Oxford University Press Reviews in Oxford, England | Glassdoor

Oxford University Press Oxford Reviews

Updated October 10, 2017
62 reviews

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Oxford, England (UK)

2.7
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Oxford University Press CEO Nigel Portwood
Nigel Portwood
31 Ratings

62 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Excellent work/life balance as well as great support from colleagues and management (in 40 reviews)

  • Great coworkers, great work environment (in 20 reviews)

Cons
  • Low pay and need better infrastructure (in 26 reviews)

  • Lack of direction from senior management, with a complete misunderstanding of what digital publishing means (in 20 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Poor support for mental health"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Editor in Oxford, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Assistant Editor in Oxford, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Flexible working hours, large company with many resources available.

    Cons

    Little support, understanding and accommodation of mental health concerns, exacerbated by working environments conducive to stress.

    Advice to Management

    Take mental health more seriously and value your employees more.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Toxic and depressed... but could be amazing"

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

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Great location
    - Work life balance
    - Brand and prestige,
    - Some wonderful people
    - Some great opportunities... if you make them yourself
    - Organisation is not supportive, certain managers are... despite the organisation
    - Much needed IT organisational changes, hopefully, embedded and going in the right direction
    - Ducks

    Cons

    - CTO - out of his depth and angry
    - Blatant nepotism
    - Brand value and prestige is actually tiny and meaningless
    - Favoring contractors over perms, but then expecting perms to pick up the contractors mess
    - Atrocious salaries - truly awful
    - Career progression non-existant, unless you are mates with hiring manager
    - Bizarre management decisions made with no communication or explanation
    - Scapegoating coal-face staff
    - Difficult, but required, organisational changes handled incredibly poorly. People actually made sick by the process.
    - The organisation is depressed

    Advice to Management

    Most of you need to apologise and leave

  3. Helpful (1)

    "No longer the force it once was"

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

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    The people; the building; the history; sometimes the content.

    Cons

    Poor wages; poor management; poor leadership; lack of investment in Editorial and Content (way too much emphasis on delivery and its mechanisms).

    Advice to Management

    Way too many layers of 'senior' management. Too many meetings. Too many people employed to count; and not enough to actually 'do' anything.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Great for work / life, but that's it"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Sales Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great work / life balance.
    On site gym.
    On site restaurant, shop, and espresso bar.

    Cons

    Salaries are low and it's hard to get these increased due to bureaucracy / red tape.
    Discrepancies between divisions (pay / reward / office standards / IT equipment / travel).
    Difficult to launch ideas or initiate step change.
    Many employees are comfortable with little drive. No accountability for poor performance.
    Management disconnected from "on-the-ground" work.
    Inclination to re-brand/launch old content.

    Advice to Management

    Increase salaries and reward to retain exceptional staff.
    Ensure accountability for employees who are under-performing.


  5. Helpful (3)

    "Flagging"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Digital Support Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Digital Support Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Oxford University Press full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Beautiful, historic building.
    On-site catering.
    Interesting and fun people.
    Travel-to-work scheme for bus and rail passes
    Wide variety of after work clubs and social events.
    Impressive name for a CV.

    Cons

    Lack of direction from senior management, with a complete misunderstanding of what digital publishing means.
    Terrible IT service desk that cause more problems than they solve.
    Takes far too long to get an idea off the ground and into market.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Okay"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Oxford University Press full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Beautiful building
    Onsite gym
    Good work/life balance - the office is empty after 5pm
    Lots of nice people working there

    Cons

    Difficult to see career path for junior staff
    Low salaries - especially as it is based in one of the most expensive cities to live in in the UK
    Lack of training support
    Discrepancies across Divisions - one division will pay for their staff to do a CIM course and another division won't
    Not very agile - take ages to get projects moving
    Quite hierarchical management structure
    Recruitment freezes and redundancies are rife
    Dreadful IT support - we haven't had a colour printer for months

    Advice to Management

    Pay staff better
    Create more opportunities for junior staff


  7. "Good company, good benefits"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Team Leader in Oxford, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Team Leader in Oxford, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Nice atmosphere, the people are all great to work with. Benefits are great - vacation, pension, on site canteen, on site gym, beautiful building and surroundings. The publishing work is rewarding and interesting.

    Cons

    Pay is probably less than you might make elsewhere. There has been some downsizing, but less so than other publishing companies. Otherwise it's a pretty stable place to work.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to motivate and develop staff, promote internally, retain the best talent.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Pleasant stepping stone, but no career here"

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

    I worked at Oxford University Press (More than a year)

    Pros

    Beautiful building, great facilities and positive atmosphere.

    Cons

    Not much career progression and wages fairly low.
    Not much annual leave and no time off over Christmas.


  9. Helpful (4)

    "It's all a facade"

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

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Very proud to work for a company with such an established history in Oxford, and the benefits there are very good.

    Cons

    - Massive lack of innovation.
    - The company says its a charity but it acts like a money-hungry corporation.
    - Led by useless middle-managers with no vision
    - Extremely risk-averse
    - Many long and useless meetings, resulting in nothing, except more useless meetings
    - Waste of time training courses and box-ticking exercises
    - Crappy pay, especially to digital staff

    Advice to Management

    Pay your staff more, innovate more, fire all the dead-weight useless staff who have been then for years and contribute nothing. In fact, just fire everyone and turn the location into premier flats and cafes in Jericho, and keep a skeleton staff producing a few bespoke, lovingly-made books - instead of churning out the same crap year after year.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Marketing Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Oxford, England (UK)
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Oxford University Press full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    A really amazing company to work for with lots of exciting projects and ways to collaborate across teams and parts of the business. A really nice sociable company. Career opportunities are there if you want them but you will have to apply internally, as a straight promotion is a no no.

    Cons

    Structure is completely wrong, top heavy management, not enough time is invested into making staff feel valued. The senior leadership are constantly re-structuring teams resulting in serious stress and overwork for many. Not enough transparency or consistency across different parts of the team resulting in unfair treatment.


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