The University of Surrey branches of UCU, UNISON, UNITE recently wrote to the Vice Chancellor and the Chair of Council to express our concerns in relation to outsourcing at the University. Our open letter was sent on behalf of all three campus unions.
Response to the attached open letter:
Dear Colette and union colleagues
Thank you for your letter dated February 28th in relation to outsourcing.
Having reviewed your letter, I think the majority of issues raised were answered during the Cervus+ LLP TUPE consultation and I have attached those responses for easy reference.
In relation to the new points raised Operate Surrey, much like Cervus+, is part of the strategic workstream to improve effectiveness and efficiency within our professional services. As opportunities to improve services are identified they are evaluated to ensure the best outcomes for the University through improvement in-place, transfer to 3rd party provider or retention by the University but with delivery through Cervus+ or Operate Surrey. The Operate Surrey and Cervus+ are controlled by University of Surrey providing assurance on governance, safety, quality and value-for-money whilst avoiding the long term contractual risks sometime seen with outsourcing.
The University sets and monitors service levels ensuring proper governance and maintenance of key provisions. This is a proven operational model and already in place at some higher education institutions, for example Kingston’s KUSCO operation. Whilst we anticipate other professional services transferring in the future no firm decisions have been made and we would always follow TUPE requirements. If you have any further questions our COO Andy Chalklin who is leading this initiative along with our Chief People Officer Will Davies will be happy to have a conversation with you.