Barrhead Travel Reviews | Glassdoor.co.uk

Barrhead Travel Reviews

Updated 10 Jul 2019

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Found 91 reviews

2.7
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Rating TrendsRating Trends
49%
Recommend to a Friend
80%
Approve of CEO
Jacqueline Dobson
11 Ratings
  1. Helpful (12)

    "HR Assistant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time

    Pros

    Great staff and good holidays

    Cons

    Horrible management, horrible company culture

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    Barrhead Travel2018-05-14

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel. Employee engagement and company culture is of paramount importance to us, and we are currently going through a period of change which includes surveying our teams and reviewing internal processes. We are listening to our employees and are excited to continue our growth with many positive changes to enhance our workplace. Kind regards. Wilma Taylor Human Resources Director

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  2. Helpful (12)

    "Embarrassed to have them on my CV - avoid at all costs."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Glasgow, Scotland
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    - You get to work on some interesting campaigns for big suppliers - You make good friends very quickly – the toxic work atmosphere fosters a real sense of community amongst co-workers - You learn exactly what you won’t put up with in your next job - City centre location – plenty of places to go when you need to escape on your lunch break

    Cons

    Working for Barrhead Travel was genuinely the most miserable point in my life – I have written this review because 1) I want to save people from the same situation I found myself in 2) I genuinely hope HR and senior management see it, see every other review and start to change things. Management The management system is absolutely appalling – there are former Modern Apprentices running entire departments by the time they are in their early 20s – they have the title, just not the people management experience or practical skills you need to be a good manager. Oh, and don’t expect a pay rise if you get a promotion – you will have double the responsibility but your wage increase will be so pitiful that you won’t even notice a difference on your pay check. The directors are unprofessional, aggressive and genuinely don’t seem to understand how to do their job or how to treat their staff. I saw people get pulled up by their manager because a director saw them talking to a co-worker for a few minutes. Decisions are made based on no evidence whatsoever in order to stick to the status quo dictated by a bullying owner who genuinely just needs to retire, because he adds no value to the business. Months of work can be torn apart in seconds – but you will still be expected to work to the original deadline to get your projects done. I saw people getting screamed at and things being thrown at members of staff in meetings – does that sound like a normal working environment to you? The sense of paranoia is out of this world – if you want to be micro-managed then this is the workplace for you. Managers and directors need to know what you are working on at every single minute of the day, and if you struggle to keep on top of your unrealistic workload then prepare to feel the fury of your superiors. You can literally only succeed in this company if you are a ‘yes’ person – don’t try to disagree with how things are done because you will be made completely miserable. It’s a brainwashed, Stockholm syndrome mentality – particularly amongst MAs, many of whom have never worked anywhere else - which leaves people scared to look up from their computer screens or talk about anything non-work related. In some departments it is almost competitive who can come in earliest, stay latest and not take their lunch breaks. Managers will have people watching you so they can be informed of every single mistake you make so they can emphasise to you time and time again just how terrible you are at your job. Workload Your workload will poorly structured and makes no sense. Meaningless projects to satisfy directors will be added to your already full plate, only to be completely disregarded after hours of effort. Staff are rotated around different departments without even being asked. I have seen people genuinely being ill as a result of the stress they are under. It is not normal to cry in the toilets in work every day, not be able to sleep and genuinely feel sick to your stomach at the prospect of doing your job – yet this is the environment that exists, and it is one that is continuously fostered by the people in charge. The constant cycle of recruitment is not because of expansion of the business – it’s because good, talented people reach their breaking point and leave to find somewhere better. If they are really angry that you are leaving, you will literally be marched out the door by a member of the HR team. Public humiliation is one of the responses they have to the fact that people are moving elsewhere - rather than attempting to create a better working environment for remaining staff! Pay There is absolutely no consistency in pay between members of staff – former MAs will still be on minimum wage in their mid-20s while others with the same title are making thousands more than them. There are managers of departments being paid less than their subordinates, despite having been at the company for a years. It is an absolutely appalling system when people can work hard for years, be given new responsibilities, but still get every request for a higher wage rejected. Sometimes people are in charge of departments but aren’t even given a new title to reflect that. Don’t think you will have any kind of pay review – Barrhead Travel will try and pay you as little as they possibly can and offer you no other incentive to continue to work there. Work Environment Don’t expect that just because you are a working for a large company that you will have access to good technology. This is an office full of hundreds of professionals, many of whom work in digital marketing, and yet are expected to fully do their job with ancient computers, screens that won’t stop freezing and free versions of every kind of software because apparently it isn’t worth the investment. You will have to buy all of your own stationary. Chairs are broken, some of the desks are basically on the floor – your screen will never be level so you will have a constantly sore neck from peering down at it. So many people have described the basement, but it really needs to be emphasised that these are horrible conditions! There is no heating or air conditioning; no windows and no hint of the outside world. As a result everyone gets ill at the same time– at certain times of the year entire departments drop like flies – and the response is always something ridiculous like providing hand sanitiser; the problem is much larger than that. The entire office smells of sewage and pest control have been in more than a few times; not exactly what you picture when you think of the headquarters of Scotland’s largest travel company.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-06-08

    Barrhead Travel Response

    June 15, 2018Human Resources Director

    We are pleased to note that you felt that you get to work on some interesting campaigns for big suppliers and also that you make good friends very quickly. There are a few points in your review that concern us which we would like to address and therefore welcome the opportunity to discuss these further with you. Our commitment to the workplace is to create a work atmosphere which fosters a real sense of community amongst co-workers and we regret that this is not a view you share. The city centre location is a great benefit and offers employees a variety of places to visit during their well-deserved lunch break. We actively encourage our employees to take a break or time away from their desk. Our modern apprentice scheme is of huge importance to our business and is a scheme we are very proud of. Many of our employees who started off their career as a modern apprentice have been promoted into management roles and do successfully run departments and branches. This is achieved by individuals engaging on our GROW programme and with the help and support of training and the commitment from their manager is achievable by the time they are in their early 20s. We encourage our employees and management team to be innovative and encourage them to share their ideas and suggestions. This is partly how we grow as a business and we are well-known in the industry for this. Flexible working in the workplace is encouraged. We also offer over-time and time-in-lieu schemes for many departments. This shouldn’t be considered as competitive as it is not compulsory but a great workplace benefit. We do encourage employees to rotate and trial different departments and openly encourage department or branch moves to suit individual needs, business needs and skill-sets. We review salaries regularly and offer modern apprenticeships to those aged 16 to 24. The rates of pay for all employees are commensurate with age, role and responsibilities. We are proud to be a Top 100 Company to work for – 9th year running, voted for by our employees who remain proud to work for one of the UK’s largest travel companies. Please be assured that HR and senior management value all feedback.

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  3. Helpful (8)

    "JUST AWFUL!!!!!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Travel Consultant in Glasgow, Scotland
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Worked with some Lovely people. (Excluding the Directors and Head of's of course.)

    Cons

    So many negative reviews on here. Genuinely EVERY one is true. The management are bullies. The only way you will get on in this company is by conforming and being a yes person. Targets are changed and increased mid month so you cant achieve them and make bonus. Experienced staff are made to work overtime everyday and take no days off just so the "directors" can make money. Do they work evening's and weekends week in and week out?!... NO. Lunch breaks? Nope... Infact you will be sent to get their lunch regardless if youve had yours. Regional Managers who cant help with problems or making decisions because they are clueless Managers who shouldnt be managers but have been thrown into the positions with no training because they cannot recruit. Have you seen the job vacancies on here.... they are not new they are replacing people who have finally escaped. DO NOT PUT YOURSELF THROUGH IT.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-05-20

    Barrhead Travel Response

    June 5, 2018Human Resources Director

    Thank you for reviewing your past employment with Barrhead Travel. We are pleased to note that you enjoyed working with many of your colleagues during your time at Barrhead Travel however we’re disappointed to see that you didn’t feel so positively about other experiences within the business. It is concerning to note a few specific points that you mentioned and we would welcome the opportunity to discuss these further with you. Targets are never increased mid-month however we would welcome the opportunity to discuss this particular comment with you. The opportunity to work paid overtime is one of the many benefits we offer our teams across the business however, this is neither compulsory nor is it enforced by our directors, it is in fact managed locally by each department or branch manager. We also note that you mentioned you did not feel that lunch breaks were allowed to be taken and would like to clarify that we encourage all of our teams to take their full lunch break and again we would welcome the opportunity to discuss this with you. Training is of paramount importance to the success of our business and all staff regularly undergo management training. Our regional sales managers have over 70 years of experience within the travel business and are highly experienced and knowledgeable. Attracting and retaining talent is critical to the success of our business and our frequent recruitment drives are a direct result of our continued growth and expansion resulting in internal promotions, we also have to factor in the loss of those pursuing a career change. Barrhead Travel has a dedicated and highly experienced HR team who work closely with employment law specialists RBS Mentor to ensure that our processes and procedures meet legislative requirements. We are disappointed to hear how you feel about your time with Barrhead Travel and would encourage you to contact our team at hr@barrheadtravel.co.uk to discuss further. Kind regards.

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  4. Helpful (4)

    "Great to get some travel experience if you have none, but not for a long term career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time

    Pros

    One major advantage is the flexibility to offer customers products from a diverse range of suppliers.

    Cons

    There are a few but the main ones are paying for errors (systems can be complicated for all not just new starts) no sick pay, no or little management support largely as they as controlled by senior management so they lack the autonomy to make decisions.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-04-11

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel. We’re currently going through a transitional period of reviewing current processes and procedures and collating our employee feedback to adjust accordingly. The mistakes policy has been removed and training and development plans have been enhanced based on employee feedback. As our business continues to grow, it is important that we improve our communications and we are working very hard to roll out positive changes which will be implemented very soon. Kind regards. Wilma Taylor Human Resources Director

    Continue reading
  5. Helpful (8)

    "Please avoid, even if you are offered more money than you are on now it really is not worth it."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel for more than 3 years

    Pros

    -taught me to check glassdoor reviews before accepting another job as it really could ruin your career not to -teaches you when to know enough is enough and when to say no -nice-ish product -can work on some nice supplier campaigns - some nice people

    Cons

    I feel that I need to add a review to save someone who might be considering applying for a role or close to accepting in Barrhead Travel. Please do not do it. It is not worth it. Especially if you are offered more money than you are on now! It is not worth it!!! Everything I am saying here is to hopefully help BH improve it is not meant in a nasty way. -the working environment in the head office in Glasgow is awful, everyone is terrified to speak, you can’t laugh too loudly, you can’t be seen to be having a conversation, you need to walk about like a zombie carrying a tray for one mug of tea I suppose to protect the 20 year old murky stale carpet (I have seen some of the brainwashed actually walk with a mug over a PLATE - mental) -lack of team work, get ready for the most boring/demoralising 8 (if not more) hours of your life if you are unlucky enough to be in a team with one of the brainwashed individuals who are terrified to look up from their screen whilst desperately trying to get through an unrealistic workload and accepting that mental breakdowns are just ‘part of the norm’ you also get the feeling that ‘senior’ members of the team would do anything to climb the ladder even if that means spying on workmates and feeding back nonsense to the manager - not nice and not professional but managers encourage this sort of behaviour. -OK so you might be fooled by the when walking with hot drinks carry a tray rule that they take health and safety in the workplace seriously? Wrong... what to expect at your desk... Chair? Broken and chewed and 10 years old, oh and there is no such thing as replacements. Desk? The desk I was lucky enough to have was so far near the ground I might as well have been sitting on the floor, no cupboard or drawers nothing. Computer? No such thing as eye level in BH, look straight ahead then bend your head down to your chest that is where your computer screen would be the majority of the office have their screen propped up on a pile of magazines. As part of the digital side of the business I would have expected at least a larger screen if not two for the type of work we had to do. nonetheless our team has the smallest computer screens along with hardware that doesn’t work and crashes multiple times a day. This was raised to management as a barrier to being able to do our job efficiently but apparently they felt that that was not an appropriate thing to state when asked what can be done to make our working processes better?! -despite being micro managed to within an inch of your life by a manager who despite being nice on a personal level - they must have had no clue how much work the team has on (despite analysing the constant to do lists we had to send them) and therefore piled on more and more work with no goal or objectives despite the team numbers falling. This just results in stress and tears. (But that is normal at Barrhead) when you highlight you are struggling with workload (due to a whole team member leaving) you get told that your basically just not good enough and results in the manager making your life just more difficult with more micromanagement. Instead of managing workloads effectively they would pass things on to someone else who was struggling and then expect you to be able to take it back (along with another few other major projects that has been unrealistically dreamt up) after a few days - no logic?! -the office is under the ground no day light whatsoever -you could come in an hour early to try get a head start on work but to no thanks and you would still feel bad leaving at half 5. -There is no reception so basically the phone goes at least 10 times an hour with external calls not only is this very distracting, the whole floor has to just answer it whenever they can and if you aren’t answering it don’t worry they will find out and let you know how many times people have answered the phone and then watch you every time it rings to see if you answer it. It is unprofessional and there should be some system in place that does not allow this to happen. We are busy enough without answering a thousand phone calls per day that has nothing to do with us. Some brainwashed employees even run to other departments phones when they are ringing to answer them?! After working in a normal office I can now see how bizarre that is. Also be expected/ pressured into answering the phone on your first day even when you don’t know anyone. The other staff get a kick out of making people feel uncomfortable Overall, not an enjoyable place to work. Not professional, no direction, no workflow management, stressful, not a nice environment. If you take this job on be prepared to spend your lunches crying outside the Raddison Blu.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-05-15

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel. Employee engagement and welfare is of paramount importance to us, and we are currently going through a period of change which includes surveying our teams and reviewing internal processes and procedures. We are listening to our employees and are excited to continue our growth with many positive changes to enhance our workplace. Kind regards. Wilma Taylor Human Resources Director

    Continue reading
  6. Helpful (9)

    "Worst travel agent in Britain!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel part-time

    Pros

    I would discourage anyone from accepting a job with this disgraceful company and also from buying from them. They're frauds!

    Cons

    A soul destroying job, working for crooked and corrupt people. I'm embarrassed I gave them 3 years of my life!

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    Barrhead Travel2018-05-14

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel. We’re currently going through a transitional period of reviewing current processes and procedures and collating our employee feedback to adjust accordingly. As our business continues to grow, we recognise that it is important that we improve our communications and we are working very hard to roll out positive changes which will be implemented very soon. Kind regards. Wilma Taylor Human Resources Director

    Continue reading
  7. Helpful (8)

    "Sadly not the business I thought it was."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Human Resources Generalist Assistant in Glasgow, Scotland
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Helpful and friendly colleagues. Great public transport links Character building

    Cons

    Having always been a fan of the business, I'm disappointed with the inner culture that lies behind the faux public facing image. Poor management structure. Overspending on poorly targeted marketing. No investment in people. No future vision. Senior team intimidated by knowledge and skills.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-05-11

    Barrhead Travel Response

    May 16, 2018Human Resources Director

    Thank you very much for taking the time to review your past employment with Barrhead Travel. Employee engagement and welfare is of paramount importance to us, and we are currently going through a period of change which includes surveying our teams and reviewing internal processes. We are actively listening to our employees and are excited to continue our growth with many positive changes to enhance our workplace. Kind regards. Wilma Taylor Human Resources Director

    Continue reading
  8. Helpful (8)

    "The most miserable time of my life."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Barrhead Travel full-time

    Pros

    You meet some great people who have made the same dreadful mistake you have in accepting a role at Barrhead Travel also desperate to get out.

    Cons

    On the first day you're led down rickety stairs into diabolical conditions to the dingy basement, or "the dungeon" as it soon becomes known. You are welcomed by the smell of sewage, stains all over the floor, sad looking faces and a horrific working environment of no windows, broken, mismatch chairs and dirty, dusty desks. You instantly know you've made a mistake in accepting your new exciting "dream" job in travel as advertised in the job ad. Do not fall for this, you won't see a ray of sunlight during your time working here. You're swiftly told about the written rules and need to try figure out the unwritten rules on your own. Calling the boss Mr Munro being one of them, making it feel like you're back at your first day of school. You're not allowed to go to the toilet before 10am so be sure not to have a coffee before coming to work. The smell of pot noodle drifts across the office every lunchtime which I suppose is a welcome change from the sewage. We had several inspections from what looked like pest control trying to find the source of fleas in the office, I have no words for this. The directors are the rudest, most unwelcoming people I have ever met, the CEO even had enough one day, storming out of her office in hysterics saying "I can't do this anymore". Understandable! God forbid if you have a question to ask senior management, you will be looked up and down as if you're the biggest idiot on the planet even though you haven't received an hours worth of training. Save yourself the depressing mornings knowing you have to endure a days work in the dungeon as well as the embarrassment of having this dreadful company on your CV. The only thing I learned from Barrhead travel was to check Glassdoor reviews before starting any job, safe to say the place is an absolute joke.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-05-02
  9. Helpful (10)

    "Not a great employer and need to come into this century"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Glasgow, Scotland
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    The people and friends I have made working there. Apart from that the stairs on the way out! There isn’t anything else positive to say about this place!

    Cons

    Bad pay Dictatorship If your face doesn’t fit your out Bad working conditions Directors that don’t know what they are doing Won’t spend money on new technologies Uncomfortable working conditions CEO office is bigger than some department offices that have more than 6 people in it. Filling in top 100 companies to work for review on behalf of people that have already left the company!!!! Not allowed to the toilet before 10am Remember your tray for your drink from the kitchen Don’t talk to anyone on the way back to your desk or there will be trouble.

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    Barrhead Travel2018-04-04
  10. Helpful (6)

    "Disgusting Company !"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales in Edinburgh, Scotland
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Walking out the door at 5.31pm wasn't allowed to leave at 5.30 which was my contracted finish time .

    Cons

    Nothing has changed i see from my experience in 2015 . Shocking company whoBully staff members , employ 16 year olds to take advantage of . management have no clue , low pay , long hours , unrealistic targets .

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    Barrhead Travel2018-03-30
Found 91 reviews