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University of North Carolina Research Specialist Reviews

7 reviews

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Research Specialist

3.9
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Margaret Spellings
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Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • great work-life balance, flexibility in scheduling to honor student schedules (in 24 reviews)

  • The work environment is intellectually stimulating (in 33 reviews)

Cons
  • Low pay for teaching fellows/contract (in 17 reviews)

  • University gives little to no oversight or support for higher level courses compared to what is available for entry level courses (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Make on-boarding a better experience"

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

    I have been working at University of North Carolina full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits, access to all the perks that come with academic employment and a .edu email address.

    Cons

    On-boarding procedures vary from department to department, but some STEM schools/departments have little to no process in place.

    Advice to Management

    Work on getting staff to know each other and promote work-life balance.


  2. "Great place to work with high standards and freedom to do your job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Former Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at University of North Carolina full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The benefits of the position were great. The support staff was helpful and this allowed me to do my job with minimal administrative headaches. Facilities were well kept. Busy work was kept to a minimum.

    Cons

    Parking is a hassle. Constant new construction. Not much room for advancement in my position. Not as high paying as some research jobs.


  3. "Research Specialist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at University of North Carolina (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    state retirement benefits, health insurance, one free course per semester.

    Cons

    parking is difficult (parking in a remote lot with infrequent access during the day), they will not pay you according to how good you are at your job, you will only get a raise because of how long you have been there.

    Advice to Management

    value hard work and talent


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  5. "Academic Research"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at University of North Carolina full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    A chance to do interesting work with interesting people. Good benefits.

    Cons

    The pay is much lower than in industry. Raises at the whim of state government. Very difficult to get a promotion unless you change positions. The support positions don't reward for experience. There seems to be a high turnover in faculty lately, probably due to the low pay and no research funding support.


  6. "Good experience at UNC as a research technician and a lab manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Employment security, good benefits including a decent health insurance.I find the atmosphere to be friendly and collaborative and have no complaints about the the PIs that I have worked for.

    Cons

    UNC is a public school and the staff are state employees. As state's budget was being cut during the crisis, so were our benefits and in some instances salaries. We have not had a meaningful legislative increase in salary for at least 4 years.

    Advice to Management

    I think upper management needs to do a better job making sure salaries stay competitive even if legislature is not increasing them.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Decent benefits, underpaid, underappreciated"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Former Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    It can be a good place to start your career if you have limited job experience. Decent benefits package and educational opportunities. Relatively good job security.

    Cons

    There are not a lot of opportunities for upward mobility within the sciences here. PhDs are valued much more highly than Bachelors degrees. Poor financial compensation versus private industry.

    Advice to Management

    I think the university leadership is doing about the best they can within their budgetary limitations. I do believe that the pay disparity between staff and tenured professors is ridiculous.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Dedication, long unexpected hours to porr management for low pay and no advancement."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Current Employee - Research Specialist in Chapel Hill, NC (US)
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    To be in a background chocked full of research ideas and with others that enjoy the venture of scientific inquiry.

    Cons

    The pay is awefull and does not support a family well. No checks and balances on supervision so some supervisors are great while the others that are not never get any better as there are no incentives.

    Advice to Management

    HR should evaluate employee happiness using a venue such as this.