University of Birmingham Reviews

Updated May 2, 2015
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3.7
39 Reviews
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University of Birmingham Chancellor Nicholas Dominic Cadbury
Nicholas Dominic Cadbury
7 Ratings

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  1. Excellent university for academics but some minor admin problems. Currently student at UOB.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Student in Birmingham, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Student in Birmingham, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Birmingham full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Some of the best researchers and facilities for a psychology student
    Excellent student guild and societies

    Cons

    Administration can be slow
    Finance applications can be very difficult to apply for once inside university; UCAS and student finance applications are as easy as anywhere else

    Advice to Management

    Better control and speed over administrative support

  2. postdoc in engineering

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

    I have been working at University of Birmingham full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    pleasant green campus, a lot of investment going on in infrastructure, ambitious senior managers, reasonable professional development opportunities, multinational vibrant atmosphere

    Cons

    pressure to achieve success without emphasis on it being well founded, self promoting, self serving individuals without any substance are not recognised for what they are, catering options are overpriced, very high full economic costs

    Advice to Management

    don't build your mansion out of straw

  3. Research associate, working on composites

    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Birmingham, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Birmingham, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Birmingham full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Best place to work, people are really friendly

    Cons

    access to facilities are very difficult

    Advice to Management

    If they make the facilities available to everyone in the University, it will very much appreciated.

  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. great experience

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

    I have been working at University of Birmingham

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    great environment to work in. Worked there as a student and the minimum salary is 8 pounds, quite flexible when it comes to their students work schedule.

    Cons

    No con, it was a great to place to work at. Had to leave when i graduated

  6. Missing collegiality and a sense of purpose

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

    I have been working at University of Birmingham full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good work happening around the university and a fair amount of opportunities for funding.

    Cons

    The biggest disappointment is that UoB is very managerially top-heavy and extremely conservative. Schools and departments are siloed, meaning that there is very little in the way of interdisciplinary opportunities or collaboration. Mostly, the campus feels un-dynamic.

    Advice to Management

    Pursue a flatter management structure, trust your employees to make decisions and empower all on the campus to have pride in the university.

  7. It's always WHO you know not WHAT you know

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Cleaner in Birmingham, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Cleaner in Birmingham, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Birmingham

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Alright pay and holidays

    Cons

    Managment are terrible. Try to keep your overtime pay.

    Advice to Management

    Take a managment course. Then don't become a manager ever again.

  8. superb supervisor but below average adminstration system

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Administrative Assistant in Birmingham, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Administrative Assistant in Birmingham, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Birmingham part-time (Less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    supervisors are given a lot of autonomy, and in my department, that translated into an exceptional work environment including daily group lunches, flexible work options, and a genuine expression of concern for my wellbeing in and out of the workplace

    Cons

    -it took over 2 months to receive my first paycheck because the central administration kept making mistakes in processing my paperwork
    -focused on unnecessary rules (I know they are unnecessary because I now have a masters in human resources) that undermined the amazing work environment created by my supervisor
    -bottom line, my supervisor had a vision of how work environment and respect can lead to better results while the central administration was entrenched in the past focus on rules and regulations which end up stifling profits and progress

    Advice to Management

    Teach individual employees in HR and administration what the bigger picture is so that they understand how their function works with other functions. This will hopefully lead to multiple people realizing how processes can be made more efficient and this will enhance the experience of customers and other employees.
    Question whether rules are in place because they have always been there or if current research supports them as the most effective path to desired results.

  9. Lots of variety, not great pay but stable steady posts (unless they're 1 year or less contracts!)

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

    I worked at University of Birmingham as a contractor (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    generally good people, defined responsibilities and good middle management, variety of work in different departments, stable and steady pay that's not great but then again you won't be doing major overtime

    Cons

    Lack of promotion, no way to work your way up unless someone leaves, felt stagnant at times, pay not great and hard work isn't always rewarded - those on short contracts not well appreciated even though they may have performed amazingly

    Advice to Management

    No point in making suggestions, as structure is inflexible

  10. Massive workload

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

    I have been working at University of Birmingham

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Career support, mentoring and acceleration for high achievers.

    Cons

    Work load seems infinite, and less support is available for academics.

  11. Helpful (1)

    Fantastic students, some good colleagues, dire management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Birmingham, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Birmingham, England (UK)

    I worked at University of Birmingham

    Pros

    I worked with a very good team, and really enjoyed my (postgraduate) students. Salary was to scale.
    Plenty of opportunities to get involved in research.

    Cons

    However, the university is managed from the centre and had a dire VC (he's still there) on a huge salary. The centre consistently worked against staff and students, and was highly politically motivated. For me, the final straw was when a group of unqualified Tory cronies were catapulted into our department and given a huge budget for politically motivated research. It was the worst combination of "jobs for the boys" coupled with right-wing think-tank-style "research" I've seen yet in my academic career.
    Promotion from one band to the next is also notoriously difficult at Birmingham (unless, it seems, you have mates in Whitehall and the VC's mansion...)
    There were also major administrative problems in my department, but this could be very different elsewhere in the university.

    Advice to Management

    Start listening to your staff, starting with their union, and not just hand-picked managers. You have some of the best academics in the country, and many of them are very unhappy indeed. They are the core of your "business," without them you cannot deliver what you promise to students. UB students don't come for the gorgeous campus or "student amenities," they come to achieve academically. Support them by supporting those who make that possible.

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