For Staff

Fairer future for all

Our strategy for the next 10 years is rooted in our place in the world and our desire to make a difference.  

It sets a blueprint for a values-driven University that helps shape a better future for humanity, working through collaboration to tackle inequalities, achieve societal impact and drive change.  It sets out our ambitions to create a Fairer future for all – for our staff, our students and our wider global community. 

Together our diverse community will help achieve a better future. You, our colleagues, are the heart of that community. And, to play your part we recognise that you need to be healthy and fulfilled.   

So here are our three pledges to you:

  • We will reduce short-term contracts and boost job security 
  • We will support a healthy and fulfilled staff community 
  • We will create opportunity and celebrate achievements 

We have prioritised activity to deliver these pledges that will be applied consistently and transparently across all areas of the University. We will share information about opportunities to get involved in shaping this and we will say more about our commitments to students and the wider global community over the coming months. 

Our Pledges to you

A fairer future for all

We will reduce short-term contracts and boost job security 

Job insecurity is a problem across academia. We can do things better at the University of Leeds, so we pledge to reduce our reliance on fixed-funded and short-term contracts and ensure consistency in the use of contracts across the University.  

We commit to undertake a review of how we plan, finance and organise our people resources. Having the right number of jobs, covering the right type of activities and being organised in the right way is important. Currently, the way that funding works for our sector often leads to our budgets being time based, and this in turn drives the approach we take to employment contracts. So, we are looking at how we can adapt our approach to enable the University to be more confident in offering on-going contracts. 

We will achieve this through senior university leadership and through close collaboration with the three campus trade unions. Work has started to collate accurate data to form a clear understanding of what currently exists and to fully scope out the programme of work. 

We will support a healthy and fulfilled staff community 

The pandemic has pushed us to work incredibly hard and in a different way. It has also led to societal, individual and work-related changes. Therefore, our health and wellbeing needs to be supported like never before and remain at the heart of everything we do.  

We already have strong internal networks to provide health and wellbeing support to you including staff counselling and psychological support and guidance on homeworking and life balance. We will increase awareness of, and access to all University and community resources. We are also considering our future ways of working and reviewing how workload impacts on health and wellbeing. We will do this in partnership with you so you can perform at your best and be healthy and fulfilled.  

We will create opportunity and celebrate achievements  

You are our greatest asset and we want you to be the best you can be. Your achievements and behaviours must be appropriately recognised and celebrated.  

Currently we provide a range of development services to support your professional learning and development. We commit to strengthening this even further to actively support learning and career progression opportunities. 

We will review and update our promotions processes and criteria and strengthen the performance review and feedback process. Based on the new University values and behaviours, we will review our key people processes and activities, such as recruitment, promotions and recognition to ensure that they reflect, encourage and celebrate positive demonstration of our values and behaviours.  

We want Leeds to be as diverse and inclusive as possible. We will continue with the measures we have and build on these to widen the diversity of our employee population. The appointment of our Deans for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion was a key step and together with the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team, they will determine and drive our strategy around how we make this happen.  

We are engaging with the staff networks as well as seeking feedback from and listening to you, our existing employees. We are already reviewing our approach to recruitment and considering how and where we advertise roles and engage with potential applicants. We will also simplify the application process to ensure that it supports people from all backgrounds to be able to apply for roles.  

Next steps

Delivering on our pledges is very important. We are committed to doing this properly and in a sustainable way. Whilst some changes can happen quickly, some will require a longer-term approach and we will engage with and listen to all key stakeholders - including colleagues - throughout, working collaboratively to share progress along the way.   

Look out for further information about our Leeds Conversations open event where you can find out more and get involved.


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