Reflect, Plan, Develop


The University recognises that its staff are a valuable resource. To motivate, develop and retain staff, the University acknowledges the importance of building a strong learning culture, within which members of staff are actively supported to maximise their potential, not only in the role they currently hold, but also for longer-term career and personal development.

It is the responsibility of us all,  reviewees, reviewers, managers and Heads of School/ Department, to identify learning and development needs and priorities and the appraisal (RPD) provides a framework to facilitate this. Appraisal (RPD) is a mandatory process and each staff member must have at least one development discussion (RPD) in a 12 month cycle (identified as Sept – Sept , unless exempt).  

A Personal Development Plan (PDP) template is provided as part of the RPD Form as guidance and offers a structured framework to help when thinking about development.

Reviewees and reviewers, are encouraged to consider career advancement and personal development and where appropriate, to plan for the next three to five years. For academic staff, this can inform decisions about applying for promotion, while for staff in professional, managerial, support and research roles it can help to prepare for involvement in project work, acting-up or delegated responsibilities in certain situations or for future roles through identifying targeted development. This not only supports on-going development aspirations, but also contributes to development within current roles.

For 2018/19 the RPD year will run 17 Sept 2018 – 15 Sept 2019

The University offers a wide range of development opportunities, both formal (such as leadership programmes and apprenticeships) and informal (such as secondments, shadowing). This section of the RPD framework provides guidance on preparing to discuss development and the following questions may be useful as a starting point:


  • What development has been completed during the last 12 months, or is currently underway?
  • What learning needs have become apparent within the last 12 months?
  • What personal or professional development do you need to undertake in order to progress/develop in their role/career over the next 12 months and beyond?

Information about specific opportunities can be accessed via the Learning and Organisational Development website.


The following resources may be helpful when collating information to answer the above questions and facilitate the ‘develop’ part of the conversation with your reviewer. However, this list is not exhaustive and there may be additional career-specific guidance available:



Internal links


External links


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Last Updated: 23/10/2018