University of Cambridge Reviews | Glassdoor

University of Cambridge Reviews

Updated November 5, 2016
5 reviews

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University of Cambridge Vice Chancellor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz
Sir Leszek Borysiewicz
1 Rating

5 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • bank holidays, great work-life balance (in 12 reviews)

  • Friendly and supportive working environment (in 14 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons

  1. "Ehh"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)

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

    Pros

    Successful institute, successful people abound. Financially stable. A constant influx of smart and hard working students and employees.

    Cons

    Success comes at the expense of flexibility and freedom. Not enough collaboration or exploration of new ideas. Relatively high number of big headed people.


  2. "Cambridge University, Teaching Associate"

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

    I worked at University of Cambridge (More than a year)

    Pros

    The students, the lecturing, the tutorial, the relative freedom to outline the contents of my own lectures.

    Cons

    I was quite inexperienced when I was hired. I met with poor guidance, poor supervision, poor administrative structure, poor organization. Lack of solidarity between colleagues. A huge responsibility job, to be carried out with maximum precarity.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Massive wealth - anachronism"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Lots of time off allowed, plenty of benefits depending on your Grade in the uni society (see Cons below).

    Work-life balance is good.

    Cons

    It's a successful university split into two parts: 'academic' and 'non-academic' work. Non-academics may as well be considered indentured servants, even if they're as capable as academic staff (e.g. Doctors of engineering working as software developers are considered 'non academic').

    The University is an umbrella org that facilitates data sharing between 32 colleges, but its the colleges that are extraordinarily wealthy. The university is cash strapped and most of its staff are non-academic.

    There's a tremendous disparity between the rights of people of equal capability to earn relatively similar amounts of money in salary terms; and it all comes down to the Grading of your position by HR.

    HR is superbly anachronistic, and for example considers a senior software engineer to be the same thing / level / grade as a senior anything else: including office administrators, lab techs and secretaries.

    The city is a terminal city, people come and go - plus it has small town syndrome. The uni people are self absorbed and self centered; the local town people are jaded and resentful of the uni people.

    The keyword I'd use is Feudal.

    Advice to Management

    Modernise your grading system and recognise skilled employees as such. The rest of the world is better than you at identifying / categorising skilled labour types. Unify your budgets and demand more from the colleges, who have more than they need to secure themselves for the next 500 years.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Could be great but only with better management"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Laboratory Manager
    Current Employee - Laboratory Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Lots of internal training available, final salary pension, good leave entitlement.

    Cons

    Awful management, little communication, enormous disparity in the way support staff and academic staff are treated, no flexibility


  6. "Good work life balance but limited progression opportunities"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in Cambridge, East of England, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The University offers excellent work life balance although sometimes taking this to the extreme as some employees take advantage of this and sickness absence is high.

    Cons

    As a research assistant there is limited opportunities for progression which is generally linked to publications in journals rather than performance in undertaking high quality research and the generation of money for the department.

    Advice to Management

    Introduction of timesheets to ensure that all staff contribute equally and some are not taken advantage of.



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