A key issue in the current pay and equality ballot is the UCU’s call for a nationally agreed payment to recognise excessive workloads.
1. Staff are working an average of more than two days unpaid every week
In HE, academic staff working across all disciplines work 50.9 hours per week on average.
2. Workload is unmanageable and unsustainable for the majority of academic staff and lecturers
In HE, 83% of academic staff reported that the pace or intensity of work has increased over the past three years. Two thirds of staff reported that their workload is unmanageable at least half of the time and more than a quarter of respondents (28.8%) said that their workloads were unmanageable all or most of the time.
3. Staff are taking on more responsibility and administration
The most frequently reported and highest ranked contributing factors to workload increases were the increasing administrative burden and the widening of duties considered to be within members’ remit. These were closely followed by the impact of restructuring and reductions in staff numbers. Academic staff and lecturers are expected to perform more administrative and departmental tasks and present themselves as more available to students to meet rising expectations, on top of core teaching activities including developing and delivering courses, programmes and research objectives.
4. Student expectations have increased
Rising student expectations caused by policy changes aimed at shifting the focus towards students being treated as fee paying consumers, have increased the workloads of academic teaching staff and FE lecturers. Around 33% of HE teaching staff stated that the time they spend marking assignments has increased significantly when compared to three years ago.
5. Professional and career development is suffering as a result of increasing workload
When asked whether the proportion of their time spent on certain activities had increased or decreased over time, both teaching and research academics in HE and FE teaching staff uniformly reported a significant decline in time spent on development activities including attending and presenting at conferences and networking, research and reading, self-directed study or scholarly activity.
Vote YES! in the Pay and Equality Ballot to recognise and address excessive workloads.
Voting is open and runs through to Feb 22nd – post by Feb 20 to ensure your vote counts.
Download this Workload flyer 2019 and put it up in your department