University of Reading Reviews | Glassdoor

University of Reading Reviews

Updated December 5, 2017
43 reviews

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3.1
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University of Reading Vice Chancellor Sir David Bell
Sir David Bell
6 Ratings

43 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Academia meets big business..."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Reading, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Reading, England (UK)
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If you like a more laid back life it's good, easy to not do a lot.

    Good research ratings and lots of funding!!

    Cons

    Promotion through long service, good chance of your dept. being closed if it doesn't 'perform'.

    Advice to Management

    Take a better look at all those personal domains of power...just because you bring in a lot of funding doesn't make you a manager!


  2. "technician"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - ART Tech H/S Pat Tester in Reading, England (UK)
    Current Employee - ART Tech H/S Pat Tester in Reading, England (UK)

    I have been working at University of Reading (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    good long term and good training with health and safety a prime requirement from a employer good support for students

    Cons

    radical changes due to PAS 34 million spent price house waterman , redundancies and salaries dropped by a 5th

    Advice to Management

    forget PAS reinstate good long term staff with experience

  3. "Horrible place to work"

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

    I have been working at University of Reading full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Most staff members are friendly and students treat you well.

    Cons

    Wages are rubbish. Employees are not treated well. There is a lot of bullying from management.

    Advice to Management

    Be kinder


  4. "Unbalanced"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Office Administrator
    Current Employee - Office Administrator
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at University of Reading full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good pension and a lot of training opportunities available. Leave available is alright, as you get closure days around Christmas and Easter but if you don't have a family and want to take these days at other times not so flexible. It's a good place to start if you're interested in a career in Education. You don't get paid overtime but you can claim it back as time of in lieu. For a grade 4 post hours tend to be 36, but I have always worked more than that. You can also apply for an NUS card which is a small benefit.

    Cons

    IT is poor and is very behind other Universities. You can't take leave during term time. Ability to work from home has mixed messages. For a small University the attitude is quite arrogant and having studied at a University in the Russell group, it's no where near that standard. Pay does not cover workload expected of administrative staff, especially as they are currently making cuts to admin. Management don't communicate changes down the hierarchy. There isn't much opportunity to be rewarded for hard work and it's incredibly hard to progress if you aren't working in research or academia. Other Universities pay higher salaries to administrative staff.
    During personal circumstances I have found management not helpful or supportive and there is no encouragement to progress staff up the career ladder.

    Advice to Management

    Re-balance your priorities, without administrators the courses won't function.


  5. "Librarian"

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

    Pros

    Lots of books to occupy yourself with

    Cons

    Can be a bit dull


  6. "Too much change all at once"

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

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

    Pros

    Lots of really good and friendly people to work with on an operational level

    Cons

    There has been an awful lot of change, lots of people have left or are new and so in many areas people are extremely stretched. Very political.

    Advice to Management

    Look after your staff; make sure they have the support they need, the training and development as well as a positive working environment.


  7. "PhD Student"

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

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

    Pros

    Nice campus, lots of clubs/societies, gym on-site, easy-ish to get to London (takes 50-60mins, NOT 30mins as advertised).

    Cons

    Terrible communication between departments, absolutely awful. Poor planning by high ups, no support for PhD students - doctoral research office does minimum possible to help with issues, no coherent progression plan, just generally not well organised and not interested in helping PhD students with career progression

    Advice to Management

    Increase communication and cohesion between departments, in particular admin staff who have no idea what they're doing. Better catering facilities for staff and postgrads during the summer - absolutely no reason why everything closes early, its not like we dont need to eat. More opportunity for PhD collaboration across departments, everything is very localised

  8. "Managers need to know how to manage and look after their teams"

    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
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at University of Reading full-time

    Pros

    Colleagues are friendly and both campuses are beautiful in their different ways.

    Cons

    The University has undergone a lot of change over the last couple of years and in some cases this change has not been well managed leading to increased workloads and higher stress levels for staff. Your experience will very much depend on your manager. Unfortunately my last manager while being a very nice person was completely unwilling to recognise that the amount of overtime being done was unsustainable and seriously impacting people's work life balance. When various members of staff raised concerns they did not seem concerned to find a solution or escalate these issues. In fact the relationship between middle and more senior managers seemed to be non-existent and more worryingly there did not appear to be consensus about how the department should be moving forward. As a result staff were left feeling confused and somewhat neglected. Very little was done to either reassure them that things would change or to take real steps to make this change a reality. It didn't seem like the managers really cared about the welfare of their teams and took for granted that they would put in the extra effort and hours.

    Advice to Management

    Managing people is a skill. When promoting someone who has good technical skills and experience to a managerial position it is critical to offer training or mentoring to ensure they fulfill their potential. If not the impact on the team is going to be negative and there will be problems retaining staff. HR need to be more aware of what is going on in departments and should know what signs to look for that indicate if things are not going well. More should be done to make the values that the University says it holds a reality.


  9. "Interesting and laid back"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Staff in Reading, England (UK)
    Current Employee - IT Staff in Reading, England (UK)

    Pros

    Educational environment
    Flexible but at the same time strict
    Reliable job that will not let anyone down
    Location is nice and close to London

    Cons

    Repetitive routines that are too repetitive and finally it is a real pain to work with all the procedures before doing anything

    Advice to Management

    Make work more fun a place where everyone can enjoy and feel like they're working not because they're looking forward to the final salary but because they're doing something challenging


  10. "A place where people are passionate and committed but poorly served by the low level of leadership and management."

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

    Pros

    Great location; pleasant, loyal and able colleagues.

    Cons

    Sadly and institution long past its prime and living on a (declining) reputation. The take over by University of Reading has not worked due to 1) no strategy for combining the best of both places and 2) very poor HR decisions (wiping out all the small, but important staff legacy working conditions at Henley) 3) absent or incompetent management/leadership skills. A case of 'physician heal thyself'!

    Advice to Management

    Start practising what (your programmes) preach - consult your staff and develop a strategy that inspires and makes sense; put 100% more effort into coaching and bringing together staff/teams; stop wasting time on trying to win business which has more to do with vanity than business sense


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