UCL management competencies introduced
14 January 2008
UCL staff with management responsibilities will soon have a clearer view of how UCL expects them to develop and refresh their management skills.
UCL will this month pilot its management competencies to all new and existing grade 10 staff (senior managers and professorial staff). At the end of the pilot phase - likely to be at the start of the next academic session - the competencies will apply to all staff with management responsibilities.
As one of the largest UK universities - ranked within the top ten worldwide, with a turnover of £600 million and an estate valued at £1.9 billion - UCL needs well-developed management skills to ensure that it maintains its reputation for excellence and its place on the world stage. It is interesting to note in this context that one of the issues highlighted in UCL's first staff survey in 2004 was the need for a more consistent application of high management standards across the organisation. As a result, UCL has developed management competencies to describe the characteristics and behaviours needed to successfully perform a management role. They are simply a distillation of the behaviours currently displayed by most good managers.
Organised under the headings of 'Leadership', 'People Management', 'Resource Management', and 'Organisational Citizenship/Awareness', the competencies set out UCL's expectations of the areas in which managers are expected to demonstrate skills. They will enable managers to assess their strengths and development needs in those areas. The competencies will also clarify what staff should expect of their line managers.
During the pilot, a manager recruiting for any grade 10 post will ensure that the management competencies for the role are available as part of the particulars for the post and that they are reflected as appropriate in the person specification of the post. The management competencies will also inform the induction and development of the new employee.
Staff currently in grade 10 posts will discuss the application of the management competencies to their role as part of the appraisal process, and development activities will be planned in that context. All UCL staff are expected to complete a minimum of three development activities per year (although the target for early career researchers is 10 days of development activity, as specified by the research councils) and managers are expected to undertake at least one management development activity per year.
Through its published programme of learning events, UCL's Staff Development & Training Unit is available to help staff develop their management competencies, and the HR Consultancy Team can also advise on implementation.
To find out more, use the links at the top of this article.