Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.

Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. Employee Reviews

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Toxic environment, dishonest and disorganized
Operations Manager (Former Employee) –  OregonJanuary 13, 2019
I will start by disclosing that I was recently terminated while on medical leave for cancer testing. The company states they accepted my resignation even though I didn't resign.

I started working for CARD in Oregon about 11 months ago. I was really excited for the opportunity. As a mom with an autistic child I thought I would be making a difference...this was not the case.

My first week was supposed to be training with the operations manager trainer. The person assigned to me was quitting and spent the majority of the week doing interviews and other things. I was given manuals to read but really had no training whatsoever. The person assigned to give me ongoing support never reached out or responded to requests for help so I had to wing it for several months.

I did a good enough job because I took our clinic from the bottom of the region to the top. This however wasn't good enough. My staff was super hostile to having an outside manager come in and did everything to make me miserable. My assistant and another therapist tagged teamed on doing everything to sabotage the good that was happening.

Some of the specific problems that Oregon faces are:

1. Too much growth. The corporate office can't support the clinics that are already in place but they are hyperfocused on opening more. They won't listen to the employees who beg them to slow down and support what already exists.

2. Operations and admin are treated poorly. The focus is only on the clinical staff. Although we are managers by name, we are not managers by function. We are more like puppets for our regional
  more... manager to add hours. The only thing they care about is billable hours. The staff are supposed to have holidays off but we are pushed to stay open so they can bill at a premium rate. They get mad if the therapists actually want their holidays off. You get between ten and fifteen emails per day asking how many hours have been added. It's draining. Clinical supervisors, who are technically below managers, make $20,000 more per year. They get incentives such as PlayStations and big screen TVs, regional getaways and apple watches while admin gets a fruit basket and a $50 gift card. There is such a huge gap between the way clinical and admin are looked at by the corporate office. The only reason that they call us operations managers is so they can claim exempt status and pay us a salary without overtime as we put in 60-70 hours/week. But...if you miss a day they will dock the pay.

3. Shortage of BCBAs. They will literally higher anyone. I was actually told that as long as the BCBA wasn't that bad then we really wanted to keep them happy. Let me remind you that they are creating programming for autistic kids.

4. Poor regional and corporate managers. Aside from one person, there is no support in Oregon. You will be ignored. You will not be helped. Of course, if you make a mistake then you will hear from them very quickly. But when you ask for help you get empty promises.

5. Structural damage to buildings and an unsafe work environment. Our clinic had metal grates falling from the ceiling. Our fire system was disabled the entire time I was there even though I tried to get it fixed.

CARD says they have a discretionary bonus structure. When I was hired, this was not disclosed correctly. I was told that quarterly bonuses were part of my salary. They don't mention that the requirements to meet bonuses are only met by a handful of clinics and it's three quarters later that you would actually see the bonus if you are lucky enough to get one. They do this because the turnover is so high and if you are no longer working there then they don't have to pay you.

My turning point came in November. We were notified with very little notice that they were taking away Kaiser Permanente for insurance and only offering United healthcare. Prior to 2018 there were options at least. I was paying about. $600/month for premiums and as of 2019 that would jump to almost 40%of each paycheck. I have lupus and need continuity of care and was starting to have some other symptoms.

Our region was restructured as well and we had a horrible new manager come in who made things so much worse. I sent a detailed letter to the director of operations regarding the stress and decline of Oregon clinics. She didn't acknowledge or respond to it which wasn't entirely unexpected. They simply don't care. I went out on medical leave for only three weeks and was terminated while away. I had to have testing for breast cancer and blood cancer so it wasn't like I just had a cold.

Bottom line...stay away. Even if you think it will be different for you, it won't be. I'd rather flip burgers or drive Uber than go through the stress and toxicity that this company creates. It's simply not worth it. You aren't helping autistic kiddos...you are helping the CEO and the executive team line their pocketbooks with money by adding hours. Take what I say with a grain of salt but so your research. I was one of the top performers in the region so I can only imagine what it is like for those who aren't.

Stay away from CARD as if your physical and mental health depend on it.... because it does.
  less
Pros
The kiddos and the families
Cons
Everything else
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Avoid CARD at all costs!!!
Behavioral Health Technician (Former Employee) –  Chandler, AZJanuary 13, 2019
I was hired at CARD. When I was hired I was told that my pay would be $14 an hour; however, when I got my check it seemed way smaller. I couldn't access the online pay system, and it wasn't until they mailed me my final pay stub that I realized that they were paying me minimum wage while I was training!!!

I went through three weeks of training. I felt like I got a lot of support through training, but then you have to do a final observation with a client. Anyone who has ever worked with someone with special needs knows that things go awry. This happened, and instead of taking this into consideration, they failed me.

This happened at 1pm on Thursday, and they waited until 4pm on Monday to tell me I failed and that I was fired. That's four days they stole from me! That's four days I couldve been looking for another job! They also never reimbursed me for my fingerprints.

There is a huge need for people to help those with special needs. As someone who's done it for many years and absolutely loves it, I can tell you I left the profession because of companies like CARD who mistreat their employees.
Pros
Working with a great group of kids
Cons
Poor training, mistreating employees
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3.0
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Great for getting your foot in the door with ABA
BCAT (Former Employee) –  United StatesJanuary 9, 2019
depends on the office you are at but they hire office managers who have no clue what they are doing. It’s a high stress job that does sometimes leave you drained. It’s confusing because most of their offices across California offer diffrent pay rates. Good job to get your foot in the door it just depends what office you go to.
Pros
Fulfilling experience
Cons
Low pay and unreliable bosses
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2.0
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overwhelming and long hours
Operations Manager (Former Employee) –  Aurora, ILJanuary 9, 2019
I truly wish my time at CARD would've worked out, but the location I was at needed a lot of work and I was a one admin team, and who knows how long it would've been before I was able to receive that in-person support let alone if that in-person support would've helped. A LOT of my support was remote and I could tell that my mentors/trainers tried their best, but they were also over worked so it was hard for them to give me the attention that I really needed in order to succeed in that position. I worked incredibly long hours (averaging about 95 hours every bi-weekly paycheck) when I was under the impression that my hours would be a little more flexible. I worked through my lunch every single day as I was also in charge of answering the phones and didn't have time to take breaks. Not only that, but the task load was incredibly overwhelming and there was a lot of pressure and high expectations for the OMs. Rightfully so as any management position requires a lot of responsibility, but I was not trained appropriately and that job had no room for mistakes. I was thrown into a lot of it and learned as I went and made mistakes, as a new employee would, but I felt like a constant failure for not getting things done on time or not knowing how to do something. I think the company is growing so rapidly that the employees can't keep up with it. I truly tried the best I could in that position and after putting in all of those hours and not seeing much progress or success was, both, very mentally and physically draining. Unfortunately, the pay and employee incentives were not enough to keep  more... me there as I had no work-life balance and was on call constantly, so even at home I couldn't leave work.  less
Pros
great mission, rewarding field, colleagues were nice
Cons
long hours, overworked, draining, no work/home balance
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5.0
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Great place to work with many opportunities to advance your career
Behavior Therapist IIb (Former Employee) –  San Antonio, TXJanuary 8, 2019
The job itself can be difficult, however, the company does everything that it can to make sure that their employees are supported. The clients can be difficult in many different ways, but it is rewarding and exciting to see your client succeed. This job is not for everyone, but if you are someone who is patient, hard-working, creative, and can often think outside of the box, you will be a perfect fit. There is a lot of problem solving, but I often felt I was never alone when I was confronted with a problem. CARD provides a foundation for a strong, friendly, and team working environment

Whether it is office or therapy roles, there are many opportunities to advance your career at CARD, and I always felt that the company did a great job at informing their hires about how they can move up in the company. If you are motivated enough, you can obtain your RBT and BCAT certifications. CARD also provides therapists the opportunity to become a BCBA.

In my experience, I really enjoyed working at CARD and finally decided to leave to pursue a different career. After a few bad jobs and bad employers, I have often considered returning to CARD. They really set the standard for me in how they took care of their employees and they made it a very fun place for me to work. Even through the tough times, the clients are amazing. I enjoyed working with all of them and watching them succeed every day. Overall, it is a great place to start if you are looking to get involved with helping kids on the spectrum.
Pros
Many career opportunities, great working environment
Cons
Clients can be tough, not much down time during sessions
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Do not work for card !
Line Technician (Former Employee) –  Denham Springs, LAJanuary 8, 2019
The worst job! This company is based on contracts and will sue you into an agreement so that you cannot work anywhere else. The company is very unprofessional. I spent my time and money to designate myself a secure job. This isn't it, the only ones making money would be the supervisor and the higher boss. The company only pays at the most 12 per hour to sit with children that are autistic or related in some way with a disorder. I LOVE WORKING WITH CHILDREN, BUT I CANNOT WORK FOR THAT WAGE. IT IS UNACCEPTABLE! I CANNOT EXPRESS HOW HECTIC IT IS WORKING FOR THIS COMPANY!
Pros
No pros
Cons
Money, Time, Hours, Pay, Pay, Pay
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3.0
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Fun workplace
Behavior therapist (Former Employee) –  CaliforniaJanuary 4, 2019
The working environment was great as well as the training. I really enjoyed working there, even if it was for a few weeks. This job is perfect as a first job to gain experience, but ONLY if you have a second job. The most hours that were given, were a maximum of ten hours a week for a full time position during training sessions. Was also being paid at minimum wage with a bachelors degree (paid as someone with just a high school diploma straight out of high school).

I had no choice but to resign. I had to look somewhere else in order to be able to pay for bills that were adding up. With the hours that were given just during the training sessions, were just not enough to pay bills.
Pros
working environment and training
Cons
very little hours
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I was SO disappointed with CARD- refused to pay me!
Behavioral Health Technician (Former Employee) –  Lansing, MIDecember 30, 2018
As a social work major, I was ecstatic to start working with CARD. It is a large company and I was eager to learn about ABA therapy, so I packed up and moved two hours away for this job. However, I was quickly disappointed. I was promised full time work, but they only gave me 13 hours per week. The online training was awesome BUT there is TERRIBLE communication with the trainers/management.
I found out that payroll didn’t pay me for two days of work (~20 hours) and the issue failed to get solved, no matter how many different people I spoke to. Finally, I ended up quitting after two months of not getting paid for those hours. Also, you get paid your States minimum wage for training, rather than the hourly wage in the offer letter.
This company is a hot mess. AVOID AT ALL COSTS.
Pros
Working with kids, valuable training
Cons
Everything: management, payroll, hours
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2.0
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Alright
Behavior Therapist (Former Employee) –  Elk Grove, CADecember 28, 2018
Good experience for ABA beginners. Hard to get feedback when you want experience in the field and especially when insurance doesn’t allow it. Seemed like more people were getting more hours due to favoritism. Management seems picky and chooses favorites. Didn’t get the career advice I needed and had barely any hours. Pay is very low compared to other ABA companies. Seems like CARD is more money hungry for insurance than taking care of employees.
Pros
Shop program, flexible schedule
Cons
Management, low hours, lack of feedback
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4.0
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Best Part
Behavior Technician (Former Employee) –  Sacramento, CADecember 23, 2018
I would say the most rewarding moment of my job was seeing the child grow over time and apply new skills they've successfully learned. I've witnessed this many times and it made my day every single time.
Pros
Helping Children
Cons
Trying to keep cool at all times
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5.0
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Well worth the tough days
Behavioral Therapist (Former Employee) –  Arcadia, CADecember 22, 2018
This job in general featured fun days of playing board games, dance parties, and learning opportunities for the kids. Occasionally the job would be very difficult due to a tantrum by one of the kids. Although these sometimes last hours, the reward of seeing these kids progress is well worth the trouble.
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3.0
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Rewarding career field, poor corporate management
Behavioral Therapist (Former Employee) –  AnonymousDecember 19, 2018
If you’re in college and looking to get into ABA for some valuable experience as a new therapist, CARD is the place for you! The initial therapist training is thorough and sets you up for success, if you study and actually care to learn about ABA. But if you’ve got a family to support and bills to pay, however, CARD is not the place to be. The lack of consistent hours and low pay with the Behavior Therapist position is awful. Flexible schedules are advertised, but with business hours ranging from 8a-8p every day, that requires you to essentially ‘always be available’ so you can have close to full time hours each week if possible. Most alarmingly though, for an ABA company, there should really be more OBM strategies used with clinicians and employees. Being treated like you’re just a number from your corporate resources, and never receiving praise or positive reinforcement from them on a regular frequent schedule is disappointing, discouraging, and frankly exhausting - no matter how rewarding your clinical work with kiddos is.
Pros
Opportunity to grow and get ABA experience
Cons
Low pay, lack of consistent hours/schedule, lack of support from Corporate
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work place
Behavioral Therapist- Center (Current Employee) –  San Jose, CADecember 16, 2018
Card is a great place to work. I would not leave there. They have lots of opportunities for growth and promotions. Its a friendly atmosphere to work in. They help you when you are having problems with schedule.
Pros
the supervisors are awesome
Cons
pay could be higher for living in the area
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Stressful low paying job that includes long days with huge gaps in schedule
Behavior Technician (Former Employee) –  Lakewood, WADecember 12, 2018
While working with the children at this company can be incredibly fun most of the time the workplace culture and environment overall is extremely toxic.

The scheduler consistently leaves gaps in employees schedules, for example, work 8-10a then a lunch and work 10:30a-3p with a gap from 3-6:30p and then work 6:30-8p. The scheduler also has control entirely over your schedule and in the past has cut hours of employees based on if you upset them. Management at this location is incredibly poorly done. It is super hard to get ahold of supervisors due to how overworked they are. While the company promises ongoing mentorship it oftentimes feels as though any mentorship is lacking true care from the supervisors and it is merely about completing a meeting or supervision hours in order to be done with it and move on to the next activity they have.

Workplace culture is honestly just extremely stressful. The staff is kind and fun overall (although there is always some workplace drama happening) but the rigid management is the hardest part of the job as well as the inflexible schedule + low pay that is given.

The company is incredibly for-profit and will charge you ridiculous amounts of money if you leave before one year after signing contracts for certain credentials, pay attention to what they have you sign. On HR day the company has you sign tons and tons of papers if you intend to work here ensure you read each thing you sign.

The most enjoyable part of the job is playing with the kids but even that sometimes isn't fulfilling due to the companies intensity goals they
  more... have for the staff to be hitting. The intensity and pacing expected of the kiddos frequently results in more maladaptive behaviors because they are overworked and unable to play/be kids. CARD highly pushes for discrete trial teaching methods with token economies doing 10 trials rather than naturalistic teaching methods. I've worked at multiple ABA companies now and have never seen such insane intensity as this company expects as well as have never seen such challenging behaviors due to programs being implemented.  less
Pros
Pay increases as you receive more credentials, good job to get into ABA/Autism field if you have zero experience, and decent opportunities for career growth
Cons
Gaps in schedules/poor scheduling (expect to work weekends and 8a-8p most days), low pay, bad management, infrequent mentorship, horrible benefits that take months to kick in while you're paying for the benefits, and stressful expectations for workers
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takes care of their clients and employees
Behavioral Health Technician (Current Employee) –  Las Vegas, NVDecember 11, 2018
CARD has an enjoyable and great work environment. Management team is there to help their employees grow and succeed, which results in the clients success.
Cons
none
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2.0
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Low pay, low hours
Therapist (Former Employee) –  Chula Vista, CADecember 11, 2018
Been meaning to write this for a while. Low pay and low hours make it hard to pay bills. The managers are nice and so are most of the RBTs. You can make way more money other places. There just isn't much room for growth. The therapist liason was helpful. A few of the trainers could use some more compassion (especially working with disabled children). The receptionist/office coordinator was calm and helpful. Overall a OK experience. I would suggest doing what I did and staying the required year then move on to a place that pays better with more room for movement. Especially if you've gone through the trouble of getting your Bachelor's.
Pros
Free training
Cons
Low pay, no room for movement
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They're disorganized, they don't communicate well enough with employees
Behavior Therapist (Former Employee) –  Beaverton, ORDecember 3, 2018
They don't communicate well with their employees, especially when it comes to things that YOU REALLY should know. They say they'll pay you $15. But they only paid me $9/hr. Everything is disorganized because they lack the people. They also failed to explain how the training process would go.
Pros
None
Cons
Miscommunication, Low-paying
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CARD Review
Corporate Administrative Therapist (Current Employee) –  Gilbert, AZDecember 2, 2018
A typical work day would include seeing 2-4 different clients per day with appointments ranging from 2-2.5 hours. I learned how to manage my time and be more patient when facing a stressful situation. Although stressful times will occur, the progress with clients is rewarding.
Pros
Flexible
Cons
long days
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3.0
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Over worked and underpaid
Administrative Coordinator/Receptionist/Scheduler (Former Employee) –  ArizonaNovember 20, 2018
Great company but poor management lack of support and the turnover rate is very high. Love what the company stands for but most of the offices are ran by the wrong kind of people.
Pros
Training at corporate and retreats for administrative
Cons
Poor management and pay
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Great Experience working with certain kids: rude management and low pay
Behavior Technician (Former Employee) –  Visalia, CANovember 19, 2018
Some of the kids were great to work with. After a year however management gets rude and unappreciative of employees. Pay is also very low. Some good things but management and pay definitely need improvement.
Pros
Some wonderful kids and parents; Great to help make a difference in someone's life
Cons
Rude managment, disrespectful and insensitive to employees needs; ridiculously low pay
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3.1
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