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People Plan Programme - change management update

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The University needs to improve how change is delivered across the institution and the support we provide colleagues through change. This has been the clear feedback from our staff surveys and one that the ‘People Plan’ programme has been working on.

A Change Management Working Group is considering ways we can improve our performance in this area. The group will report to the University Executive Board by the end of the academic year with proposals for enhancing the University’s management of change across three overarching themes: supporting people, supporting decision-making and supporting delivery.

The group is looking to develop our capability for design, governance, leadership, delivery and experience of change at all levels, from major institutional projects to local initiatives. It has representatives from the People Plan Board reflecting the views of colleagues across the University:

  • Richard Messer, Chief Strategy Officer and University Secretary (Chair)
  • Stuart Brown, Director of IT
  • Mark Fellowes, PVC Academic Planning & Resource
  • Annika Newnham, Associate Professor, School of Law (People Plan Board stakeholder representative)
  • Tony Parr, Building Support Officer, Campus Services (People Plan Board stakeholder representative)
  • Janis Pich, Director of Estates
  • Claire Rolstone, Assistant Director (Advisory Services), HR
  • Stephanie Sharp, Lecturer, Institute of Education (People Plan Board stakeholder representative)
  • Rachel Stewart, Director of Planning & Strategy
  • Susan Thornton, Assistant Director (People & Talent), HR
  • Dawn Turner, Executive Administration Manager, School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences (People Plan Board stakeholder representative)
  • Caroline Redzikowska, Senior Governance Officer, Academic & Governance Services (secretary to the Group)

The working group is keen to learn from recent experiences of change. Work has been commissioned to draw out key themes and lessons learned from how the process of change has been managed in the past.

In terms of support of colleagues, the group is looking at ways of providing more direct support for colleagues leading, managing or experiencing change, including self-help resources and professionally supported training and development, so that we are all better equipped for changes large and small, local and institution-wide.

As part of its work on how we support decision-making and delivery, the group is piloting a Change and Planning Board. The board will have an overview of change projects across the University and ensure not only that we are focusing our efforts and resources on the right changes, and that those changes fit together, but also that we can cope with it all.

The lessons from this work are already informing the process for developing the new University strategy, and the principles of openness and dialogue that underpin it. The Vice-Chancellor, Robert Van de Noort, will be talking more to colleagues about this at briefing sessions in the summer term.

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