Summary of Employment Procedures and Services for New Staff
Welcome to UCL Qatar. We hope that you will find the following summary of UCL Qatar’s main employment procedures helpful. All the documents referred to here, can be found on the HR UCL Qatar website
Additional general information can be found www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/new_starters/
You may also find the questions and topics relating to work matters on the main UCL website useful: www.ucl.ac.uk/staff/work-matters/
The main employment policies that you should be aware of are highlighted below.
1. UCL Code of Conduct
The reputation of UCL as an internationally renowned centre of excellence for teaching and research relies upon high standards of integrity and professionalism on the part of its staff and any organisations working on its behalf. UCL relies on public, charitable and commercial funding which supports its cutting edge research and high quality teaching. The responsibilities allied to the achievement of excellence in our work and the stewardship of such funds require that all staff act with the highest standards of integrity.
UCL aims to offer a welcoming and healthy work and studying environment in which all members of its diverse staff and student populations are treated with respect and dignity. Discriminatory behaviour, harassment or bullying play no part in our culture and will not be tolerated. We are all responsible for ensuring that our environment is free from unacceptable behaviour; that our actions and words demonstrate courtesy and respect and promote UCL’s commitment to inclusivity and equality in all its forms.
2. Equal Opportunities
UCL Qatar's equal opportunity policy statement is that in the recruitment, selection, education and assessment of students, and in the recruitment, selection, training, appraisal, development and promotion of staff, the only consideration must be that the individual meets, or is likely to meet, the requirements of the programme or post and is compliant with Qatari immigration and other Laws.
The requirements being met, no student or employee will be discriminated against on the basis of their sex, sexual orientation, race, colour, ethnic origin, nationality, disability, marital status, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, caring or parental responsibilities, age, or beliefs on matters such as religion and politics.
UCL Qatar is committed to provide a learning, working and social environment in which the rights and dignity of all its members are respected, and which is free from discrimination, prejudice, intimidation and all forms of harassment including bullying.
This Policy means that all students and employees of UCL Qatar have the right to study or work in an environment free from discrimination, prejudice and all forms of harassment or bullying.
UCL Qatar is committed to ensuring that this and other equalities policies are implemented, promoted and monitored at an organisational and individual level. Cultural Awareness training will be provided for all staff and their families on joining UCL Qatar.
3. Harassment and Bullying
UCL Qatar is committed to developing a working environment in which harassment and bullying are unacceptable, and where individuals have the confidence to complain about harassment and bullying should it arise, in the knowledge that their concerns will be dealt with appropriately and fairly.
Allegations or concerns about harassment or bullying can be dealt with in a number of different ways including speaking or writing directly to the individual concerned, either alone or with another colleague; asking your manager to facilitate an informal meeting; or making a formal complaint. Formal complaints about harassment and bullying should be raised through the UCL Qatar grievance policy
4. Hours of Work, Leave and Time-off from Work
Hours of work
You can find details of your hours of work here
You can find details of your annual leave here
Leave for Domestic and Personal Reasons
There may be particular times when you will need some additional time off from work. UCL has clear guidelines on leave for domestic and personal reasons, including the following:
Medical appointments - these should be arranged outside your normal working hours wherever possible. If you have an appointment that requires a whole day’s absence, this will be recorded as sickness absence.
Bereavement leave - you may be granted between 2 and 5 days’ paid leave depending on your bereavement.
Leave for urgent and other domestic crises - you can request leave for situations such as vehicle theft, vehicle accident, burglary or emergency home repairs due to flooding or fire. You will normally be granted one day’s paid leave.
Religious and cultural observance - you are entitled to request flexibility in your hours of work, annual leave, flexi-days or unpaid leave to enable you to observe a particular religious or cultural occasion. Your manager will need to take the needs of the service into account in deciding whether or not to approve your request.
This policy also provides information on leave related to ante-natal care, parental leave, paternity/partner’s leave, adoption leave, carer’s leave and time off to visit relatives abroad: see leave for domestic and personal reasons
5. Sickness Absence and Well-being
If you are unable to attend work due to sickness, you should contact your manager within 30 minutes of the time that you are expected to start work (or as early in the day as possible if you work a flexible or irregular work pattern). Your department may have specific arrangements for reporting absences, and if so, you should ensure that these are followed.
Your manager will let you know how frequently you should contact your department during your sickness absence. When you return to work, you should report to your manager, sign a Sickness Absence Record Form, and provide any necessary medical certificates (for sickness exceeding 7 calendar days).
Details of UCL’s procedures relating to repeated short term absence and long-term sickness absence can be found in the Sickness Absence Policy
UCL Qatar has a No Smoking policy. Smoking is not permitted in any public areas of UCL Qatar. However, if there are designated smoking rooms or areas near your place of work where you are able to smoke, your manager can advise you of where these are located.
7. Employee Assistance Programme
This is a free service, available to staff through the Occupational Health Service (www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/occ_health/). You can use the service to discuss, in confidence, any problem that is causing you professional or personal difficulties at work, including conflict or stress, relationship difficulties, loss or bereavement, drink or drug dependency, depression or eating problems. More details can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/occ_health/services/index.php
Other relevant documents
Stress - Management of Stress at Work
8. Work Life Balance
This policy provides guidelines on how all staff, not only parents, can request a change to their working arrangements, on a permanent basis, to enable them to achieve an effective balance between work and life outside the workplace.
9. Induction, Training and Development
Induction and probation
All new staff have a probationary period during which they will be introduced to the main duties and responsibilities of their post, the performance standards expected of them, the colleagues with whom they will be working, and the context of their work. Probationary periods are 6 months and during this time your manager will undertake regular progress reviews with you. As part of your induction process, your manager should discuss your training needs with you and identify suitable training courses for you, if necessary. Probationary lecturers with limited experience of teaching, and Teaching Fellows with full responsibility for a half-course unit are required to complete one of the core modules of the Post Graduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education see www.ucl.ac.uk/calt/certs/clthe.html or an equivalent qualification
The Induction and Probation Policy, which includes an induction checklist, can be found here and the Handbook for Probationers is at: www.ucl.ac.uk/calt/probationary-scheme-guidelines/index.html
10. Staff development opportunities
The Organisational & Staff Development team works closely with other training providers to offer a wide-ranging programme giving opportunities for all staff to update and enhance their knowledge and skills to fulfil both current and possible future demands at work. More information about the role and activities of Organisational & Staff Development, including the Staff Development Strategy, can be found at www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/osd/
Online resources can be found at www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/osd/resources/online.php
11. Appraisal, Review and Development Scheme
This scheme aims to assist individuals to develop to their full potential, identify strengths and development needs, enable discussion of career aspirations, and enhance communication. The review discussion will focus on your work over the review period and, in particular, the progress you have made against objectives set at the last review. Objectives for the forthcoming review period will also be discussed and agreed. Staff reviews will ideally take place on an annual basis, but no less frequently than every two years. Your first review meetings should be arranged no later than 6 months following the satisfactory completion of your probation. Guidance on the scheme, including how to prepare for the review discussion, can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/docs/staff_review_development.php
12. Performance and Conduct at Work
Capability – Managing under-performance
This procedure establishes guidelines for managers and staff in relation to the management of under-performance, and aims to assist in raising performance to the required level. The policy includes both informal and formal stages during which the individual’s manager will make clear where performance is below expectations, provide the individual with the opportunity to explain their unsatisfactory performance, and will discuss how resolution can be achieved (e.g. additional training, providing a mentor, coaching etc.) within a set timescale.
The capability procedure can be found at here.
13. Disciplinary Procedure
The Disciplinary Procedure is available at here, further information can be obtained from the HR Director.
Other relevant documents
UCL Qatar Personal Relationships at Work: Code of Conduct
The Grievance Procedure is available at here, further information can be obtained from the Human Resources Consultancy Team.
HR Policy and Planning