Freedom Leisure Employee Reviews

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5.0
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Brilliant
Duty Manager (Current Employee) –  Chatteris11 September 2019
Brilliant company to work for, quick response on emails. Alot of staff benefits including offers for restaurants, holidays, activities and plenty more to do.
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1.0
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Don’t work for this company !!!
Assistant (Former Employee) –  Sussex11 September 2019
No respect for staff and pay minimum wage to the penny shows they have no value in their staff. Management clueless ! Worked regular 10 hour shifts with virtually no break as insufficient staff happy to break law on this one!
Happy to let the place fall apart seem to have a policy of not repairing or replacing anything. Poor conditions to work in.
Don’t work for this company unless you are desperate this is the worst leisure company I have ever worked for !!!
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4.0
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It can be good where i work
Leisure attendant (lifeguards) (Current Employee) –  Gorseinon23 July 2019
It can be a good place to work plus it can be a hard place too. The kids can drive u up the wall but it can be good seeing the kids u helped come back with their kids and still enjoying activities.
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1.0
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Okay place to work short term, but not a good company to work with.
Receptionist (Former Employee) –  Caterham, Surrey15 July 2019
The staff I worked with were mostly lovely people, but everything else was horrible. Unpaid breaks, no staff room or area away from customers where we can sit for our short break and relax and eat in peace, pressure to do more and do better and be quicker but no acknowledgement for good work done, the only feedback is criticism when you do something wrong and they dismiss all your other hard work (this is both management in the centre and higher up).

They also make you feel like your health isn't important as I was penalised for being signed off work twice by the doctors despite me working whilst ill until that point and I felt pressured to return to work early both times, and if you're sick or late *too often ( *read more than 3 times a year) then they put everything you do under a microscope but they only look for imperfections - I covered shifts and came in early and did my job and more, but I was late 3 times and sick 3 times (all with legitimate explanations I should add) within a 7 month period and that wasn't acceptable. Reasons and doctors notes etc were ignored and warnings given for each regardless. Also please note that 2 or 3 minutes is considered late.

Plus paychecks were constantly wrong, things in the centre (hairdriers, microwaves etc) took forever to be fixed, anything for staff convenience is ignored, and we were expected to do more than we expect with our jobs - for instance receptionists are also expected to clean, make and serve drinks, do tours, do admin work, and sometimes find cover for shifts etc - because FL put it in their contracts that they
  more... are allowed to ask us to do any extra jobs they want without notice or pay increase etc, and if it interferes with your regular job role - for instance signing people in or taking payment for something - then that's your fault and you should be better at your job.

I've complained about all this to FL HO over the past year and they did nothing to rectify any of it, they just gave me excuses or explanations and false promises of change or support.

Please Freedom Leisure, listen to your employees!
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Pros
Cheap membership for you and possibly one other. Employee benefits for shopping etc outside of work.
Cons
Pretty much everything else.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 August 2019

We are disappointed to read your review and we do have clear policies and procedures in place for staff to raise any concerns that they may have during their employment with us so we can ensure that concerns are addressed in a timely and appropriate fashion. Our staff always take regular breaks and there are café areas in most of our centres where staff are able to take their breaks away from their normal work environment and of course many staff make use of the leisure facilities to relax and unwind during their breaks as well. Health, fitness and wellbeing is at the core of our business and therefore this is not just a focus for our customers but also our staff. We have a number of options in place that we would always use to support staff members who may be experiencing problems with their health or wellbeing, which includes Occupational Health services and a confidential Employee Assistance Programme using professional counsellors. Many of our job roles are multi-skilled which adds variety and enables the staff member to develop their skills and knowledge across the leisure industry. This places them in a strong position to progress within the industry and diversify their career pathway. From our recent staff survey we had a positive response and continue to make improvements regarding staff recognition and reward, and as you may know, we offer a wide and diverse range of staff benefits as well, which is frequently reviewed

1.0
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Dont wotk there
Recreational Assistant (Former Employee) –  Wrexham, Wrexham4 July 2019
Management and other staff treat you like dirt. Main duty manager is power happy. They hate everyone that has potential because they see you as a threat. Never pay ontime or right just dont do it
Pros
Gym membership for £5
Cons
The people
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 August 2019

We are disappointed to hear that you did not enjoy your time working as an RA within our Wrexham contract area. From our recent staff survey we can see that we have made significant progress in staff reward and recognition and we have worked hard on developing a clear career development pathway for staff at all levels of the organisation, to ensure that we are nurturing and supporting those staff who have the potential to progress within the organisation. We also work hard to ensure all staff are paid on time and are quick to address any issues that may occur with administration of payroll paperwork and authorisation once we have been made aware of any problems

5.0
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Fun workplace
Active communities' coordinator (Current Employee) –  Gloucester6 June 2019
Within this role I was able to coach different ages from 4-80, this allowed me to develop a range of skills such as developing my vocabulary to suit different ages. Within this job I learnt about different sports and different people, this role was mainly participation based, we offered a safe environment for people to come and enjoy sport.

The challenging thing within this job was differing between the age groups and realising what drills would work with the young people and older adults. Also coming up with new ideas was difficult but this was overcome by working as a team.

T he most enjoyable part of this job is meeting new people and knowing you are making a difference to them by offering a place for them to play sport.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 August 2019

Thank you for leaving this wonderful positive review, we are pleased you are part of the Freedom leisure team, as you clearly enjoy and have a passion to coach and support. Keep up the fantastic work

Head Office

4.0
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Fun leisure provision
Assistant (Former Employee) –  Hastings, East Sussex18 May 2019
I had a varied range of tasks and gelled well with the staff and customers alike. My favourite aspect was customer service and sports.

I was inspired by the professionalism and interaction of the management team.
Pros
Shift times.
Cons
Phone lines were not answered quick enough.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 August 2019

Thank you for taking the time to leave the positive comments that you have done, and it appears that you enjoyed your time working for Freedom leisure. I hope the experience you have gained, will help you towards your future career choices.

Head Office

1.0
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I didn’t get much opportunity to work
Lifeguard (Current Employee) –  Worcester1 March 2019
I didn’t enjoy working here as I didn’t get offered many shifts, and the ones I was offered were 8 hours and interfered with college work and my long days
Cons
Long hours, no shifts
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 August 2019

Sorry to read your comment in regards to working for Freedom leisure. As we can appreciate working in Leisure is not for everyone, and it is very much a flexible working environment, with many employees working on a casual basis to cover and pick up shifts when needed. As a casual employee you are not under any obligation to commit to fixed working hours, and therefore if you were not available to cover when needed, this may have been why you were not offer as many shifts as you may have wished, due to them not fitting around your commitments.
I notice you are a "current" employee, so therefore hope you may have addressed this with your manager at the Centre?

Regards

Head Office

5.0
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Fun workplace
Receptionist (Current Employee) –  Hastings, East Sussex9 February 2019
Everyone is very friendly and helpful. They trained me very well, if I didn’t understand they would always be there to help me. They are very helpful.
Pros
Friendly staff
Cons
Not many hours
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 August 2019

Pleased to read the positive comments you have made on working for Freedom leisure. We have a fantastic new starter induction in place, that we roll out to all new employees, and ensure a new starter process is in place at all our centres - making sure we work with you, offering you the training and support you need. Our employees are just as important as our customers, as without them we wouldn't be able to continue to supply the service we do.

Thank you, and please keep up the positive good work.

#PeopleLikeYou #Whereyoumatter.

1.0
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Poor terrible company
Cafe Assistant (Former Employee) –  Swansea, Swansea21 January 2019
Recently taken over the LC in Swansea after a successful 10 years run by Bay leisure. Unfortunately the leisure centre in Swansea has rapidly gone down hill staff and members leaving.

I was lucky to leave at the right time. Same old story if it aint broke dont try and fix it. Freedom leisure however have ruined morale. The new uniform they gave us made us look like care workers. Staff were leaving in their droves and were not being replaced. Lets face it who wants to work for minimum wage with poor management being worked to the bone.

Bring back bay leisure, you weren't perfect but at least you didn't suck the life out of the place.
Pros
None
Cons
Everything useless company
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
7 February 2019

Sorry to read that you felt you had a negative experience whilst working for Freedom Leisure. We do appreciate that change can be challenging, however this is often inevitable to meet the client’s expectations. Freedom leisure are a very successful leisure management company and have some really exciting plans for Swansea leisure portfolio with over £5 million pounds of investment in the coming months.
The staff are at the centre of our service and we have not seen any changing trends in either members or the team at the site, and regarding your comment on the pay structure, this again has not changed. All that is different is the management company, which brings with it a name that is recognisable within the leisure industry across the UK.
Thank you for your feedback and we would wish you luck in your future career.

1.0
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painful and exhausting
Lifeguard/Leisure Assistant (Former Employee) –  Guildford, Surrey11 December 2018
Very stressful place to work and should have a health warning on all jobs advertised. Two faced managers and lying of how good the company is a regular occurrence, promises of expansion and job opportunities but these are generally false promises for most. The department managers/directors should be ashamed of their selves for the treatment of its staff.

The way I was treated is absolutely disgusting, they look down on me if i was at bottom of the pecking order despite working the hardest, the longest and being paid the lowest. We cover everything from complaints, abusive customers, first aid, cleaning, lane control and every bit of rubbish that gets dished out at us. Was constantly denied a half hour break on most occasions and denied other human rights is a regular occurrence. It’s like managers can dish out jobs to us just for the fun of it. The turnover rate is incredibly high as people who work there for 3 months are just too tired and exhausted to continue.
it’s very clicky and the office lot often order pizza and coffee and don't allow any other departments to join in or bond.

They promise you training which is all lies so you can work hard for them, breach human/employments rights, managers treat you like dirt, under pay you constantly, lazy line managers where most of the staff do their jobs the minute you stand up to them they threaten you with the sack. During my time I was spoken to like an idiot and in a patronizing way never felt so worth less in my life.

Managers are self-obsessed with hitting unrealistic targets and the workers suffer, if you say something
  more... you are singled out and attacked like a pack of wolfs and you are and will be made out to be a liar at any costs.
Management bangs on about how the rules need to be stuck too, yet they are the ones who bend the rules to please people.
The help you receive is laughable at best and if it doesn't suit them then it simply doesn't happen

Don't be fooled into thinking you have opportunities to progress in the company, these are held for managers "friends" and some roles are filled with people who are clearly not suited for the role
Beware!!!! This place WILL make you ill if you work there, you will not receive any help. More to the point departments is run by people who will try and put all their friends in posts rather than people who have the right skills so there is no progression if you’re not in the click.

They promised so much but only delivered disappointment. Always being give more and more but not allowed any help. ( only get help if your one of the hand picked) they take and take and take and will give nothing back not even a thank you. They talk the talk but they cannot walk the walk. Your just a number to them you’re not even considered a human being as far as they are concerned. I remember having to literally crawl out of work as I could never use their facilities not even for a simple swim/gym as I was just too tired after my shifts. I never write bad reviews but this is a must.

My advise would be no matter how desperate you are stay well away from them

Many will think im lying but i can assure you im very serious.
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Pros
None
Cons
Far too many to list
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
7 February 2019

We appreciate the time it has taken you to leave this review, and just so you are aware, we do read them all, and take the comments you make seriously and feed them back the management team.

We do understand that working in leisure isn't for everyone, and that working as a Lifeguard is a responsible and demanding role, which is important to meet the demands of the business.

As a company we have a confidential employee assistance scheme, which is open to all, alongside a supportive HR function. If you had maybe raised your concerns sooner, the negative feelings you have could have been addressed and actioned. Hopefully some positive can come from your comment, that other employees will see we are here to listen, and may see that if you speak to someone sooner, it can be dealt with, rather than expressing it on an open review page, where it is too late to comment.

I wish you all the best, and hope you have secured a position in a company you enjoy.

Hr Team

4.0
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Enjoyable and friendly workplace
Lifeguard/Leisure Assistant (Current Employee) –  Caterham, Surrey21 November 2018
I enjoy working with freedom and the people i work with are very similar to me which helps me to be as productive as possible. I’ve never had any issues with freedom
Pros
Staff membership
Cons
Salary
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
26 November 2018

Thank you for leaving this review, we do take the time to read them. It pleases us to know that you are enjoying working for Freedom leisure, and to know you have a good team alongside you. It seems that we are the lucky ones to have you as our employee. Many thanks

Zoe Blundell - Freedom leisure

1.0
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A not for profit organisation who have made more cut backs than brexit!
Fitness (Former Employee) –  Midlands17 November 2018
Minimum wage. Have to pay to use facilities where you work. No room for progression and no help from management either. Lots of cut backs in the company which makes its near impossible for staff to complete their jobs effectively. No one has a clue what they are doing as they don’t train people properly. Shifts aren’t flexible so if you’ve got a family and other life commitments go elsewhere. You will end up doing other people’s jobs as not enough staff and they don’t pay for your break. They don’t even have a staff room so staff can take a break. Things continuously breaking down and taking a long time to fix and staff are always paid wrong.

Other than that, you will work with some amazing staff also in the same position as you.
Pros
Nothing.
Cons
Long hours. Low pay.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
26 November 2018

We appreciate that working in leisure is not for everyone as it is very busy and demanding, although your comment about having no progression opportunities is disappointing as we believe it is not reflective of how we like to operate. As well as extensive development opportunities, we have a significant number of employees who have progressed their careers in our business. One of our best examples of this is our Managing Director, who started as a Life Guard!
We are a not-for-profit charitable trust although that means we need to generate enough income with a surplus to cover expensive maintenance of sites as well as future investment into our facilities and staff. We try to emphasise service delivery rather than income but can only exist if we fully cover our costs, sorry if you felt this emphasis was leaning the wrong way.

We hope this has addressed your comments and concerns and again we are grateful for all reviews to help us make improvements.

5.0
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Good
Sports Assistant (Current Employee) –  Worcester14 November 2018
Incredible staff
Helpful
Time keeping is main objective
Incredible facilities
Friendly
Fun workplace
All round good place to work due to staff and management
Pros
All excellent
Cons
Short hours
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
26 November 2018

All reviews left are read by the team, and it is good to receive them, so we know areas in which we can improve, however in the case of your review, your experience can only been seen as positive, which is fantastic. So thank you for taking the time to leave this, and we are pleased that you are part of the Freedom leisure team.

Zoe - HR Team

2.0
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Bad experience
Swimming Teacher (Former Employee) –  London, Greater London30 October 2018
Freedom leisure is expanding in the U.K. , they bought a lot of clubs and they may buy more , I have worked for them for a period of 3 years since they took over the place which used to be LA fitness, management is bad especially area managers they think they are smarter than anyone anything you suggest to make the gym better they know about it but never Domitian even if they lose 10* times money some other way , they look at you as labour not as human being ,, management changes a lot they don’t pay well they decrease wages if someone leaves the next one will get less for the same job .i will never work for them again .
Pros
Area manager is the worse .
Cons
Bad wage
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
2 November 2018

Sorry to read that you felt you had a negative experience whilst working for Freedom Leisure. We do read all the reviews and take the comments seriously and continually look to improve the experience for our employees. We appreciate that working in leisure is not for everyone as it is very busy and demanding.
Our salaries are competitive with the industry, and we do offer flexible hours, along with a brilliant employee benefits package.
You are correct, we have taken over the management of many new centres across the UK, and are really pleased with our growth an expansion as a company.
I wish you all the best, and thank you for your time whilst working for us.

Regards

Zoe - HR Team

5.0
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Fun
Party Supervisor (Former Employee) –  Hastings28 October 2018
Not bad, only a party advisor. Made sure kids were safe, didn't die on the bouncy castle, or drown. Very nice place, always made me hungry too. That sucks, but happy kids were made happy.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
31 October 2018

Thank you for your review! we are pleased you managed to keep the children safe and happy whilst in your company!
I hope you have gone on to do something that makes you feel equally as happy in your work as you were, and less hungry.

All the best.

Zoe

2.0
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My humble opinion which probably won't count anyway
Lifeguard/Leisure Assistant (Former Employee) –  Chirk, Wrexham3 October 2018
The stars speak for themselves. management will do what they want anyway so why bother and they get supported by HR to do just that so we are just the little people working at the bottom who can be replaced as much as they need to.

Also breaks on poolside are not covered as they legally should be, staff are left on poolside far too long.
Pros
Other colleagues can become good friends
Cons
Centre manager not great in dealing with people
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
5 October 2018

Sorry to read your review, and the negative experience you felt you have had whilst working for Freedom Leisure. We do read all the reviews and take the comments seriously and continually look to improve the experience for our employees. If you would like to, please email zoe.blundell@freedom-leisure.co.uk and outline further the issues mentioned so we can look into these, to ensure that we can deal with the areas of concerns, ensuring future employees have a more positive experience than you have mentioned.

Regards

Zoe Blundell - HR Team

3.0
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Good Workplace but uncompetitive pay
Recreation Assistant (Current Employee) –  Crowborough24 September 2018
Good Workplace but uncompetitive pay. Few easy opportunities for career advancement. Good training set up and considerably reduced gym membership cost.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
25 September 2018

Thank you for leaving this review. It is always pleasing to receive positive comments, especially by current employees. I was sorry to read your comment about noncompetitive pay, as this is an area we do review and monitor and find ourselves to be fairly consistent within the industry. We have implemented an employee benefits package, which includes the staff membership you mention, alongside discounts on travel bookings, high street vouchers, gift cards, cinema tickets, days out, leisure activities and your day to day spending, which we hoped would be an added incentive for our employees? If you require any further information on Freedom Choices, drop me an email and I can forward this to you. zoe.blundell@freedom-leisure.co.uk

3.0
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pleasant team
Recreation Assistant/Lifeguard (Former Employee) –  Brighton and Hove, East Sussex5 September 2018
a typical day at work consisted of keeping facilities clean, responding to customer inquiries as well as possible. Supervising activities in the pool and educating customers on the rules, always keeping alert and attentive and safeguarding all customers. I learnt how to maintain a calm and professional attitude, when dealing with any situation be it evacuating customers; dealing with a first aid, resolving customer disputes etc. The management team was composed of friendly yet fair individuals, who took their job very seriously but where not uptight and did the best they could. The hardest part of the job, was the boredom of sitting still and not engaging with people unless necessary and the humid overly warm environment. The most enjoyable part of the job, was working with the overall chilled and nice bunch that made up my colleagues.
Pros
cheap staff membership and the central town location, plus flexibility
Cons
humid work environment, unpleasant and rude customers from time to time
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
25 September 2018

Thank you for taking the time to leave this review, it is always good for people to see and have an understanding of what it would be like being employed by us, and within the roles we offer. It is good to know you have taken some skills that you have obtained from within your role, and hope they are of good use to you in your future years. All in all, it seems as if your experience has been a good one, so thank you again.

4.0
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Freedom has many opportunities
Swimming Teacher (Current Employee) –  Stafford13 August 2018
As freedom leisure is a big firm here are numberous opportunities and places to extend your career in various locations. Freedom staff are a strong team, working as a community.
Pros
Freedom centres provide large staff discounts on leisure.
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Official response from Freedom Leisure
25 September 2018

All reviews left are read by the team, and it is good to receive them, so we know areas in which we can improve, however in the case of your review, your experience can only been seen as positive, which is fantastic. So thank you for taking the time to leave this, and we are pleased that you are part of the Freedom leisure team.

Zoe - Head Office

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3.1
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