190502 Response from the Vice-Chancellor re Compulsory Redundancies

Dear Michael,

Thank you for your email. I am acutely aware of the challenging situation we are working through at the University, the impact it has had on staff.
I naturally wish to bring clarity and certainty to all of our staff as quickly as I can. The outcome of our recent Enhanced Voluntary Severance scheme, together with other measures we have taken, means that in all likelihood we will not be looking at wide-ranging compulsory redundancies across the University as part of the Continuous Improvement Programme.

Given the ongoing challenges we face with Augar and Brexit, I cannot categorically rule out the need for local action involving redundancies in some areas, but I would see these as operating business as usual, rather than a wider change programme. Any such action would be supported through voluntary severance packages and other means.

I will continue to communicate with staff, both personally and through the Continuous Improvement Programme team, and with you and your Union colleagues about the next steps. We have town hall meetings planned for next week, and we will be engaging staff further to help them shape the steps in the programme, and I am confident this will help provide reassurance on the nature and progress of the programme.

To date we have appreciated the positive and proactive nature of the discussions between the University and colleagues from UCU and other trade unions. I very much hope you will continue to work with us in a positive way that would stabilise the sentiments of staff and let staff get on with the tasks at hand, as we go forward.

Yours sincerely


Professor G.Q. Max Lu AO DL FAA FTSE
President and Vice-Chancellor


Formal Communication from the Vice-Chancellor with UNISON Branch Chair:

Regarding outsourcing, the University currently outsources a number of functions and activities where this is deemed to be in the interests of the University and our various stakeholders, but this represents a small proportion of our activities, and I do not envisage any significant changes here in the foreseeable future. We value and recognise the qualities of our staff and the loyalty that in-house staff bring to our operations.