UNISON/VC Meeting Updates

Meeting Held on 27/03/2015

UNISON and GMB got reassurance and confirmation from VC that:

  1. This is not a cost saving exercise.
  2. Freeze on all external posts continues (unless it is very skill specific)
  3. Freedom of movements
  4. Slotting staff to new posts whenever possible
  5. Aim for minimising stress to staff and minimal use of unnecessary red tape whenever possible
  6. We continue with business as usual for this academic year.

In return, the management reiterated that:

  1. Staff should be flexible
  2. Staff should be prepared to move if necessary to minimise redundancies


Meeting held 05/01/2015

  1. He spoke of number of applications received so far for 15/16, we are 8% up  from the last year and our standing in research league table, better than expected as research was not encouraged under Martin.
  2. Further investments in IT, within 12 to 18 months
  3. Appointments of two more Deans to be announced very shortly
  4. Schools’ structure to be finalised within a month(ish)
  5. Line management of old Faculty staff moved under Student Services for now until it is established who does what.
  6. Lots of work to be done over next months to find out what is a core school administration and what can be moved.
  7. Actual move to be done (ideally) in August,
  8. For now people stay as they are, working as they always worked.
  9. Staff to be involved in discussions re: duties and tasks, no decision without a full input from staff who actually do those jobs.
  10. No redundancies were mentioned.   Unison stated that as we are working under recruitment freeze at present, it is difficult to envisage any redundancies at present

Meeting held 29/05/2014

  1. Management is not planning any changes during 14/15 academic year.
  2. We should be operating in the way we have always operated.
  3. September 15/16, changes will be implemented, bit by bit
  4. They accepted that Faculty offices and Student Centre should be looked at together, not separately.   Amir Rashid Programme Manager will oversee this part of the project in his role as Programme Director.
  5. They suggested  calling a big meeting with all support staff, mostly from faculties, students centre and technicians, to reassure them that no changes at present; future restructure as one not two parts for Faculty offices and Student Centre: allow staff to ask questions (staff should be encouraged to ask questions and take an active part in this meeting)
  6. In order to reassure staff that no loss of jobs are planned or wanted, in couple of weeks they will be putting a freeze on further recruitment.
  7. They have three people in mind for new Deans of schools but if some do not accept, they will not be appointing second best.   They will be re-advertising and looking for the right person, not any person.   So far only Creative industry is confirmed and the other two are still not agreed.
  8. Executive Head of HR has been appointed, Katie Boyce will be retiring around Xmas (we will miss her as she has been a friend to all of us)
  9. The new project manager, Amir, will be recruiting internally, whenever possible, to help with changes with different projects.   Staff will be offered full secondments, part secondments and invited to comment and participate.  Only if there are no experts internally, will external people be appointed.
  10. There are 188 technicians across the university.   They had a meeting with team leaders and plans are in place to send some sort of questioner to all to ascertain who is who and who does what and once that is established, that section will be looked at properly.   Possible time scale 12 months
  11. The emphases are on efficiency and productivity, not money saving and getting rid of people, however we cannot rule out possible redundancies.    We have to be ready to ask for the usual, voluntary if people want to go……

It was positive even nothing new or concrete was told.   It seems and they say it openly, that they do not have a blue print or know how things are going to turn out as they have not reached that stage yet.   They are as much in a dark as we are at present…….

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