University of British Columbia Reviews | Glassdoor.ca

University of British Columbia Reviews

Updated 15 April, 2018
823 reviews

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4.1
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University of British Columbia President and Vice-Chancellor Arvind Gupta
Arvind Gupta
107 Ratings

823 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Work life balance is pretty great (in 39 reviews)

  • Obviously, if you're a student, you're probably well acquainted with how beautiful campus can be on a sunny day (in 75 reviews)

Cons
  • Low salary and some times hard to have a good job-life balance since there is no fixed schedule you are expected to work even weekends (in 28 reviews)

  • Living in Vancouver is expensive (in 11 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Football intramural referee"

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

    I worked at University of British Columbia part-time

    Pros

    Fun job, opportunity to meet other student and very corporative

    Cons

    less than 10 hours of job /week


  2. "Graudate research assistant at UBC"

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

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

    Pros

    Great place to work and live, wonderful colleagues, and team centric environment. High energy atmosphere with an all hands on deck approach. love it..

    Cons

    None really. (Except the size of the city)

  3. "student"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

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

    Pros

    ethics and sustainability , entrepreneurship , good school, less fees

    Cons

    jobs market poor in Vancouver is. disadvantage


  4. "Find great financial support while studying MASc"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Graduate Research Assistant
    Current Employee - Graduate Research Assistant
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at University of British Columbia part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Funding while studying; Flexibility in length and duration of holidays

    Cons

    As a Graduate Research Assistant, a significant percentage of your work may not be really 'Research' and that might cause frustration. It helps if one acknowledges that it is a part of RA duties


  5. "Great employer for research technician"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Tech in Vancouver, BC
    Former Employee - Research Tech in Vancouver, BC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at University of British Columbia full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Reasonable pay and benefits. I enjoyed many aspects of working at vgh as a ubc employee. One perk is access to the shuttles between vgh, ubc, St. Paul’s, and elsewhere.

    Cons

    Not too many. I think ubc campus itself is a bit hard to get to for most people in the city. Vgh and St. Paul’s are central though.


  6. "Research Technician II"

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

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

    Pros

    No overtime as per Union ruling

    Cons

    Union ruling is not really enforceable


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Incredible benefits, but you'll be ruined for anywhere else"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing in Vancouver, BC
    Current Employee - Marketing in Vancouver, BC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    - M&P employees have insanely awesome benefits: great extended health, 4 weeks of vacation to start and holiday closures, pension (do these even exist any more?), and extremely generous sick/medical time. UBC is the definition of golden handcuffs.
    - Salary: M&P salaries can be pretty great, depending on your pay grade and how many years of service you've had. Vancouver is known for having salaries much lower than the rest of the Canadian market, but UBC's M&P salaries are decent.
    - Work life balance is pretty great. Depending on the unit you work in, you'll work mostly 9-5. I rarely work evenings or weekends, and there's a focus from your supervisors on keeping this balance intact.
    - Working for a good cause (education) feels good, and keeps many people here for longer than they'd otherwise stay
    - Beautiful campus: The Vancouver campus is really picturesque, and has lots of (expensive but plentiful) food options.
    - Reputation: UBC is considered to be a top 40 university in the world, and one of the top 25 public universities. Putting UBC on your resume will never hurt your career trajectory.

    Cons

    - Lack of innovation/stagnation: Maybe this a general downfall of the public sector, but we're about 5-10 years behind the private sector in a number of different ways. Namely technology and HR policies. This can be frustrating if you come from a sector known for new trends/changes (i.e. technology, business, etc.)
    - Hierarchical structure: You won't find many departments with flat structures here. The boss is at the top, and they know best. If you're a junior staff member, it can be hard to speak up and be heard by your senior leaders.
    - Lack of mobility: It's difficult to move up in units/departments. If you're early career, this can be extremely frustrating, and you might just leave to get that experience you so badly want.
    - Expensive to work here: UBC's salaries may be high, but geez, they really suck it back out of you if you drive to campus. Parking on campus is about $100/month and food options on campus are expensive. Combine this with the high cost of living in YVR, and your paycheques may not go that far. Not really UBC's fault, though.
    - No telecommuting: While UBC published a telecommuting policy in recent years, many departments and units fail to follow it. Our unit isn't allowed to telecommute unless it's an emergency or on a once-off basis. This is an outdated approach to work. If UBC wants to recruit and retain talent in a city as expensive as Vancouver, they need to implement a campus-wide telecommuting policy. For real, this time.
    - Vancouver vs Okanagan: There's some grumbling back and forth between campuses. We're technically one university, but it can be challenging to communicate or align resources equally across both campuses.
    - Lack of engagement among staff: I find UBC to be so enormous and inaccessible as an employer brand, that I don't feel like I really matter here. It would be nice if the university could find a better way to make employees feel engaged with UBC.
    - No meritocracy: There's a fair amount of nepotism here, and under-performing staff are not dealt with appropriate. This can be pretty de-moralizing if you take your work seriously.

    Advice to Management

    1. For the love of god, please implement a reasonable telecommuting policy for us poor souls who slog across the entirety of the Lower Mainland each day. It's not 1950 - the Internet exists, and many of us don't need to be in the office to do our jobs effectively.
    2. Work on finding meaningful ways to involve younger staff in decision making. Giving your employees more agency will help retain staff and make it easier to recruit.
    3. We value the great benefits/vacation policies - please keep this up!
    4. Until we're all operating on UBC skytrains and solar energy, please lower the cost of parking for staff. We commute very long distances to be at work - please give us a break until it's feasible for us to all use modes of clean transportation.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Nice campus - zombie coworkers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Information Technology Manager in West Vancouver, BC
    Former Employee - Information Technology Manager in West Vancouver, BC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at University of British Columbia (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Really nice environment. Good vacations.

    Cons

    Irresponsible and unaccountable management, changing priorities, morale is very low across the board.

    Advice to Management

    Watch your back. Move slow.


  9. "Research assistant"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    The benefits, and paid holiday time, are good. The location is beautiful.

    Cons

    The cost of living in Vancouver is very high, and the salaries at UBC do not necessarily reflect that.

    Advice to Management

    It would be helpful to raise salaries in order to assist with the high cost of living in Vancouver.


  10. "Great experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at University of British Columbia part-time

    Pros

    - flexible schedule
    - supportive environment
    - good pay

    Cons

    There are no cons for my part-time job. Not sure about other full-time positions.


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