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March 16th, 2017:

Reading UCU at Congress 2017: Use Of Consultants in HE

RUCU Members at the quorate General Meeting on Wednesday 15th March agreed to submit the following motion to Congress 2017. More updates to follow!

Use Of Consultants in HE

UCU Reading notes a trend in university senior management to spend significant public funding on private sector consultancy firms, as evidenced by the £36m spend at Reading. These firms recommend the implementation of ready-made business solutions, inappropriate for the HE sector, which generate redundancies, de-skill the workforce and increase workload. Institutional expertise is ignored, devaluing the sector and demotivating staff. The HE sector should use its in-house expertise in order to achieve buy-in from its staff and arrive at recruitment, teaching, financial and other processes that are fit-for-purpose.

RUCU calls on HEC to:

  • Investigate the increasing use of consultants in HE;
  • Collect examples of recommendations that have already failed and been reversed;
  • Investigate the additional stress caused to employees and the lowering of morale.

RUCU further calls on HEC to:

  • Call on the National Audit Office and Government to conduct value-for-money audits on consultancy spending across the HE sector.