Scottish Government Reviews | Glassdoor

Scottish Government Reviews

Updated June 7, 2017
24 reviews

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3.1
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Scottish Government First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
Nicola Sturgeon
4 Ratings

24 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Solicitor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Scottish Government full-time

    Pros

    flexi working is overall present

    Cons

    should let people who know what their doing get on with it.


  2. "Senior Developer"

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

    I have been working at Scottish Government full-time

    Pros

    Very good Flexible working pattern
    No pressure to complete tasks by deadline
    Zero consequences of work dragging on
    Laidback atmosphere

    Cons

    Very little skills development
    No pressure to complete tasks by deadline
    Zero consequences of work dragging on
    All development work goes to external staff leaving bug fixes to permanent employees
    Constant feeling of being undervalued or overlooked

    Advice to Management

    Trust the internal skills of your staff and give them the opportunity to use these skills. Staff will be much happier and will not look to leave at every opportunity

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Infrastructure Systems Administrator"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - IT Administrator in Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - IT Administrator in Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Scottish Government full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good support, Flexible working hours, Relaxed environment, Good employee benefits package and Excellent colleagues. I have worked with people who are employed for over 20 years, the place is that good!

    Cons

    Things can sometimes be slow to process.

    Advice to Management

    Senior level management needs improving but otherwise great place to work for.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Admin assistant Scottish Government"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Administration Assistant in Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)
    Former Employee - Administration Assistant in Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Friendly Management. Good pay rate. Allowed lots of responsibility, leading to a rise in my confidence.

    Cons

    Open plan workspace causing distraction. Some unpaid overtime expected.

    Advice to Management

    Monitor staff more often to tackle workplace bullying and watch for supervisors taking credit for assistants work.


  5. Helpful (3)

    "Utter mayhem"

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

    I worked at Scottish Government full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Flexi-time, talented colleagues (some), decent amount of holidays, work was interesting and challenging, majority of colleagues are friendly and helpful

    Cons

    Management (senior) not in-sync with employees, some staff in technical roles without necessary training/expertise, highly stressful, often a negative working atmosphere

    Advice to Management

    Listen to employees, incorporate a logical structure to managing teams of employees, give teams a chance to sync/adapt rather than continuously moving personnel between different teams


  6. "Gradist and No Interest in Professionalism or Career Progression"

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

    I worked at Scottish Government full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Met some good friends there and got on with some people.
    Had a couple of bosses who were very nice and friendly.
    A lot of the subject matter is interesting, even if the work isn't.

    Cons

    Gradist - senior managers generally look at very junior members of staff with complete contempt.
    No training for members of staff, no interest in staff careers or development.
    Bullying by managers not held accountable.
    Temp workers - when I was there they hired loads of temps on minimum wage instead of hiring proper permanent staff, continuity and motivation on the floor as a result. Temps were barred from applying for jobs internally.

    Advice to Management

    Above all punish managers if they show contempt or worse towards junior members of staff to try to shift the culture.
    Stop hiring temps and give new people proper jobs.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Too many contractors"

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

    I have been working at Scottish Government full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    good amount of leave and flexi working

    Cons

    Vast majority of staff are contractors. Taking permanent jobs away from current staff and burning though budgets and not delivering

    Advice to Management

    Stop employing so many contractors

  8. "Good - Could Be Better"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Team Leader in Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)
    Current Employee - Team Leader in Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Scottish Government full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Invests in people development.
    Working hours.
    Interesting work.

    Cons

    Limited promotional opportunities - and based on how you 'talk' about your job rather than actual performance.
    Salary.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Doesn't walk the talk, has a diversity problem, bad behaviour at senior levels can go unchallenged"

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

    I worked at Scottish Government (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    General perks of working within Central Government: for example, good leave allowance, flexible working policies, and help with childcare. As someone who has worked in UK Government departments as well I found the pace of work much more relaxed with more emphasis on work-life balance.

    Cons

    In principle, the Scottish Government has a number of commendable corporate policies, however in reality these are often ignored or only given lip service.

    If you are unfortunate enough to require assistance from HR on issues falling outside the usual payroll issues, they are found wanting or even being actively unhelpful to both managers and employees, acting in ways that run counter to the corporate rhetoric of things like the 'People Strategy'. As long as you realise that HR are working wholly to the interests of the business and not necessarily in the best interests of its staff, you won't expect too much from them.

    The workforce, particularly at more senior and managerial grades, is not diverse and reflects a deeper diversity problem which the organisation is unwilling to address in any meaningful way, other than to point to their diversity strategy. This is not helped by the way that the organisation discusses and takes action on diversity issues, focusing on only one or two strands such as gender balance.

    The promotion system makes grade progression difficult and exacerbates the diversity problem where the senior management team is really not reflective of the society it serves. There is nominally an internal talent management programme that aims to identify people with good leadership potential to get to the higher grades, but a new intake of people has not happened for around 4-5 years at least.

    There are also ingrained issues around management and managers having the skills and support they need to able to manage people effectively and getting the best out of them, and this is a problem that reaches up to senior management level.

    Advice to Management

    Get HR to take more responsibility for the issues that managers and employees both look to them for guidance and help. They and other Corporate Services need to take on much more of an active role, particularly in business areas that seem to be in difficulty (e.g. high rate of staff sickness and stress).

    There needs to be better understanding of diversity issues as not just a tick box exercise (for example during recruitment, or when HR want to implement a new policy) so that the issues are looked at in a broader, holistic way and the experiences of those facing unconscious bias and discrimination are listened to and real action is taken.

    The promotion system is currently being overhauled but I am not sure whether this will remove some of the barriers to promotion - a culture shift (where presently there is a sense of you need to have been working at this grade for x number of years before you can progress) needs to be part of that, as well as proper adherence to recruitment guidance (where in my experience some recruitment managers bend the rules).

    Better support and upskilling of those in managerial positions - perhaps even having honest conversations about whether some people would like to be managers? Senior management need to step up more and get better at managing people and 'softer skills', rather than just being good leaders.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Good employer but very poor progression, pay and promotion opportunities"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Scottish Government full-time

    Pros

    Colleagues are all brilliant, employment conditions are good and flexible working is always an option if you ever need it. Depending on your role though, you could have more responsibilities with less pay than someone else in a higher band. Staff are offered a part wage advance at Christmas, to reduce financial worry / stress. There is a high dedication to work / life balance and sessions are available with advice on things like anxiety and stress.

    Annual leave is good and additional options are available if required (parental leave, emergency leave etc). Policies also exist to help with childcare costs and money towards glasses if you need them to do your job (working on a PC for example).

    Cons

    Salary is poor, and starting salaries in the lowest pay band have only increased by around £1000 since 2009. Salary moves up each year, but when you reach the maximum for your band, the only increase is capped at 1% and gaining promotion in a higher band is the only way to gain a significant increase.

    Recent changes to the state pension have worsened take home pay because NI contributions have now increased dramatically. Even with a higher personal allowance, the NI increase has resulted in staff taking home LESS every month than in 2015.

    Promotion is extremely difficult with various different stages. Applications, assessment centre stages, group exercises, presentations and interviews are all hurdles you have to jump over just to get a "ticket". You can only then use your ticket if there is a role available within X amount of time. If not, you lose the ticket and you start all over again next year.

    Internal applications are scored based on well written examples, not on the ability to perform the job. No weight is placed on individual dedication and any positive changes or contributions staff may have made, are not taken into account.

    Some Fixed Term staff can apply for permanent positions, but their current performance in the same temporary role is not even considered (Civil Service rules dictate that all positions should be given based on fairness & merit).

    Temporary Responsibility promotions are a waste of time, recruiting managers have dismissed written applications without even reading them. This is because applicants have not structured the document in a way which makes it easier to read. Most Managers who sift applications agree that if they cannot easily read the examples, they will put the application aside / in the bin and the applicant will fail the sift.

    Staff can ask for feedback, but if the above happens with your written application, then feedback is pointless as your answers were not even read. Managers also have different views about good & bad examples, so it really is total luck depending on who gets your application.


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