Human Resources

Prize Fellow probation and development review process

Here are the key stages of the probation and development review process for Prize Fellows.

Within the first few weeks of your start date

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will meet with you to discuss probationary arrangements, support available and to define appropriate objectives which will form the basis of your probation and development review. Objectives will be subject to approval by the Dean of your Faculty/School. 

The objectives will be set and formally recorded using the Prize Fellow Objective Template Form during your first few weeks in post and will cover broadly the first three months, six months, 12 months and 24 months of your appointment.  The Prize Fellow Objective Template Form should be used at each and every review meeting to record agreed outcomes and objectives for future reference.

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will assign one or more senior academic members of staff to act as your mentor, providing support and guidance in relation to your progress.  Your mentor will meet with you and agree the mentoring arrangements.

The Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) will approve the objectives when these are set and forward them to the HR Administration Coordinator.

During your probationary period

Your University probation will last 6 months and during this time, your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will arrange review meetings with you to monitor your progress.  This will include a mid-probation review meeting and an end-of-probation review meeting.

The University’s Probation Policy and Procedure details how the probation process works in more detail.

Within three months of your start date

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will arrange a mid-probation review meeting with you to monitor your progress against the objectives set over this period and provide any necessary support.   Prior to your probation meeting, you will need to complete the relevant section of the Prize Fellow Objective Template Form to demonstrate your progress against the set objectives plus any other activities, and provide this with supporting information to your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute. 

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute may also make some initial comments on the Form and return these to you in time for the review meeting.    

Within six months of your start date

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will arrange an end-of-probation review meeting with you to confirm your progress to date against the agreed objectives, in consultation with the Dean.  As before, prior to your probation meeting, you will need to complete the relevant section of the Prize Fellow Objective Template Form to demonstrate your progress against the set objectives plus any other activities, and provide this with supporting information to your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute. 

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute may also make some initial comments on the Form and return these to you in time for the review meeting.    

If your performance is to the required standard, your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will send a notification to the relevant HR Administrator that you should be confirmed in post and you will receive a letter from Human Resources confirming this.  

[If your Head of Department/ Division/Director of Institute has identified performance and/or conduct below the required standards, they should meet confidentially with you, following consultation with the Dean, at the earliest possible opportunity with a view to establishing the cause of the problem and how it can be resolved.  If they consider that there has been insufficient improvement prior to your mid- and end-of-probation review dates then they should seek advice from an appropriate advisor in the Department of Human Resources; normally from the relevant HR Manager]

On the successful completion of your probation period, the management of your performance will follow the University’s policies on Capability and Staff Development Performance Review.

Within 12 months of your start date

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will arrange a formal review meeting with you to monitor your progress against the objectives, in consultation with the Dean, and provide additional support where necessary. 

Within 18 months of your start date

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will arrange a further formal review meeting with you to monitor your progress against the objectives, in consultation with the Dean, and provide additional support where necessary. 

21 months after your start date

The HR Administration Coordinator will send a notification to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), Dean of your Faculty/School, Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute and HR Manager that you are nearing the end of your second year in post.

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will recommend to the Dean of your Faculty/School whether you should transfer to a permanent academic contract at the end of your second year or remain on a research contract during your third year.

After consultation with the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), the Dean will make a decision based on your progress and the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) will confirm the final decision to Human Resources.

24 months after your start date (end of year two)

If your performance meets the required standards, then you will transfer to a permanent academic contract as a probationary Lecturer and start academic probation at the commencement of your third year.  The HR Administration Coordinator will write to you formally to confirm this. 

You will also receive a letter from the Deputy Vice-Chancellor outlining your probationary arrangements and the dates for formal review by Academic Staff Committee (ASC). 

There would continue to be a strong research focus during your academic probation years and your teaching would focus on research-led higher-level courses and projects.

If you perform as we expect then academic probation in years three to five would be followed by a confirmed appointment as a Lecturer or exceptionally as a Senior Lecturer or Reader (via Academic Staff Committee).

For those that stay on as a Prize Fellow during their third year

If your performance does not meet the required standards at the end of your second year in post, then your third year will provide an opportunity for you to reach that standard.  You will remain on a fixed-term research contract during your third year and your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will set objectives for you in consultation with the Dean and with the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) using the Prize Fellow Objective Template Form.  The Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) will approve the objectives and forward these to the HR Administration Coordinator.

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will continue to monitor your progress against these objectives, in consultation with the Dean, and provide additional support where necessary. 

28 months after your start date

Your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute will arrange a further formal review meeting with you to monitor your progress against the objectives, in consultation with the Dean, and provide additional support where necessary.

32 months after your start date

The HR Administration Co-ordinator will send a notification to your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute that your fixed-term contract is due to end at the end of your third year.

The Dean of your Faculty/School will meet with your Head of Department/Division/Director of Institute and based on your progress will decide whether your contract should terminate at the end of your third year or transfer to a permanent academic contract.

The Dean of your Faculty/School will confirm their final decision to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), who will in turn notify the HR Administration Co-ordinator of the decision.

33 months after your start date

Unless it has been confirmed that you will transfer to a permanent academic contract at the commencement of year four, the HR Administration Coordinator will issue you withormal written notice of redundancy.

36 months after your start date (end of year three)

If your performance meets the required standard at the end of your third year, then you will transfer to a permanent academic contract as a probationary Lecturer and start academic probation at the commencement of year four.  The HR Administration Coordinator will write to you formally to confirm this. 

You will also receive a letter from the Deputy Vice-Chancellor outlining your probationary arrangements, and the dates for formal review by Academic Staff Committee (ASC). 

If your performance does not meet the required standard at the end of your third year then your fixed-term contract will end.

Created: October 2016