News

A message from the Vice-Chancellor: Formal Change Proposal


3 February 2012

As you know, on 21 November 2011, we published a Draft Change Proposal in which we sought staff feedback on a proposed strategy for reducing salary and non-salary related expenditure on a University-wide basis.

A total of 348 responses were received from staff: 116 of these were from individuals, 219 were form letters using content provided by the NTEU, and 13 were responses from groups of staff, including school and departmental responses. In addition, submissions were also received from the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) and the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU).

Meetings of the Management and Staff Consultative Committee were held on 21 November and 5 December 2011, and various meetings have also been held with staff at the faculty/portfolio/professional service unit level to discuss the Draft Change Proposal. Some staff sought clarification regarding the status of recent discussions they have had with their supervisors about their employment, and we provided that clarification in an update on the website on 20 January 2012.

I very much appreciate the thoughtful responses we have received, and thank you for taking the time to consider the proposed changes.

After considering all the feedback received from staff and unions, the University has decided to proceed with the broad expenditure reduction measures outlined in the Draft Change Proposal. It is proposed, however, that there will be some changes to the process for reducing academic staffing costs, with more emphasis being placed on flexible options - including pre-retirement contracts and natural attrition in addition to redundancy - in order to meet our budget target, as well as some changes to assuage concerns about the assessment process.

The revised proposal resulting from the consultation process to date is now provided in the University's Formal Change Proposal for consideration by staff.

The Formal Change Proposal includes a proposed consultation and implementation plan. Once again, all staff are welcome to comment on the proposed changes, and any comments should be submitted by email to university.consultation@sydney.edu.au by 15 February 2012.

Arrangements will be made over the coming week for meetings to be held within individual faculties, portfolios and professional service units as required to discuss the proposed changes, and staff are also welcome to provide feedback at these meetings or by email to university.consultation@sydney.edu.au.

Further explanatory information and updates will also be posted on the website during the consultation period, and I encourage you to read this additional material carefully.

If you have any questions or concerns about how the proposed changes might affect you, please do not hesitate to contact your dean, supervisor or HR adviser.

Yours sincerely,

Michael Spence