The Finance team continues to support colleagues on the financial impacts of covid-19 and the subsequent re-entry to campus. They are also continuing to ensure that costs are controlled in line with current University financial policies around the commitment of expenditure.
The team have been busy collating the financial forecast of spend for the second quarter of the year as well as commencing work on the University-wide Integrated Planning Exercise (IPE) which enables the FD to forecast its spending for the next five years. This work will be ready to submit to the University Finance Service for approval in May.
Support has also been provided to the University Tax and Systems team in order to maximise tax opportunities on major capital development schemes. Work to support Conferencing and Catering across a number of areas including billing and staffing also continues.
Recently PCB were asked to support students who were unable to access a computer cluster to print their work or who were self-isolating with an easy printing solution. The team immediately put some plans into action by providing free printing. The free printing was delivered via PCB’s existing online service where students simply upload their work, enter the correct code and collect from a safe area on Level 6, Roger Stevens Building. Additionally, for self-isolating students printing was delivered to their residence address. The service has been very successful so far, with 780 orders completed since the beginning of February.
The team also recently collaborated with the Sustainability Service to mark the International Day of Forests. In the University’s paper trail blog the team reiterated their commitment to sustainability and ethical sourcing of paper used for print and copy. To do more for the environment, PCB have also set up an FD cross-service group that will look at how they continue to purchase and more importantly dispose of paper.
Health and Safety
The Health and Safety team want to remind all staff that as restrictions are eased everyone still needs to work together to keep each other safe. This can be done by washing your hands regularly, wearing your face covering and socially distancing. The asymptomatic testing centre is still in operation and all staff on campus and critical contractors are encouraged to be tested twice a week.
The Health and Safety annual review, which outlines this year’s health and safety objectives for the FD, was submitted this month and papers can be found on EQMS.
FD Marketing, Sales and Communications
The team have been working in collaboration with Sustainability to create a management training essential video, worked closely with the University communications team and the agency Creative Concern to develop a bespoke website for the upcoming launch of the University Climate Plan, and created visually engaging content for the Annual Sustainability Awards campaign.
Promoting the availability of University accommodation to non-first year students, has been a key objective. The predominantly digital campaign highlighted the many benefits to living in University accommodation, such as all bills inclusive rent, a free Edge membership and cheaper deposits with no guarantor needed. The campaign aims to attract 150 more home undergraduate or postgraduate students to apply.
Facilitating the success of the Moneypenny live chat on the University Residences website has also been a priority for the team. The new instant chat service has improved the user experience, reducing time and resource which was previously needed to answer 200-300 emails daily. Since its installation, at the start of March, there have been 1,518 contacts on the Moneypenny live chat facility with an average of over 300 a week.
In partnership with Sport & Physical Activity, the team have devised a new campaign for The Edge to inspire members to rediscover The Edge. The campaign reminds the audience of the emotional pull of their favourite regular physical activity, of how it makes them feel and how good it will feel to be able to do it once again.
Work has progressed on developing a new café brand for GFaL in the Esther Simpson building. Following competitor analysis and stakeholder workshops, a shortlist of possible names have been selected and the team are fine tuning the creative treatments to be able to test with customers before selecting the best option.
Highlighting the construction of the Sir William Henry Bragg building and the impact it will make on teaching and research capabilities of the University has been a key objective of the team. In March when construction was completed extensive PR of this milestone took place. Engagement across social media platforms soared, especially on Twitter, where the main post appeared on 35,082 accounts resulting in 4,461 engagements – something definitely worth Bragging about!