Aerial photograph of Dalby Courtyard, South Kensington
Learn more about the programme via the UniForum SharePoint siteContact the Imperial UniForum team

Results rollout dates

  • 29 Jan - 16 Feb: First wave support services packs (Finance, HR, Research Admin, Campus Operations, Communications, Registry and ICT)
  • 12 - 16 Feb: Faculty level packs
  • 21 Feb: Results briefing for University Management Board
  • 26 Feb - 8 Mar: Academic departments packs
  • 27 Feb: Results briefing for Operations & Infrastructure Committee
  • 4 - 15 Mar: Second wave support services packs


The Strategic Programmes and Change team is supporting Imperial's participation in the UniForum Programme, developed by Cubane Consulting. UniForum is a data-gathering exercise on support services-related activities – from HR, IT and Facilities to Student Support and Teaching Administration - providing member institutions with a global benchmark. ​​​​​​​Insights are based on data from 60 universities across Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and Canada, and within the United Kingdom, including at UCL, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Durham, Leeds and several other Russell Group peers.  

In order to understand how we can better support our Imperial community into the future, we need to better understand what takes up our colleagues’ time. Our participation in the UniForum programme will provide us with baseline data insights into our relative professional services performance and resourcing. Our aspiration is to provide a world-class end-to-end professional service. This more profound understanding of operations will give us a lens on successes and the areas with the biggest performance gaps that are the most important to staff. This will enable joint decisions on where to target service improvements and investment to make the support of teaching and research more effective.

Our Service Effectiveness Results

In Autumn term, staff were invited to share survey feedback on their experience of using our support services, alongside an activity data collection exercise describing how much time colleagues spend on support service activities. This combined information has provided Imperial with a baseline and benchmark against our global peers. I'd like to thank all those who took the time to participate and provide us with your valuable input.  

Our key insights from our results are:

  • Understanding for what our staff service users feel about our services
  • Understanding how much capacity we have across Imperial to deliver our services, and compared with other institutions

Our results will help us better understand the areas to prioritise and invest in which are most important to you. They show us that some of our services have been rated by you as performing well, placing our staff satisfaction ratings above the benchmark median of our UK peers, and also that there is much-needed improvement so that we can be more effective in the way we work.

We will not be able to solve all of our operational challenges at once, but we now have a valuable baseline from which to plan and measure progress. Our initial focus will be on getting the foundations right for a world-class end-to-end professional service. This will be achieved together through a combination of locally identified improvements and Imperial-wide Great Service Programme initiatives. The first phase focuses on improving our People, Finance and Research Post-Award services, which will contribute to a much-needed step change that will help alleviate workload pressures and also enable you to spend more time on things that make a difference to research, to our students, and to each other as colleagues.

Results at a university level will be presented to senior leaders at the University Management Board (UMB) and Operations & Infrastructure Committee February meetings. Organisational area and service results summary packs are currently being shared with operational leads. I will be encouraging our operational leads to use our results as a basis for discussion and action that will enable all areas of Imperial to perform at their best based on understanding the service aspects that are driving satisfaction and that you most value.

Find out more about UniForum and the results share timeline from our UniForum SharePoint site.

Robert Kerse
Chief Operating Officer and UniForum Sponsor