Oxford University Press Reviews

Updated Jul 2, 2020

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2.9
51%
Recommend to a Friend
51%
Approve of CEO
Oxford University Press CEO Nigel Portwood (no image)
Nigel Portwood
223 Ratings
Pros
  • "Holiday car pay Work life balance(in 60 reviews)

  • "A nascent focus on change and digital transformation is going to make OUP an exciting (and career-defining) place to work for many people(in 58 reviews)

Cons
  • "Need more investments in the publishing operations if OUP is going to be an active participant in the new publishing environment(in 66 reviews)

  • "Low pay and slow career progression(in 48 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. Featured Review

    "Wonderful and Supportive Place to Work"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing Coordinator in Cary, NC
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Oxford University Press full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Excellent home/life balance Opportunities for career development Competitive salary Plenty of PTO and paid holidays Excellent and supportive management

    Cons

    A lot of meetings depending on your department Some confusing communications between departments

    Oxford University Press Response

    January 20, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    We’re delighted to hear that you are enjoying your time with us, and that you have been able to make the most of some of the benefits we have on offer. We’d really like to hear more about why you like working at OUP, and hope you’ll get in touch to expand on your review: glassdoor@oup.com.

  2. "A great place to work"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Human Resources Operations Manager in Charlotte, NC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Great benefits offered by the company.

    Cons

    Changes do not happen a quickly.

    Oxford University Press Response

    October 14, 2019OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    Thanks for sharing your feedback, and it’s great to see that you’d recommend working at OUP to others! If you want to expand on your review at all, you can tell us more by emailing glassdoor@oup.com.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Making necessary transitions, but it's a good place to work."

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Oxford University Press full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Still values the importance of the scholarship we publish in a very challenging marketplace. Good work/life balance, which is very hard to find. Opportunities to move around, though admittedly requires having a champion.

    Cons

    The balance between not-for-profit leader in scholarly comms is very often at odds with the requirements to return a profit to the University. Need more investments in the publishing operations if OUP is going to be an active participant in the new publishing environment.

    Oxford University Press Response

    March 31, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    Thank you for your feedback, and we’re pleased to hear that you have had a positive experience at OUP. We are always keen to find out what we can do to improve, so if you would like to tell us anything else about what we’re doing well, and where we can do better, please do get in touch via glassdoor@oup.com.

  4. Helpful (8)

    "Good people, poor management"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Development Editor in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Oxford University Press full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    OUP is home to some of the best people you'll ever meet.

    Cons

    Unfortunately, many of OUP's entry- and mid-level employees are undervalued by the company, in both pay and recognition. The future of publishing in NY is not looking great.

    Continue reading

    Oxford University Press Response

    February 28, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    Thank you for sharing your experiences of working here, and for your positive feedback about our people. We regret to see your comments around reward, and also the impact of business decisions on our people, and would like the chance to discuss this in more depth. We hope you will consider getting in touch with us to tell us more, so please do email us on glassdoor@oup.com.

  5. "Great people, tough industry"

    4.0
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time

    Pros

    Great people, felt very organized

    Cons

    Low salary makes it hard to stay

    Oxford University Press Response

    February 17, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    Thanks for your feedback. If you want to tell us any more about your experiences, please get in touch via glassdoor@oup.com.

  6. Helpful (9)

    "The worst place you will ever work, in any industry"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Marketing in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Met some wonderful, kind people at the assistant and mid-manager levels. All of them have wised up and moved on.

    Cons

    Rampant abuse of lower-level employees (all female) by senior management (all white and mostly male). I was personally bullied and yelled at, and witnessed sexual harassment of other employees. HR is fully aware of this, yet the same senior management team remains in place. Day to day, you are expected to take on the work of 3-4 people with no perks whatsoever, no resources to help you and a computer system that only functions about half the time. There is little to no chance for advancement, which is why most people don't last more than a year or so. The salary is poverty level, and the health insurance is just ok. The bottom line: OUP culture treats its employees (at the lower and middle levels) as valueless and disposable. Even if you want to get publishing experience, it is NOT worth the soul-crushing, toxic environment. If you value your mental or physical health in the least, you'll stay far away from OUP.

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  7. Helpful (9)

    "Terrible place to work. Managers haven't got a clue. Very hostile work environment"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Representative in Cary, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Earning potential as a rep is high. Time off is good. Benefits are good

    Cons

    Hostile work environment. Amateurish managers (at best). Lots of sniping and very cliquey. Managers play favorites. Inappropriately closeness between managers and some of their subordinates. Complete and utter lack of coaching. Lacking in any kind of real training or coaching in sales, systems etc. Almost all coaching and training is done online, rather than in a face to face teaching environment and is of the lowest quality I have ever experienced in more than four decades of work experience. I worked for OUP for a long time and only put up with it because of the high earnings potential. It was like an abusive relationship. I am glad to be gone from there.

    Continue reading

    Oxford University Press Response

    February 28, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    We are concerned by many of the issues you raise in your review, particularly around our culture and learning and development opportunities. We would really like to understand more about your experiences, so we can identify opportunities for improvement, and encourage you to email us via glassdoor@oup.com. Regarding your point about inappropriate behaviours, you can also raise your concerns for investigation by contacting our confidential helpline - SpeakUpOUP@expolink.co.uk.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "A place to start in publishing if you really want to explore publishing"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Good 401k program, OUP NY is located near subway stations, Penn Station and Grand Central.

    Cons

    Too bureaucratic, too many silos, management talks about change but change is not in the DNA of OUP. Lack of transparency and diversity

    Continue reading

    Oxford University Press Response

    February 17, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    Thank you for sharing your feedback. If you would like to expand on any of the areas you mention in your review – positive or negative – or have ideas of how we can improve further, then please do email us at glassdoor@oup.com.

  9. Helpful (16)

    "How to get out alive, Strategically"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    It can be a casual environment, especially if your manager is remote. Network/Friends - People are under so much stress, that you can bond really closely. A lot of people move to NY, and you’ll feel like you made friends fast. Then when your friends leave OUP, you now have a great network. We help each other get out, and it’s very common for former OUP employees to continue working together at other companies. Honestly this was my strategy coming in, and it worked. But it doesn’t work for everyone. *caveat: turnover is so high that some people don’t bother getting to know the new assistants. They’ll be gone in 6-11 months, and it’s exhausting. The Oxford brand - it sounds impressive on your resume, especially if you want to work at a smaller academic press or in education. If you want to work in publishing, there can be barriers transitioning from academic/higher ed to trade books. In those cases, people usually take an assistant level job at a different publisher (often a step down if they’ve been promoted at OUP), but some end up really happy at their subsequent company. Publishing knows how crappy OUP is, and they know people at OUP know how to work hard. In Summer 2019, a few of the most infamous sexual harassers/managers were let go (which in itself was a miracle because assistants had been reporting them for 20 years). It’s a weird culture because it feels like almost all of of the assistants are young women and almost all of the editors/managers are middle aged men. Although there are women in middle management, the men hold the authority. Some people like it at OUP. If you figure out how to emotionally detach, compartmentalize, and protect your personal time, you’ll be fine. Bagel Friday - although they’ve been cutting back on this recently to save money, which is concerning. Brown bananas aren’t healthy, they’re just cheap. They never got enough bagels in the first place - they’re gone by 9:15. Work somewhere else, and afford your own bagels.

    Cons

    Salary is unlivable in NYC. No one can do it without support from their parents or spouse, or a second job. This makes diversity impossible. Terrible health care. They’ll say they have tuition reimbursement, but they won’t give it to you. Layoffs - you might be next. The 60 people laid off this week have more time to pack their things, but usually people are forced out in the same work day that they get the news. Then their work is dumped on people who are kept. Hiring freezes - turnover is high, people leave all the time. And spanning months, the company has hiring freezes, where they refused to fill these empty positions. Their workload gets dumped on the remaining team. Everyone at OUP is juggling 2 full time workloads, at a minimum. Even when there’s not a hiring freeze, they’re EXTREMELY slow to hire mid and upper level positions. It’s 8-12 months of an assistant doing the work of their former manager or director, with no compensation in title or salary. I’ve heard sometimes they’ll give one $500 bonus, which after tax, isn’t nearly proportional to the workload. An assistant’s experience is entirely dictated by their manager. A few managers are wonderful, but they don’t tend to stick around long because they’re actually capable of getting out. Often they are forced out because they know they’re overworked and doing a good job, so they’ll ask for a raise/promotion, and they won’t get it. Then they leave, and the assistant is stuck doing both jobs. The bad managers get stuck there, and for some bizarre reason upper management seems hell bent on keeping the worst offenders. Experiences can vary, but expect to be yelled at, belittled, and thrown under the bus. No one is taught how to do anything, and then you get yelled at when the work lacks very ridged specifications. Less common: harassment. Most situations toe that line of “is this worth reporting?” and then “will there be repercussions if I do report?”. In the past, reporting assistants had been fired or shuffled to a different manager with nothing happening to the offending manager. Recently that’s been changing (see the pro for more details), but you will need multiple witnesses. I think the most common issue is general nastiness and incompetence at the mid/upper-level. Performance plans - less common, used as a tool to set impossible standards for a single employee, and then fire that person when these “expectations” aren’t met, after a boss has decided he doesn’t like the employee. I’ve seen this happen to both assistants and managers. Frustrating that they kept people who are much less competent than the employees they fired. Depending on the department, it can feel nearly impossible to get promoted. More commonly, people get promoted once and then it’s nearly impossible to get promoted a second time. On the flip side, I know 3 people who turned down promotions because of workload concerns and dealing with big personalities. The Diversity Committee is straight white women, who are upset with the straight white men who run the company (justifiably). Then nothing happens because of the limitations set on the committee by the straight white men. They do not care. This sounds obvious, but people have walked into HR sobbing, and they won’t acknowledge the issue or follow up.

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  10. Helpful (9)

    "Looking for a foot in the door? Unless you're desperate for a paycheck, apply elsewhere."

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Editor in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Oxford University Press full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Brilliant, kind employees ruthlessly mistreated by upper management; extremely low stakes.

    Cons

    Embarrassingly low pay, almost no opportunity for advancement, out-of-touch upper management, outdated and mind-numbingly convoluted systems, rampant outsourcing, loudly empty gestures toward diversity and inclusion, constant turnover resulting from a company culture that encourages employees to leave and usually fails to replace them in favor of spreading the work around.

    Continue reading

    Oxford University Press Response

    February 17, 2020OUP Glassdoor Account Manager

    We’re concerned by a number of the points you raise in your review. We hope you will consider getting in touch to tell us more, so that we can escalate your feedback to the necessary teams internally. You can reach us at glassdoor@oup.com.

Found 568 reviews