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Working at Video Monitoring Services (VMS) — Reviews by Employees

Learn what employees have to say about Video Monitoring Services (VMS) pay, work/life balance, care potential, job security, and much more by reading our anonymous employee reviews.

Reviews of Jobs at Video Monitoring Services (VMS)

3.6Rating Details
Category
Pay3
Respect3
Benefits3
Job Security5
Work/Life Balance5
Career Growth3
Location4
Co-Workers3
Work Environment3

From From Louisville KY — 02/12/2010

I've been at VMS for several years and have seen numerous ups and downs. As with most companies, there seems to be many inefficiency issues never addressed because departments are territorial. Middle management appears to more concerned about job preservation than trimming waste to improve the bottom line. Overall, I feel the company has done a pretty good job handling the impact of the recession. Our pay was cut but, as promised, it has been restored. Unfortunately, well before the recession, corporate failed to provide cost of living increases even when reasonable belt-tightening could have made it possible. Not only have we not gotten raises in a very long time, we've seen insurance payroll deductions increase, co-pays increase, and overtime eliminated. I understand that the economy is a hardship for the company, as it is for employees but, honestly, many of us on the lower rungs of the company ladder are struggling. While it isn't the company's obligation to pay us more than they can afford, they can hardly afford to return to the days when turnover was high in positions where training takes literally months. Monitoring is one of those jobs with a long learning curve and minimal standards. There is no incentive to improve production or quality. Those who do improve performance from year-to-year should be rewarded if for no other reason than to reinforce their work ethic and to shame the slackers. Better yet, fire the slackers to save the overhead spent on insurances, taxes, and 401K matching that adds 50-100 percent to the cost of wages in order to offer limited overtime to the most productive monitors who aren't in it purely for the paycheck. Expect and reward professional standards and you'll see the benefit. I really believe this is achievable, especially if overtime eligibility was raised to production of 1.0 for five hours of OT, 1.10 for more than five, and tied to standards set for attendance and quality.

Where job security is concerned, I have learned that supervisors seem to appreciate me as long as I'm on time, work instead of playing computer games or sending texts or talking on my cell phone, and don't whine about everything. Work-life balance is great because I don't ever have to work swing shift and, even when OT was available, have never been coerced to work it. One really good thing about monitoring: you can't take it home with you.

Career Potential: from what I've seen, there is only potential to make lateral moves where you change jobs but don't get paid more to learn more.

Work environment can be stressful with so many monitors crammed so close together. The department often sounds like a tuberculosis ward during cold and flu seasons, especially with desks positioned end-to-end being shared by shifts. Supervisors are a pleasure to work for and very accommodating as long as you're doing your job and meeting standards.

Co-worker competence: Ask a monitor what they do for a living and they'll tell you, "I get paid to watch the news." This is true, but it takes multi-tasking skills to combine the use of so many senses at such an intense level for so many hours. It is not for those with ADHD or texting-talking habits. You almost need to be anti-social to monitor because you work in isolation. I'm not sure new hires are screened for this. I hate it when monitors whine about their show assignments, which shows are on the pick-up list, that they got written up for constantly arriving late/leaving early/take long lunches without making up time/need forum pages because they think we need to express themselves. I don't want to potluck with you. I don't want to bowl or play softball with you. I don't see any need for an idea committee expect to get an extra long paid break. I'd rather work than read your jibberish on time-killing forum pages. Just shut up, do your job, do it well, and quit talking on your cell phone while I'm taking a leak.

Bottom line: VMS has improved to become a mediocre company to work for. With a little effort by management and employees, it could be fantastic. Unfortunately, mediocrity appears to be the new American norm. What a shame.
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3.1Rating Details
Category
Pay3
Respect1
Benefits5
Job Security1
Work/Life Balance4
Career Growth2
Location5
Co-Workers4
Work Environment3

From New York, NY — 11/08/2009

I can not fault this company in terms of beenfits, location or co-worker competence. All are very good. But I can fault them inother ways like respect, which hardly exists any longer, or job security, which is a joke. It's a very toxic work environment. I do not blame the current regime. The previous regime is the one that had the problem. They started off very nice and optimistic and then the whole set up of the company from the top down degenerated into a popularity contest. If the Head Honchos liked you, you stayed, you got a raise, or you even got a promotion. If they didn't like you, y ou were booted out the door unceremoniously. I saw this happen so many times to so many good people and also saw so many idiots who knew how to be butt-kissers get promoted. It was ridiculous. It really needed to be stopped and then when the new regime came in they have gone over board in trying to stop it. There needs to be a happy medium again at this company like there was years ago when Bob Cohen was in charge but I fear this will never happen. What a shame. This was a great little place to work and once upon a time I even looked forward to going to the office every day, well not any longer. It's really too bad.
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3.6Rating Details
Category
Pay3
Respect3
Benefits3
Job Security5
Work/Life Balance5
Career Growth3
Location4
Co-Workers3
Work Environment3

From Louisville KY — 09/04/2009

I've been at VMS for several years and have seen numerous ups and downs. As with most companies, there seems to be many inefficiency issues never addressed because departments are territorial. Middle management appears to more concerned about job preservation than trimming waste to improve the bottom line. Overall, I feel the company has done a pretty good job handling the impact of the recession. Our pay was cut but, as promised, it has been restored. Unfortunately, well before the recession, corporate failed to provide cost of living increases even when reasonable belt-tightening could have made it possible. Not only have we not gotten raises in a very long time, we've seen insurance payroll deductions increase, co-pays increase, and overtime eliminated. I understand that the economy is a hardship for the company, as it is for employees but, honestly, many of us on the lower rungs of the company ladder are struggling. While it isn't the company's obligation to pay us more than they can afford, they can hardly afford to return to the days when turnover was high in positions where training takes literally months. Monitoring is one of those jobs with a long learning curve and minimal standards. There is no incentive to improve production or quality. Those who do improve performance from year-to-year should be rewarded if for no other reason than to reinforce their work ethic and to shame the slackers. Better yet, fire the slackers to save the overhead spent on insurances, taxes, and 401K matching that adds 50-100 percent to the cost of wages in order to offer limited overtime to the most productive monitors who aren't in it purely for the paycheck. Expect and reward professional standards and you'll see the benefit. I really believe this is achievable, especially if overtime eligibility was raised to production of 1.0 for five hours of OT, 1.10 for more than five, and tied to standards set for attendance and quality.

Where job security is concerned, I have learned that supervisors seem to appreciate me as long as I'm on time, work instead of playing computer games or sending texts or talking on my cell phone, and don't whine about everything. Work-life balance is great because I don't ever have to work swing shift and, even when OT was available, have never been coerced to work it. One really good thing about monitoring: you can't take it home with you.

Career Potential: from what I've seen, there is only potential to make lateral moves where you change jobs but don't get paid more to learn more.

Work environment can be stressful with so many monitors crammed so close together. The department often sounds like a tuberculosis ward during cold and flu seasons, especially with desks positioned end-to-end being shared by shifts. Supervisors are a pleasure to work for and very accommodating as long as you're doing your job and meeting standards.

Co-worker competence: Ask a monitor what they do for a living and they'll tell you, "I get paid to watch the news." This is true, but it takes multi-tasking skills to combine the use of so many senses at such an intense level for so many hours. It is not for those with ADHD or texting-talking habits. You almost need to be anti-social to monitor because you work in isolation. I'm not sure new hires are screened for this. I hate it when monitors whine about their show assignments, which shows are on the pick-up list, that they got written up for constantly arriving late/leaving early/take long lunches without making up time/need forum pages because they think we need to express themselves. I don't want to potluck with you. I don't want to bowl or play softball with you. I don't see any need for an idea committee expect to get an extra long paid break. I'd rather work than read your jibberish on time-killing forum pages. Just shut up, do your job, do it well, and quit talking on your cell phone while I'm taking a leak.

Bottom line: VMS has improved to become a mediocre company to work for. With a little effort by management and employees, it could be fantastic. Unfortunately, mediocrity appears to be the new American norm. What a shame.
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4.9Rating Details
Category
Pay5
Respect5
Benefits5
Job Security5
Work/Life Balance5
Career Growth5
Location5
Co-Workers5
Work Environment5

From All Over the Country — 08/16/2009

This is Tony Clifton here, ladies and gentleman. When I was hangin' out at VMS it was a great place to be. My score above is from the way it was back in the good old days. I even remember bringin' my guitar to the annual meetin' and goin' into my lounge act for the staff. Back in the day people loved goin' to work there. And if it ain't like that there any longer then something needs to get done. Something like bring the old regime that everyone loved back - like Michael and Bob, DeWitt and Pro. Any one of them could turn the place around. All of them could send it right out of the ballpark and turn it back into the good positive work environment it used to be. So I say bite the bullet, owners, bring back the old gang and let's get this show on the road!
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3.1Rating Details
Category
Pay3
Respect2
Benefits5
Job Security2
Work/Life Balance3
Career Growth2
Location5
Co-Workers4
Work Environment3

From New York, NY — 08/07/2009

Benefits, Work/Life Balance and Location are pretty good. Respect, Job Security, Career Potential/Growth and Work Environment are pretty bad. VMS is the kind of company where the people in charge create a negative and almost hostile environment for the employees and then blame the employees for not being happy about it.
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4.2Rating Details
Category
Pay2
Respect5
Benefits5
Job Security4
Work/Life Balance5
Career Growth4
Location5
Co-Workers5
Work Environment4

From Louisville KY — 02/05/2009

Iím a little disenchanted by what I see hereÖ but I still like my job.
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4.3Rating Details
Category
Pay4
Respect5
Benefits5
Job Security4
Work/Life Balance4
Career Growth5
Location5
Co-Workers4
Work Environment5

From Louisville, KY — 12/15/2008

Pay: The pay isn't great, but I know they could get away with paying us less and don't, so there's something.

Respect: I've read many of the responses here and can't disagree more. I have only experienced good things from coworkers and supervisors. The only thing I will complain about is working second shift you don't get to actually watch the CEO briefings. You just get a paragraph about what was said. Other than that, in this company I feel if you do your job you get treated equally. Regardless of performance.

Benefits: The benefits are nice. I've been impressed with the holiday PTO, vacation time immediately from hire date, and you even get to treat your birthday as a holiday. I've never had that with a company before. Especially the two weeks of vacation from the moment you begin working with them. Nice.

Job Security: Considering we have had layoffs recently, I should say this is pretty poor. But I do believe the company when they say they've cut all they need to cut. They assured us there would be no more layoffs and I trust them enough to believe it.

Work/Life Balance: The problem I have here is there are no "normal" shift hours. The only shifts they have in my department are 5,6,7 AM start times or 3,5,6,7,9 PM start times. Which means either way you don't have the possibility of a normal life. haha. I don't mind it personally, but I can see how someone would.

Career Potential/Growth: I've read a lot of the responses on this one and I disagree completely. I've been with the company for a year now and know for a fact you can move up if you try. The problem with people calling this the "buddy system" is that most companies work that way. There are college classes all about it, though they call it "networking". haha. I truly believe at VMS if you excel at your job, they will promote you. And I haven't seen any evidence to the contrary.

Location: Nice building.

Co-worker Competence: It is true I work with a bunch of anti-social people. But I don't mind. Everyone is respectful.

Work Environment: Besides IT problems (what company doesn't have those?) everything is fine. It's not too hot or cold and the building is cleaned every night.
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3.2Rating Details
Category
Pay4
Respect1
Benefits4
Job Security3
Work/Life Balance5
Career Growth3
Location3
Co-Workers4
Work Environment2

From New York, NY — 10/23/2008

When I first worked at VMS, I thought it was the best company I'd ever worked for. But they lost their focus lightning fast. There was an "executive shuffle," and they traded down, not up. The buddy system definitely is at play there. If you suck up to the head honchos, and they love you, you're a shoe-in for a promotion, but if you don't, you're expendable. And the head honchos sure can't abide any of the rest of us saying so on Jobvent, can they? I've written three or four previous reviews on here and every single one of them has been deleted. I pity all the good people who are still there and still trying to survive what has obviously become the VMS quagmire. Believe it or not, there IS life after VMS. Send out those resumes and get yourselves situated someplace better. I did, and I've never regretted it!
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3.7Rating Details
Category
Pay4
Respect4
Benefits4
Job Security4
Work/Life Balance4
Career Growth4
Location4
Co-Workers3
Work Environment3

From NY — 07/27/2008

It's really not that bad, it's what you make of it. I'm not management, and I am happy. If you work hard, admit your mistakes (and correct them) you will be just fine. There are a lot of intelligent people that work at VMS, and a lot of buffoons who work there as well. If you surround yourself with positive and successful people, you will become positive and successful. It's a free market economy.

The one thing I can fault is the finger pointing and blame games that go on. It's not elementary school anymore, we're all supposed to be grown ups, that is not the way it usually goes. Instead of concentrating on resolving the issue with the client, typically one department wastes their time blaming another, and nothing gets done.

For those who are paranoid schizophrenics, the survey was conducted by a 3rd party, surveymethods.com. They are a reputable place, and have nothing to do with VMS except they conducted the survey on behalf of VMS.

For the complainers - you work in a temperature controlled office building, talk on the phone all day, and surf the web at your whim. Would you rather be doing manual labor for half of what you get paid? That's what some people do, and they don't complain as much as you do.

The benefits are not that bad, come on. Other companies I've worked for have had far worse health care plans. You can go to almost ANY doctor out there (accredited by an American medical association), and it's in network. It may cost you a little more since you probably are heavily medicated due to issues of your own, and Rat Tailed Jimmy on the corner probably doesn't accept Horizon's RX card.

They moved to Times Square - perfect location. So what, you may have to walk a few more blocks, it's exercise. Think about those in the other offices that probably commute further than you and pay for gas.

I rate co-worker competence at -1, simply because if you look at these posts (from the small majority), you can clearly see that grammar and sentence structure is not high on anyone's priority list.

There is room for growth, if you make room. Perhaps you will not rise from Video tape changer to COO in a few short years, but again, it's based on your own work ethic and mental capacity. You are only limited by your own ineptitude and inner self.

Excellence is ...
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3.9Rating Details
Category
Pay3
Respect3
Benefits5
Job Security3
Work/Life Balance4
Career Growth3
Location5
Co-Workers5
Work Environment5

From Los Angeles, CA — 06/25/2008

I'm very sad to read all these negative reviews and I'm even more sad because I know they are true. VMS used to be a great place to work pretty much up until the end of my stay there. It used to be a great stepping stone for many employees. During their stay at VMS, employees learned numerous valuable skills that made them desirable and hirable. They learned how to provide excellent customer service, how to up-sell, how to work as a team and how to take pride in a goal accomplished.
But I understand where all these reviews are coming from. After a while, you get tired of fighting the good fight and you have to move on. For those of you still fighting for more programs to be monitored, for more integrated software, or for better bonus structures - hang in there. Your time will come. It did for me and for my many former co-workers who are now off at better jobs and happier.
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