Pulse Survey: Ask/Listen/Act

The 3rd iteration of the Pulse Survey is currently open.


Why are we continuing to survey?

Our environment is changing and we want to capture what’s going on for our staff as we experience change. Since the closing of survey 2, NZ has moved from alert level 3 to 2. This translates into UC staff making the transition from home back onto campus. This also coincides with schools opening. Such changes result in a shift in support needs to ensure an optimal level of staff wellbeing.


Results to date

I invite you to look at the Pulse Survey results gathered so far. As time has progressed some staff found the lack of resources and having dependents at home have negatively impacted their perception of their own productivity. We can get by for a certain amount of time without our usual office setup but there comes a point where it impacts our ability to do our role. Primary/Intermediate/Secondary schools brought forward the term 1 holidays, and when school holidays finished the challenges of balancing schooling from home with working from home became a reality.

The satisfaction with onsite safety has dropped by 10 points. Onsite safety of staff and students is something we are working hard to maintain and improve, so this is an area we are very keen to explore and in the current survey we are calling for more information to capture specific areas of concern.

Please take the time to share your thoughts so we can continue to gather information on how best to support our staff and ensure we create an environment of optimal wellbeing.

The call for clarity

We aren’t hardwired for uncertainty and this can be seen in the large numbers of staff calling for more certainty and clarity in relation to:

  1. Forecasted student numbers
  2. Financial impacts
  3. Future focus and planning
  4. Job security
  5. Recognition of our varying ability to produce research outputs and how this impacts our internal recognition processes
  6. Expectations of the teaching and learning environment going forward, eg online vs face to face or a “hybrid model” and how that impacts workload.


As the VC mentioned in her address last week it is still too early to provide answers to all questions, however she has gone through the findings of the Pulse Survey and is working with the SLT in a focused way.

A Post Covid-19 Core Group has been created with the purpose to create a vision and plan to respond to the rapidly changing and uncertain post COVID-19 world. The group will have four key pillars: finance; strategy; the academic delivery model; and general operations. They are currently working to fully analyse the impact on UC and are looking at response options. The SLT and Council workshops, to discuss some of those options, will be completed by the end of next week.

Key indicators such as student numbers and potential financial implications are still only emerging, and change from week to week. These will be shared once there is more stability and certainty in the reporting.

Job losses will be our absolute last resort, and the SLT are looking at all other options before that, on both the revenue and cost sides. Our VC spoke about some new revenue ideas last week (FutureU and the new Fast track pathway in Engineering)

Academic concerns have been heard and these will be raised with the Academic Board such as the academic promotions criteria being able to reflect a hybrid model teaching and learning environment. The research inequity concerns raised by staff due to the current situation will also be examined and worked through.

The teaching mix under the hybrid model will require further analysis and assessment to ensure workloads are manageable and equitable.

The Answers to staff questions from the VC address last week is a helpful resource in providing further clarity.

Covid-19 has not caused us to deviate from the strategic plan agreed to at the end of 2019. This is important for us to understand as we look for something to align to which gives a sense of purpose and meaning to our work.

Ngā mihi

Rachel Dillon

Organisational Development Consultant

MASSAGE THERAPY is back at the Rec Centre: OPEN 26th May

Haumanu Mirimiri | Massage Therapy


We have all been through so much over the last few weeks in such a fractured time. Why not take some time out whilst your on campus to treat yourself to a massage that can help de-stress those achy muscles from weeks of working at the desk. Our therapists are here to care for you and help support your wellbeing.

We have made a few changes to how we operate but still offer a great service and will open up part time initially. 

OPENING Tuesday 26th of May

With the current status of COVID-19 and Alert level 2 in New Zealand, we have been recommended by Massage New Zealand (MNZ) to follow the health professionals guidelines from the ministry of health and can open.

Procedures Alert level 2:

  • Only 45 min and 60 minute appointments are available
  • We need to work in with block bookings for opening hours of the Rec Centre and cleaning schedules
  • Please bring your own WATER
  • Sign in at Reception and wait in the allied health waiting area for your appointment
  • 1 metre distancing from all people in the circulation space and in the waiting area
  • We have 1 use-masks available if you want to use them during your massage
  • Therapists are to use masks at their discretion
  • If you show any signs of being UNWELL you MUST rebook or cancel your massage and/or, the therapist has right of refusal to treat should you show signs of being unwell
  • Please sanitize your hands before and after your appointment
  • There is 30 minutes in between appointments to allow for cleaning and sanitizing of the massage room

We look forward to seeing you

BOOK HERE: https://www.canterbury.ac.nz/ucreccentre/massage/

Important changes to Remote Access via go.canterbury.ac.nz

From 27th May, IT Services will be making some changes to Remote Access via go.canterbury.ac.nz which will  improve the user experience when working remotely.

There will be an enhanced layout and readability for users, with Help information linking to video tutorials on the ITS website      

Key improvements for Remote Desktop to Windows:

  • supports connection from Macs (Remote Desktop application must be installed).
  • now has an alternative option for connecting using multiple screens
  • auto-populates the username field
  • does not require installing a client application
  • does not require admin rights when connecting from PCs
  • has less pop up screens requiring input

To ensure a smooth transition, the old method of connecting to Windows computers will be available temporarily under a “Legacy options” heading.

These changes do not affect those connecting via Microsoft Direct Access from UC-issued computers.

Te Waka Pākākano – new name for Office of the AVC Māori, Pacific & Equity

We are pleased to announce the name of the Māori, Pacific and Equity portfolio, led by Dr Darryn Russell.  Formerly known as the Office of the AVC Māori it now includes a focus on Māori, peoples of the Pacific and equity, diversity and inclusiveness.

The new names for the unit, and for the AVC position are:

Te Waka Pākākano | Office of the Assistant Vice-Chancellor Māori, Pacific and Equity

Te Amokapua Pākākano | Assistant Vice-Chancellor Māori, Pacific and Equity

The narrative of the names is important.  Te Waka Pākākano is a seed carrying vessel; this reference is taken from a Ngāi Tahu ngeri, a chant for launching a waka or canoe, Terea te Waka, that tells of the voyage of the waka Uruao from its ancestral homelands to Te Waipounamu.  It refers to the dispersal of peoples through the Pacific, and by extension to all those who have come to make their home here in Te Waipounamu.

It also references the whakataukī: “E kore au e ngaro, he kākano i ruia mai i Rangi-ātea”; I will never disappear, a seed dispersed from Rangi-ātea, which honours the diverse origins of the members of the UC community, and our resilience to thrive.

The title for the role of AVC Māori, Pacific and Equity, Te Amokapua Pākākano, is based on the name of the unit.  At UC the term ‘amokapua’ is given to those leaders with the title Assistant Vice-Chancellor.

Keeping UC staff informed