UCLA

  www.ucla.edu
  www.ucla.edu

UCLA Reviews

Updated October 13, 2014
Updated October 13, 2014
592 Reviews
3.9
592 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
UCLA Chancellor Gene D. Block
Gene D. Block
180 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work-life balance was great -- rarely had to stay long hours (in 23 reviews)

  • Casual work environment with high expectations (in 33 reviews)


Cons
  • Income for graduate student can be unstable, depending on how well your PI manage to get funding (in 20 reviews)

  • Budget cuts and draconian restructuring methods on the horizon are only making these problems worse (in 11 reviews)

More Highlights

13 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Very Major Disappointment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at UCLA full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    The health plan was decent. Having UCLA on your resume is somewhat of a bonus. The employee discounts were kind of decent, but that's about it.

    Cons

    I worked for a UCLA off-campus division. The experience was horrible: I encountered a lot of politics and blatant racism. The management was incompetent, the facilities were inadequate, there was a lot of in-fighting amongst employees and favoritism for males with the "right" skin color (in fact, UCLA has a tendency to only re-hire white males who left the company). And I truly believe that they do not value their African-American employees. In fact, I believe they work against them. I understand that this is a major issue with black students. But it is also VERY prevalent for African-American UCLA employees. It's clearly abhorrent and pathetic. I also encourage minorities to NOT indicate their race on the online UCLA application. I truly believe this will work against them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The Regents need to take a close look at ALL of UCLA divisions. The division I worked for has its headquarters on campus but also satellites across L.A. So because it's so spread out, middle managers can continue to practice unscrupulous acts. The Regents also need to place more attention on civil rights and examine how their African-American employees are treated.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Oncology Research Department

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Graduate Research Assistant in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Graduate Research Assistant in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at UCLA full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Job benefits are outstanding. Most of the staff and patients are really wonderful.

    Cons

    Poor training if any; horrible management and HR department. Review the companies ongoing diversity issues all over the Internet.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take cultural sensitivity training, stop hiring friends and family and playing favorites. Take an ethics course to learn how to treat people the way you want to be treated.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Stay away from this company.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Administrative Assistant III in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Administrative Assistant III in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at UCLA full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great people to work with.

    Cons

    Horrible management, they need to let people with degrees have management positions... Not people who have been there 20+ years.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change your culture.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Understaffed, Underpaid, Micromanaged, Moronic

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at UCLA full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    There are a few gems you will meet in this department, but they are few and far in between. Those are the only people that matter in this toxic environment.

    Cons

    The management is awful and moronic. They do not know what they are doing and treat every single employee as if they are replaceable. However, the management is SO bad that they can't even replace an employee. While other UCLA departments can hire within 30 days, UAN management takes at least 4 months just to hire for a position they knew about for over 2 years. The management is also passive aggressive, selfish, and will penalize you for everything. If you accomplish something, the manager will take credit for it, and if the management fails something, they will not hesitate to place the blame on you. They are also so oblivious to anything that goes on around them. This was by far the worst management I have ever seen and even after you leave the department, they will tell everyone to cut all ties with you. The manager is so paranoid that she theorized about how past employees may be sabotaging and manipulating her files in the server; which is not possible. And past employees are so relieved to get out of the department they don't ever look back, not to mention waste their time manipulating her templates.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Management is the problem and they are the reason that people can't do their work. This environment is TOXIC, negative, unmotivational, and self-deprecating. Management is selfish and oblivious, unorganized and passive aggressive, and overall just the worst. There is NO room for movement and NOWHERE TO GO from here.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  6.  

    Deceptive hiring practices. Too many oldtimers - who are WAY behind the curve.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at UCLA full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great Benefits. Working with students is by far the best part of working for UCLA. Get out and enjoy the beautiful campus.

    Cons

    Stuck in the past. Management refuses to embrace technology or new best practices. Anderson school of "mis-Management" has a horrible culture. High level professors, especially the emeriti, are a sham. Definitely a case of "those who can't do - teach".

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Wake up and appreciate new talent and clear the path for advancement by thinning out the old wood instead of letting us slip through your fingers while you chase your tails and quote policy and procedures from the 1980's.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    School of Law terrible place to work, not sure of other areas on campus

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at UCLA full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Flexible schedule, good health coverage

    Cons

    Zero raises, chastised if ask for raise, ignorant management, unfair balance of wages, favoritism, zero training opportunities, zero motivation, not rewarded for work, increasing workload and responsibility with zero compensation for said increase, expected to live on stagnant wage, treated with contempt, disappearing benefits, specifically retirement program.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Interact with your employees to actually see how much work they do

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    Bewildering

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant Professor in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Assistant Professor in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at UCLA full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    UCLA has a beautiful campus, wonderful weather, and is populated by some amazingly intelligent, motivated, hard-working students.

    Cons

    Job expectations could not be less clear. I'm guessing this is probably because no one in the administration knows what they are either. You are evaluated by sets of committees filled with nameless members whom you never meet. The criterion you are evaluated on are sometimes secret and often contradictory (from committee to committee). The worst part is there is no one to discuss your performance with because you have no idea who will be evaluating you and this will be different every time.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    While I understand the importance of shared leadership, accountability has its advantages as well. It would be nice to create a system where employees could have some idea whom they could turn to for reliable job advice. It would be nice to have some hints at standards by which one could assess oneself. I have heard many people discuss how difficult it would be for the multiple layers of committees with their ever-shifting membership to establish any criterion at all. While I recognize the difficulty in this, consider the even greater difficulty this poses for employees being evaluated by groups of people who have given up hope on the idea of agreeing as to how to evaluate them.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Dont do it

    Current Employee - Research Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at UCLA full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    None, really. I am serious, perhaps the healthcare benefits? Parking there is a mess. And expensive. Traffic sucks. The buildings are either really good or terrible to work in.

    Cons

    Backstabbers,liars, lazy people with no incentives to do work, but they really love to get into your life. They are all nosy.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Resign.

  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    A suspicious, insecure, toxic, fear-based workplace

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Westwood Village, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Westwood Village, CA

    I worked at UCLA full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Great work-life balance. Excellent, inexpensive benefits package. UCLA takes the health and wellness of their employees seriously.

    Cons

    Not much has changed in the two years that the other individual who reviewed UCLA external affairs originally posted their cons about working at UCLA.

    Suspicion and insecurity rule this department. No one is trusted to do their job--much time is spent waffling to make sure that nothing is done that could endanger the positions of the middle managers. There is a complete lack of knowledge of industry best practices--not that knowing them would mean they would be implemented. The middle managers are only concerned with making sure they look like they are doing a good job managing. There is no leadership or mentorship.

    When I first started working at UCLA I had to give myself work to do--I was never assigned anything from my manager. I had to request weekly 1-1 meetings so I could tell my manager what I was working on and the status of my projects. I was never given any feedback on my work--my manager would have to speak with his manager first, then he would tell me what I could and could not do. If I took the initiative to start a new project I was discouraged from spending time on it--when the projects were successful there was no reward or acknowledgment. I was not allowed to have meetings with people without my manager present, and if I did I was grilled to inform him what the meeting was about and what was said. My recommendations based on years of private sector experience (for which I was hired) were never acknowledged. I was there to do the job the way my supervisor wanted me to it. There was never any trust--not for me or my colleagues.

    UCLA is not a place to grow, or to learn. UCLA is not a place to do good work--good work is stifled and discouraged. The middle managers are completely incompetent, and so fearful of their incompetence, that they do everything they can to maintain their positions. They maintain their positions by making sure that those that work below them stay where they are.

    The people that work at UCLA are capable and smart--but the result of the management environment is complacency. Any motivation in the department is purely fear-based. Morale is sluggish and discouraging. The negativity is so widespread that it seems like an infection. I have never seen or heard more rude and unprofessional communications--via email, in meetings, on the phone--in my entire career.

    The most important thing to know--is that any time spent at UCLA will set you back professionally for future positions. Because of the innovation-adverse environment, any new industry standards, technological advancements or strategies will pass unnoticed through the department. You will have a lot of catching up to do when you leave.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire third-party companies to do more technology/outward facing work. Being innovative and cutting edge is not a reality for this department. The management team you have in place have created an environment that is purposefully slow and ineffective.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Poor Leadership

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant in Westwood, CA
    Former Employee - Administrative Assistant in Westwood, CA

    I worked at UCLA full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Great benefits and a beautiful campus

    Cons

    Management is extremely condescending and has no training on dealing with employees. One supervisor made her employees write down on a white board the times they went to the bathroom. My direct supervisor was so afraid of her manager she would never stand up for us and let us down a lot.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take some training on communicating with employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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