Staff Hub

Find out about our people strategy – our vision to improve the staff experience at Sussex.


The aim of this strategy is to create an open, transparent, inclusive, and vibrant culture, where we welcome challenge.


Not only will we support and develop people to be the best version of themselves. We want to be renowned in the sector as a champion of best practice in inclusivity and diversity, leading to improved engagement and morale.

Having a clear People Strategy allows not only the HR Division, but the whole University to be clear on the priority areas of improvement for our people. In developing this strategy, we have not only considered feedback from the regular staff surveys, but also considered the wider University Strategy and Inclusive Sussex 2025 and what needs to be actioned and achieved in order to deliver on those strategies, through our people. The aim of the People Strategy is to improve the staff experience which will ultimately impact positively on the student experience and lead to improved NSS scores and assist with recruitment levels in the future.


This strategy will be implemented via work undertaken to accomplish its four main aims. There are also success measures in place to qualify how these aims are achieved. Importantly, the strategy supports the Sussex 2025 vision; making a better University for a better worldIt’s underpinned byremains true to, and aligns with, our five core values. 

The strategy focuses on getting our processes not only right, but also effective so that our people are treated with the appropriate level of concern and confidentiality. We want to develop trust with our people by offering them more efficient processes, with managers and leaders that are trained and competent in using those processes and procedures, to ensure integrity. 

It impresses the importance of getting the basics right, focusing on EDI and wellbeing issues and harnessing our talent we will be showing kindness to our people and valuing the work they do, whilst also encouraging them to be kind to the people they come into contact every day.  

Our commitment to valuing and celebrating diversity is evident in the work and the objectives the EDI team have been doing and continue to challenge themselves and the rest of the institution to get better at doing. We believe the combination of the People Strategy and the revised Inclusive Sussex shows our commitment to highlight injustices and inequalities and work towards a truly inclusive place for everyone to work and study. 

The People Strategy cannot be achieved without the collaboration and commitment of others across the University, we have to work with others and we will use the people strategy as a tool to bring stakeholder groups together and resolve differences wherever we can.  

We acknowledge that the People Strategy is ambitious, there is a lot of work to do and a lot of improvements to makeBut we have challenged ourselves in order to improve the experience of working at Sussex for everyone. It is going to be a lot of hard work and dedication to change and improve systems and processes and we believe the strategy does show not only ambition, but also courage. 

Main aims

Select each of the below to explore our main aims:

People strategy success measures

Find out how we will measure success.

Getting the basics right

  • To introduce efficient, automated processes to maximise the ability of leaders and staff to make data-based decisions, driving workforce planning by end 2027.
  • To have a fully functional e-recruitment system in place by end 2023.
  • To have a systematic review of policies relating to people/HR in place with full Equality Impact Assessments completed and reviewed by end 2023.

Improving Inclusivity

  • The KPI of “proud to be working at Sussex” will be improved year on year reaching a target of being above comparator average by 2025.
  • To make reductions in the gender pay gap annually and have an equitable transparent pay framework by 2024, in line with the Inclusive Sussex Strategy.
  • To Improve representation at senior level with regard to gender, ethnicity and disabled staff by 2025. Explicit targets to be modelled and added here by end 21/22.
  • We will engage with our stakeholders to understand what they value and measure our success in delivering what is valued.

Harnessing talent

  • To have a Total Reward Strategy written and agreed, for all staff to be aware of and understand by the end of 2023.
  • To have a well-established and valued programme of ongoing leadership development and personal development for all, by 2025.
  • To ensure a process of annual review (currently known as appraisal) accessible for 100% of staff and a success rate of 95%, with an average value rating of 80% in all areas by end of 2023.

Increasing engagement and wellbeing

  • To have a wellbeing strategy in place with a process setting and monitoring actions to ensure ongoing improvements, by 2025, aligned with the Inclusive Sussex Strategy.
  • To ensure that wellbeing is seen as a priority area and that links are made to all people processes, such as annual reviews, interactions with staff and management awareness.
  • We will embrace the hybridisation of working practices and leverage this to enhance wellbeing.

Next steps

We will be providing updates as the strategy is implemented and continue to help you understand the actions and benefits relating to the programme.

In the meantime, read the full strategy document [PDF 314.97KB]. 

See more from Our strategy