The College is committed to the development of its staff.  Secondments are a valuable tool for individual career development and for developing the skills of an organisation.  A ‘secondment’ is the temporary move or ‘loan’ of a member of staff. The College treats equality of opportunity seriously and has an equality framework that is applicable to staff in order to promote and ensure equality of opportunity.  Implementation of this policy must be clear and transparent and not subject to any unfair discriminatory practices.

Line managers and supervisors are required to familiarise themselves with and understand this policy.

Guidance for staff and managers

Who is eligible?

All members of staff will be eligible to request a secondment. It is normally expected that staff will have completed 6 months’ service at the date the request is made.  
Members of staff will not normally be permitted to undertake a secondment during their probationary period or training and development review period.  However, the probation period/training and development review period will count towards the above qualifying period of service for a secondment.   
All matters relating to eligibility may be subject to variation at departmental/divisional level.

What types of secondments are there?

There are three secondment types: available as set out below:

  1. Internal - between different College departments/divisions or within the member of staff’s own department/division 
  2. External Secondment (Outward) - from Imperial College to an external organisation
  3. External Secondment (Inward) - from an external organisation to Imperial College

For all types of secondment, it is essential that all parties are clear about their obligations, expectations, accountabilities and objectives

How can I request a secondment?

Members of staff wishing to apply for secondments should discuss this with their line manager prior to making an application.  Approval for a secondment must be given by the member of staff’s current line manager before it can proceed. Should approval not be given, there is no right of appeal against this decision.

Managers should give serious consideration to a request for secondment and where they are unable to approve a request, they should discuss the reasons for this with the member of staff concerned. 

Who is the line manager?

On a day to day basis, the member of staff will report to and be managed by the line manager for the seconded post. Any management issues during the secondment will be dealt with in consultation with the substantive department.

What happens at the end of the secondment?

Before a secondment is due to finish and the member of staff returns to their substantive post, it is advised that a meeting be arranged between the individual and their line manager (in their substantive post) at least one month prior to the return date. The purpose of the meeting is to ensure that both line manager and individual are up to date with any developments and issues etc. before an individual returns.  The meeting might also include clarifying details of role and responsibilities, setting objectives and discussing how any new skills can be used.  

This guidance has been designed to act as a point of reference. For further details please refer to the Secondment policy [pdf]