Research staff development

Development opportunities

Research staff at the University of Hertfordshire benefit from a range of development opportunities, from those organised through Human Resources Staff Development programme as well as on the Researcher Development Programme.

Additional benefits include:

  • an induction programme at university and school level
  • two appraisals per year organized within their home School
  • access to a mentoring scheme for research staff and sessions on, for example, grant funding, health and safety, communication skills, ethics and integrity, equality and diversity, networking, reference management software, impact and research and the challenge of leadership.

The University encourages research staff to take responsibility for their own personal, professional and career development.

HR Staff Development Programme

The staff development programme, organized by HR Development, offers a plethora opportunities for research staff to access development on leadership, team working, IT skills, personal transferrable skills, grant funding and ethics and integrity. This is designed to support research staff from their arrival through a progression in their career to experienced research staff, and if necessary in the transition into academic careers.

Researcher Development Framework

The University delivers its development opportunities through an alignment and mapping to the Vitae Researcher Development Framework (RDF). Researchers are encouraged to make use of the RDF to carry out a gap analysis of their skills, competencies and attributes and to feed this into the appraisal system so that development support can be discussed and identified.

Staff appraisal has always been provided for researchers and the University process guidance now explicitly foregrounds the RDF for use by appraisers and appraisees in appraising research staff. There is a dedicated research staff induction checklist used alongside the generic one.

To ensure all managers at the University are aware of their responsibilities and could access guidance and identify learning needs connected to their management role, the Successful People Management - responsibilities, guidance and development document was produced.

Accessing the RDF

All development that is available to researchers is mapped on to one or more of the RDF domains and sub-domains.

Researchers can access development and training either directly through the Researcher Development Programme (RDP), Staff Development Programme on HertsHub, or by identifying the RDF domains and sub-domains that they wish to target in their personal development plan.

University success

The University is proud of its EC HR Excellence in Research award as a result of our implementation of the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers and the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers.

The University participates in the national Culture, Employment and Development in Academic Research Survey (CEDARS). The University's Researcher Development Group and Research Committee uses the results of this survey to improve and support our provision for research staff training.