Our Vision for Technical Talent — launch event

December 13th, 2018

The University of Nottingham’s Vision for Technical Talent launched on Tuesday 4 December 2018 — the event included a celebration of technical talent across our University and the launch of our new strategy to ensure increased profile, recognition and opportunity for technical colleagues.

We were delighted to have so many technicians together in the room during the launch event. It was a real pleasure to have the opportunity to showcase and share the diverse activities and wider impact of technical staff across our University. The contribution of technical colleagues to research and teaching here in Nottingham and beyond was clear to see.

James Key, Technical Director – Formula One, addressing attendees at the launch of ‘Our Vision for Technical Talent’

Here’s a recap of key highlights of the event:

Launching our Vision for Technical Talent

The President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Shearer West launched the new strategy entitled ‘Our Vision for Technical Talent’ and presented some key areas of progress. These included:

  • The extension of the Technical Services job family to levels 6 and 7, in line with the University of Nottingham’s Research & Teaching (R&T) and Administrative, Professional & Managerial (APM) job families and a number of other higher education institutions. Technical Services Level 6 descriptors (specialist and managerial routes) will be launched on August 1st 2019. Technical Services Level 7 descriptors are being developed.
  • February 2019 will see the launch of a new Technical Skills and Conference Fund dedicated to ensuring technical colleagues can apply for funding to ensure they can continue to develop their technical skills and expertise.
  • The development of a new and refreshed University of Nottingham Technician Network, led by Joanne Green (School of Chemistry) and colleagues across the University who have put together a full calendar of events for 2019 including courses, development opportunities and open afternoons at various facilities, laboratories and workshops across our University.
  • The creation of placement opportunities for technical colleagues. Technicians will be able to apply to undertake technical placements of up to a week to learn new techniques and methods at universities and research institutes across the UK via a successful EPSRC Inclusion Matters award and through support from the Midlands Innovation consortium. Details of these schemes, and how to apply will be released in early 2019.

Technicians on film

A short film made in celebration of technical colleagues was previewed at the event and can be found here: https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/technicians/home.aspx.

Technical talent in Formula One

We were delighted to welcome James Key, Formula One Technical Director to the event. James was one of the youngest Technical Directors of a Formula One team, at the age of 33 years and is a University of Nottingham Alumnus (Mechanical Engineering, 1996). James has spent his working life developing innovative technical solutions for a number of Formula One teams including Lotus, Jordan, Sauber, Force India and Scuderia Toro Rosso. James gave a fascinating talk on the roles of technicians in motor sport and higher education and drew on personal experiences to convey the impact of technical skills and expertise.

Science Council Employer Champion Award

The University of Nottingham was formally presented with an Employer Champion Award in recognition of our support for the continued professional development and professional registration of technical staff. This was presented to the Vice-Chancellor by Professor Patrick Kniveton, Trustee of the Science Council.

Showcasing our Technical Talent

Speeches and presentations were followed by a poster session where technical colleagues from across the University presented aspects of their roles and activities to internal and external guests. This offered an opportunity for networking and festive refreshments.

Next steps

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the event – please complete our short survey to help inform future events and activities.

Keep in touch with progress on the new Vision for Technical Talent strategy from the University —- see our refreshed webpages for news, events and development opportunities and look out for details of our next event in spring 2019.

Many thanks once again to all who contributed. If you have any further questions on any aspect of the strategy please contact Director of Technical Skills and Strategy, Kelly Vere.

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One Comment

January 9th, 2019 at 12:02 pm

Ian Mann

Does this extend to Campus IT Support?
I am a Teaching Room Technician (Audio/Visual Specialist) and would be interested in getting involved.

Many thanks.

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