Royal Botanic Gardens Kew Employee Reviews
United Kingdom18 reviews
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I have worked here for about a year and a half, and everyone at Kew is so different in relation to backgrounds, culture, knowledge and experience that it makes every single person there interesting. Everyone is so friendly, we are surrounded by the most beautiful plants in the world, all in once place and you work alongside the heroes who rescue them and you can be part of that by spreading the word in terms of the research and conservation that is done here. Absolutely phenomenal. If you are ready to absorb it, it just doesn't feel like any other job.
Be part of saving plants, see the bigger picture
wages could be a bit more...
I am currently completing a science-based Curation Internship at Kew Gardens, where I am working for the Identification & Naming departments - Africa Team Monday to Thursday and on Friday I am involved with Mycology work. Now I am databasing fungal vouchers at the Fungarium using Herbtrack (with rotting fungi) and I am carrying out various curation projects at the Herbarium (focusing also on Mozambique TIPAs). I feel that although my degree is already completed my current mycology, chemistry and botany studying skills are also relevant to your needs. My key relevant skills gained through the current Internship include - botany, mycology & herbarium curation, research, databasing using Herbtrak, HerbCat, Brahms & CRIS, data collection, data analysis, mycology lab work and scientific report writing. My main day to day duties are: - Collecting specimen in the field - Using microscopes properly - Preparing wet-mount slides - Keep equipment in a clean and serviceable condition - Recording and interpreting results to present to senior colleagues - Conducting searches on identified topics relevant to the research - Following and ensuring strict safety procedures and safety checks - Auditing family indexes in the Herbarium - Curation of specimens collected in Mozambique - bar-coding, labeling, databasing (BRAHMS) - Databasing fungal vouchers at the Fungarium - (Herbtrack) - Photographing specimen, cataloging, use of Digifolia - Preparation for mounting plants
Very motivating job with periodic team stand up meetings to discuss highlights of previous and future jobs. This was helpful so that we do not operate in silos and were kept aware what changes other members of the team were involved in that may affect your work. A typical day started with checking monitoring tools for any alerts, check my support job queues for high priority jobs and deal with them, read emails and attend to project work and then BAU. Management promoted personal growth and always made me feel I was part of the organisation's triumphs and tribulations. To top that Kew offered a good environment to work in, with garden walks at lunch time, just pleasant to work in. I also learnt to only reboot a critical system as a last resort. In most cases looking through the logs, processes and resources, restarting individual services resolves most problems. Having a systematic approach to dealing with issues is key. The hardest part of my job was troubleshooting external hosted services where I did not have access to the system logs, diagnosing and eliminating internal systems as being the cause. I learnt how to use various diagnostic tools such as Wireshark and port mirroring during the process. The most enjoyable part was when that very difficult problem is resolved and the management and the business acknowledge your input followed by a day out with my colleagues to celebrate. Very good career development opportunities through external and in house training.
Staff discounts for myself and family
Long travelling times/congested transport
Duties included maintaining and supporting as well as updating the various database servers, web servers and applications used in the gardens, research labs and university’s that we interacted with as well as those facing the general public. Additionally I was asked to cover the duties of the support desk on scheduled days. This involved general IT support skills, such as answering the customer phones or face to face customer interaction in order to solve their issues, hardware/software upgrades or installation, rollouts, set up of workstations or kiosks and general queries were all day to day tasks. As part of this, weekly rotating trips to the Millennium Seed Bank at Wakehurst Place were conducted by the team in order to carry out any support that could not be performed remotely.
A typical day in the shop would be replenishing stock, managing the tills, tidying the shop, and helping customers. Its quite an easy job and lovely to work at as customers are really nice. All but a few staff members are great to work with! A few members of staff including a manager can come across quite rude. The hours are not very sociable, days vary from 9-6, 10-7, 11-8 and 2-10 during the christmas period. The pay is nice, at 9.40 an hour. Overall, Kew Gardens is a great place to work, but because of this everyone is comfortable in their jobs which means there is no room for making your way up the ladder in this business.
A typical day would start with putting out stock and arranging new displays out on the concourse. Once the customers starting coming in and the shop floor became busy, I would start taking calls and serve customers at the tills. I was part of a team of twelve with one Floor manager and one General Manager, who was in charge of the two main shops at the Gardens. This job taught me a lot about the importance of working efficiently as a group as well as good customer service. This was, in my opinion, the best part of the job. The hardest part of the job was difficult customers, especially ones who were stubborn and indignant. Overall, I found being a Retail Assistant at the Royal Botanical Gardens to be an enjoyable experience.
Long Hours and Difficult Customers
I loved my two weeks work experience at Kew Gardens because it was my first taste of the world of work. I was put into different sections and tasked with helping the horticulturalists with the general maintenance of the nurseries.
regular hours, great staff
far away from my house
Lovely Location; under severe financial pressures at time of writing. Scientific work carried out here is under-appreciated and under-valued, but world leading and extremely important.
poor job security and development; under-investment
Working as part of a team within a small department at RGB Kew, I was able to manage short term projects alongside accompanying duties. These duties included: exhibition and event set up, organising loans and transporting art works, liaising with clients, the public and colleagues, writing talks and presentations both formal and informal. Through this position I honed and developed my skills in being a highly organised project manager. training new staff and volunteers. The most enjoyable part of the job was being able to keep up to date with my CPD and to be supported with this.
In my role as a customer assistant, my duties included: • Restocking on merchandise • Looking after customer needs and problem solving • General upkeep of the shop - dusting, sweeping, etc • Creating interesting displays to tempt customers to buy. • Tending to indoor/outdoor plants - watering, weeding and pruning. • Welcoming customers to the shop and directing customers to facilities. • Explaining multiple products and providing gardening tips to customers. Good management, fun work, friendly staff and good satisfaction. Good work experience.
half price on food, 20% of products, travel costs
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