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					Rewarding and Developing Staff
Operational Strategy 2004- 2008




A people vision to drive the business




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A PEOPLE VISION TO DRIVE THE BUSINESS


A      Foreword

This operational strategy for the development of the University’s human capital, sets out an
agenda for the management and direction of Human Resources and is designed to support the
achievement of the University’s strategic objectives. It builds upon the Rewarding &
Developing Staff document submitted to HEFCE in May 2004 and is further informed by the
results of the Staff Satisfaction Survey conducted by the University in June 2004. This
document should also be read in association with the HR Development Plan, which sets out in
more detail how the HR Department will deliver the strategic aims contained herein.

The University of Derby’s Strategic Plan’s primary aim is to ‘Achieve a high quality, student
focussed learning experience’. The achievement of this aim will require significant input from
many parts of the University, but is primarily dependent upon our ability to harness the talents,
enthusiasm and dedication of our people to this common goal.

This document sets out how the Human Resources Department will contribute to the
achievement of this aim by developing the themes of making the University of Derby a ‘Better
Place to Work’, and establishing ourselves as an ‘Employer of Choice’ within the sector and
the region.

The Human Resources Department has recently developed its own mission to underpin its
activity in supporting the University’s strategic aims and the twin themes mentioned above:

‘HR will be a strategic partner, supporting the University’s mission by enabling our people to be
the best they can be, ultimately benefiting all our customers’.

The Human Resources Department has been restructured to allow it to focus resource upon
the broad strategic themes that are outlined in the main body of this document.



B Making the UoD a ‘Better Place to Work’ and an ‘Employer of Choice’

1. ‘Employer Brand

The themes of making the UoD a ‘Better Place to Work’ and an ‘Employer of Choice’ which
underpin the development of this Operational Strategy for HR, will be supported by the
development of a clear ‘Employer Branding’ position for the University. The essence of this
Brand position will be to provide ‘right fit’ people with a compelling reason why they should
seek to join the UoD in the first instance and then perhaps more importantly stay.
The creation of an ‘Employer Brand’ for the University, (which will also link to the externally
focussed marketing brand) will allow it to focus on its current strengths, develop new and
attractive propositions and provide it with a focal point and framing device for all its people
orientated strategies during the period of this plan and beyond. This should facilitate the
marriage of strategy and product development in a manner that enhances our position in the
market place and also improves our employee’s experience of the institution.




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2. Culture

The challenge of ‘Employer Branding’ will be to match as closely as we can, the expectations
of prospective employees set by our marketing, with the reality they experience when they join
us. A critical success factor will be to what extent we are able to develop a common culture,
which can be easily expressed and reflected in our behaviours.
The University has recently developed 5 Cultural Value definitions, Quality, Valuing People,
Customer Focus, Challenge & Innovation and Opportunity & Openness, which it is believed
capture the current strengths of the institution and focuses it on critical areas for the future.
During the period of this plan, the Values will be firmly embedded into the University’s way of
doing things. Work will be undertaken to define the essence of each of the 5 Values in terms
that are clearly anchored in observable behaviour. These behaviour definitions will then be
built into our people processes, giving an unambiguous feel to what we do and a clear
connection between theory and practice.

3. Resourcing

The UoD regards itself as the ‘ultimate people business’, identifying, as it does, the almost total
reliance of its business success, on the skills, innovation and commitment of its people. This
sounds very attractive, but what does it mean? We need to define the statement in terms of
inputs and outputs. The main focus of the HR delivery in this regard will be to put measures in
place which improve our success in the 3Rs, recruitment, respect and retention of what we will
refer to as ‘right fit’ individuals. This means that we need to devote more time to planning,
helping clients critically assess their needs, understand what a successful candidate will look
like for each post, identify the ideal combination of skills and
Behaviours, appropriately market the post and employ more focussed selection techniques to
ensure ‘right fit’.
During the period of this plan, we will also introduce processes and techniques to ensure that
we continuously review our people base, to give greater comfort that we have the right bench
strength to achieve our corporate goals and better plan to meet future requirements/career
development needs.

3.1 Recruitment

Over the period of this plan, the focus of recruitment activity will be become ‘quality’ driven.
The operational goals that underpin this strategic aim will see us delivering in the following
areas:

   -   use the ‘Employer Brand to effectively market the UoD as an Employer of Choice in the
       region/sector
   -   develop and employ robust and innovative processes to improve the predictive qualities
       of our recruitment
   -   implement robust workforce planning processes to identify and diagnose demographic
       and skill imbalances and allow us to clearly plan for know changes.

3.2 Talent Management

Providing transparent career structures alongside clearly understood skill matrices will assist
staff retention activity and aid the ‘right fit’ approach. The development plan will deliver this
strategic aim by:

   -   promoting the line ownership of Talent Management
   -   developing ‘job family’ based career ladders for large parts of our people base
   -   developing succession plans for key roles within each section
   -   introducing an audit of the University’s bench strength


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4. Reward & Recognition

The positioning of the University’s Reward Strategy will be an important contributor to the
development of the Employer Brand. The aim of the reward strategy will be to attract staff of
the appropriate calibre, reward them in relation to the market and their contribution, encourage
retention and reduce the perceived de-motivational impact of our current approach. The
reward strategy will have 5 interdependent themes, which need to viewed in an holistic way:

   -   to develop pay frameworks that are consistent with equal pay for work of equal value
       principles
   -   to ensure that our reward practice is linked to our market position and our ability to pay
   -   to introduce remuneration/recognition practices for all staff that allow some element of
       reward to be linked to the performance/contribution of the individual or the team an
       individual forms part of
   -   to promote a better understanding of the real value of reward packages
   -   to develop a range of flexible benefits, (both financial and non-financial) to support the
       diverse needs of our employee base and the need for flexibility of our service provision


5. People Development

The UoD’s mission to be a university of Quality and Opportunity plays equally well to both
external and internal audiences. The University recognises the significant long-term benefits of
investing in the development of its people. Equally it recognises the importance of helping
people come to terms with and then embrace the significant changes that are impacting the
sector. We currently offer a wide spectrum of developmental opportunities to our staff without a
clear and identifiable strategic influence being apparent. During the period of this plan, our
people development activities will be clearly linked to the main thrust of the University’s
mission and strategy and our plan will have 5 main aims:

   -   to identify and improve management and leadership competencies
   -   to promote business efficiency through the effective management of change
   -   to support the development of a ‘customer first’ culture in the university
   -   to develop an environment in which personal development is encouraged and jointly
       owned by the individual and the institution
   -   to move to a ‘demand led’ development environment

6. A Responsible Employer

Previous plans have focussed upon the University’s need to be compliant in the areas of
Health, Safety and Equality and work on promoting good practice in these areas will continue.
However, during the period of this strategy, the emphasis will begin to shift to the
measurement and promotion of the business benefits of good practice in these areas and the
connection of them to our ‘culture’ and Employer Brand positioning. Plans will be developed to:

   -   transform our approach from being an Equal Opportunity Employer to one which
       understands and harvests the full value of embracing the concept of Diversity
   -   work to achieving an attitudinal change in our approach to Health & Safety
   -   develop a ‘safety management’ capability amongst managers and a greater awareness
       amongst all staff
   -   to develop a comprehensive approach to the promotion of healthier life styles,
       improving the physical and mental health and attendance of our staff.




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7. Communications and Consultation

The HRD’s role in establishing and promoting first rate internal communications has been
recognised recently by the University, with responsibility for setting the strategic direction being
passed to the department. This it is believed will enable us to give the focus which has been
missing in the past to an activity which is central to the achievement of the University’s
strategy. The past performance of the University in this area has been weak, so during the
period of this plan, steps will be taken to:

   -   conduct an audit of the existing communications delivery
   -   develop and implement an internal communications strategy
   -   review and improve the existing Consultative Machinery, ensuring it is compliant with
       new legislation, is truly representative of the work-force and receives the right drive and
       commitment

8. Business Partnership

Historically the HRD has operated in an arms length and reactive fashion. The aim of the
recent changes in the Department is to establish human resource management as a key part
of what our line management cadre actually do. We believe that this can be best achieved in
the first instance by putting the resource into the Schools and Departments to establish a real
partnership based upon better understanding and shared objectives. The stance will be pro-
active, with the emphasis upon helping managers make quality decisions about people in a
timely manner, thereby avoiding the need for the fire fighting which has come to dominate our
HR approach.


9. HRD Performance

This is an ambitious plan, its achievement will require a further step change in performance
and delivery from the HRD. During the period of the plan, the HRD will:

   -   benchmark our performance against sector and UK best practice
   -   develop SLAs for every major aspect of our transactional service
   -   undertake regular customer service soundings
   -   develop further our e-HR strategy and roll out a self service concept




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