skip to content

A briefing to professional services staff about a new programme to support staff and simplify processes.

The following briefing on the 'ourcambridge' programme was sent in a message to all staff on Wednesday 7 November.

Dear Colleagues,

I have great pleasure in announcing ‘ourcambridge’, a programme designed to recognise and realise the potential of our professional services staff – of you. ‘Ourcambridge’ is a light touch, dynamic initiative designed to help you in your busy roles – and to ensure you feel valued for the critical contributions you make to the University’s mission. It is a voluntary and inclusive programme, open to all the University’s professional services staff – academic-related and assistant, outside and inside the UAS.

There are two complementary themes in ‘ourcambridge’.  The first is ‘Supporting our Staff’, one of the principal aims of which will be to put in place a career structure for professional services staff.  This, we hope, will be a structure which provides support and guidance for those wishing to advance their careers here in Cambridge.  There will be a greater emphasis on developing transferable skills; and we will enable much easier movement across the University.  In addition to career structures, we will look at how we can build a greater sense of community and instil a culture of positivity, respect and creativity.  There will be many other avenues we will want to explore as the programme develops, to ensure that you all receive proper support.

Secondly, but no less importantly, ‘Simplifying our Processes’, or, as it has colloquially been termed, ‘Untangling the Spaghetti’.  This is about building a consistent framework for change.  The framework will apply at many different levels.  At an institutional level, it will apply to the complex programmes of change in specialist operational areas, such as Finance and HR.  At a local level, it will aim to enable each of you to make changes to improve things for you and your teams.  We will do this by providing tools and time – expertise and backfill.  Rather than seeking perfection, we want approaches that are fit-for-purpose.  Ultimately, we want processes that are simple, effective and harmonised.

Change will not happen overnight – indeed, in ‘ourcambridge’, we are not striving for that.  We want to take incremental, small steps.  We want to learn from our successes and failures.  But most of all, we want to make a positive difference.

Over the next few weeks, we will hold a number of launch events. At each event we will give an overview of the programme, hold a series of workshops to hear your suggestions and create an online ideas board.  There will be a website with more detail about the programme and, importantly, about the ways in which you can become involved.

This is a programme for you all.  It will work best if we have as much participation from you as you can provide, so that you can guide, develop and implement the professional services that you want to see here at Cambridge.

I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible at one of the forthcoming launch events. If you would like to attend, please sign up by following the links below or pasting them into your browser:

26 November, 3pm – 4pm, Norwich Auditorium, West Cambridge Site -

4 December, 10am – 11am, Clifford Allbutt Lecture Theatre, Cambridge Biomedical Campus -

5 December, 3.45pm – 4.45pm, Hicks Room, University Centre -

With best wishes


Ms Emma Rampton



08 November 2018