Index Exchange Reviews | Glassdoor.ca

Index Exchange Reviews

Updated 3 May, 2018
95 reviews

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4.3
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Index Exchange President & CEO Andrew Casale
Andrew Casale
84 Ratings

95 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Everyone works hard but has a great work life balance (in 12 reviews)

  • Index Exchange is somewhere that you can bring your whole self to work (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • A few growing pains but all being addressed by management (in 13 reviews)

  • Young inexperienced managers and lack of senior managers and developers, work life balance is a joke, the culture is to work long hours (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Growing with the right leadership"

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

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

    Pros

    - Rapidly growing company
    - Strong leadership guidance with acute foresight into industry trends
    - Collaborative and nurturing environment
    - Opportunities to succeed and expand responsibilities

    Cons

    - Rapid learning curve
    - Need self-directed attitude to succeed

    Advice to Management

    - Hire more experienced managers with outside knowledge

    Index Exchange Response

    6 Apr, 2018 – VP, Human Resources

    Thank you so much for this review - and for joining us on our journey for several years! We feel very fortunate to have gathered such an exceptional team. We're excited to do more this year to expand... More


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Huge strides in making engineering culture better, but still a long way to go for senior management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Toronto, ON
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in Toronto, ON
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Index Exchange full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Great work perks, benefits, work life balance. Definitely a place where you can make a name for yourself, and grow.

    - A lot of cool technical problems of scale that aren't found anywhere else, with the tools and resources to experiment and do so.

    - Has also improved a lot in terms of engineering management. A lot of senior leadership has entered, injecting fresh ideas and modern practices. It's a lot better than it was a year ago.

    - Competitive salary.

    Cons

    - Lack of senior technical expertise. They're trying their best to address it, but hiring senior engineers are deterred by the lack of technical knowledge from the internal recruiters, and boring task of maintenance as opposed to building.

    - A lack of emotional intelligence from the old guard management. New management is great, but many of the old managers don't admit when they're wrong or don't know something when they should, which leads to a lot of office politics and gossip, and poisons company culture. No channel of feedback is provided for engineers to these managers, nor is it taken seriously.

    Advice to Management

    Put your senior managers and TPOs in a communications course to hopefully enlighten them about emotional awareness. Provide feedback channels for engineers to talk about their managers/TPOs.

    Index Exchange Response

    10 May, 2018 – Director, Engineering

    Thank you for taking the time to post your review. We’re very happy that you recognize the significant effort we’re undertaking to redefine our engineering culture, and that overall you feel... More

  3. "Striving for being better everyday"

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

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

    Pros

    Motivated workplace, strong teams, good food and team building events.

    Management was bringing in new people in leadership roles, did not work much with them so not sure how that is working out but it felt like impactful changes at that time.

    People are generally friendly and helpful. They motivate/challenge you and that helps you to perform better every sprint.

    Technically you would learn a lot if you are early in your career.

    Hackathons are meant to allow software engineers to be creative and innovative. The Hackathon is fiercely competitive, but it’s done in such a manner that it’s has a festive feel to the event.

    Overall a nice place to enjoy your work.

    Cons

    Lack of leadership but a lot of commanders.

    Focus on quality less than it should be, sometimes strict deadlines are to be blamed and some times consistently evolving requirements.

    There was no understanding of agile development but the teams were trying to come up with their own home grown processes that at times mimicked agile development.

    Advice to Management

    Let engineering teams be more self organized. Ask them for feedback on how to improve quality of the product.

    Index Exchange Response

    7 May, 2018 – SVP, Engineering

    Thank you for this review, and thanks for spending a spell of your career with us! The learning journey is ongoing at IX as we try to do a lot of ambitious things at the same time. I'm very glad... More


  4. Helpful (1)

    "A great company to work for if you want to stagnate your technical skills and abilities"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Flexible hours and great perks, such as catered lunches, free snacks, and gym memberships. Frequent team outings and company-wide events. Management and process improved during my time with the company but could be improved upon still. A lot of nice people in most departments.

    Cons

    Note: This is for the Toronto location of the engineering department.

    Nepotism, company politics, and poor cross-departmental communication are very rampant in this company. If you want to grow your career and not worry about being caught in company politics, go elsewhere. The Toronto tech scene is thriving, and IX does not play a role in that.

    Management and leadership team lack in management skills, industry knowledge, and communication skills. They have hired some great new managers to help the team scale, but unfortunately, the majority of senior and tenured employees lack experience and are behind in what is happening in the tech scene, have poor communication skills and low emotional intelligence.

    The most disappointing part is that the culture of unwillingness to learn and communicate has trickled down and is perpetuated by employees who have been working with the company for a while. As a result, the tech stack is extremely outdated and the company lacks innovation. People want to stick to what they know because they are afraid to try anything that would hurt their egos. People would rather be right than actually do what is best for the product.

    The process has improved in my time working at Index, but still has a long way to go. There was very little thought and planning into the products we were building. It doesn't help that there is very little communication between the business and engineering teams. It's very common for projects to pivot mid-way or not even ship at all, because of poor teamwork, planning, and resourcing.

    Additionally, the company culture is awful. The HR and people team don't do anything to help their employees and are willfully ignorant of how it truly is them. The HR and people team are just like IX's social media presence - all style, no substance. How the company is portrayed in social media is extremely deceptive and only represents a portion of the company.

    Index does not encourage diversity of thought, backgrounds, or opinions either. Almost everyone comes from the same cookie cutter background. Voicing your opinion that is against the status quo is extremely frowned upon. The company was heading in a right direction in actually listening to their employees' concerns; however, when employees actually started voicing their opinion, they changed how people can communicate their concerns in a way that actually discouraged them to do so.

    Index is definitely experiencing growing pains and that's understandable -- however, whenever Index takes a step forward in improving as a company, they'll take another two steps back.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees. Improve how you're treating your employees, so they actually feel like they're contributing to your company instead of just a cog in a machine. You've started gathering feedback from employees, so do something about it instead of getting defensive and skirting around.

    Index Exchange Response

    30 Apr, 2018 – SVP, Engineering

    Thank you for your review. I regret that you didn't have a more positive experience at IX. My colleagues in Management and HR are committed to ensuring every employee has a positive experience with... More


  5. "Best Company!"

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

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

    Pros

    - great perks
    - convenient locations
    - strengths are always acknowledged
    - lots of transparency

    Cons

    - I don't really have any?


  6. "Many opportunities to learn and contribute"

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

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

    Pros

    Note: I have never worked in any of the offices except for the Kitchener office so my feedback does not apply to the Toronto office (main office).

    What stands out most among my experience at IX is that there are many opportunities to become a technical and team leader by taking on additional responsibilities to drive the project architecture. Time is allocated towards project research and having the motivation to dive deep (as is reasonable) is rewarded.

    Team members are also encouraged to spend a portion of work time doing activities that are not directly project-related. Book clubs, conferences, courses are all recommended. It's left to the engineer to figure out what avenues of exploration provide the most value to them.

    Management that understands what it means to keep employees happy in the long-term and how to assist in career growth. They often have the competency to contribute to meetings with the explicit goal of unblocking engineers. Teams are encouraged to push the boundaries, even if there's a possibility of failure, which is expected and a good learning experience.

    People teams are exceedingly friendly and company culture is taken quite seriously. They work hard to get to know everyone and aren't seen as a distant HR manager.

    The company provides fairly regular business updates and Q&A sessions that provide good insight into how the company is progressing. Executive team demonstrates frequently in Q&A sessions that they are passionate, but beyond that, they are people -- not always perfect and can react emotionally to emotionally charged questions. Personally, I feel like this makes them more approachable.

    The engineers that I've worked with are smart and helpful, interested in continuous improvement, despite the overall engineering talent being somewhat younger in age and more junior than what you might expect to see at a mid-sized tech company.

    The office is pretty nice and spacious. There are a lot of non-work-related interests that are apparent within the office and groups are formed when a bit of context switching downtime can be squeezed in during the workday. Whether it's ping pong tournaments, rocket league competitions, or a thoughtful game of Go, the concept of a balanced work schedule is not met with any resistance here.

    Salary and benefits are quite competitive, but still pretty far from the compensation provided by large American tech firms.

    My impression is that the executive team understands the ad-tech market very well and are able to drive focus onto the most important growth initiatives. The company, however, does recognize that there are very clear deficiencies in some of the software solutions provided and that technical debt needs to be addressed.

    Cons

    There is a lack of visibility into architecture teams and excessive reliance on their feedback before making decisions. The company seems to be in a state where architecture resources are frequently needed to help make decisions but a lot of the decisions should likely be delegated to senior engineers instead of having project bottlenecks.

    Projects can also be slow to ramp up as insufficient planning or understanding of the scope of work forces teams to figure out what needs to be done on the fly. This is both a negative as well as an opportunity for those that take the initiative to serve as a technical product owner within their own team.

    The office services team is slow and unresponsive in terms of allowing employees to enter the office outside of core 9-5 hours. There have been multiple occasions where I've come to the office slightly earlier or wanted to come outside of those time periods and not been able to get in. This is really a downer and should be a really trivial issue to fix.

    Advice to Management

    Keep focusing on the company vision and treating all employees like partners with a common goal!

    Index Exchange Response

    2 Apr, 2018 – SVP, Engineering

    Thank you for this very thoughtful review. We invest a lot in providing opportunities for learning and career growth, but we also have ambitious goals for our work output, so we sometimes lose sight... More


  7. "Great company with lots of potential to grow even more"

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

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

    Pros

    Engineering management really started to care for their employees. Opinions are now well respected and any form of disrespect is frowned upon and unacceptable. IX grew tremendously over the last few years and most in engineering truly believe we will grow even more. They brought in a several senior people to be the new managers and directors in engineering, and this brought on a very positive change to the department. It's also great to see that the CEO does not have to worry about some external investors, as we are 100% financially independent.

    Cons

    Office needs to expand, but they are already working on this

    Advice to Management

    Some calls, no matter who you are, need to be discussed with other managers before being made. Some, but not all engineering managers still need work in this area. Many engineering teams have suffered from frequent priority shifts due to this.

    Index Exchange Response

    12 Mar, 2018 – SVP, Engineering

    Thank you for sharing your experiences and how they've evolved over time. While I'm pretty confident we always cared, if it wasn't readily apparent to the team, that's all on us and I regret it very... More

  8. "Growing company with strong culture"

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

    I worked at Index Exchange full-time

    Pros

    - Had the opportunity to work with some talented, hard working engineers at all levels of seniority.
    - Strong company culture that fosters respect within teams with a huge emphasis on strong teamwork and willingness to help each other.
    - Solid place to start for a new grad because of the fast paced work environment that encourages to look at problems differently and think outside your comfort zone.
    - Management learns from mistakes and addresses the pains of a growing organization by taking initiatives to have a scalable growth. (Ex. Hiring more senior engineers and managers).
    - Amazing perks and benefits.

    Cons

    - There seems to be a huge disconnect between the commercial and the engineering side in terms of processes, workflows and expectations.
    - Seems to have very little emphasis on QA and testing strategies for the products/solutions.
    - Employees have the opportunity to get gym memberships for very cheap but there should be more initiatives focusing on work-life balance from the management.
    - More emphasis should be put on training and learning opportunities for the employees, especially at the junior level.
    - There should be more mentoring/coaching to support career growth of employees.

    Index Exchange Response

    12 Mar, 2018 – SVP, Engineering

    Thanks for the thoughtful feedback on your experiences with IX. It was great to read of your respect for the talent at all levels, the culture of teamwork, learning environment, and responsive... More


  9. "Analyst"

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

    I have been working at Index Exchange (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Recently joined Index. Some pros are: fantastic manager, helpful and friendly coworkers, good work environment & benefits. Most importantly, challenging yet rewarding work projects.

    Cons

    Can't think of any, no company is perfect but no major cons.


  10. Helpful (6)

    "High turnover rate, inexperienced management and coworkers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer in Toronto, ON
    Former Employee - Engineer in Toronto, ON
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Free snacks
    Free lunch
    Free swag sometimes

    Cons

    No work-life balance
    Little respect for working parents
    Immature, inexperienced hires fresh out of university
    No mentoring
    Weird family business dynamic
    Managers without people skills or training (lots of internal hires and promotion)
    Little to no experienced senior people

    Advice to Management

    Don't work so much / have a life outside of work and external achievements--it'll help you understand the people who work for you better

    Index Exchange Response

    4 Dec, 2017 – Sr. Director, Engineering

    Thanks for taking the time to provide a review. I don’t know how long you’ve been away - but in 2017 we’re delighted to have hired a very strong new group of Engineering leaders. While we’re proud to... More


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