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Support Services Review Project Update - Issue 2

Sent 3 December 2018

Welcome to the second Support Services Review project update – the aim is to provide updates and information about the project as it progresses over the coming months. The website will also be updated regularly – this is where you will find the SSR consultation outcomes and the business plan:

This week there is another vacancy being advertised, as below. The newsletter also includes details on the dates finalised for voluntary redundancy information sessions in Christchurch and Wellington, and for an additional session planned for Dunedin.

We encourage staff to continue to send through any questions or comments for this newsletter or the website using the ‘Have your say’ form.


The first tranche of recruitment will result in appointments at Director and Manager level, and we anticipate that most of this will be completed before the end of 2017.

For full vacancy listings please be sure to check the Current Vacancies section on the HR web site.

Project Activity


A number of activities have commenced to ensure that the essential elements are in place to support the new service delivery model proposed in the SSR business case. These activities cover a number of areas including Finance (e.g. planning for the establishment of new ‘Charts of Accounts’), HR (e.g. planning for the setup of new organisational structures) and Property Services (e.g. space planning). Over the coming weeks the project team will start contacting a number of other areas to collect further information and discuss details pertaining to transitional activities. We appreciate your help with this as your contributions will produce the best outcomes for the University.


The Project Team has started the first stages of implementation for the AskOtago Contact Centre. This involves the consolidation of the various information sources into a single knowledgebase, which will act as the central repository for all University information. This knowledgebase will underpin the online self-service option for staff, students and visitors. The project team has already started work with several areas of the University to bring information into the knowledgebase and this work will broaden to other areas over the coming weeks and months. The system that is currently performing well in the University Information Centre (Oracle Service Cloud) has been selected as an interim solution to manage this knowledgebase. A decision on a long term solution for managing the knowledgebase will be made as the outcomes of other projects (such as the CRM project) become clearer.

St David 2

Work is about to start on redevelopment of the St David 2 building on campus, which is where the University shared services centre will be located. It is expected to open in mid-2018, to coincide with the launch of the shared service.

The four-level St David 2 building, located on a long, narrow site behind the Centre for Innovation on St David Street, originally housed the University of Otago Language Centre and Foundation Year before it relocated to the University Plaza Building in 2012. It is currently unoccupied after the interior of the structure was gutted and seismically strengthened in 2015 to meet new building standards. The redevelopment will include a new front entrance and reception, and will be fitted out to accommodate Shared Services staff and a small number of staff from other Divisions in instances where colocation will have significant benefits.

Voluntary redundancy information sessions

Voluntary redundancy information sessions are being offered to staff, with representatives from the University, MSD and IRD on hand to supply personalised advice. Sessions are coming up across the Dunedin, Christchurch and Wellington campuses:

  • Dunedin: 8 November 2017
  • Christchurch: 10 November 2017
  • Wellington: 9 November 2017

View more information and register online for voluntary redundancy information sessions

Any questions about this please contact Carolyn King, Change Manager on 021 278 3034 or by email

Working during periods of change – flexibility and adaptable thinking

Jane Davis will present another session for staff on Tuesday 7 November 2017 in the Common Room at Arana College. This programme provides the opportunity to learn about and apply practical tools to sustain yourself during periods of change.

We welcome your feedback on the project implementation as it progresses. Contact us to discuss, or let us know if you need more information at

From the Support Services Review Project Team