Embedding the Values in ICT
Written by Liz Scholfield, Communications Lead (ICT)
In ICT, we are committed to embedding the Colleges Values, reflected in our behaviours towards our colleagues and customers.
We are ensuring our team is aware of these values. We are all discussing the behaviours we expect of each other, reflecting on what this means for each of us, and as a collective. We are focussed on embedding the values to create an equal, diverse and inclusive team.
But how are we achieving this?
Introducing the Values
In 2021 we started by introducing the new Values and Behaviours Framework at our all-staff meeting, ICT Connect, encouraging staff to give feedback in our open Q&A session.
Line Managers were encouraged to discuss the new Values at other staff meetings, one-to-one and in PDRPs. This feedback helped us understand that people’s perception was that the change needed to come from the top, and there was a strong “it’s not me, it’s them” attitude.
Therefore, we had to ensure that the leadership team led the change and that staff understood that we are all in it together. The College’s Imperial Together campaign helped with the latter.
We ensured that the Values featured in the fortnightly CIO newsletter were added to our staff inductions.
Our ICT Assemble team (voluntary staff group that represents the ICT staff body and supports the ICT Leadership Team) suggested staff wanted not only buy-in but notable action from both staff and the leadership team, so they designated a Champion to each Value, who would focus energy on their specific Value to find ways to highlight the Value, find ways to improve and take action on concerns raised. They also added a buddy for each Champion to ensure they were supported with any outputs.
The Values Champions and their buddies meet on an ad-hoc basis to discuss and plan how to take their values forward. They created presentations and activities for the all-staff meetings. This means we have meeting content on each Value over the coming months, helping keep the Values work fresh and at the forefront of people’s minds.
We added a page to our intranet site about our commitment to the College Values, with the Champions' names and photos – so they know who they are and how to reach out to them.
We have a strong passion for having the best tech talent in our ICT team, and to do this, we need a diverse and equal workforce; therefore, ICT has added the 6th value of EDI to ensure we are keeping our focus in this area and we have created a new voluntary post of EDI Champion for ICT, as well as looking at further permanent roles in this area.
In January 2022, we launched the Imperial Celebrates Together (ICT) Awards, a new reward and recognition scheme aligned with the College’s Values. Staff can be nominated when they go above and beyond their role to achieve a College Value. All nominations are recognised and announced monthly at our ICT Connect Meetings, with a dedicated Awards Ceremony once a quarter. Winners receive a certificate, Linkedin graphic, gift vouchers and a prize from the College shop.
Everyone loves free merchandise! We have designed water bottles incorporating our ICT Visual Identity and the College Values, which we can give staff to use both at work, at home, and while commuting – therefore, they will be reminded of the Values on the go.
How are we measuring success?
All change takes time, especially cultural change – so it is good to be patient and play the long game.
This type of work will require a lot of listening to qualitative feedback through discussions with staff about morale, reputation and working for us. We hope to see year-on-year improvements from all staff surveys and departmental polls.
But we got some quick early-stage quantitative data by sending out a pulse survey to staff to find out if they knew what the College Values were, and 85% of staff that completed the survey knew the College values. So that was a positive start. We will send the poll again in a few months to see if this has improved.
Quantitative data can also be collated from HR and equality status metrics to show how we improve our workforce.
If we can create a culture of Respect, Collaboration, Innovation, Excellence and Integrity, we will see a happy, positive, talented workforce which is not only part of our strategic objectives but, more importantly, of our values.