University of Southampton Reviews

Updated April 21, 2015
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  1. Good academic staff, poor management and administration

    Former Employee - Lecturer in Southampton, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Lecturer in Southampton, England (UK)

    I worked at University of Southampton full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    There are good academic staff in the university, although many are leaving because of the horrible management.

    Cons

    The administration act as though the university is there for their benefit, and not for producing research and educating students. Human resources imposes policies on academic hiring that are not appropriate to academic hiring (e.g. not requesting letters of reference until a short list is made). Management, from the rank of associate dean up, is generally full of either people who try to micromanage things without understanding the implications of their policies, or their toadies.

    Advice to Management

    Council should clean house. Rank-and-file employees have completely lost confidence in the upper management. It would be good for morale to actually publicly dismiss the worst of the lot, rather than allowing them to step down. That would restore confidence that someone in charge actually cares about doing things right.

  2. Helpful (1)

    Decent benefits, but poor management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Southampton, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Southampton, England (UK)

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

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

    Pros

    Generous holiday allowance. Campus is nice enough, with relatively easy access to the city centre and surrounding areas by bus, although train connections are a bit more challenging. Also easy access to a variety of Chinese food restaurants nearby.

    Cons

    Administration appears to care little for the impact of their policies on researchers. Little opportunity for early career researchers to distinguish themselves, however, this has been improving as of late. The amount of paperwork, harassment and bureaucracy imposed by health and safety is a significant impediment to performing research. Hired technical staff does not have sufficient background and expertise to perform their jobs at a reasonable standard.

    Advice to Management

    Consider instituting policies to make it clear that all employees are valued by the University. Hiring appropriate support staff and providing conditions that promote creativity instead of imposing impediments to new ideas is crucial for a research orientated university. Being open with staff regarding changes to facilities would promote trust.

  3. Helpful (1)

    Convinced me to leave Southampton

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Contractor - Research Associate in Southampton, England (UK)
    Current Contractor - Research Associate in Southampton, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Southampton as a contractor (More than a year)

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

    Pros

    Good engineering facilities when they work. Nice central campus with pretty gardens. Generous vacation allowance. Bus station on campus allowing for easy transportation links to city centre, airport, and London.

    Cons

    Administration does not take ownership of administrative tasks. Line managers are not suitably trained. Work/life balance is poor and is not taken into consideration by management. For early career researchers there is very little chance for future progression.

    Advice to Management

    Focus less on strategy and pay more attention to making staff happier.

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  5. lecturer

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

    I have been working at University of Southampton (More than 8 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Research-intensive University, forward-looking leadership, motivated students.

    Cons

    Fundamental values of teaching, scholarship and research deserve a bit more appreciation than entrepreneurialism and short-term impact.

    Advice to Management

    See cons.

  6. Great company to work for if you work in one of the offices, not so much in the field

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Field Sales Development Executive in London, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Field Sales Development Executive in London, England (UK)

    I worked at University of Southampton

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Great company culture, good support, great benefits and incentives

    Cons

    Field sales is a lonely job where it's difficult to hit targets. Also the company insists on silly 'steps to the call' to employ in a sales conversation which, in my experience, negatively affected my relationship with my customers.
    Also they preach that experience and movement to different departments is both available and supported, however this was not true

    Advice to Management

    Ensure that field sales employees are well looked after and have more team contact time

  7. PhD Student in Biological Sciences.

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

    I worked at University of Southampton full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Decent access to publications, new building/facilities, close knit department. Decent seminar programmes. A few big names in the department

    Cons

    Poor IT support, lack of working space, cannot access some journals (even some high impact ones), not as much technical support as one would like sometimes. Also the hospital lab facilities are old and in great need of updating.

    Advice to Management

    Provide more support to researchers - things like a dedicated statistician, full access to ALL the important journals, and spend some money on the outdated hospital facilities.

  8. Helpful (1)

    Working in academia is hard because of bike shedding and penny pinching.

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

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

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

    Pros

    Great research, smart people, vibrant students with a willingness to learn and teach you in return.

    Cons

    Admin. The administration are the slowest, laziest kinds of people. Jobsworths through and through with no idea what the big picture is and intention to figure it out.

    The pointless Bureaucracy that is eating academia from the inside out is in full force in southampton.

    Advice to Management

    Fire HR and Finance.
    Start again and under stand that these support staff need to SUPPORT staff...and SUPPORT students... and not act as a barrier every opportunity they have

  9. I am a 4th year PhD student in the university of Southampton.

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

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

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    academically strong and well funded engineering department. World class facilities.

    Cons

    not enough feedback given. some professors are better than others.

  10. OK

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Intern - Research Support in Southampton, England (UK)
    Current Intern - Research Support in Southampton, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Southampton as an intern (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    No stress, easy job which is relevant to my degree and have attended some interesting lectures.

    Cons

    Not much for me to do sometimes

    Advice to Management

    Find me more fulfilling tasks.

  11. Engineering Researcher

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

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Get to do what you want, a lot of freedom. But I guess it's pretty much the same everywhere in a university. Engineering research in Southampton is very well know so there are quite a few industrial corporations going on, that might be helpful if you are seeking an industry move afterwards.

    Cons

    You are pretty much working on your own, the city isn't the most interesting one in UK. It depends on what your expectations are for a university really.

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