Improving the researcher experience


February 22nd, 2024

Work is underway on an ambitious new project aimed at enhancing the researcher experience across the university. In a collective effort, colleagues are collaborating to streamline processes, enhance communication, and provide comprehensive guidance throughout the complex research project lifecycle.

To gain valuable insights, workshops have been held with stakeholders, unveiling key pain points experienced by academics during the bidding process for research grants and throughout the intricate research project journey. Stakeholders have not only identified challenges but have also offered constructive suggestions, forming the foundation for the development of actionable plans.

Project lead Rachel Brereton, Director of Research and Innovation Operations said “The focus of this project is all about making life easier for our whole research community at each stage of the research project lifecycle. That is why our starting point had to be listening to their experiences of the current process and how they feel it could be improved.”

The ‘improving the researcher experience’ project is a key priority for the university, as sponsor Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Knowledge Exchange, Tom Rodden explained “This exciting initiative has the potential to transform how we approach grant-funded research projects, by putting the researcher at the centre we aim to bring greater simplicity to the process of fund bidding and for managing the grant.

“The complexity of the research lifecycle process involves multiple teams across faculties, schools, and Professional Services, the project aims to reduce friction by clarifying roles and providing clearer signposting at each stage. The ultimate goal is to create a more streamlined, efficient, and satisfying work environment for everyone involved.

“I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to this project so far. It has been a fantastic joint effort, with all participants dedicated to achieving the same goal. We are committed to keeping you informed of our progress and look forward to sharing the implemented outcomes and their positive impact soon.”

If you would like to get involved or if know of other related workstreams which the project team may not be aware of, please contact joanna.green@nottingham.ac.uk to ensure any further opportunities for joined-up working are captured at this stage.

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