Audley Travel Reviews | Glassdoor.co.uk

Audley Travel Reviews

Updated Oct 13, 2019

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Found 190 reviews

4.2
StarStarStarStarStar
Rating TrendsRating Trends
86%
Recommend to a Friend
99%
Approve of CEO
Audley Travel CEO Nick Longman
Nick Longman
114 Ratings
Pros
  • "Audley genuinely cares about their employees(in 56 reviews)

  • "FAM trips- incredible, simply some of the best in the business(in 39 reviews)

Cons
  • "Work long hours over suggested 9-5:30; Job requires a lot of skills, multi-tasking and previous experience - wish we the pay were higher(in 23 reviews)

  • "unclear commission structure that does not pay well(in 11 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. Featured Review

    "Supportive sales team environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Country Specialist in Witney, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Superb training and support. Great team ethos. I enjoy working for a company with a set of values that thread through everyday activity. Audley cares about its staff who in turn care about their clients and this results in a high level of repeat and recommend business.

    Cons

    This IS a sales environment so targets need to be met, but there is a lot of support and robust processes in place to help you achieve them. Compared to other sales jobs it is not a high pressure environment. No obvious cons, but the pension offering could be better.

    Advice to Management

    The challenge for management will be to grow the business without losing the ethos / AudleyWay that is so pivotal to retaining our loyal client base.

    Audley Travel2019-06-20
  2. "A great sales role with a fantastic team and training."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Country Specialist in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Clear progression opportunities for sales staff with training being offered to support you to move into management if you choose. For those who love sales there are other ways to progress your career where you can take on extra responsibilities within the team from such as training or mentoring a newer member of staff. The earning potential is fantastic once you understand the role but realistically it takes... 12- 18 months to really embed what you have learnt. The role is serviced focused but this is definitely a sales role where you are working to clear sales targets. The expectations are very transparent and you’re measured not just on your sales but also your service levels. 4 week initial FAM trip when you start. It’s a great opportunity but this is a work trip not a holiday. Some days can be pretty exhausting but its also a lot of fun. Secondary trips are offered every 12- 18 months depending on business needs/time of year. Audley throw the best parties and they don’t cut corners. The company listen to staff feedback. Its quite transparent with monthly Company meetings where you can ask questions to the whoever is leading the meeting which is either the CEO, CFO, MD or HR Director. The benefits are constantly being reviewed. As of this month we now receive life insurance. Very bright, modern offices with plenty of natural light all within close walking distance to tube and over ground stations.

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    Cons

    The travel industry is cyclical which means your earnings go up and down with peak/non-peak periods.

    Advice to Management

    As the company continues to grow ensure changes are clearly communicated.

    Audley Travel2019-06-25
  3. "Inexperienced and unprofessional Regional managers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Travel Specialist in Witney, England

    I worked at Audley Travel full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The pros of working here are mainly the great location of their country office and most people you work with who are also passionate about travel.

    Cons

    During 2019 the company changed their approach from excellent customer service to prioritize sales numbers due to the recession in the industry numbers because of the unstable political situation. They hired sales managers from other backgrounds with no understanding of the industry and the intensive level of work and customer service that providing a high end tailor made product involves. The company’s aim now is... just to push sales and nothing else, losing in most cases the real value of what we used to do, providing something excellent rather than just another number on the sales board. The main reason being, the board wants to sell the company next year so they want to make themselves as profitable as possible to attract buyers. This of course put themselves first over customer needs and had ruined the moral of many genuine specialist who always work hard to provide the best product and service for our guests. The low level of professionalism and communications skills in management in some departments creates a very negative environment in the teams as they seem to be more interested in taking care of themselves rather than their teams. The sales team suffers of terrible work life balance as most people have to work late most nights, in a very stressful environment. Keep in mind you will also need to work up to 16 weekends.

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    Advice to Management

    You need professional and experienced management who can relate to their teams and sympathize with the hard work they do rather than asking numeric questions as only aim of meetings. We have managers telling us that we have to make more sales so they can earn their bonuses which is the most selfish approach I have ever seen in the industry.

    Audley Travel2019-09-29

    Audley Travel Response

    October 8, 2019Group HR Director

    I’m pleased to hear you enjoyed working in our beautiful countryside office location and I agree, the people at Audley are great and all are passionate about travel. Our People Development team have devoted a huge amount of time to train and up-skill our managers over the years so I’m sorry to hear that you felt your manager was not supportive. We continue to develop our managers so there is consistency across all programmes and we’re proud to have invested in a company-wide management development program for all our managers this year. We also support progression into the Regional Sales Managers roles by offering ‘Stepping Stones’ programmes to anyone with aspirations to move into management. We’re delighted that 75% of our managers hired over the past 12 months in Witney were internal promotions; these managers receive extensive training prior to gaining their own team and having done the role of the Country Specialist previously, they know the pressure a sales role brings. The UK economy has presented its challenges since the announcement of Brexit and Audley are pleased to achieve growth during these uncertain times where some of our competitors are reporting losses. There are always pressures that comes with a sales role and Audley do try to balance this out. We have reduced our core hours to 37 hours based on employee feedback to help support a healthy work life balance and we do encourage all staff to work these hours. Our staff work on average of 12 weekends days per year with a day off in lieu either side of the weekend to ensure a 5 day working week. The travel industry is cyclical and with that there may be certain times of the year where you will be busier. We try to balance this additional work with wellbeing initiatives (on-site gym, lunch time exercise classes and yoga), social events and ensuring the kitchens are stocked with an array of fresh fruit, juices and smoothies. In addition, we are working on enhancing the flexibility we’re able to offer our staff to further support a healthy work life balance. We have offered 20 staff the opportunity to work remotely from home (or another location) in Q4 this year and we aim to extend this to more staff as our technology continues to improve throughout 2020.

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  4. Helpful (1)

    "Mixed feelings"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Country Sales Specialist in London, England
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Audley Travel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great socials, great team, good office atmosphere. Good opportunity for someone coming from uni wanting to get a foot into the door in sales, travel or both. They also lowered the sales targets for new starters which is great. Fam trips are a great idea and well worth it.

    Cons

    Before I start I want to say that I genuinely believe that HR has good intentions to make this a great place to work. In the end however, there's an investor at the end of the chain and they are of course primarily interested in numbers. This may work well in the financial industry, but in the end Audley is a travel company selling "experiences" - as cheesy as it sounds. Most people who decide to work here do so out... of a passion for travel, cultures and to plan incredible trips for their clients. The result of the management pushing, pushing and pushing for quotes and bookings has been quite clear, our department has lost a third of their staff within the past year. The firm's employee retention is non existent, there's been a wave of experienced staff members leaving recently and it feels that really no one bats an eye. But let's start with the commission system. Of course your commission depends on how many bookings you make a month which is perfectly fine. The problem is that they will retrospectively deduct part of it (or even all of it) from your next paycheck if for whatever reason your client hasn't come back satisfied from their holiday. Reasons could be anything from a bad driver or guide in the country in question, a cancelled flight or any other reason which the country specialists don't have any control of. You are often the scapegoat for everything. Meaning, if your client decided they're not happy with something that's completely out of your control, you will be personally financially liable for it. If you're lucky and you dispute it, you might get it back if your manager is willing to help but it's a hassle and few people go that far. For a company that literally throws money at every customer not returning completely happy, sometimes in the thousands, this is just not good enough. Many reviews on here mention high stress levels and long hours. The pressure is indeed high, in the end it is a sales environment. The problem is that your job goes far beyond just being a sales specialist. You are an operations, admin, complaints and occasionally product representative at the same time. Generally not bad as it gives you a variety of tasks every day. The problem however is that your sales targets and customer service targets remain the same, there's simply no flexibility. There's pressure coming from all sides and oftentimes long hours are the only way to finish everything at the end of the day. The elites and turbos who have often worked at Audley for many years know how to do it but for new starters in particular this can be quite the challenge. Then there's clearly a lack of career progression opportunities, mainly due the fact that growing the sales department is the company's main concern. The product teams are kept small and while they are doing their best, there's a lot more potential to improve product, text and new ideas especially against the background of new competitors such as vivid travel, imagine and co. A travel operations department doesn't exist as every specialist manages both sales and operations process for each client. If you decide to work for Audley, make sure you're aware that you're making yourself financially liable for the next 18 months in case you decide that this job is not for you (unless they let you go during or right after probation). Otherwise they can make you pay up to 2k in fam costs. I have seen first hand how even close to these 18 months they will make specialists pay a substantial amount back. IT systems totally outdated and a pain. I know the above all sounds very negative, but if you've got a passion for sales and are quite organised then I'd give it a go. It's a good start into the industry, be it sales or travel and if you're committed and sales driven then it could be a great opportunity.

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    Advice to Management

    Take better care of your employees, especially the ones that have been there for a long time. Loosing too many experienced people ultimately means less bookings and a lack of experienced customer service. Happy employee = happy client, not the other way around.

    Audley Travel2019-08-29

    Audley Travel Response

    September 13, 2019Group HR Director

    Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts regarding your time at Audley. We take all feedback into consideration and are always openminded when it comes to ways we could improve things for our employees. I’m pleased to hear that you experienced great social events, along with being part of a great team and enjoyed our office atmosphere! Our employees are at the heart of what we do and therefore will always encourage a ‘one team’ philosophy and positive working environment. That said, I am concerned by your further comments and would welcome the opportunity to speak with you personally about your whole experience in further detail. One of our core values is to ‘be passionate about travel’. We encourage our sales teams to create special and unique experiences our clients will always remember. Therefore, I am regretful that you feel your passion for travel was overlooked as this is a key driver in the Country Specialist role and what separates Audley from our competitors. Having said that, the role is still a Sales position and there are minimum expectations each month for our employees to reach, with the help and support of management, product and sales support functions. We strive on reaching excellent client satisfaction feedback on every single trip, and as such this has been built into our commission structure. We continue to review our salary, commission and benefits offering and as part of this our Head of Reward is currently reviewing the commission structure we have in place to ensure it is right and fit for Audley and our employees. We appreciate that the Country Specialist role is a demanding role, and as such continue to review ways we can best support our staff in juggling the various tasks involved. For example, we implemented the Sales Support and Quality Control functions to aid in the administrative aspects and are seeking to implement enhanced technology systems next year to help speed up processes. We value the importance of our clients having one point of contact throughout their entire Audley experience. This is something that sets us apart from our competitors and we will continue to encourage this strong, ongoing relationship, whilst simultaneously looking for ways to support this from a Country Specialist perspective. The Country Specialist role offers a clear career progression, enabling employees to further their skills in the role and reach more Senior sales positions. Outside of this we encourage internal movement of staff, including into other areas of the business such as Product or Operations. Our version of the annual appraisal – My Journey – was implemented to help support such conversations and encourage employees and managers to discuss career aspirations and how to reach this goal. Thank you once again for your feedback. Whilst I am pleased to hear that you have recognised that working for Audley is a great opportunity, I am disappointed by some of your other comments. Please do not hesitate to speak with me directly regarding any of the points above.

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  5. "Great company spirit"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Hidden Beaches Specialist in Oxford, England
    Recommends

    I worked at Audley Travel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Professionalism, team work, work hard play hard ethic, social aspect

    Cons

    Numbers can be hard (same each month) and can easily turn into being very stressful.

    Audley Travel2019-07-31
  6. Helpful (2)

    "A company that rewards hard work and persistence, but you have to persevere"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Country Sales Specialist in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    The initial 4 week Fam Trip is awesome and really helps you to build up a great knowledge of the core product. The rewards that you get after you have been here for 2 or more years are great for those who are able to make their sales targets.

    Cons

    It is very hard to achieve your sales targets until you have been here for 2 years because you don't have repeat business, can't take on the richer "Elite" clients and you don't have in depth knowledge of a wide area, so it is not great money. If you can wait and get past 2 years, the money becomes fantastic.

    Advice to Management

    If you want a lower attrition rate, you need to make some of the financial rewards more attainable to newer people. How many sales specialists have ever made their point in their first year?

    Audley Travel2019-06-20
  7. "Great perks and an improving development team"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Witney, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    In General: - Great perks - Lovely people - Beautiful location Specifically with software development: - With help from 'transformation' contractors, we've made recent changes to management and team structure and processes (e.g. introducing code reviews) which has led to a better working environment and quality of code. - Introduction of more languages/frameworks which means there are plenty of... opportunities for developers to learn new skills

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    Cons

    - LOTS of technical debt and legacy applications that ends up compromising a lot of decisions and new applications. - Not the strongest/most communicative managers - despite a better management structure with the guidance of 'transformation' contractors. - Sometimes not a very motivated team with a lack of empowerment. - Audley has a poor reputation with salaries, despite the good reputation with perks.

    Advice to Management

    - Hire managers with strong experience in the industry to bring that wealth of industry experience into our team so we can improve - Hire developers with strong skills and experience for the same reason - Pay those people a competitive salary

    Audley Travel2019-06-20
  8. "Very nice place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Witney, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Very friendly and helpful colleagues, office is located in countryside surroundings A wide variety of social events throughout the year

    Cons

    No big disadvantages of working here- happy to work for Audley

    Audley Travel2019-06-20
  9. "work hard, play hard"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Regional Sales Manager in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    the people, the culture, the socials, the travel, the challenge

    Cons

    Can be busy and stressful if you aren't organised and good at time management

    Advice to Management

    NA

    Audley Travel2019-06-20
  10. "Excellent, progressive, people-centred company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Regional Sales Manager in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Audley Travel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Having joined in September 2018, I have been incredibly impressed with the quality of the induction and training, ongoing personal development and support in my role. The environment is positive, competitive and interesting, and my colleagues are high calibre, sociable graduates.

    Cons

    It is a sales environment so there are always ups and downs, and stressful periods, but the company does everything possible to mitigate this through support and training.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure to maintain this high quality environment as the company grows and thrives. Focus on quality recruitment over quantity to avoid the pain and waste of people failing probation.

    Audley Travel2019-06-19
Found 190 reviews