OUR VALUES

PASSION, INTEGRITY, EXCELLENCE AND SUPPORT

Passion

We care

 

  • We want each and every one of our students to succeed
  • We do the right thing by our students and customers – that means we do whatever we can to ensure that no student falls behind in their studies, and that no customer is unhappy with the service they receive

Integrity

Fairness first

 

  • We model integrity in everything we do
  • We never compromise on honesty or trustworthiness
  • We adhere closely to laws and compliance standards
  • We do what we say we will do, and fulfil our promises to staff

Excellence

We aim high

 

  • High standards drive everything we do
  • We deliver excellence, strive for continuous improvement and respond dynamically to change
  • Each one of us is personally responsible and accountable for the quality of whatever we do
  • We listen to our students and understand their expectations
  • We strive to exceed expectations in quality and delivery

Support

We show respect

 

  • At UCEM each member of staff does everything they can to help other staff and students to achieve their goals
  • We respect others and their opinions, we are open to ideas, we trust each other
  • We promote a supportive working environment across UCEM that extends to our students
  • We value and reward each individual’s skills, working towards common goals with shared objectives and through collaborative practice

OUR CULTURE

Built for community

UCEM has a long history and a bright future. We have a clear vision, we are driven by our core purpose, and we have set out an institutional strategy to 2025. At UCEM we are transparent with our staff; every individual joining UCEM will know what their role is and how it contributes to achieving the overall institutional objectives. You and your work will be valued and we want your contribution.

Given we operate in a highly regulated sector, we take compliance with higher education rules and codes of practice seriously. This means systems and processes are an important part of our everyday work because we want every student to succeed. These formal ways of working and clear organisational structure are balanced with the informal and friendly environment in which our employees operate. We have a UK head office in Reading and a small staff team based in Hong Kong. Overall our staff group is circa five hundred individuals and we operate flexible ways of working (office, hybrid, and remote).

UCEM is filled with people who are passionate about their work and who are incredibly supportive to their colleagues. Staff act with integrity and continue to strive for excellence in their everyday work. These all represent our values and we regularly take time to recognise and reward staff for demonstrating these. We know that the people are what makes UCEM a great place to work; we know this because staff keep telling us so. When you join us, we know you will discover this in almost no time!

Finally, we make sure that we take time out to talk to each other and get to know what makes each of us different and interesting. Whether it’s through informal chats with colleagues both in person and online, during Feed Me Fridays, at a social event or other fun activities, we enjoy each other’s company and most importantly, we look after and out for each other.

Look at our current vacancies if this makes you want to join the UCEM team!

“By joining UCEM you will be surrounded by a great group of people. Your contribution will be valued and every day you’ll see the results of your efforts through student success.”

Lisa Wilks

Director of HR

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?

BUILT FOR YOU

At UCEM we are delighted to be able to offer you a comprehensive employee benefits package that has something for everybody! We are committed to ensuring our employee benefits are relevant and offer value for money, and we made some exciting enhancements to our benefits offering during 2022 but we are not stopping there. We continue to invest in our employee benefits to enhance our package even further with employee feedback heavily shaping our future plans. This page will be updated as and when we have further information to share.

Core benefits
  • Paid holiday, (26 days full-time equivalent per annum, plus bank holidays and designated closure days (up to 5 per annum), holiday buy/sell/carry over options
  • Paid wellbeing day (normally one per annum)
  • Occupational sickness pay from day one of employment
  • Salary exchange pension scheme (auto-enrolment): 7% employer contribution, 2.5% minimum employee contribution
  • Life assurance/death in service
  • Flexibility in relation to place of work (office based, hybrid working, remote working)
Lifestyle and work-life balance
  • Contractual flexible working built around a core hours’ model
  • Holiday increases with service (28 days after 5 years)
  • Holiday buy option is up to 5 days’ full-time equivalent per holiday year
  • Holiday sell or carry over option is up to 2 days’ per holiday year (choose one or neither)
  • Policies in place for all types of family-friendly statutory leave with enhanced pay available from day one of employment (in addition to statutory pay, where applicable)
Health and wellbeing
  • Employer-paid health cash plan for employees with options available to enhance cover (any enhancements are employee-paid)
  • Employee Assistance Programme (EAP), available 24/7 365 days per year
  • Dedicated wellbeing area on the intranet
  • Optical care support (employer-paid via health cash plan in first instance)
  • Dental insurance for employees, voluntary basis (employee-paid)
  • First aid training for first aiders (including mental health)
  • Fire warden training for fire wardens
  • Social committee events, some subsidised by UCEM
  • Charity and voluntary paid day, per annum
  • Promotion of sustainable living
  • Employer paid Private Medical Insurance (specific job roles only)
Tax efficient/salary sacrifice

Tax efficient and/or salary sacrifice benefits

  • Cycle-to-work scheme
  • Give-as-you-earn/payroll giving
  • Salary exchange (sacrifice) pension contributions
  • Access to Tax-Free Childcare (Government scheme)

Payroll Giving Award

UCEM is proud to have achieved the silver category Payroll Giving Quality Mark, as recognition for our generous contributions to UK charities. The Silver Award is a symbol of excellence which demonstrates our philanthropic culture and committed giving in the workplace. Tax efficient charitable giving is just one of the many employee benefits offered here at UCEM.

Silver Award 2021 - Payroll Giving

Workplace savings
  • Retail discounts: thousands of offers from top brands available via Lifestyle Savings portal and app
  • Season-ticket travel loan
  • Discounted Dell products
  • Office 365 for use on personal/home devices
Training and development
  • “500 for 500”. Pitch 500 words for a £500 contribution to personal or professional development or training
  • 24/7 365-day access to online learning through LinkedIn Learning
  • Access to hundreds of short courses on a wide range of topics through Lifestyle Learning (part of the retail discounts benefit)
  • Access to a well-equipped e-library
Other employee benefits

Other benefits and employee recognition

  • Paid professional body subscription (terms apply)
  • Employee recognition: peer to peer recognition including Values awards and Star awards via an online portal
  • Long service awards (key milestones include a financial award)

Further information on all our employee benefits can be found in the PDF document below:

Office working

Benefits specific to office working

  • Modern office environment with strong sustainability credentials, facilities include break-out and collaborative working spaces, kitchen and rest facilities including outside deck, shower and changing facilities including lockers, and a locked bike shelter
  • Free car parking on site (spaces subject to availability and terms)
  • Free tea, coffee and milk
  • Free fresh fruit and other breakfast items available (selected days only)
  • Dress-down Fridays
  • Feed Me Fridays!

WHY DO OUR STAFF LOVE WORKING AT UCEM?

BUILT FOR CAREERS

Karen Manning

 

“The thing that I love most about working at UCEM is that we are one big extended family. We look after our students and our staff as if they are family, and we are as proud and excited to see our students complete their studies and graduate as any family member. I can’t think of a better place to work.”

Christine Gausden

 

“I love working at UCEM because I feel valued; working at UCEM enables me to make a positive contribution to our mutual sustainable future.”

Hazel Lobo

 

“Why do I love working at UCEM? Everything we do centres around student success. This means that the contribution of every single member of staff is acknowledged as important, and also that every single person is cared about (and for) so that they can contribute their best. We’re not an institution, we’re a family – we look out for, and look after, each other.”

Jessica Gordon-Calvert

 

“I love being able to work for an organisation that reflects my values and has a passion for people and planet. I love being a part of UCEM and able to support their sustainability journey through Responsible Futures and beyond. I have felt incredibly welcomed into UCEM’s community and I can’t wait to work and connect with more staff and students as time goes on.”

Equality Diversity and Inclusion

Here at UCEM we champion Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in our workforce. We began our EDI journey in Autumn 2021 by forming an EDI Staff Working Group, which meets regularly to plan and implement changes and developments that will bring us closer to our goal of having a more diverse and inclusive workforce. We do not have a “tick-box mentality” but instead are committed to embedding real and lasting change within our institution. As an online education provider for the Built Environment we want our staff to be representative of the diverse and global student body that we serve.

Staff favourite things

about working for UCEM