Whatever the consequences of the proposed re-structuring for staff including the hard pressed staff in HR, one person will not have to deal with the fallout.
It seems clear from the cluster meetings held last Week that Keith Ross, the temporary head of HR, will be leaving in June. Keith, it is alleged, has been employed on the basis of a rolling contract. The latest one finishes in June.
Who is Keith? Well the Health Professional Council website tells us:
“Keith Ross is a self-employed HR and management consultant. He concentrates on human resources assignments and management roles mainly in the public sector – specifically in the health and education fields. Before becoming self-employed, Keith had a 20-year career in Human Resources roles in the Scottish Health Service and latterly was Director of Human Resources for a Scottish Health Board and an acute NHS Trust. He specialises in management of change and has spent two periods of one year at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh during periods of major structural change”
An examination of what happened at Heriot-Watt would show that there, staff ended up voting for strike action over the imposition of an inflexible performance management system associated with Keith Ross.
Did our senior management know this? If not, why not? Or if so, what were management’s aims in making this appointment?
We do not believe the HR system of a multi-million crucial Scottish university like our own can responsibly be put in the temporary hands of consultants. We believe our staff, students and the Scottish community we are answerable to deserve better.