3.2 Supporting the competence development and well-being of the staff

Auditointiryhmän arvio

LUT has functioning routines for identifying the competence development needs among staff

The audit team notes that recruitment and competence development are strategic issues for the university. LUT has a recruitment policy together with LAB University of Applied Sciences that regulates the starting points and processes for the recruitment of staff. The ambition is that the recruitment work is open, transparent and based on merit. The policy is also available on the university’s website. Furthermore, the university encourages the majority of positions to be advertised internationally, which is applied to all tenure track positions. This is commendable and in line with the university’s ambitions to strengthen internationalisation. The strategic action plan requires that gender balance should be promoted in connection with academic recruitments. In summary, the audit team notes that the procedures for staff recruitment are clear, accessible and transparent.

The university’s tenure track system includes competence development with clear targets for teachers and researchers. The target of the tenure track positions is to advance to the level of full professor based on post-doctoral achievements and qualifications. Non-tenure track positions are either research- or teaching-oriented, based on the needs of the school. The tenure track committee ensures that the system is applied and that related procedures are uniform in quality and content. The audit team’s impression is that the tenure track system works well and is appreciated within the university.

Based on the interviews and available documentation, the university has functioning routines for identifying development needs for staff competence and for supporting the development of staff competence. This applies to all staff at the university. Here, the audit team would like to specifically mention that teachers are actively encouraged to obtain pedagogical training of at least 25 credits or even take the vocational teacher training degree. The annual development discussions are applied so that they achieve the purpose of identifying and recording development needs of staff competence. Competence development within successful academic leadership will become increasingly important in the coming years. This is a challenge that is shared by many universities, and the university is aware of it.

There is a systematic approach in supporting staff well-being at work

The interviews confirmed the impression that the university has a clear focus on the well-being of staff, both in terms of follow-ups and through activities such as ‘Happiness through Health activities’. The university’s ambitions regarding well-being are exposed in various ways within the university. The well-being issues have a prominent position in the university’s quality work, for example, through a workplace well-being survey every other year and the anonymous and monthly measurements through the ‘employee mood tracker’ the results of which are available on the university intranet. The overall impression of the audit team is that the follow-up routines regarding well-being mainly work well. At the same time, the mood tracker system generates relatively blunt information that makes in-depth investigations necessary to find out the reasons for any changes.

According to the LUT Quality Manual, the rector is ultimately responsible for ensuring that all members of the university community are treated equally and in accordance with the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The LUT Group Equality and Non-Discrimination Plan gives the impression of proactive and systematic work that is accompanied by a division of responsibilities and follow-up activities. The interviews during the audit visit confirmed the positive impression.