Probation information for managers

Probation refers to the period of time when a new member of staff first joins the University. Within this period of time it is important to ensure the individual receives support and guidance whilst they are developing in their new role. 

Any problems should be highlighted and addressed at an early stage so that support can be given.  Probation is a two-way process and the individual must take ownership of their own development.

Academic and Research staff employed on permanent contracts are required to undertake Pathway to Permanency, which is a structured, longer-term process, and they will not have a separate probation process. Please see the Academic Permanency and Promotion page for more detail on this process. 

Probation period length

  • Permanent professional staff: 12 months for grade 7-11, 6 months for grade 1-6.
  • Fixed-term professional staff: half the duration of the contract with a maximum of 6 months. One month for 3-6 month contracts. No probation for one month contracts.
  • Permanent academic and research staff at or below grade 9 and some grade 10: three year Pathway to Permenancy.
  • Fixed-term academic and research staff: three months for a 12 month contract or six months for a contract greater than 12 months.
  • Professors, readers, senior lecturers and senior research fellows: not subject to a probation period unless otherwise stated.

Manager's responsibilities

  • Make sure you are aware of the Probation Policy and what is required in terms of documentation at different points.
  • Support and guide the probationer through the process.
  • Arrange for the probationer to complete a comprehensive induction on joining the University.
  • Review all of the relevant paperwork which needs to be completed for a successful probation – this is particularly important for those on an academic probation.
  • Regularly review how the probationer is progressing.
  • Formally review at mid-point and towards the end of the probation period progress against targets.
  • Flag to People and Culture as early as possible if there are any concerns.

Professional Services Probation guidance

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Organisational Development
Telephone: 01206 874402