Estates Services Priorities & service levels

Prioritising of work requests

The Estates Services Helpdesk will assign an appropriate priority to all Service Orders it receives. The following guidelines will direct that decision making process. 

Not hazardous and causing only minor inconvenience to the building and its occupants.

Examples of Standard priority jobs include:

  • loose or missing floor tiles / paving where there is minimal safety risk
  • replacement of cracked glass not giving rise to security or safety risk
  • replacement/repairs to sanitary ware fittings: plugs, seats etc
  • wall tiling; re-fixing loose or missing tiles
  • ceiling tiles; replacing missing or damaged tiles
  • curtains and blinds; repairs to curtains, blinds or their tracks
  • plasterwork repairs
  • repairs to doors, windows etc. where there is no health and safety risk
  • replacement of cracked sanitary ware when the damage has not prevented use
  • re-fixing of loose fixtures and fittings
  • cleaning or repairing gutters or downpipes
  • draughts at doors or windows
  • repairs to roof tiles or lead flashings

Matters causing inconvenience but with a low probability of further property damage if resolved within the target response time.

Examples of Urgent priority jobs include:

  • blocked drains or internal waste pipes
  • loss of heating on a local basis within a non-residential building
  • loss of water supply on a local basis within a non-residential building
  • loss of electrical power on a local basis (individual socket circuit)
  • broken glass in a window or door (this may involve initial boarding up)
  • unusable sanitary facilities where the affected facilities are the only ones within the building
  • any incident giving rise to a serious safety risk related to floor coverings, steps, paved areas
  • damage to roofs likely to cause additional harm to other structures or finishes
  • loss of other services e.g. ventilation, air conditioning
  • water leak not causing damage to the building (e.g. tap won't turn off)
  • fungus growth or insect/pest infestation

Matters at risk of causing significant injury or catastrophic property damage.  Resources will be directed to a Critical priority matter within 2 hours and will ensure that the problem is returned to a safe or usable state within 4 hours. Measures will be taken to reinstate the premises as necessary. Any further work required will be done as soon as availability of labour and materials allows.

Examples of Critical priority jobs include:

  • gas leak
  • fire, imminent risk of fire or an explosion
  • leakage of water from plumbing or heating service not contained by local drains
  • sewage overflow
  • loss of electrical supply to an entire floor or building
  • lighting failure on a local basis which is affecting a teaching space, emergency exit or stairs
  • bare or live electrical wires or fittings
  • security incident (theft, burglary, or problem affecting personal security and safety)
  • doors/windows which are broken or cannot be locked, causing the property to be insecure
  • lift breakdown with passengers trapped inside
  • any incident that is preventing teaching or a research project activity

Additional priority which can be applied for matters causing loss of amenities to student residential accommodation.

Examples include:

  • no toilet facilities within student flat
  • no shower facilities
  • no heating to accommodation
  • no cooking facilities.

This priority will apply to all scheduled and longer term works. Examples of Planned priority jobs include:

  • requests for set up and set down for events
  • office relocations
  • repair or purchasing of furniture
  • refurbishment and adaptation works
  • any other task that has been arranged with the customer for an agreed date

Service levels

The target timeline for completion of each priority is as follows:

Standard within 10 working days
Urgent within 5 working days
Critical Initial response < 2 hrs. Make situation safe and secure < 4 hrs
Student Priority Within 2 working days*
Planned Agreed or scheduled date

Supplementary categories



Workflow Bypass - Critical

Temporary category – pushes a job straight to a Tradesperson’s phone rather than it waiting in workflow for a Supervisor to process it.

Not Automatically Assigned

Temporary category until Helpdesk assigns SLA category

The above is for guidance only. Estates Services will take account of the individual needs of the building occupants, whether or not the issue is business critical, and whether the fault or defect is impacting on people with disabilities. 

Please note that all of the above are initial response times. Where possible a full repair or reinstatement will be carried out within the priority timescale. Sometimes, based on the nature of the problem, it may be necessary to carry out a temporary repair, with final completion of work being dependent on the availability of materials or equipment or the need to employ a specialist contractor.  Where a subsequent visit is necessary the originator of the request will be notified via an update to the EMS system. 


We will always aim to complete your defects within these timelines. However, on occasions, achieving these timelines is outwith our control. Should we be delayed we will provide you with an email alerting you of this and will also post updates within your Service Order record in the Estates section of the FMS system.

Where a delay is experienced one of the following reasons will be provided:

  1. We need to engage with a specialist contractor
  2. We need to order materials that are not authorised to be kept in the University’s stores
  3. We have not been able to gain access to your area to carry out the work
  4. Adverse weather is presenting a health and safety risk preventing work from continuing at present.

We commit to pursuing the earliest delivery dates for materials and for contractors to commence work, in order to limit any delay as much as possible.


Estates Services will aim to address any quotation request within 7 days of receiving it. Requesting a quotation for a job may cause a slight delay to the timeline for the commencement and completion of the work.