The only drawback is car parking (in 14 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (3)

    "Probably should be better"

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

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

    Pros

    - Friendly staff for the most part

    - The building is quite modern and nice, with free tea, coffee etc

    - Casual dress code

    - A fairly "young" company - so plenty of potential and room for improvements

    Cons

    - For a company that prides itself on being "Reliable, Engaging, Pioneering and Straightforward" it seems to be seldom a reflection of these

    - The perks have been mentioned many times; if these are not improved upon then staff will continue to use this company as a mere stepping stone (many good employees have come and gone - which inevitably causes knowledge loss and countless team reshuffles), rather than look to build their career here. Maternity/Paternity pay has been raised and brushed under the carpet numerous times, and probably will continue to be, but without these a long career at FU becomes difficult to consider. First Perks is a nicety, but really it's a bit like having a student card...and you can find most of the deals online anyway!

    - The communication across the company can be absolutely woeful at times, the current move to Coventry has been handled poorly. Whilst I can appreciate that some of this is out of the company's hands, people want to know what is going on (the term "manage expectations" is thrown around a lot...not when it comes to employees it seems!). This cascades down to team level also, this could stem from a lack of decisive management - there's more flip flopping than a seaside shoe shop! All it shows is a lack of direction, creates confusion and unsettles employees - and the buck stops with the HODs for these issues.

    - I think our competitors would laugh at some of our systems. They really are anything but pioneering and straightforward - simple fixes can be long winded and can often do more damage than good, the layouts are not user friendly. Any ideas to improve the systems from a user perspective are often knocked back because they are not a priority - but it is not made clear what the priorities actually are? Updates to the systems are poorly communicated to the wider business, therefore back office staff are none the wiser and necessary training cannot be carried out.

    - Progress within the company can be a mixed bag, this really depends on department. On the customer services side of things, there appears to be more of an opportunity, but in other departments there really does seem to be a lack of drive from the management teams to help their employees kick on. It doesn't seem like the development plans agreed between employee/manager are taken very seriously and can often be a bit of a tick box exercise. To my knowledge, there has been very little in the way of training courses and the like in the time I have been employed by FU (unless you are already a manager) and any shadowing is generally cast aside because there are "more important priorities right now".

    - It can often seem like that managers see employees as "disposable parts" and are a burden on them. Obviously this is probably not the case for the majority, but support is not always as freely available as it should be and genuine concerns can be dismissed as "moaning"

    - There is a real treading on egg shells atmosphere and a feeling that employees are not trusted by their superiors. You have to be very careful around what you say, how you say it and who you say it to (which is obvious to a point, but on the flip side - rumours and reputation can travel fast in this place!).

    - For a supposed modern thinking company, there is a lot of bureaucracy - process often gets in the way of progress. There is a real hesitancy to run with a new idea because "that's the way we've always done it" - if you haven't produced a 20 slide PowerPoint presentation, you might as well not waste your breath!

    - The parking situation is a bit naff at the moment, this should improve soon though (one would hope!).

    - The office location isn't great for a commute, if you have the wrong hours you will be sat in traffic for lengthy periods.

    Advice to Management

    - Improve communication, this keeps employees informed and invested - if there's going to be delays...tell us!

    - Back your employees, there are some genuinely brilliant people working for this company. Listen to them and believe in them, or they will be gone!

    - Be more decisive, there is too much of "we are trialling this and that". Make expectations clear, and we will work towards them

    - Improve the systems, a few tweaks here and there will benefit the users and the customers at the end

    - Be Reliable, Engaging, Pioneering and Straightforward! (walk the walk as well as talk the talk!)

    - Improve the perks, everybody is screaming for maternity/paternity/sick pay. If it's not that simple, let's find compromises (see above point and point #2)


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Love it"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Online Operations Manager in Coventry, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Online Operations Manager in Coventry, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    A great vibrant atmosphere, great people, from front line to exec team.
    Bright airy office, open plan, no cubicles, everyone is approachable..

    Cons

    Improve comms, which to be fair is being addressed..
    Holidays, get no bonus for staying with the company, a lot of places award an extra day a year upto to a ceiling limit.

    Advice to Management

    Consider not just "Perks" but loyalty bonus (holiday etc), encourage people to stay.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Fast paced, exciting workplace"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Coventry, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in Coventry, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at First Utility full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Exciting, cutting edge technology used daily. Fast-paced but time for learning with research days. Breakout and quiet areas available when needed as it’s an often noisy open office environment.
    We are treated like adults with no micro-management. We are trusted to do our work whether in the office or at home.
    The management hierarchy is flat and mainly excellent. They are mostly recruited via promotion within the department so they know how to treat you to get the best out of you.
    We have quarterly team building outings which are great. Provision to go to conferences and training is minimal but available.
    The salary is very good and inline or better than the best companies in the area.

    Cons

    The open office is distracting but there is provision to work from home and recently added quiet areas. Headphones recommended.
    We need more ability to exercise while at work.
    The benefits are quite poor compared to the salary (they are improving though), for example the pension is a very low percentage and the annual bonus is usually not paid or a small percentage of it is. Although it does depend on company performance overall so even if your department is doing very well you might not get any bonus which is unfortunate.

    Advice to Management

    Look at the pension and bonus provision. Look at bonus per department performance.
    Individual budget for training, books and conferences would be good.
    Flexible working with core hours 10-4 is helpful to parents.
    Office lifestyle is sedentary so more provision for exercise at work.
    Long standing employees have a stagnated salary not inline with new employees so they leave. Isn’t it worth looking after your current employees and keep the years of experience? Why do people have to leave then come back to get the going rate for the job rather than proper pay increases?


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Field Sales Representative"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Everday was different, nice to meet new people.

    Cons

    No basic salary, very poor management and a lack of professional conduct from management.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Statutory"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Coventry, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Coventry, England (UK)
    Neutral Outlook

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

    Pros

    Fresh fruit on a Friday,
    Good working atmosphere - the company culture is good, though largely due to employees than the company itself,
    BUPA healthcare.
    Being a small company, good access to senior management and there isn't an obvious hierarchy.

    Cons

    Paternity, Maternity, Pension etc are all statutory minimum.
    Overall package is really not that competitive.
    HR seem to be struggling.
    Pay scales are very vague and a taboo subject,
    Length of Service is not rewarded, if anything it's penalised thanks to pay-rise caps, no/poor bonus
    Overall company strategy appears inconsistent
    Company structure is a little chaotic with high number of Heads of Departments seeming to outnumber actual departments etc.


  7. "Great Company to Work for"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends

    I have been working at First Utility full-time

    Pros

    Friendly Staff. Great atmosphere. Very supportive management. Good communication. Very positive outlook on work/life balance, I have worked places where I have dreading going into the office but not here I. All in all I personally think it is a great place to work.

    Cons

    Benefits offered could be better, that being said they are working on improving them over time.

    First Utility Response

    20 Nov, 2017 – Chief People Officer

    We are very proud of our people at First Utility. Many of our colleagues comment on how friendly and supportive everyone is as well as the real sense of team spirit.

    I'm so pleased to hear that... More


  8. "Innovative and Entrepreneurial"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Warwick, West Midlands, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Warwick, West Midlands, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great people, accessible leadership, entrepreneurial spirit, no blame culture, nice working environment, can do and get things done attitude, feel valued as a member of staff, innovative and technology led, willing to take risks, customer focused

    Cons

    multi site location (soon being fixed!)

    Advice to Management

    Organisational structure needs to be adjusted to support multi product strategy

    First Utility Response

    20 Nov, 2017 – Chief People Officer

    Thanks very much for the fantastic feedback!

    Our entrepreneurial spirit is definitely part of our DNA and our, "get things done and can do attitude", you mention certainly is part of... More


  9. "You will never get bored at FU"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administrator in Warwick, West Midlands, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Administrator in Warwick, West Midlands, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at First Utility part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    No two days are the same.

    Cons

    High turn over, real shame.

    First Utility Response

    20 Nov, 2017 – Chief People Officer

    Thank you for your review and five star rating.

    It's great to hear that you're never bored at First Utility! Our fast paced, evolving environment does keep us on our toes, while keeping things... More


  10. "Supportive place to be"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great atmosphere, really encouraging place to be for those who want to succeed. Hard work is required but I truly believe that what you put in you get out. Friendly and supportive people throughout the business with a real feeling of collaborative working to get the best done for the customer, whether that be internal or external.

    Cons

    Benefits could be better / improved.

    First Utility Response

    20 Nov, 2017 – Chief People Officer

    Thanks for the great review!

    You're absolutely right. Those who want to succeed can thrive with First Utility and we support everyone to reach their full potential. We launched our new... More


  11. "Great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Digital Customer Services Executive in Coventry, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Digital Customer Services Executive in Coventry, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at First Utility full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Friendly people
    Fun place to work
    Free fruit
    Forwarding thinking

    Cons

    Car parking
    Sick pay and maternity pay

    Advice to Management

    N/A


Showing 111 of 112 reviews
Reset Filters