Dear Colleagues,

Welcome back to College after the summer break. Over the summer, efforts to find a resolution about pensions continued and we wanted to update you on recent developments which we hope will get us a closer to a solution.

Joint Expert Panel (JEP) Report

As you will remember Imperial first called for an expert panel back in February. We appreciate the hard work of the JEP members and we welcome their unanimous and constructive report. Their findings and recommendations should now form the basis for UUK and UCU to productively engage with the USS through the Joint Negotiating Committee to resolve the 2017 valuation.

The initial reaction to the JEP report from UUK and UCU was positive, and, while the USS will wait to hear from other stakeholders before coming to any conclusions, they are willing to ‘engage constructively’ over the coming weeks. The Pensions Regulator is yet to respond in detail to the report’s findings and recommendations.

UUK Consultation

UUK has launched an employers’ consultation on the JEP report. We feel that it is important to hear from you and to answer your questions before we submit a response. We plan to hold a number of meetings across the College during October in order to learn your views. You will be contacted separately with details.

Our response to UUK will be informed by these conversations across College and discussed at October Provost’s Board before being submitted by the October 30th deadline and made public. 

Pay and Benefits Review 

Staff feedback from the Pay and Benefits Review was considered as part of the annual Local Pay bargaining negotiations between the College and the Joint Trades Unions which was successfully concluded in June. Meanwhile, we wanted to thank the Benchmarking Working Group, led by Professor Nigel Brandon, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, for their work so far. Professor Brandon reported on the Group’s progress to Provost’s Board this week and we will share their final recommendations in due course.

We look forward to hearing from you over the coming weeks and will keep our USS webpages updated with any further developments.

Best wishes,

Professor Alice P. Gast, President

Professor Ian Walmsley, Provost