University of British Columbia

  www.ubc.ca
  www.ubc.ca
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University of British Columbia Reviews in Canada

Updated 17 September 2014
Updated 17 September 2014
176 Reviews
3.7
176 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
University of British Columbia President Stephen J. Toope
Stephen J. Toope
58 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great people to work with and UBC is situated on a beautiful campus (in 19 reviews)

  • Support employee development, provide good benefits and lot of opportunities (in 12 reviews)


Cons
  • Salary is not enough to sustain in an expensive city like Vancouver (in 6 reviews)

  • Salary isn't quite great, as a similar position in government or private sector is paid around (in 5 reviews)

More Highlights

156 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    A great place to work. Co-workers are friendly and opportunities for growth and development are abundant!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Special Projects Coordinator  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Special Projects Coordinator in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I have been working at University of British Columbia as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    - campus is beautiful
    - benefits are awesome
    - compensation is good
    - casual atmosphere with flexibility

    Cons

    - each faculty/department does things a little differently - lack of consistency across the board
    - many employees that have been around a long time making some interactions more complicated than needed

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Good experience lots of opportunity to learn

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Assistant  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Research Assistant in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I have been working at University of British Columbia as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Good experience lots of opportunity to learn

    Cons

    Limited budget and sometimes the work environment was a little unsafe

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    good opportunity to learn

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Great place to work!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Program Coordinator  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Former Employee - Program Coordinator in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I worked at University of British Columbia full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Continuous learning opportunities - formal and informal such as instructional skills, management development and structured networking opportunities with professional staff. Very flexible, family-friendly approach and policies

    Cons

    As a publicly funded university, the salaries are not the best, particularly for non-academic or beginning academic staff.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider transitioning out some of the administrative staff who have been there for 30 years or so without re-skilling significantly. It would help UBC grow at the pace it hopes to grow.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Working as a PhD research and teaching assistant at UBC

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Assistant  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Research Assistant in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I have been working at University of British Columbia full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    A lots of opportunities for personal and professional growth
    Wonderful place to build a network
    Varieties of options to learn new professional skills
    A good start point for career in teaching and research

    Cons

    Low paid jobs.
    Being over-qualified for most of available jobs in BC.
    Hard to create boundary between research work and life.
    Challenge of defining the tasks

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Providing opportunities for more internship for graduate students

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Relaxing place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Assistant  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Research Assistant in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I have been working at University of British Columbia full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Relaxed atmosphere, good work-life balance

    Cons

    Very slow progress, but such is research

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    NA

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Great work-study position for students!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Operations Staff  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Operations Staff in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I have been working at University of British Columbia part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Chill job, good schedule, freedom, and you get to see famous hockey players all the time!

    Cons

    If you work over 12 hours a week your pay decreases to 12/hr.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    People were nice, helpful, and enjoyable work place

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - IT ASSISTANT  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Former Employee - IT ASSISTANT in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I worked at University of British Columbia part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Flexible hours, Flexible work load, and nice people.
    it is definitely a place where I would go back if I have chance.

    Cons

    There's no cons at this workplace for sure

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Avoid UBC IT

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Vancouver, BC (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Vancouver, BC (Canada)

    I worked at University of British Columbia full-time

    Pros

    - Good benefits, tuition waivers, pension plan, vacation days
    - Many excellent co-workers who are knowledgeable and very helpful
    - Good work-life balance
    - Professional and respectful work environment across the campus

    Cons

    - Low employee morale
    - No work satisfaction
    - Employees are not valued
    - No interesting projects anymore
    - No investment in modern technologies anymore
    - High staff turn over in the past year (20% turn over), driving the best employees to other companies
    - Used to be an excellent place to work where everyone worked well together but has turned for the worse in the past 2 years
    - Communication is one-way, from top management downwards, command and control
    - Bad upper management who believes in vendors' PR and overhyped silver bullet solutions rather than own employees
    - Everyone is told what and how to do their job which can be seen by the purchase of an old low-tech third-party system and development environment with a very limited feature set
    - Custom development is frowned upon and is seen as ineffective, inefficient and unmaintainable
    - People are treated as replaceable parts
    - UBC IT makes town hall promises with out-dated third-party technologies without accuracy or validation from technical staff
    - Very political environment
    - Lack of transparency from management
    - Does not value employee personal and professional growth anymore
    - Dysfunctional organization
    - UBC IT is a dinosaur and is not an innovative IT department who value their human infrastructure

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Remove the command and control management style and start listening to your employees.
    Management should embrace its people instead of external experts/consultants and silver bullet solutions.
    Don't treat strong talent, especially BAs, SMEs and IT staff with deep institutional knowledge as commodities - we are not in the industrial age anymore.
    Make sure that staff do meaningful work and embrace creativity.
    Broad executive or upper management commitments made at 30,000-foot views normally bring terrible results which are now starting to show.
    Turning problems over to a vendor does not protect you from failure or customer dissatisfaction.
    Treat knowledge workers as assets and as not expenses and as assets they must be grown.
    COTS does not always give you a competitive advantage. Identify and prioritize your problems first. Don't do big-bang solutions.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 5 people found this helpful  

    UBC IT - Management sees no failures, hears no failures and speaks no failures, but are bound for failure

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Developer
    Current Employee - Software Developer

    I have been working at University of British Columbia full-time

    Pros

    - Great salary, benefits, pension and vacation package
    - Those who work on the ground are great to work with. They are willing to help and are knowledgeable
    - Relatively slower pace than the private sector, so tends to have better work-life balance (depends on department)

    Cons

    With the recent focus on 3rd party systems rather than in-house development, things have changed for the worst:
    - Management only sees vendors' marketing spin and ignores their own teams' findings
    - There is no communication between those who do and those who manage. This is because management refuses to listen and removes those who do not conform
    - Unrealistic project timelines that do not take into account estimates of those who do the work. Because of this, quality suffers and people are stressed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please remove your new style of command and control management. Listen to those who are on the front lines and see with your own eyes what's happening. If you continue down this path, you will only realize the painful errors you're making several years down the road. That's when you'll realize it's too late to turn back.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    It is great everywhere else on campus, except in UBC IT.

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

    I have been working at University of British Columbia full-time

    Pros

    - Excellent work-life balance
    - Excellent benefits
    - Professional and respectful work environment across the campus.
    - Competitive salary, within the public sector

    Cons

    - Upper management are delusional, they think front line employees are the problem. As evidenced by the wasteful money on "Effective Communication" workshop, masked as Career Framework training, during organizational transformation.
    - Unless you can be represented by a number, you can work your butt off and no one will notice.
    - Employees are treated like a cog in a giant Lego machine. Everything is NOT awesome.
    - Too much management, especially remote Senior Management with limited exposure to different ways of doing things.
    - Incompetent management lacking any vision. They are all order takers. The more, the quicker they move up.
    - A mountain of internal processes that reduces workflow efficiency to a crawl.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Break out of your by the book management style. PMP works great when you are building a house. Not so great with IT systems. Not every system is the same, no matter how many times you have done it. ITIL best practices are great, when you correctly applied what you need. When ITIL processes become operational roadblocks, you have a problem. KPI and metrics are great, but so are liars and numbers manipulators, they are great at telling you what you want to hear.

    - Ditch your command and control management style. Respects are earned, not by job titles or salary grades. Problems can be fixed/solved much faster if they do not have to traverse the endless tree to the top. Your employees are all expertise in their areas, why restrict their ability to make expert decisions? You pay for their experience and expertise, yet you put roadblocks in front of them.

    Doesn't Recommend

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