University of Durham
3.5 of 5 14 reviews
www.dur.ac.uk Durham, United Kingdom 1000 to 5000 Employees

University of Durham Reviews

Updated Jan 26, 2014

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3.5 14 reviews

                             

67% Approve of the CEO

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Anne Galbraith

(3 ratings)

80% of employees recommend this company to a friend
14 Employee Reviews
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1 person found this helpful  

An unhappy working environment

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at University of Durham

ProsMany interesting and enthusiastic students who were very pleasant to teach. A very picturesque setting.

ConsManagement is very heavey handed and pays little attention to the needs of their employees. This led to a very unhappy working environment in the department in which I worked. Very poor communication from management also led to great difficulties in performing my job.

Advice to Senior ManagementRemember that staff are not mind readers and need to be told what you want. When staff tell you what they need to do their job, please listen. Provide staff with the basic materials and facilities to do their jobs.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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The problem is not the University of Durharm, but the career in academia/astrophysics

Research Associate (Current Employee)
Durham, England (UK)

I have been working at University of Durham full-time for more than a year

ProsStrong and productive astronomy group

ConsNo stability perspectives, very poor possibilities to even extend a post-doc contract. Attitude of individuals to emerge is stronger than work-group in general.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Bad Administration

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at University of Durham part-time

ProsThe departments are full of lovely people and most of the staff are truly there to provide a good student experience. Unfortunately this is often stymied by administration. Most of my issues with this company are all to do with administration and nothing to do with what the university is truly here to do. The teaching is fantastic, the hours are good, the community is supportive.

ConsClass differences are rife, HR rarely processes your paperwork properly--I had emergency tax taken out for months even though I filled out the necessary paperwork *multiple* times. There is no communication between different arms of the administration. Immigration doesn't use the same computer systems as HR so you have to have your documentation checked by two different departments at different times of the year rather than using the same system. If they mess up your pay (which they do more often than they should because of simple clerical errors such as typing the numbers into the wrong column) they won't give you the money until your next paycheck (which is monthly) unless you can prove to them you have a 'dire need' of the money. The university is consistently trying to centralize everything which is a complete nightmare. If a lightbulb needs changing in a college area, it won't get attention for *months* because it all has to go through central estates and buildings. Heating is done on a computer system that at one point got *deleted* from the university's program. The regulations have recently changed so that any university event has to use central catering instead of supporting local businesses in the area and the prices and quality for in-house food are sub-par. Often it seems the university hires individuals into managerial positions in various capacities in administration who do not do their jobs properly or strive to provide for a better experience and yet these individuals are never fired or trained to be better.

Advice to Senior ManagementSee cons.

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Elitest but beautiful

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at University of Durham full-time for more than 8 years

ProsHigh academic quality. You need to be good to work here and the pressure is on to produce quality. It's great to be amongst such clever colleagues.

ConsNot much social diversity. A university for rich kids.

Advice to Senior ManagementManagement is good. They pander to equality issues but really this is a university for the privileged.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Ambitious theoretically but limited by budget and management

Research Associate (Current Employee)
Durham, England (UK)

I have been working at University of Durham full-time for more than 5 years

ProsGood area of the country for work/life balance
Modern campus

ConsOld boys club is prevalent in committees and promotion/recruitment schemes
Slightly delusional management team who are far too proud of their modest achievements
Too many senior staff not willing to lecture leaving junior staff overwhelmed with teaching committments.

Advice to Senior ManagementFoster young talent rather than recruiting "senior staff" looking for a final pay-day.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Good

Research Associate (Current Employee)
Durham, England (UK)

I have been working at University of Durham

ProsGood working environment, student centred environment. Building work currently taking place to modernise large sections of the campus, which improves the environment.

ConsLots of building work currently taking place, which leads to disruption of various parts of the campus and makes moving around difficult at times.

Advice to Senior ManagementIt is good that the environment is being improved, which will enhance the student experience. More parking spaces would be good.

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Excellent departments, estates and buildings is terrible

PhD Student (Current Employee)
Durham, England (UK)

I have been working at University of Durham full-time for more than 3 years

ProsI have greatly enjoyed my time in durham, working as a PhD student, the city is pleasant and the academic departments have a well deserved reputation for excellence.

ConsThe city does not have as much going on as other, larger, cities. But Newcastle is nearby and easy to get to by train. The weather can be changeable, but the summer is very nice.

Advice to Senior ManagementSpend less on Picasso paintings and more on educating students

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Great time work as a teaching assistant and researcher

Teaching Assistant (Current Employee)
Durham, England (UK)

I have been working at University of Durham part-time for more than 3 years

ProsEnjoyable and peaceful environment for living and doing researching.

Conssometimes the requested book in the library are online version, it would be better if the students can get a copy of it or paper book for reading.

Advice to Senior ManagementKeep offering opportunities for people in University and graduated from Durham University.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Good place to work with some bureaucracy

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at University of Durham

ProsBeautiful city located in the North of England.

ConsBit isolated, and although Newcastle is near, it's still a bit too far.

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Satisfying environment. Some of the best UK students. Salary good.

Professor (Current Employee)
Durham, England (UK)

I have been working at University of Durham

ProsGreat very pretty small town - good facilities for kids. Reasonable emphasis on research and bureaucrats can be mostly avoided!

ConsThe organisation is a bit centralised with edicts coming from the centre. Remedial classes required for incoming students but this is true for the whole UK now. A bit too much focus on the "student experience".

Advice to Senior ManagementMy main advice would be to let the experts you hire be expert. Also often the University only tries (and fails) to retain the best people once they have job offers from elsewhere - try harder to retain people before they feel they even need to look elsewhere.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at University of Durham reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for University of Durham CEO Anne Galbraith. All 14 reviews posted anonymously by University of Durham employees.