Operational excellence

The efficient and effective management of our resources – our people, finances, physical assets and information – is vital to the achievement of our ambitions.

In order for our students and staff to achieve at the highest level, we will ensure that these resources are optimally aligned, with financial sustainability at the core. We will evolve and embed a team-based approach to delivery, guided by our institutional values.

The successful realisation of our strategic vision relies on the collective commitment of all our staff to the strategic priorities, performance indicators, targets and values of the University.

We will ensure a supportive, people-oriented and rewarding working environment where staff will benefit from opportunities for development, a shared set of common aims, clear lines of communication and a commitment to equality and diversity. This includes our commitment to a new, extended Athena SWAN charter open to humanities, social science, law and business schools and covering wider issues of gender equality including the progression of professional, technical and support staff.

We are building for the future with a bold 10-year, multi-million-pound investment to transform our estate and deliver first-class facilities for teaching, research and knowledge exchange. We will continue to develop an attractive, dynamic, technology-enabled and environmentally-sustainable campus that reflects our status as a leading international technological University, supports our strategic ambitions and delivers for staff, students and partners.

The strategic use of technological solutions to support the delivery of transformational services is central to the realisation of our vision and ambitions. We will deliver state-of-the-art, innovative and ‘best in class’ information technology, regardless of physical location, to enhance our teaching, research and collaborative activities and to drive and support business change.

Ensuring continued financial sustainability as an institution requires that we generate sufficient funds both to cover our operating costs and to support our ambitions for investment in our staff and students and in our estates, IT infrastructure and facilities. We will do this by coupling innovative solutions with effective and efficient financial practices to achieve value for money in all our operations. We also aim to maintain an operating cash surplus that will enable strategic and sustainable investment in the pursuit of our ambitions.

We will be innovative in delivering our strategic ambitions – questioning, challenging and developing our operations and processes to ensure that we are effective in all that we do. Our strength will lie in our ability to respond quickly and flexibly to developments in the external environment and to create and take advantage of opportunities when they arise.

Objectives Strategies
What do we want to achieve? How will we do it?
  • Effective and engaged staff
  • Supportive environment for students, staff and partners
  • High-quality infrastructure
  • Value for money
  • Realise benefits from organisational values
  • Financial and environmental sustainability
  • Support staff development and leadership
  • Improve diversity and promote equality
  • Deliver planned infrastructure developments
  • Capitalise on our investments in information systems and tools
  • Maximise efficiency and effectiveness
  • Act and make decisions guided by our organisational values
  • Evolve and embed a team-based, collaborative approach to delivery
  • Maintain an operating surplus sufficient to meet strategic aims in a sustainable manner


Since the publication of the 2015-20 Strategic Plan a small number of adjustments have been made to the University’s KPIs and associated data, to better enable the University to determine progress against the Strategy. Further details of these changes are available on request from Strategy and Policy.

Key Performance IndicatorsCurrent PerformanceTargets
How will we measure progress? What is our baseline? What are our ambitions?
14. Athena SWAN Silver award Bronze Institutional Award renewed 2014 Submit for Silver Institutional Award by 31 July 2020
15. Operating surplus as a % of turnover 2.5% Achieve a surplus annually of between 3-5%
16. Carbon emissions 30,000 tCO2e Reduce by 25% by 2020