Strategic Plan
Operational excellence

Operational excellence

Our people and the community they create are, without question, our greatest asset and what make our University what it is. Through our provision of a supportive, people-oriented and rewarding working environment, staff benefit from opportunities for development, a shared set of common aims, clear lines of communication and a commitment to equality and inclusivity. We want to ensure our staff and stakeholders are proud of their institution, of what we have achieved collectively, and are motivated to deliver on each milestone of this Strategy. We will continue to develop our attractive, dynamic, technology-enabled and environmentally sustainable campus, ensuring it is safe and promotes student and staff health and wellbeing.

The efficient and effective management of our resources – money, physical assets and information - is vital to achieving our ambitions. Ensuring continued financial sustainability as an institution requires that we generate sufficient funds both to cover our operating costs and meet our obligations, and to support our ambitions for investment in our staff and students and in our estates, IT infrastructure and facilities.

The next period will see a significantly increased focus on climate action, decarbonisation and digital transformation – embracing technological solutions and ensuring innovative responses to critical global and local challenges.  And we are committed to ensuring our socially progressive ethos underpins our thinking and decision-making in all our areas of activity.

Distinctive Strathclyde

Read more about our ongoing commitment to operational excellence.

Sunday Times, Scottish University of the Year 2020 logo.

Our strategic aims

Strategic Aim 5.1: In embracing our socially progressive ethos, our community of staff and students feel valued and are effective, engaged and values-led

We will achieve this by: 

  • supporting staff development and furthering leadership development to ensure our community of staff epitomise our values and have the capability and confidence to think differently, take measured risks and deliver excellence
  • evolving our team-based, collaborative, continuous improvement approach to delivery and gathering views via ‘pulse’ surveys to ensure change is informed by an understanding of the Strathclyde community’s views
  • using our values and our socially progressive ethos to guide our decision-making and actions
  • improving diversity, enabling inclusion, and promoting equality
  • implementing our workplace health and wellbeing strategy, ‘Thrive @ Strathclyde’
  • ensuring we derive maximum benefit from Strathclyde Sport, with a focus on sport, health and wellbeing, academic alignment, external partnerships and our elite athletes programme

Strategic Aim 5.2: Our infrastructure is high quality, sustainable and meeting user needs, within a wider technology-enabled environment designed and maintained to enable our students, staff and partners to maximise their contribution to local and global issues

We will achieve this by:
  • delivering a step-change in our response to climate change: as a community; as an institution; and as a thought leader and creator of 21st century solutions to global issues
  • delivering planned infrastructure developments with a focus on net zero
  • growing our staff numbers in all categories through new talent attraction and retention, whilst also embracing digital transformation
  • capitalising on our investment in information systems and tools to allow us to take a digital-first approach, with a focus on simplification and automation of business processes
  • adopting a ‘data protection by design and by default’ approach and ensuring that we actively tackle cyber security challenges

Our people strategy framework

Our people vision

Together we will create an exceptional, Values-based work environment where colleagues feel deeply connected with the University’s Vision 2025 and have the skills, motivation and reward for delivering it

We will achieve this Vision through five Strategic Themes which build upon a foundation pledge for all staff:

Theme 2:
Effective Leaders and Managers
Theme 3:
A thriving environment
Theme 4:
My reward, my contribution
Theme 5:
Retention and attraction of talent

The Strathclyde staff pledge

Stable contracts
Fair and equal pay
Safe and secure working environment
Staff opinions count

Our values


Strategic Aim 5.3: Our ‘value proposition’ approach enables us to ensure we take informed risks within an overall framework that is managed, efficient and focused on maximising impact and learning from experience

We will achieve this by: 

  • ensuring our approach delivers ‘value for money’ for our partners, funders and students
  • taking a technology-enabled and data-informed approach to decision-making, built on bespoke analytics and benchmarked performance data
  • maximising our efficiency and effectiveness and undertaking post-investment evaluations
  • working within a tailored risk framework which considers constraints and opportunities, encompasses our agreed ‘risk appetite’, takes privacy into account, and enables us to meet our ambitions within a changing external and internal context
  • promoting a positive, sustainable safety culture in which everyone plays their part
  • delivering on our commitment to ensure Strathclyde is financially sustainable throughout its next period of growth

Key performance indicators

We will demonstrate our success by achieving:

  • A continuously closing gender pay gap
  • Meet or exceed planned net cashflow from operating activities
  • Year on year reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, leading to 70% reduction by 2025, 80% by 2030 and Net Zero by 2040 at the latest