• Report:  #2414

Complaint Review: Merrill Adams Associates - Parsippany New Jersey

Reported By:
- pennington, nj,

Merrill Adams Associates
400 Lanidex Plaza Parsippany, 07054 New Jersey, U.S.A.
Tell us has your experience with this business or person been good? What's this?
I contracted with Merrill Adams Associates to provide me with career counseling and marketing. They claim to have "contacts" and led me to believe I would have access to decision makers in companies and to jobs that were not advertised. I looked at two other firms that do this work, but went with MA because they claimed to have the most contacts.

Turns out the contacts they have are available almost anywhere. They did do a resume for me and cover letters, but for $5000, that's all they did. The counselor they assigned me to met with me 4 or 5 times over several months and provided very little advice. He was a good writer, but did not know the business world. Realizing that after months passed and I did what they told me to do, which was a one-page form that told me when to mail things and what to mail by certain dates, nothing happened. I didn't get any interviews, a few calls, but the leads went nowhere.

The information they gave me from their secret database was often wrong and didn't help at all. You can get the officers of a company in the library. You don't have to pay $5000 for it. I asked on several occasions for these specific "contacts", but was always put-off. They avoided the answer.

I finally realized that I was Ripped-off and asked for a refund. They refused several times and I went to Consumer Affairs. They could not compel the firm to refund my money. I wrote to the Attorney General for NJ, they directed the complaint to Consumer Affairs.

I cannot get any help with this firm. Each Sunday I see their ad in the newspaper and can't believe they advertise that "...it can be different if you have contacts" If this isn't false and misleading advertising and,in my opinion, possibly fraud, I've never seen it. PLEASE HELP ME GET MY MONEY BACK.

2 Updates & Rebuttals

I truly want to believe that you are a wonderful resource for consumers who have been "ripped off". I also believe that you have an awesome power which, when misused, even unintentionally, can be devastating to innocent people who should be protected.


Thu, February 07, 2002

----- Original Message -----
From: [email protected]
Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2002 4:37 PM
Subject: Re: Merrill Adams (Employment services)

400 Lanidex Plaza Parsippany, New Jersey 07054
973-884-2833 Fax: 973-884-0135
Email: [email protected]

To: RipOffReport.com

From: James F. Marken
Executive Vice President
Merrill Adams HQ.
Parsippany, NJ

I truly want to believe that you are a wonderful resource for consumers who have been "ripped off". I also believe that you have an awesome power which, when misused, even unintentionally, can be devastating to innocent people who should be protected.

Our organization has 31 wonderful people, many of whom have been here for many years. We have always taken pride in the meaningful work we do. We feel we serve a purpose, that we help others achieve a balance in their lives between home and work. These people have included Presidents, General Managers, functional Vice Presidents and senior Managers from manufacturing and service sectors, as well as scientist, attorneys, human resources and finance executives, and professionals from education, government and the military.

Many of those we help are corporate refugees from downsizing who only followed the methods of the past and found themselves scared, unemployed, thought of as old in the marketplace, with outdated skills. Rather than giving them a way to remain vital, their companies helped to make them disposable. In today's very difficult job market, these companies only offer them a cookie-cutter outplacement service for a few weeks or a few months.
To engineer our futures, to be able to change jobs at will, to move into this whole new world of technology and global competition did not come with instructions from prior generations or educators.

Three thousand people come through our doors every year. Out of those three thousand, we can only service three hundred paying clients. For the other twenty-seven hundred, we spend a few hours giving a one-on-one workshop. With our high level of intuitiveness and expertise in job change and career
management, we help them to move from the problem side to the solution with the best "do it yourself" program available. We have never charged those people one dollar, and they have numbered into the thousands each year.

We provide a very expensive resource on a shared cost basis. Our clients pay a small fraction of what it costs to create our service. They each receive our proportionate best effort. Our fee is received as our service is rendered. The service is front-loaded. We realized when we began this service that we could not operate on a contingency basis.

We teach our clients how to launch a successful marketing campaign. The materials this requires are crafted before launch. Our process is accelerated. Essentially we have a power launch into the market. We enable clients to have swift, comprehensive coverage of their available market. Normally within ten days, a new client is fully immersed in the market.

We make ourselves part of the solution for our clients' career- related challenges. Our fees are more than reasonable for the valuable service we provide. By comparison, recruiters who work on contingency charge 30% to 35% of annual income plus expenses associated with the search. This is simply not practical for our clients.

We charge the lowest feasible amount required to maintain our high standard of service. Each one of our employees knows he or she could earn more in Corporate America with their extensive credentials. Almost all of us are over fifty, and some in our sixties and even seventies. We have excellent work ethic, good morals, and are extremely knowledgeable in our field. We

..a mission of doing unto others as you would wish to have done for you


Wed, December 06, 2000

To: RipOffReport

From: James F. Marken, Executive Vice President, Merrill Adams Associates

Subject: Rebuttal

I have no idea who this anonymous person is. The experience they speak of is not at all familiar to me, which is strange since I am the Executive Vice President of Merrill Adams. The Consumer Affairs and Better Business Bureau claim no unsatisfied claims exist against our firm.

If you have spent years building a business you are proud of with wonderful work ethic, fine morals and a mission of doing unto others as you would wish to have done for you, you need to understand you can be almost destroyed overnight by false accusations. We understand the risk but are willing to build anyway.

Honesty and frankness may make you vulnerable to attack. We understand the risk but we are willing to be honest anyway.

People who need help can be confused and distressed and they may attack you when you try to help. We understand the risk, but we are willing to help anyway.

If there is any truth in this accusation, let this person come to me and take responsibility for the accusation rather than hide behind anonymity.

Good morals and high ethics has been our direct route to success. I guess we have to expect to encounter a few who would attempt to diminish our reputation, rather than take a closer look at themselves.

It is hard for me as a proud member of the Merrill Adams organization to not pay attention to ill-natured remarks about our service. The one thing I know for sure is, as we have for the last decade and a half, the staff of Merrill Adams will remain proud of our ability to powerfully impact the well being of our client's lives. We have done so for thousands in the past and look forward to that worthy purpose in the future.

Please feel free to contact me at 973-884-2833 or [email protected]. I can always show you proof positive.


James F. Marken

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