ISD reorganisation - general meeting reminder Thu 25 Mar, 1-2pm

23 March 2021

A total of 42 posts are to be deleted in an ISD organisational change proposal

This is a reminder for our next Extraordinary General Meeting of UCL UCU which will be held this Thursday 25 March from 1-2pm, facilitated using Zoom conferencing - click here to RSVP.

A total of 42 posts are to be deleted in an ISD organisational change proposal.

The work that colleagues do is not ceasing, it is simply stated that whole teams are no longer part of ISD's 'mission'. Outsourcing is proposed for some teams.

Click here to see the multi award-winning work of the Health Creatives team. Most shockingly, 18 of 21 posts are to be deleted in this team that have worked through the COVID-19 pandemic producing printed materials, photography, and illustration to support the work of clinical academics (especially at the Royal Free and GOSH).

Digital Media Services, a team that supports the work of UCL with banners and posters, video, and photography services, is also targeted, with 12 posts deleted. The academic related relationship that is vital to the organisation of this work will be destroyed by outsourcing.

Though welcome investment in online learning and security sections is proposed, we believe this ‘cost neutral’ change is driven by outsourcing services now and preparing for further outsourcing in the future. ISD needs a real increase in funding.

More new posts are to be created than deleted (56), but the majority are service management roles or more senior posts, and not suitable alternative employment for the staff that are at risk.

UCL are refusing a guarantee of no compulsory redundancies and refusing to extend the consultation from 30 to 90 days.

A motion for debate can be found at Appendix 1.

We urge colleagues to attend our Extraordinary General Meeting in solidarity with ISD colleagues.

UCL UCU Executive Committee

Appendix 1 - Responding to organisational change proposal in ISD

UCL UCU notes:

  1. The publication by UCL ISD management of an organisational change proposal that:
  • deletes 42 posts, threatening staff with redundancy;
  • creates 56 posts, most of which will not be suitable redeployment opportunities for at-risk staff;
  • proposes the closure of the Health Creatives and Digital Media groups, outsourcing the majority of the work;
  • is "cost-neutral", meaning that no new investment is forthcoming at a time when ISD services have never been more important.
  1. There are some welcome additions to sections that support online learning, and information security areas.

UCL UCU believes:

  1. That the change proposal is driven by outsourcing, both directly, in outsourcing two groups, and indirectly, in preparing ISD for further outsourcing of services.
  2. Declaring work done by groups 'no longer part of the ISD mission' is not sufficient justification to threaten academic related staff who provide a valuable service to the UCL community with redundancy.
  3. Just 30 days cannot be meaningful consultation on such wide-ranging changes.
  4. UCL should be increasing ISD funding.
  5. UCL should not prioritise accruing a 'surplus' (profit) over maintaining and enhancing in-house service provision.

UCL UCU resolves:

  1. To call on UCL ISD management to:
  • rule out compulsory redundancies in the reorganisation of ISD;
  • cancel plans to outsource the work performed by the Health Creatives and Digital Media groups, and to keep the work in-house;
  • extend the consultation period to 90 days.
  1. To encourage colleagues to lobby UCL in support of the work done by staff threatened by this proposal.
  2. To strengthen the Organisational Change Procedure so staff can give early, formative input in the change process.
  3. If management refuses to rule out compulsory redundancies, to declare a local industrial dispute and to ballot members on industrial action.