The British Library Reviews

Updated June 3, 2015
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3.2
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The British Library CEO Roley Keating
Roley Keating
4 Ratings

7 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    flagging national treasure

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at The British Library full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Wonderful institution with some great staff and great projects. I was proud to work there. Some good managers. Good work/life balance but I see that changing as massive cuts bite and over-ambitious CEO piles more and more new projects onto less staff.

    Cons

    Woeful senior management, lack of real strategy and clear decision making leads to paralysis. A lot of time-servers that need to modernise or move on. Constant restructuring CEO seems to have forgotten a library is essentially a research centre

    Advice to Management

    Get some focus, preferably on research users rather than just Twitter users


  2. Boston Spa: Good place, hampered by politics, budget cuts.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston Spa, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston Spa, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Lovely location out in the countryside, good hours, great work/life balance provided you have a decent manager.

    Cons

    Terrible politics - lots of folks building their empires, grievances against other people, unwillingness to change working practices leads to an atmosphere of disillusionment and apathy. The buildings are frankly below par. The main building smells really strange, and the corridors are freezing.

    Advice to Management

    Try and lose some of the 'for life' employees.


  3. british libray

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

    I have been working at The British Library full-time

    Pros

    very good to work for well looked after

    Cons

    nothing that really comes to mind


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  5. Helpful (1)

    Great People, slow work.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Intern in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Intern in London, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at The British Library part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The British Library has a lot of great, intelligent people and it is a very relaxed environment. It was a great learning opportunity for anyone who is interested in research or information management.

    Cons

    The work is very slow and not at all demanding. There is hardly an opportunity to work with any large projects or teams much less manage them. The library also has a no reference policy for interns applying to future employers and they are never hiring which defeats the purpose of interning for someone looking for a job in the near future.

    Advice to Management

    Please stop restructuring everything in the library, it has created an unstable work environment.


  6. Helpful (1)

    Currently at least, the whole place is consumed by a terrible negative atmosphere.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Decent internal training courses provided. Flexible hours. Generous annual leave. Relaxed atmosphere. Given autonomy to take responsibility for own workload.

    Cons

    Impossible to have your voice heard by senior management. Any advice offered is always ignored. In I.T. pay is terrible. Very negative atmosphere and sense of inertia.

    Advice to Management

    Try to stop politics and competition between divisions from getting work done.


  7. Helpful (1)

    Decent for a job, not a career

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Some of the staff can be very supportive and helpful. Will teach you many things.

    Cons

    Some of the staff won't want to teach you anything. Keep it like a guarded secret. You generally need to "suck up" to advance or keep your head low, as someone will always give you a reputation. They love hierarchy there and will remind you of your status frequently. Management is seen to always be on the lookout to cut jobs, so you have to always be busy unless you are friendly with the management.

    Advice to Management

    Appreciate your workers more. Base progression on performance not who has scratched each other's backs.


  8. Helpful (1)

    A fascinating place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at The British Library full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    This is one of the world's greatest cultural heritage institutions, the collects are amazing and they are fantastic to work with. Really interesting projects in the digital library space.

    Cons

    The current economic climate is affecting the Library badly with it being down sized which is affecting morale. Can be very bureaucratic and it does take a long time for things to get done / approved.



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