Four Fights: Workload

What is this dispute about?

Staff in this sector very often work long hours. A recent UCU workload survey found that staff in HE work an average of 50 hours a week. The same survey found the 4 in 5 HE staff had struggled with their workload. UCU are requesting a standard 35-hour week so that staff can enjoy a safe working environment and reclaim the work-life balance they deserve.

Four Fights workload descriptor

What does this mean for our local members?

One of our members has this to say about workload:

“Workload is one of the main causes of stress and anxiety for me. I find it literally impossible to do my job in a 37-hour week. I always work during evenings and usually over weekends. I have never used up anything like a full annual leave entitlement. When I do take time off, during term time especially, I use it to recover from busy weeks, rather than to catch-up with friends or family – which has a real impact on my relationships. Though most people are over 100% on our workload models, additional work continues to be allocated, and deadlines are not movable or flexible. And then, of course, not undertaking enough REFable research is used as a reason not to promote staff. It’s a vicious circle.”

A testimonial on how high workload directly affects one of our staff at the University of Liverpool.