FD bulletin

FD Bulletin – May 2024

Email sent to all FD staff from Ann Allen, Director of Campus Innovation and Development, on Wednesday 1 May.

Spring has definitely sprung on campus and once again the work of the Grounds and Gardens team is very much in evidence! I hope you’re enjoying the beautiful floral displays as much as I am.

An opportunity to say ‘thank you’

As ever, I’ve got lots teams to thank starting with everyone who helped with the critical IT incident last week. At short notice, several teams were asked to work from home to free up space for colleagues who needed to work together to resolve the issues. Your flexibility was very much appreciated.

Thanks as well to everyone in the FD involved in the Colour Run event, particularly Sport & Physical Activity, Cleaning Services and Security, working together to host a great event on campus to get the University community active. It looked great fun!

Also a big thank you to the many colleagues and teams across the FD who supported the speedy opening of new Pop-Up Study Spaces across campus, increasing the numbers of desks for students to study at during the lead up to exams and end of term. It was a great collaborative effort with colleagues in the Student Experience team and elsewhere. This fully exemplifies the main goal of our work: to use the phrase I used in my introduction to the FD’s business plan, this is to help students – and staff – to flourish and succeed.

People & Culture

I also said in that introduction that in order to deliver on our plan we may need new skillsets and that we were committed to providing training and development to support people as they try new ideas and new ways of working. Our Staff Survey results also highlighted this. I’m really pleased to see the setting up of a new operational excellence/continuous improvement programme within the Infrastructure, Construction and Delivery (ICD) team headed up by Gareth Hughes.

Working with Gobeyond (now part of the Cocentrix group), the programme began with the first training session taking place last week. The first cohort will act as a pilot and if successful the model may roll out to other areas. Look out for updates on this.

Our business plan is founded upon the University’s values, and I was pleased to see this EDI open call from the Vice-Chancellor for colleagues to get involved in the new Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Committee. They are looking for people who have a particular interest in EDI and I would encourage colleagues across the FD who would like to take part in discussion and debate to get involved.

I was delighted to read the Fifteen to One piece with Claire Sowerby about the innovative new partnership between the FD and Organisational Development and Professional Learning (OD&PL). Claire is working to improve skills development and career pathways for colleagues in the FD as part of the People & Culture team, guided by our new strategy and very much informed by our Staff Survey results.

Female colleagues looking to take the next steps towards leadership positions will be interested to hear that the application window for this year’s Aurora Women’s Leadership Development Programme will open from Monday 17 June to Friday 19 July. It’s a fantastic opportunity for colleagues on grades 6-8 to develop their leadership skills through events, mentoring and workshops. Virtual briefing sessions for applicants and line managers are taking place during May.

Finally, don’t forget the Staff Festival, which takes place on Friday 28 June. All colleagues, family and friends are invited to join us on campus for a fun-filled day of entertainment, food and workshops.


Ann Allen
Director of Campus Innovation and Development