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Transforming Our Professional Services (TOPS) update

By Benjamin G M Meunier, on 3 May 2017

The latest TOPS Briefing has been published and is available here: TOPS_LeadershipBriefing_Edition6_v1.0

UCL’s Senior Management Team discussed the initial outputs from the TOPS design phase on 3rd May (today). Further discussions in the coming months will help to refine the appropriate delivery model for different services at UCL and how TOPS can be implemented to improve professional services to support the academic mission.

The attached briefing references “the second wave of service design workstreams”, including a Library services workstream. The Library is light touch as far as TOPS is concerned. In line with Customer Service Excellence principles, we already deliver services consistently across UCL. As we have previously highlighted, the family of libraries within UCL Library Services contributes to an overall library strategy for UCL, with a unified budgetary process and a joined-up reporting structure for all colleagues. Indeed, I have received reports that the TOPS consulting engagement partner spontaneously mentioned Library Services as an example of best practice in terms of service ethos, in a recent workshop from a different workstream!

The focus of discussions between Library Services and the TOPS team has been very much on interfaces with Professional Services units, to enable us to sustain and improve on our already excellent service. There are no plans for Library Services workshops to be run. Instead, the TOPS consultants will be visiting the Library SMT/Leadership Team on 15th June to test the TOPS model with us.

2 Responses to “Transforming Our Professional Services (TOPS) update”

  • 1
    Robbie Lumsden wrote on 8 May 2017:

    Thanks for the update, Ben. I was wondering if it would be possible to clarify a couple of things you said: (1) what is understood by consistency of service and (2) what you understand was meant by “service ethos” and what role this will play in the TOPS programme. Thanks.

  • 2
    Benjamin Meunier wrote on 8 May 2017:

    Hi Robbie, Yes, (1) I was referring here to the fact that library services at UCL are all provided by our department, based on our established model with site libraries within a joined-up structure. We have shared policies, regulations and our Service Charter. There are some areas where we could further improve consistency, which we are taking forward, for instance with the way we support and record enquiries. (2) The first stated aim of TOPS is to achieve “More effective services and a more satisfied UCL community”. In that context, the level of customer satisfaction is key and the UniForum survey conducted last year identified areas of Professional Services where there was widespread low satisfaction. Based on our National Student Survey (NSS) and PRES/PTES (postgraduate research/taught experience surveys), UCL Library Services is delivering the quality of services which our customers expect. I think that the consultant was referring to this, which reflects the support our staff provide to individual users, and to the fact that the Library Strategy places a strong emphasis on user experience. We still have some way to go before we achieve the Customer Service Excellence accreditation we are aiming for, but work which is underway for CSE will contribute to the TOPS aims I refer to above.

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