X Close

LibNet staff news



Archive for the 'Staff, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion' Category

UCL Ways of Working

Benjamin Meunier9 May 2019

Last week, UCL launched the new behavioural framework for professional services staff, UCL Ways of Working.

The framework enables individuals, teams and leaders to set clear expectations, support development, have quality conversations and be their best in the workplace. The nine Ways of Working are clustered around three central themes:

The framework was built for and by colleagues working in professional services roles across UCL, from faculties, departments, institutes, other academic units, offices of Vice-Provosts (including Library Services ) and central services.

The UCL Ways of Working Wheel (see below) and Descriptors provide a simple overview of the central Ways of Working, outlining how we work consistently, successfully and happily as an integrated professional services community. Supporting indicators and steps to development are then detailed for each grade and these can be used to support appraisal conversations, induction and probation meetings, and in recruitment – writing adverts, job descriptions and preparing for interviews. Detailed guidance is available on how to use the UCL Ways of Working.

The UCL Ways of Working are closely aligned to our values:

“UCL Library Services is empowering our staff and our users. Our staff are skilled and knowledgeable experts.

We are community-minded, inclusive and innovative. Our approach to service is professional, responsive and friendly. We are proud of our service, and we are honest and transparent.

Our strategy presents our goals to be cutting-edge, visionary and eco-friendly.”

How are we addressing the issues raised in the last Staff Survey?

Benjamin Meunier7 May 2019

Following the 2017 Staff Survey, Library Services established a new group to coordinate a response and address the issues which were impacting on Library Services staff. This group is the Staff Survey Action Group. The Group devised a Staff Survey Action Plan, which was signed off by the Library Senior Management Team and is being implemented. You can view progress against the actions at the link above.

As one example of an initiative developed in response to the Staff Survey, ‘Welcome to Library Services’ sessions were introduced with Paul Ayris and some SMT members since November 2018. This allows new starters to meet SMT members, and get a sense of the libraries’ key priorities, and also an opportunity for SMT members to get to know new members of the Library. It will become part of the induction process for LS staff, in a similar way to the Provost’s Welcome. To help staff understand Library Services’ place in UCL, new charts have been made available on LibNet to illustrate the Library’s place in the Office of the Vice-Provost (Research) and how the Library reports to UCL Council, the university’s governing body, via Library Committee.

Another need identified from the Staff Survey was to provide accessible formal procedures, implementation and monitoring within Library Services on bullying and harassment. This was done last December with guidance on how to respond if you witness bullying or harassment. This has since been complemented by the UCL Full Stop campaign, calling on our community to come together and say Full Stop to unacceptable behaviour.

Thirdly, as a final example, the Staff Survey highlighted Leadership and Staff Engagement as an area for improvement within Library Services. This has been a significant area where Library managers have taken action through the engagement of Library staff in developing our new strategy, through visits to Library sites and through training schemes to enable Library staff to thrive in the fast-changing environment we operate in. The Library SMT discussed how we might engage more effectively with colleagues at an Away Day in December. We have established a working group to look at making the work of SMT more transparent. We are also exploring ways for colleagues across the service to be able to share the challenges of working in Library Services and raise issues that concern them.  Further information will be forthcoming in the next few months.

All of this work would not have been possible without the members of the Staff Survey Action Group, including Library Services staff and representatives from UNISON. Members attend quarterly meetings and analysed the Staff Survey results last year and continue feed in contributions, in terms of what measures would help to improve the work environment. Members also liaise with Library colleagues on the work of the Staff Survey Action Plan.

There is still a way to go before the actions are all delivered, so that the issues which were identified in 2017 are effectively addressed. If you would like to get involved, there are currently 3 vacancies on the Staff Survey Action Group. If you are willing to devote half-a-day a term to help make UCL Library Services a better place to work, please speak to your line manager to obtain approval and contact me to join. Colleagues at all grades and from all sites across Library Services are welcome to get involved. Find out more about the Staff Survey Action Group on LibNet.

Develop your entrepreneurial skills – free training available to UCL staff

Benjamin Meunier15 April 2019

UCL Innovation & Enterprise is here to support the UCL community to develop their ideas and entrepreneurial thinking. That includes all Professional Services staff, as well as academics, students and alumni.

If you are interested in learning how to think in an entrepreneurial way, or have an idea you want to build into something real that impacts the outside world, please take advantage of this free programme of activities. 

Examples of Professional Services staff who have already had support from UCL Innovation & Enterprise include Alice Chilver, who has developed a national network for women in HE and Rachael Corson and Joycelyn Mate whose natural haircare business recently won $500K in a competition.

Here are some upcoming events that may be of interest.


Enterprise Bootcamp 12-14 June

Learn what it takes to be an entrepreneur. A free 3 day bootcamp to introduce you to how businesses operate. You will learn practical business orientated skills in a supportive environment details and apply here


Explore £5,000 – Explore your business idea – starts 14 May 6-8pm

Test the potential of your business idea in eight free interactive Tuesday evening sessions and get the chance to pitch for £5,000. Details and apply here


Launch £10,000 – Launch your business venture – starts 12 June

Get your business ready to go live in eight evenings of hands on workshops, gaming activities and one to one support, then pitch for £10,000. Details and apply here


First Monday – Networking next 3rd June

Everyone is welcome at our monthly networking evenings. Be inspired by successful entrepreneurs and form lasting connections with peers that could help you start or grow your business.  Details and register here



Making a difference: Library Services Review 2015-18

Benjamin Meunier26 February 2019

As we begin to look forward for the next 4 years in the new Library Strategy, we can also take stock of the achievements from the last strategy period and reflect on how Library Services is making a difference to UCL. As a retrospective piece looking at some of the achievements from 2015-18, we have published the Library Services Strategy Review 2015-18.

As Pro-Vice-Provost Paul Ayris states in the Foreword, we have collectively achieved the vast majority of ambitious objectives which were set five years ago to support the vision laid out in UCL 2034. This is down to the work of each member of staff across the service, combining expertise, collaboration, innovation and a large dose of perseverance to ensure that our service is as good as it can be for the benefit of our staff and students within UCL, in the NHS and other users. The Review features a number of colleagues and teams in case studies which provide a glimpse into the varied projects and initiatives which Library Services undertakes. These illustrate how our department is improving the User Experience, delivers best value for money and engages with the world beyond UCL. Inevitably, the achievements listed are not exhaustive and we will be re-introducing Annual Reports effective from 2019, on a similar model to this Review, to present the work of Library Services each year.

Some of the highlights from 2015-18 are listed on the ‘What we do’ webpage, which provides a link to the full text Strategy Review.

New Library Services Strategy launched online

Benjamin Meunier21 February 2019

The UCL Library Services Strategy 2019-22 is now available online and in print booklets:


Our 4-year strategy sets out the specific work the Library can undertake as an outstanding library service to support the long-term goals set out in UCL 2034. Within the Library Strategy, we define our values, based on the contributions of many colleagues from across the service. Thanks again to colleagues who contributed to shaping the strategy through the workshops and meetings at site libraries in the past 18 months. The Library Strategy is organised around six strands of activity, or Key Performance Areas (KPAs):

KPA leaders from the Library SMT oversee each of the KPAs, which contain the specific actions we have committed to delivering during the lifespan of this strategy. For more information, please visit the webpage. If you would like a print Strategy booklet for your team, these can be collected from Daniel Kordik (Main Library room 107, d.kordik[at]ucl.ac.uk). The Library SMT acts as the Library Strategy Steering Group.

We invite all members of Library Services to the Strategy launch event on 20th March and look forward to seeing many of you there!


Steps to Progress — Diversity & the Literary Canon

Kate Cheney21 February 2019

Harvey Wiltshire, a PhD student in the English Department, is organising an installation on the Main Library staircase where decals of literary texts, representing UCL’s diverse community, will be applied to the stair risers at the entrance. Harvey is now inviting suggestions for texts to include, please see further details in his Steps to Progress Call for Suggestions flyer.

Please do promote this and also contact Harvey directly with your ideas.

This installation will coincide with the new exhibition about the history of our libraries that will be running in the Main Library from March to December 2019.

Kate Cheney


Final Call to take part in the 2018 UCL Race Equality Survey

Benjamin Meunier12 November 2018

We are seeking your views on race equality at UCL.

At the request of the Provost, the survey deadline has been extended until the end of November, to increase the participation rate and gain more statistically meaningful results.

The survey takes around 10 minutes to complete and the link to the survey is here:

Race Equality SurveyPlease have your say

UCL is one of only 10 UK universities that currently holds a Race Equality Charter Bronze Award. We are currently renewing it and would like as many staff as possible to submit their views to inform this work.

Participating in the survey will help identify areas for improvement and future engagement/action in the coming years.


Who is the Survey For?

This survey is open to all staff but we hope to get a significant response from BME members of staff.


Why are we running this survey and why take part?

UCL is committed to addressing racial inequalities and creating an inclusive culture and environment where individuals are able to thrive, irrespective of their race or ethnicity. We want to hear your views on working at UCL and what you would like to see included in institutional action plans. Your views are not just important, they are critical to establishing a culture that speaks to the needs of the UCL community.

The findings from this survey, along with other surveys, staff and student data and conclusions from focus groups will support the development of our submission for the Race Equality Charter and for the institutional action plan.



Participants are not required to log in and so cannot be identified; it is completely anonymous and it should only take around 10 minutes to complete.


The link to the survey is here:

Race Equality SurveyPlease have your say


If you have any queries, please email Ash Talwar(Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Manager): a.talwar@ucl.ac.uk

Brexit Support: EU Settlement Scheme and Provost’s View

Benjamin Meunier8 November 2018

Dear colleagues,

UCL HR recently circulated the message at the end of this blog to non-British EU staff. In case you missed it, this provides information on the EU Settlement Scheme, which is the scheme arranged by the British government to ensure that EU citizens who are currently living in the UK continue to enjoy the same benefits, including the right to live here, work here and access public services. UCL has scheduled a number of briefing sessions with a specialist law firm, which you are welcome to attend if you are affected. Colleagues who have attended the first session (held yesterday) found it helpful.

You may also be interested in the Provost’s View for this week, which sets out how UCL is responding to Brexit. The Provost places a major emphasis on UCL’s ongoing commitment to support staff and students, as highlighted in the following slides.


Full details on the EU Settlement Scheme are provided below. One suggestion from a Library colleague which is being explored is the feasibility of providing access to Android devices for staff who need to register for the EU Settlement scheme – if this can be arranged, I will advise about this separately.

For more information, please see https://www.ucl.ac.uk/brexit. If you have any concerns about Brexit in relation to Library Services, please ask your line manager, myself or any member of the Library SMT.



The Home Office pilot of the EU Settlement Scheme opens from 15 November 2018 and we would like to provide you with additional support if you are considering making an application. There is further information on the scheme, eligibility and how to apply in this pilot phase below.  

We have also arranged briefing sessions with the law firm, Eversheds Sutherland who will be able to answer any general immigration questions you may have. There are four sessions this month and we would encourage you to register soon as we anticipate places will be in high demand.

Book your place at your preferred briefing session now:


What is the EU Settlement Scheme?

In advance of the UK’s exit from the EU on 29 March 2019, the UK government has committed to protect the rights of EU citizens and their family members currently living in the UK. This includes the right to live here, work here and access public services such as healthcare and benefits. To retain these rights after 31 December 2020, EU citizens must apply for UK immigration status under the EU Settlement Scheme. Further detail on the Settlement Scheme can be found on GOV.UK.


What is the pilot?

The Home Office is testing the EU Settlement Scheme through a series of pilots ahead of the public launch. This second phase of the pilot starts in November and runs until 21 December this year and covers employees in the higher education and health and social care sectors.

This pilot is testing the application process that EU citizens and their family members will use when the scheme opens fully next year. Feedback about your experience will be used to make improvements to the process before the Scheme fully launches to the public by 30 March 2019.


Who is eligible?

You will only be able to take part in the pilot if you are an employee of our [university/institution], and you are:

  • an EU citizen and have a valid biometric passport (this is an e-passport which has a digital chip)
  • or a non-EU citizen family member employed by the [university/institution] and have a biometric residence card with ‘EU Right to Reside’ on the back, which you have applied for on or after 6 April 2015


If you are eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme pilot you will need to complete a short and simple online application form to: 

  • prove your identity;
  • show that you live in the UK; and
  • declare any serious criminal convictions.


Application process during the pilot

To apply to the EU Settlement Scheme you will need to complete an online application:

  • Verify your identity – You will need to have a valid biometric passport or biometric residence card (issued by the Home Office) to apply in this pilot. All applications must use the EU Exit: ID Document Check app to verify identity. This is currently only available to download on Android devices – an easy way to check if your device can use this app, is if your device has the technology to make contactless payments. A number of local authorities are offering an identity verification service to ensure those who do not have access to a suitable device are able to do so.  Details of the locations where this service is being provided will be available on GOV.UK once the pilot launches. If you cannot get access to this app during the pilot there will be alternative ways for you to verify your identity once the scheme fully opens.
  • Criminality check – You will need to complete the criminality check by declaring any criminal convictions. Only serious or persistent criminality will affect your application. This should not affect the vast majority of EU citizens and their family members.
  • Verify your residence in the UK – You will need to provide evidence of your residence in the UK. There are number of ways you can do this, for example providing your National Insurance number (if you have one). There may be cases where residence cannot be proven automatically in this way, and you will be asked to provide further evidence on your application. Information on the other types of evidence you can use can be found on GOV.UK. Alternatively, if you have a valid permanent residence document or valid indefinite leave to remain, you will just need to provide proof of that status.


What happens next? 

  • When this phase of the pilot goes live, we will send you an email inviting you to participate. This email will provide you with the details of how to register your participation.
  • Once you have registered your email address, you will receive an email with a link to complete your online application.


Please note that making an application in this pilot is entirely voluntary. There will be no change to your current rights under EU law until the end of the planned implementation period on 31 December 2020. 

The Home Office will be sharing further details on the pilot and how to make an application, which we will pass on to you. In the meantime, the UCL and Brexit website has a range of information available.

BME Update

ucylapo4 October 2018

As you may have noticed, the distribution of BME articles to lib-list has slowed down considerably in recent months, largely due to a reduction of entries made to the racematters address list.
This may be due to the fact that our primary contributor is spending a great deal of time in preparing the latest UCL Race Equality Charter (REC) application. The UCL EDI office now reports to the Provost who is keen for UCL to again attain the Bronze award and the submission date is getting closer, due at the end of the year.

The REC aims to ‘provide a framework through which institutions are encouraged to identify and reflect on institutional and cultural barriers impacting upon staff and students. Member institutions develop initiatives and solutions for action, and can apply for a Bronze or Silver award, depending on their level of progress’.

Amongst the UCL initiatives to tackle BME staff and student inequalities:

•  UCL are set to publish the latest EDI strategy which is a 10 year plan which is expected to be centred around inclusion for staff and students;

•  The Centre for the study of Racism is expected to be established soon with a masters degree expected to be an eventual offering;

•  Activities around Liberating the Curriculum is on-going;


•  The efforts to reduce the Student attainment gap (3% at UCL) is gaining momentum with Deans declaring their pledge to the cause.


•  Inclusive Advocacy – A new sponsorship programme has been introduced to ensure high-performing, under-represented groups reach their full potential at UCL.

However, despite the initiatives, a lot of work is still needed to redress the inequality balance. One of our BME medical students and recent former BME student officer wrote a very strong article back in December outlining some serious issues faced by our students:

“Last year when I was studying medicine, I attended a fair held to pick courses for 3rd year and was left disgusted when a student reported one of the tutors saying “Don’t let any Blacks or Hijab-wearing people over here to sign up. I have so many more instances that have come up and receive emails on this every other week.”

With the Library due to roll out a new strategy in the coming months, a BME list of potential ideas/objectives has been submitted to the Library EDI committee. It would be good if the library can make a contribution towards the BME initiatives.

Should you like to share your thoughts and ideas on BME matters please do get in touch.
Thank you to all who contacted me following the many BME articles sent last year, your support is very much appreciated.

Fellow members of the Library EDI committee should also be available should you like to discuss matters on diversity.

“Until we get equality in education, we won’t have an equal society”

Staff benefits awareness- staff survey action group.

Grazia Manzotti5 September 2018

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing as a member of the Staff Survey Action group. From the staff survey it appears that most library staff  (84%)  are aware of UCL’s range of benefits for its staff. 

We thought this is very  positive,  but we would like to remind staff of the range of benefits available to us all.  We have found this link on the HR website which is a very comprehensive list of what is available: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/human-resources/pay-benefits/staff-benefits

Of course what is not listed on the HR site and available just to Library staff is the flexi system.

Kind Regards