UCL Faculty of Population Health Sciences
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Wednesday 1 August 2012
The new Faculty is one year old today and I want to take the opportunity to thank all staff for your contributions and hard work over the last year. I have met with many PIs, attended Institute staff and strategy meetings and we’ve held two Faculty Strategy meetings (Research, Professional Services) that have given us a better understanding of what you need to support success. We have also progressed many of the objectives listed in the Faculty Strategy.
Colleagues have had significant grant, publication and teaching success in the past year. The latter was very evident at the Faculty’s Graduation ceremony in June, where our PGT and PGR students shone with pride as they received their degrees, thanks to their hard work and that of the staff that have supported them.
From a research perspective we have major new opportunities ahead in terms of health informatics, metabolomics, rare diseases, clinical trials, global health and the Yale-UCL Collaborative, and you will be hearing more about these developments soon.
However, the Strategy Days, together with the UCL 2011 employee survey, have provided us with some insight into where you feel we should make improvements. We have taken forward three initiatives in direct response to the views expressed:
First, with regard to career development, only a quarter of respondents felt that the promotion and grading review processes were applied completely fairly.
Addressing this issue will take time. As a first step we are going to review our approach to managing promotions and the awarding of contribution points. I believe that research and teaching staff should be actively considered for promotion on an annual basis; I’d also like us to review cases for contribution points twice a year, to ensure greater comparability. We’ll complete this review early in the coming academic year, working closely with Human Resources.
Secondly, in the survey only half of you felt that “there are good opportunities at UCL to learn and share knowledge between parts of the organisation”.
Our research, educational and enterprise strategies can only work if we make the most of cross-Faculty, School and UCL expertise, and so we’ll continue to alert you to opportunities to benefit from resources that are available centrally. We are launching a series of networks (in Education, Human Resources, Communication, Finance and Research Administration) to improve communication, provide training and development, and encourage dialogue across the Faculty and in the central service departments: although primarily for professional support staff, all staff are welcome to attend. Please visit the network pages on the Faculty’s internal website and sign in to the membership lists (UCL password required).
Thirdly, and finally, improving communication. People have said that they’d like to understand better the structure of the Faculty and asked for more information about developments in and news items on our achievements in Education, Research, and Enterprise. So, in the autumn we’ll provide a web-link to a Faculty and SLMS organogram, and regular updates via a web-based Faculty Newsletter.
If you have any views and ideas on how we can best communicate with and support you please write to me at email@example.com
I hope you enjoy the Olympics and the rest of the summer and, if you’re taking leave, a well-deserved break. Thank you again for ensuring that the Faculty’s first year was a resounding success.
Professor Graham J Hart PhD FMedSci