Barrhead Travel Reviews | Glassdoor

Barrhead Travel Reviews

Updated June 16, 2018
63 reviews

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2.2
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Barrhead Travel Chief Executive Sharon Munro
Sharon Munro
37 Ratings

63 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "I began my Barrhead Travel experience by completing my Modern Apprenticeship within a year and securing employment" (in 10 reviews)

  • "I started working in a sales environment and with the help of Senior Management I have now progressed to a Management position within the company" (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • "Barrhead Travel must be the worst space I have ever worked in" (in 8 reviews)

  • "Senior Management have old-fashioned outlook" (in 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (5)

    "Absolute riot of a company,"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Travel Consultant in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - Travel Consultant in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Honestly really hard to think of any as the bad outweighs the good

    Cons

    Literally the worst company I have ever worked for.

    I started my employment with barrhead with high hopes of it becoming a secure career for me and something i would grow with, as i enjoy talking face to face with people and have worked in the travel industry before. However, I have many disgraceful points I would like to share with everyone, in hopes that people see this and never apply to work there.

    Training:

    I had positive vibes from training through my first impressions, however this all changed as time went on. Even after a few days people started dropping like flies and who can blame them! We were all given talks on how the business works by bossy trainers who literally have no interest in helping you, you feel like its a big deal asking for help with very complex systems! Many people dropped out of training. Trainers sit on their phones and huff and puff quite literally when ask a question. Phones are banned although this isnt the case for the trainers who sit and SMILE while on their phones (clearly not a company phone if you have love heart emojis beside a name!) most rude people ever couldnt believe it. Left training still knowing nothing and hoping that the store would be better

    Store:
    First week of store i was completely ignored and spoken to only to “stack brochures” “mop the floors” and my favorite “wash the dishes” in the back shop which consisted of other staff members food and dirty rubbish everywhere that they were too lazy to clean, didnt realise i applied for a cleaning job, terrible as these people are managers, team leaders and assistant managers and think they are too high up to clean their own dirty plates, would hate to see the state of their houses! When i got my first customer i was left in the dark, so called mentors there to help you dont even help and meanwhile management sit on their phones, sniggering and talking loudly about customers and also talking about fellow employees. When you ask for help they have no time for you, i got told a few times that there was no time to help me? So basically saying its acceptable for me to make mistakes and cost the company money all because they cant be bothered to stop texting boyfriends/girlfriends and friends for two seconds? Quite honestly disgusting. There are many other things that happened in not only this store but other stores by the sounds of other employees. Company only cares about money money money, you get given the most unachievable targets and thr company wonders why? Because you are making a bad name for yourself, staff are not trained well enough and management openly talk about customers! You are told to bump customers so shop hits its target, there are no morals what so ever, i understand there is targets and businesses need to make a profit, but adding £1000 to a holiday for an old couple who are putting their trust in you is absolutely appalling and disgusting. Regional managers do not help at all and even the ceo is blind to what is going on. Never met so many horrible people in my life in such a catty atmosphere. This is the world of work and NOT highschool. Disgusting management who take 1hr 40 mins lunches and have the cheek to tell you you are only allowed 30 mins?? Dont think so, although if you take your full hour beware as you WILL get spoke about behind your back (ironic). There is so many more things but i would be here all day.

    Please please please to anyone reading these reviews and thinking of applying for a job here, please do not do it for your very own happiness and wellbeing, dont. Is a horrible place and i wish i could sit here and say this was a great job but it wasnt and as other reviews say, i am ashamed to even have them on my cv. I am an optimistic person and if this was a good job i would have loved to tell everyone but its NOT. I wish i had looked here before i applied and saved myself the tears and dread of going to work everyday. Girls going home crying everynight because of this company! Please dont do it. ISNT WORTH THE MINIMUM WAGE

    Also barrhead i see you have wrote your own reviews here to try and make the company seem like a better place? Nice try.

    Advice to Management

    have a read at these reviews ans seriously sort your management out! Ceos need to visit each and every shop and seriously test their management, maybe send them on an anti bullying course instead of giving them free fam trips. Rewarding disgusting behaviour.


  2. Helpful (11)

    "HR Assistant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time

    Pros

    Great staff and good holidays

    Cons

    Horrible management, horrible company culture

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel.

    Employee engagement and company culture is of paramount importance to us, and we are currently going... More

  3. Helpful (12)

    "Embarrassed to have them on my CV - avoid at all costs."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - You get to work on some interesting campaigns for big suppliers
    - You make good friends very quickly – the toxic work atmosphere fosters a real sense of community amongst co-workers
    - You learn exactly what you won’t put up with in your next job
    - City centre location – plenty of places to go when you need to escape on your lunch break

    Cons

    Working for Barrhead Travel was genuinely the most miserable point in my life – I have written this review because 1) I want to save people from the same situation I found myself in 2) I genuinely hope HR and senior management see it, see every other review and start to change things.

    Management
    The management system is absolutely appalling – there are former Modern Apprentices running entire departments by the time they are in their early 20s – they have the title, just not the people management experience or practical skills you need to be a good manager. Oh, and don’t expect a pay rise if you get a promotion – you will have double the responsibility but your wage increase will be so pitiful that you won’t even notice a difference on your pay check.

    The directors are unprofessional, aggressive and genuinely don’t seem to understand how to do their job or how to treat their staff. I saw people get pulled up by their manager because a director saw them talking to a co-worker for a few minutes. Decisions are made based on no evidence whatsoever in order to stick to the status quo dictated by a bullying owner who genuinely just needs to retire, because he adds no value to the business. Months of work can be torn apart in seconds – but you will still be expected to work to the original deadline to get your projects done. I saw people getting screamed at and things being thrown at members of staff in meetings – does that sound like a normal working environment to you?

    The sense of paranoia is out of this world – if you want to be micro-managed then this is the workplace for you. Managers and directors need to know what you are working on at every single minute of the day, and if you struggle to keep on top of your unrealistic workload then prepare to feel the fury of your superiors.
    You can literally only succeed in this company if you are a ‘yes’ person – don’t try to disagree with how things are done because you will be made completely miserable. It’s a brainwashed, Stockholm syndrome mentality – particularly amongst MAs, many of whom have never worked anywhere else - which leaves people scared to look up from their computer screens or talk about anything non-work related. In some departments it is almost competitive who can come in earliest, stay latest and not take their lunch breaks. Managers will have people watching you so they can be informed of every single mistake you make so they can emphasise to you time and time again just how terrible you are at your job.

    Workload
    Your workload will poorly structured and makes no sense. Meaningless projects to satisfy directors will be added to your already full plate, only to be completely disregarded after hours of effort. Staff are rotated around different departments without even being asked. I have seen people genuinely being ill as a result of the stress they are under. It is not normal to cry in the toilets in work every day, not be able to sleep and genuinely feel sick to your stomach at the prospect of doing your job – yet this is the environment that exists, and it is one that is continuously fostered by the people in charge.

    The constant cycle of recruitment is not because of expansion of the business – it’s because good, talented people reach their breaking point and leave to find somewhere better. If they are really angry that you are leaving, you will literally be marched out the door by a member of the HR team. Public humiliation is one of the responses they have to the fact that people are moving elsewhere - rather than attempting to create a better working environment for remaining staff!

    Pay
    There is absolutely no consistency in pay between members of staff – former MAs will still be on minimum wage in their mid-20s while others with the same title are making thousands more than them. There are managers of departments being paid less than their subordinates, despite having been at the company for a years. It is an absolutely appalling system when people can work hard for years, be given new responsibilities, but still get every request for a higher wage rejected. Sometimes people are in charge of departments but aren’t even given a new title to reflect that. Don’t think you will have any kind of pay review – Barrhead Travel will try and pay you as little as they possibly can and offer you no other incentive to continue to work there.

    Work Environment
    Don’t expect that just because you are a working for a large company that you will have access to good technology. This is an office full of hundreds of professionals, many of whom work in digital marketing, and yet are expected to fully do their job with ancient computers, screens that won’t stop freezing and free versions of every kind of software because apparently it isn’t worth the investment. You will have to buy all of your own stationary. Chairs are broken, some of the desks are basically on the floor – your screen will never be level so you will have a constantly sore neck from peering down at it.

    So many people have described the basement, but it really needs to be emphasised that these are horrible conditions! There is no heating or air conditioning; no windows and no hint of the outside world. As a result everyone gets ill at the same time– at certain times of the year entire departments drop like flies – and the response is always something ridiculous like providing hand sanitiser; the problem is much larger than that. The entire office smells of sewage and pest control have been in more than a few times; not exactly what you picture when you think of the headquarters of Scotland’s largest travel company.

    Advice to Management

    My only hope is that the takeover results in some genuine changes to the environment, opportunities and management structure currently in place. Stop investing in opening new stores and show some care to the people who work behind the scenes to make the business a success by investing in your head office. Barrhead Travel need to learn that not everyone is replaceable – give your staff a reason to stay and they could really improve your business. Right now, everything about staff treatment is a joke.

    Barrhead Travel Response

    Jun 15, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    We are pleased to note that you felt that you get to work on some interesting campaigns for big suppliers and also that you make good friends very quickly. There are a few points in your review that... More


  4. Helpful (7)

    "JUST AWFUL!!!!!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Travel Consultant in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - Travel Consultant in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Worked with some Lovely people. (Excluding the Directors and Head of's of course.)

    Cons

    So many negative reviews on here. Genuinely EVERY one is true.
    The management are bullies.
    The only way you will get on in this company is by conforming and being a yes person.
    Targets are changed and increased mid month so you cant achieve them and make bonus.
    Experienced staff are made to work overtime everyday and take no days off just so the "directors" can make money. Do they work evening's and weekends week in and week out?!... NO.
    Lunch breaks? Nope... Infact you will be sent to get their lunch regardless if youve had yours.
    Regional Managers who cant help with problems or making decisions because they are clueless
    Managers who shouldnt be managers but have been thrown into the positions with no training because they cannot recruit.
    Have you seen the job vacancies on here.... they are not new they are replacing people who have finally escaped.
    DO NOT PUT YOURSELF THROUGH IT.

    Advice to Management

    There is nothing that hasnt been said a million times. Yet you still dont listen....
    The standard HR reply is making you look worse (and desperate) if HR actually followed HR policies instead of made up ones, the company might not be in the state it is.

    Barrhead Travel Response

    Jun 5, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    Thank you for reviewing your past employment with Barrhead Travel.

    We are pleased to note that you enjoyed working with many of your colleagues during your time at Barrhead Travel however we’re... More


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Great to get some travel experience if you have none, but not for a long term career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time

    Pros

    One major advantage is the flexibility to offer customers products from a diverse range of suppliers.

    Cons

    There are a few but the main ones are paying for errors (systems can be complicated for all not just new starts) no sick pay, no or little management support largely as they as controlled by senior management so they lack the autonomy to make decisions.

    Advice to Management

    Redesign the HR manual make it easy for all. Remove the error system. Acknowledge you have a complicated holiday costing system and provide a simpler process. Introduce a loyalty scheme for staff to reduce your current turnover. Recognition and Reward schemes with clear goals set in advance.

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel.

    We’re currently going through a transitional period of reviewing current processes and procedures and... More


  6. Helpful (8)

    "Please avoid, even if you are offered more money than you are on now it really is not worth it."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    -taught me to check glassdoor reviews before accepting another job as it really could ruin your career not to
    -teaches you when to know enough is enough and when to say no
    -nice-ish product
    -can work on some nice supplier campaigns
    - some nice people

    Cons

    I feel that I need to add a review to save someone who might be considering applying for a role or close to accepting in Barrhead Travel. Please do not do it. It is not worth it. Especially if you are offered more money than you are on now! It is not worth it!!! Everything I am saying here is to hopefully help BH improve it is not meant in a nasty way.

    -the working environment in the head office in Glasgow is awful, everyone is terrified to speak, you can’t laugh too loudly, you can’t be seen to be having a conversation, you need to walk about like a zombie carrying a tray for one mug of tea I suppose to protect the 20 year old murky stale carpet (I have seen some of the brainwashed actually walk with a mug over a PLATE - mental)

    -lack of team work, get ready for the most boring/demoralising 8 (if not more) hours of your life if you are unlucky enough to be in a team with one of the brainwashed individuals who are terrified to look up from their screen whilst desperately trying to get through an unrealistic workload and accepting that mental breakdowns are just ‘part of the norm’ you also get the feeling that ‘senior’ members of the team would do anything to climb the ladder even if that means spying on workmates and feeding back nonsense to the manager - not nice and not professional but managers encourage this sort of behaviour.

    -OK so you might be fooled by the when walking with hot drinks carry a tray rule that they take health and safety in the workplace seriously? Wrong... what to expect at your desk... Chair? Broken and chewed and 10 years old, oh and there is no such thing as replacements. Desk? The desk I was lucky enough to have was so far near the ground I might as well have been sitting on the floor, no cupboard or drawers nothing. Computer? No such thing as eye level in BH, look straight ahead then bend your head down to your chest that is where your computer screen would be the majority of the office have their screen propped up on a pile of magazines. As part of the digital side of the business I would have expected at least a larger screen if not two for the type of work we had to do. nonetheless our team has the smallest computer screens along with hardware that doesn’t work and crashes multiple times a day. This was raised to management as a barrier to being able to do our job efficiently but apparently they felt that that was not an appropriate thing to state when asked what can be done to make our working processes better?!

    -despite being micro managed to within an inch of your life by a manager who despite being nice on a personal level - they must have had no clue how much work the team has on (despite analysing the constant to do lists we had to send them) and therefore piled on more and more work with no goal or objectives despite the team numbers falling. This just results in stress and tears. (But that is normal at Barrhead) when you highlight you are struggling with workload (due to a whole team member leaving) you get told that your basically just not good enough and results in the manager making your life just more difficult with more micromanagement. Instead of managing workloads effectively they would pass things on to someone else who was struggling and then expect you to be able to take it back (along with another few other major projects that has been unrealistically dreamt up) after a few days - no logic?!

    -the office is under the ground no day light whatsoever

    -you could come in an hour early to try get a head start on work but to no thanks and you would still feel bad leaving at half 5.

    -There is no reception so basically the phone goes at least 10 times an hour with external calls not only is this very distracting, the whole floor has to just answer it whenever they can and if you aren’t answering it don’t worry they will find out and let you know how many times people have answered the phone and then watch you every time it rings to see if you answer it. It is unprofessional and there should be some system in place that does not allow this to happen. We are busy enough without answering a thousand phone calls per day that has nothing to do with us. Some brainwashed employees even run to other departments phones when they are ringing to answer them?! After working in a normal office I can now see how bizarre that is. Also be expected/ pressured into answering the phone on your first day even when you don’t know anyone. The other staff get a kick out of making people feel uncomfortable

    Overall, not an enjoyable place to work. Not professional, no direction, no workflow management, stressful, not a nice environment.

    If you take this job on be prepared to spend your lunches crying outside the Raddison Blu.

    Advice to Management

    I hope the takeover helps the situation because it really is not a business that is run correctly. It is a family owned business trying to be a big company and that is its biggest problem. I feel in order for BHT to be a real contender in this market long term a lot has to change. If that means ditching the head office dungeon in Glasgow and moving it to the states then so be it.

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel.

    Employee engagement and welfare is of paramount importance to us, and we are currently going through a... More


  7. Helpful (9)

    "Worst travel agent in Britain!"

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

    I worked at Barrhead Travel part-time

    Pros

    I would discourage anyone from accepting a job with this disgraceful company and also from buying from them. They're frauds!

    Cons

    A soul destroying job, working for crooked and corrupt people. I'm embarrassed I gave them 3 years of my life!

    Advice to Management

    There's nothing anyone can say that will get through, they don't have the sense or the conscious to realise that they're doing anything wrong.

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel.

    We’re currently going through a transitional period of reviewing current processes and procedures and... More

  8. Helpful (8)

    "Sadly not the business I thought it was."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Human Resources Generalist Assistant in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - Human Resources Generalist Assistant in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Helpful and friendly colleagues.

    Great public transport links

    Character building

    Cons

    Having always been a fan of the business, I'm disappointed with the inner culture that lies behind the faux public facing image.

    Poor management structure.

    Overspending on poorly targeted marketing.

    No investment in people.

    No future vision.

    Senior team intimidated by knowledge and skills.

    Advice to Management

    Take stock.

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018 – Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel.

    Employee engagement and welfare is of paramount importance to us, and we are currently going through a... More


  9. Helpful (8)

    "The most miserable time of my life."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time

    Pros

    You meet some great people who have made the same dreadful mistake you have in accepting a role at Barrhead Travel also desperate to get out.

    Cons

    On the first day you're led down rickety stairs into diabolical conditions to the dingy basement, or "the dungeon" as it soon becomes known.

    You are welcomed by the smell of sewage, stains all over the floor, sad looking faces and a horrific working environment of no windows, broken, mismatch chairs and dirty, dusty desks. You instantly know you've made a mistake in accepting your new exciting "dream" job in travel as advertised in the job ad. Do not fall for this, you won't see a ray of sunlight during your time working here.

    You're swiftly told about the written rules and need to try figure out the unwritten rules on your own. Calling the boss Mr Munro being one of them, making it feel like you're back at your first day of school. You're not allowed to go to the toilet before 10am so be sure not to have a coffee before coming to work.

    The smell of pot noodle drifts across the office every lunchtime which I suppose is a welcome change from the sewage.

    We had several inspections from what looked like pest control trying to find the source of fleas in the office, I have no words for this.

    The directors are the rudest, most unwelcoming people I have ever met, the CEO even had enough one day, storming out of her office in hysterics saying "I can't do this anymore". Understandable! God forbid if you have a question to ask senior management, you will be looked up and down as if you're the biggest idiot on the planet even though you haven't received an hours worth of training.

    Save yourself the depressing mornings knowing you have to endure a days work in the dungeon as well as the embarrassment of having this dreadful company on your CV.

    The only thing I learned from Barrhead travel was to check Glassdoor reviews before starting any job, safe to say the place is an absolute joke.

    Advice to Management

    Start listening to some of these reviews, rather than posting false ones yourself and still wondering why the staff turnover is so high?


  10. Helpful (10)

    "Not a great employer and need to come into this century"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Glasgow, Scotland (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The people and friends I have made working there.

    Apart from that the stairs on the way out!

    There isn’t anything else positive to say about this place!

    Cons

    Bad pay
    Dictatorship
    If your face doesn’t fit your out
    Bad working conditions
    Directors that don’t know what they are doing
    Won’t spend money on new technologies
    Uncomfortable working conditions
    CEO office is bigger than some department offices that have more than 6 people in it.
    Filling in top 100 companies to work for review on behalf of people that have already left the company!!!!
    Not allowed to the toilet before 10am
    Remember your tray for your drink from the kitchen
    Don’t talk to anyone on the way back to your desk or there will be trouble.

    Advice to Management

    Come into this century and listen to your staff the place has the potentially to be a great place to work because of the staff. Let people work remotely when needed and don’t make it sound like they are up to no good. Embrace change and new technologies and bring in flexible working for all staff....


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