The independent higher education sector is an exciting and dynamic space in which to work, with an entrepreneurial streak driving real innovations in how the business of learning is done. Career progression can be rapid, with talented individuals benefitting from a collaborative and hands-on approach which gives them the opportunity to learn widely across varied roles.

It is also a sector comprising predominantly SMEs, with a lean workforce helping to keep overheads low and institutions nimble. Departments and teams are often smaller than you would find in a traditional university, and independent providers cannot always compete on salary with much larger institutions when recruiting for some professionals in high demand.

Finding the right talent for those roles critical to helping an institution pursue its mission in the changing UK HE landscape has never been more important, so IHE will be making the recruitment, retention and professional development of staff one of its strategic priorities, and we will engage members and partners in the task of transforming our offer in this area.

We will:

work to improve the pipeline of talent into the sector, by

  • promoting awareness of the roles, careers and benefits available in IHE members
  • attracting more qualified staff into the sector through a jobs board and public events
  • expanding our training offer to better support entry-level and graduate career paths

support the professional development of IHE leaders and certain specialist roles, by

  • identifying roles in high demand and those with the most urgent training needs
  • working with members and partners to develop structured training programmes
  • improving, expanding and delivering new training as capacity and demand allows

empower staff to take leadership, governance and community roles within IHE, by

  • enhancing the support, induction and training we offer to staff taking on such roles
  • working with partners to expand the opportunities to represent IHE externally
  • exploring a framework for recognising the CPD hours of representing IHE

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