Tops Day Nurseries
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Tops Day Nurseries Employee Reviews

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4.0
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i have learnt so much working with Tops and enjoy looking after the children some days it is very busy and fast paced and other day is much calmer no 2 days are the same.
Pros
sitting playing with the children
Cons
very busy some days no time to sit
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Awful Awful company !

Higher Management (head office and the CEO) do not support the nurseries well at all, its all about the profit.


Nurseries are run on the max ratio of staff to children, which yes is legal but it just doesn't work, the staff are run off their feet with little support. Managers are in ratio constantly, No one to cover you if you need to leave the room for anything as everyone in the building are counted in ratio.


Apprentices - anyone looking to start a career in childcare with the prospect of being taken on at the end of your training - go elsewhere, you are highly unlikely to be taken on and will be replaced by a another apprentice, even the best are let go because they want cheap staff.


The company during Covid have shown their true colours! They do not look after their staff, the "Tops Family" they like to portray is total rubbish (unless your related the the CEO, Many are !!)


Staff turnover is massively high this includes Managers in Plymouth. This speaks for itself !!


The CEO is rude and abrupt. If your face doesn't fit you're pushed out.


Your Contract will now have a Permanent Lay off/short time working clause, they will/can lay you off for 6 wks within a 13wk period and no doubt will use it again and again to their advantage!


Desperate for a job? look elsewhere!!
Pros
Local Staff Nice
Cons
Terrible Higher Management/CEO - Permanent lay off clause
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I worked with tops for a a few years, at first it was a lovely atmosphere with exciting training opportunities and new ideas. However you will soon learn if your face don’t fit you will be pushed out. Little or no support from higher management who will only focus on the negatives, do not support the nurseries effectively enough leaving them to struggle. The nurseries are lovely and so are the staff but due to the lack of support the morale is so low, there’s a shocking staff turnover. They preach mental health but when it’s needed they are not actually there for you don’t be fooled. All in all I would not recommend working here, put me of working in early years all together.
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5.0
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I recently started a apprenticeship with Tops a few months ago now and love working for the company already. The staff are friendly and good company aswell as the children. It’s really good seeing the children develop and learn through play, I’m still picking up on little things, I guess we all learn new things everyday.
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1.0
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Not the most supportive or thoughtful of companies, they dont care about you as an individual or of the workload they expect from you. Lots of pressure, company has their favourites and staff treated unfairly with it.
Cons
Stressful, overworked
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3.0
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So I've worked at Tops for a few months now, and all the managers and staff are friendly and approachable!
The children are all happy, and each of the rooms are filled with fun and laughter.


Staff do have alot of pressure put on them - regarding hours worked. And you dont know your hours until the week before. This is a downside, because it makes home and work life hard to balance. The pay is also not enough for the hours and hard work we all put in! But then again this is an issue regarding the whole of the childcare industry and is not just related to Tops. They pay above minimum wage, even for apprentices - and this is a big bonus!


We get alot of training, and I love this about the company. But a downside to this is the travel to get there. I am in one of the Taunton nurseries. And we are expected to travel down to Bournemouth or Plymouth for 3 days for the training courses. This is not ideal, and is actually time consuming and stressful.


Although overall I do feel like this is a good place to work. Very eco friendly too... so puts my mind at rest when it comes to protecting the environment.
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3.0
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The overall vibe of the place when I worked there was pretty low, and it felt like they tried to put as many children in the room as possible as in preschool there would be over 40 at a time which is obviously extremely stressful! All the staff constantly moaned about their jobs, and didn’t work as a team for the most part. The management couldn’t communicate directly to the staff and would rather send a message to everyone rather than confront one person. They keep on rubbish staff and don’t look after the good ones. Positive is flexible hours when needed and pay.
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4.0
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I have worked for Tops since 2018 and have found it the most thought provoking nursery I have worked for. They seem to be able to give you the thoughts that help develop and inspire new ways of implementing activities that the children will enjoy. The job is stressful at times (I've not known a nursery that isn't) but the smile on the children's faces when they are able to do something or when they arrive in the morning makes it all worth while.
Pros
Flexible hours, training opportunities
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2.0
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At my time at This company, I was put under immense pressure for my age. I had a very supportive manager but I believe she was pushed by the directors to put more pressure on me. People are paid next to nothing for the amount of jobs and workload they have which will never change and hasn’t changed since it has opened, to find out that there are now more than one person doing my job, some of my work isn’t even done anymore makes me upset as if they had done this when I was still there I may have stayed
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4.0
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A typical day at work will depend on your role, in terms of my role the workload is busy and there is never a time when there is nothing to do, although it is good to be kept busy there are times when you feel overwhelmed by the workload and that there are not enough hours in the day, some of the tasks are repetitive and time consuming/boring.

Throughout my time with the company I have learnt a lot both professionally and personally, the company really encourages training, continuous professional development and career progression, providing a suitable vacancy is available.


My manager shows an interest in me as an individual and genuinely cares about me as a person, they are very approachable and listen to what I have to say and I have 1:1 meetings with them every 4-6 weeks to discuss how I am, as well as tasks/workload.


I have autonomy in my role, I am allowed and trusted to undertake tasks in a way that works for me as long as the job is done. I'm encouraged to make my own suggestions and bring my own ideas forwards, and I feel these are listened to and taken into consideration. Expectations are high considering pay doesn't always reflect or compare to industry. Flexible working is promoted and providing there is sufficient cover hours can be adjusted to enable time off to attend personal appointments etc, however this does have to be requested.


The hardest part of the job is not having somebody else that knows how to undertake the same tasks, therefore support is limited at busy times or if you were to fall unwell. There can be difficulties with communication,
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4.0
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Started at Tops in 2007 as a deputy manager in 2016 an opportunity came up at another site to become a manager which i was successful with.
I have a brilliant area manager to support me and have received so much training fr level 4 to more recently my level5.
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5.0
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The best thing about being Agency staff is that I can pick and choose my hours, including whether I can work term time or not - it is literally the BEST job I could have found to work around my family life.
I haven't previously worked in a childcare setting however I have other childcare experience and was still offered the opportunity to work for Tops, you just need to also pass the courses and training they provide. The training/courses have to be completed within 3 months of starting, but once done it is well worth it as if, like me, you've not worked in a childcare setting before, it covers all you need to know about not only First Aid training, but also safeguarding, how Tops operates, what is expected of you as an employee, how to teach/play/interact with the age groups etc.

In addition, the in-company job and advanced training opportunities are also amazing, and the company provide full support and encouragement for its staff to progress. Again, gold dust!


As Agency, currently I am mostly called on the morning of the day I have said I am available, with a couple of hours notice. This is fine, as I can work the commute times in around school hours, and as long as you are clear about when you expect to be able to arrive, it is great. You can also choose which sites you can do, so it's very very flexible. When you arrive, you may have to go between age groups within the building as and when required. Currently, I get used on all days I specify.


The hardest part of the job for me is literally just the commute through morning traffic and sometimes finding
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5.0
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I have really enjoyed my work experience placement so far, and have especially liked the flexibility to try everything, working with all different age groups. Everyone has been friendly and helpful and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a work experience placement.
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4.0
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I started with the company in 2019, started in baby room quickly worked out wasn't for me, once a chat with my manager back to preschool where I love my time at work, staff support each other, lots of training in offer. The hours aren't amazing can work for up to 12 hours, you can request shorter days if your doing something. Shifts at time are annoying has work at the hospital site. The benefits are great such as cycle to work scheme
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5.0
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Working at tops is very exciting, each day is different and full of new challenges and tasks. Everyone is friendly and works together well as a team. Work colleagues are very support and always there for advice! You are offered many different types of training to improve your knowledge. Never a dull day.
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4.0
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I was tuped over to Tops Day Nurseries a few years ago as a Deputy Manager. Tops have given me the opportunity to be able to grow in confidence and learn new things as a Deputy Manager.
Working at Havant has been a rocky road but the team always pull together to support each other and get over the rough times. I love working at Havant because the families make you feel appreciated. The flexibility of the working hours are good for me to fir in with my own son.
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5.0
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Our office is fast-paced and fun and no day is the same which I love. My role can be challenging but I enjoy being busy and helping parents connect with our services. My team and my manager are so supportive of me both personally and professionally and I have never been happier in a working environment.
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4.0
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Tops is a nice company to work for, management are supportive and try to help you when you have personal problems. It is a hectic job but rewarding and fun.
Pros
Opportunities to progress your career, support from management, good company benefits
Cons
Weekly scheduling
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4.0
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So I work with the agency who offer me shifts that work around my uni days. As a student this is beneficial to me as I can still get experience working at a nursery.
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3.0
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its pretty relaxed and easy to just get whats needed done.
was originally 2 hours then increased to 4 hours after another cleaner left.

its was in the evening so it was easy to work this around my college work and with the train/ bus station nearby it was easy transport home.


The only issue came when i had to leave as i was offered another job, they required 4 weeks notice, when im just a cleaner. The job offer weren't prepared to wait that long.
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4.0
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At first I found it hard as I felt I wasn’t being shown how the day to day things worked ie check lists weren’t shown or explained etc, but by the end of my probation period I’ve found a lot out for myself and feel more comfortable and happier in my setting.
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Overall rating
3.8
Based on 120 reviews
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Ratings by category
3.6
Work/Life Balance
3.2
Salary/Benefits
3.7
Job Security/Advancement
3.7
Management
3.6
Culture