Star Publishing Reviews

Updated Aug 18, 2022

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Found 27 of over 28 reviews

1.2
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  1. 1.0
    Current Employee, less than 1 year

    Editor

    Aug 18, 2022 - Editor 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    - Only 5 minutes walk to Commonwealth MRT station - Meal options aplenty - Can make friends with colleagues who suffer together in adversity

    Cons

    I worked here in 2008 for 3 months as I thought 'no harm just try lah' after graduation. Some areas to highlight: 1) I was offered the job during the interview. This should be a big red flag. 2) No CPF during probation' I don't know why I was so stupid to accept this then. Some of my colleagues (newbies like me) also accepted this. 3) In my first days there, I saw the staff list from two months ago and noticed half of them were no longer around at my time of joining. 4) All the problems associated with a family business. I recollected what happened to us (the poor employees) as I read the reviews here. Seems like absolutely NOTHING has changed in the past 14 years. The issues I encountered then are still happening today. 5) Towards the end of probation, the director just summoned me into his room one morning and said something like 'it's better that we don't continue.' At least he was kind enough to offer me a cheque of another 1/2 month salary. I left within the hour even though it was still early in the day. I had a feeling that they hired people just to work on certain projects then let them go when these projects are done. But the management bluffed these poor sods into thinking that they'll be taking on a full-time job.

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    5 people found this review helpful
  2. 1.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    Artists please read me

    Aug 18, 2022 - 3D Artist 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Medical Claim - Any clinic Half day off on Christmas and Chinese New Year Eve 15 minute teabreak (4:00 - 4:15pm)

    Cons

    Disclaimer: Glassdoor only allows 1 star as the lowest rating that you can give. Most of the negative reviews here are true, they pertain mostly to the editorial, financial and family side of the business. I will not repeat what you have already read, but instead will be focusing on the production side (Illustrators, Graphic Designers and 3D Artists) and it's management. General Issues Office uses old school punch card system (You are not allowed to buy breakfast after punching in) Company hires mostly foreigners as it is cheaper. Turnover rate is very high (1 person every 1 - 2 months) Deadlines are not fixed. If MOE asks for something last minute, you have to give it to them. Micromanagement - Everyone has to fill up a timesheet daily, about what you have done, how long did each task take. There is also a weekly timesheet, which requires you fill up your completed or ongoing tasks. Management Issues Assistant manager is newly appointed, but doing his best to keep things together. Will take time out of his schedule to listen to issues you are facing, and will try to resolve them. Keeps to his word unlike upper management. No proper deadlines for most projects. "If you ask me for a deadline I will tell you I want it yesterday." Upper management does not really care / they are very forgetful. I raised up several issues concerning the lack of portfolio take-away, the lack of teamwork, and how working on 3D using a mac is slow. PC was acquired after I voiced out the same issues a second time, rest of the issues were not fixed. Statements made by the management are things that they know you want to hear, however no action is taken, or the statement itself is not true. "I don't care about whether you have a degree or not, what matters is your artwork." "This company does not scrimp on salary." As just a poly grad, my salary was lesser as compared to my Uni grad counterpart in the office, even though I had more work experience, and the quality of my work and efficiency is better. 3D Art Department The company does not have Maya or 3DS Max, Blender is the software used here and you will have to learn how to use it on your own. Worked using a Mac for 6 months, finally got PCs after I voiced out this issue twice. No teamwork, everyone does their own thing and nobody knows what are all the 3D projects in progress, nobody knows what the others are doing. Communication within the team is bad, doing work that has already been completed by someone else has happened before. Portfolio take-away as a 3D artist here is very little. The senior artist is modelling most of the characters, as a new 3D artist, you will be mostly downloading stock assets and doing scene composition. The company functions similar to a design agency, speed is priority, quality of the work only needs to be slightly above average. Counter offer after my resignation: "I cannot accept your resignation, I want to try to make it work. If I give you the power to lead the team, and you manage to fix all the mentioned problems within a month, I will increase your salary 3 months later" Rejecting a resignation is illegal. The manager handed me back my resignation letter which I did not take back. Asked me to take up a lead position with no immediate pay increment. Impossible to fix deep rooted problems within a month. No guarantee that I would still have my job after fixing said issues. After I stated how his counter offer was unfair to me and rejected his offer, the manager told me he would reconsider his offer and get back to me. The manager did not get back to me, and instead held a meeting with the whole 3D artist team. The manager repeated all the issues I mentioned to him, and stated that from that point onwards, the senior artist would take the role of art lead. No other counter offer was presented after this. Summary If you are okay with no career progression, a very slow growing portfolio, low wages, and like to come to work to switch off your brain, this company might be a suitable choice. If you are an aspiring artist wanting to build up your career and portfolio, this is not the place for you.

    4 people found this review helpful
  3. 2.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    Not worth committing to

    Jun 21, 2022 - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    • Easily accessible by train. • Bosses does not call/text/disturb you after working hours. • 5 day work week.

    Cons

    • Short-tempered directors/management/bosses. • Get ready to be screamed/shouted/yelled/blamed frequently for no good reason. • Management is VERY MESSY. • Directors/management are all talk and no action. • EXTREMELY HIGH turnover rate. An average of 1 every few weeks or so. • Directors/management EXPECTS you to read their mind. Telepathy at its finest.

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    6 people found this review helpful
  4. 1.0
    Former Employee, more than 1 year

    Worst place I've ever been

    Jun 9, 2022 - Editorial Assistant in Singapore
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Besides some of the colleagues, nothing is good.

    Cons

    Dilapidated building that looks like it came straight out of the Great Depression, filled with miserable people (like me) that were always just constantly looking for a better place to hop to after realising how disgusting the work culture and environment is. This is a family-run business that has absolutely zero tolerance for outsiders - actually, even if you're a family member, you still get shamed in front of the other employees during big meetings (I know you existing/past employees know who I'm referring to). The chairman and chairwoman are terrible, terrible excuses of a human being. The family has no respect for anyone in the company. What you can expect there: - Expect being shouted at on a daily basis and being called into the chairman's room for (st)utterly nonsensical ramblings and 'life' stories. - Expect being accused of 'stealing' items from the pantry. - Expect working overtime and not being paid the legal amount of compensation you deserve. - Expect seeing crying colleagues every so often because they got shouted at. - Expect a particular manager that backstabs you and talks behind your back. - Expect clocking in and out of work everyday like a factory worker, with a time sheet. - Expect being on tenterhooks for every single day in that office. - The list goes on. The whole one year spent at Star Publishing was one of the worst periods of my life. I was legitimately depressed because of how bad the workplace was. I cried countless times in the office and at home because of how much I hated the company (I was constantly looking for jobs but to no avail due to Covid). I woke up every morning contemplating why I lived my life being so unhappy everyday. Now that I have moved on from the company and found a better place to work at, thinking about my experience there gives me the shivers. Each time I pass by Commonwealth MRT, I get PTSD (I'm serious LOL) because of it reminds me of the depressing days I spent at Star Publishing. Please do not, I repeat - DO NOT - apply for a job, let alone accept an offer from Star Publishing. Trust me, you WILL regret it. The employee turnover rate is higher than you would ever expect (during my time there, I've seen over 20 people come and go, and mind you, the company has less than 35 people).

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    8 people found this review helpful
  5. 1.0
    Current Employee

    FAMILY BUSINESS

    Mar 30, 2022 - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Awesome and reliable colleagues and its near MRT!

    Cons

    ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING. Management is a huge no no! Traumatic experience.....

    3 people found this review helpful
  6. 1.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    STAY AWAY

    Feb 9, 2022 - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    - highly accessible - relatively competitive renumeration - very good working relationship wiith peers

    Cons

    the very very short answer - its a total mess of a workplace. the longer answer: (1) top management's shenanigans - the company's top management is infamous for (their) internal carouselling and changing your job scope on a whim. expect to have your to-do lists and responsibilities change in a flash. (2) OJT-turned-deadly - be prepared to learn on the job *with potentially deadly consequences*. expect to work without guidance and get earfuls (at best) when your work is not up to standard WELL AFTER ITS DONE. stories of people being let go for even the most common of mistakes are *not untrue*, and *one too many*, if you know where to find these stories. (3) low threshold for "mistakes" - every sin/mistake/transgression *can and will* count against you. ^ "tarnished" the company's "reputation"? thats one charge. ^ praised a competitor before top management? that's another charge. ^ late for work by even a minute? that's a THIRD charge. ^ differing opinions with top management and keen to talk that out? FOURTH charge. TLDR: it takes terrifingly little to offend top management. (4) live like a refugee in a war-zone - since you need (almost) no effort to offend top management, always keep your table spick and span for you never know when you will have to be on the move again (5) no professional development - top management takes immense pride as a "publisher of MOE-approved textbooks", but allow your ears to be repeatedly pricked when they repeatedly espouse "certain ingredients" as essential in producing an "MOE-approved title" - one of the KPs has a (convoluted) vision of how its staff ought to contribute to its "self-sufficiency". rest-assured you will NOT have the necessary equipping and training. - an experienced colleague (>1 year) is pretty much your lifesaver when it comes to professional development. IF there are *multiple* such colleagues in your department, lucky you indeed! (6) problematic strategy, workflows - the MOE-related projects *grind* on with little complications, BUT in-house projects are extremely subject to the whims and fancies of top management as they play sudden death or resurrection with them. - you are EXPECTED to have a big-picture plan BUT are hands-tied by top management when it comes to much needed information (esp deadlines). - due to EXTREMELY HIGH TURNOVER both past and present, the company engages MANY freelancers whose work can be of questionable standard.

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    12 people found this review helpful
  7. 2.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    -

    Sep 26, 2021 - Clerical Postion 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Nothing good to talk about.

    Cons

    Think carefully before you join.

    2 people found this review helpful
  8. 1.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    Stay the heck away.

    Sep 10, 2021 - Editor 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    - near to Commonwealth MRT - good colleagues - good option of food places nearby note: none of these justify you wasting your time here.

    Cons

    - too many to list. Poor, shoddy management; temperamental bosses; wanting you to do things their way; hire-and-fire culture; obsolete and archaeic mindsets, etc etc

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    7 people found this review helpful
  9. 1.0
    Former Employee, more than 1 year

    For the sake of your sanity, read this.

    Mar 1, 2021 - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Sweet colleagues. Office is located near Commonwealth MRT station.

    Cons

    The first day I started working here was the day I knew I made a huge mistake. Never have I seen an office still requiring their employees to clock in and out with a punch card machine. What are we, factory workers? And I don't even know if factories still do that anymore? But anyways, moving on. The company is run by a family of tyrants who have little to no respect for people outside of their family. Not a day goes by in the office without hearing one of them shoutings their heads off at one of the employees. The shoutings are often rife with verbal abuse; I've heard my colleagues being called 'stupid', 'embarrassing' and more. There's even hearsay that some colleagues have been cussed at in dialects but I haven't heard it for myself so that's that. With that said, there are much better ways to let an employee know that they've made a mistake - I for one know that screaming is not on the list. Useless meetings are held every so often where the chairman just babbles on and on about his life, his family and how 'happy' his family is. You mean *coughs* dysfunctional *cough*. The pantry is usually a place for employees to have a break in, to have their meals or have a quick snack in (this place does NOT offer you any edible snacks, by the way... Unless you're keen on Chinese New Year snacks that are either almost expiring or have expired). But at Star Publishing it has been indirectly instilled in employees that this is just a place for you to store your food in the employees' fridge (there are 2 fridges - one for the management i.e. the family and one for the rest of the employees), wash your hands, or get water/tea. I'd say that besides your monthly salary and bi-yearly bonuses, the welfare there is close to zero. On two occasions, one of the family members instructed the office cleaner to go around the office and ask every employee whether they took a SLICE OF CHEESE or a PACKET OF 3-IN-1 MILO from the management's fridge. Um, I'm pretty sure no one would do that because we can afford that? Also, none of us wants to go snooping around your nasty fridge because only heaven knows how much expired food is in there. Anyway, I stated this example because it goes to show the level of distrust this company has in the employees. On a similar note, each employee is also expected to write a daily report on what they did that day. If you don't submit yours at the end of each day, they'll question you the following day and assume you did nothing. Bravo! I could go on and on but I'm afraid I'll hit the word limit. But yes, due to reasons like the above, the workplace environment always felt hostile to me. I woke up every morning wondering why I put myself through such turmoil, but due to COVID-19 it was challenging to find another job and that's why I stayed put. During my one year at this place, I've seen about 15 people come and go. That's about 1-2 people each month, which is crazy. What's even crazier is that the management still doesn't realise there's anything wrong with them or the company despite the extremely high turnover.

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    14 people found this review helpful
  10. 1.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    Highly biased superiors

    Feb 4, 2021 - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Friendly colleagues. Convenient location near Commonwealth MRT.

    Cons

    Policies changing every now and then. Very little guidance for newbies yet expecting you to create high quality production. Hypocritical- only switching to a gentler attitude when you are leaving the company. Otherwise shouting and yelling every other day.

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    4 people found this review helpful
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