La Trobe University Change Proposal

La Trobe University has today started an organisation-wide consultation to shape the University for the future. The change proposal has been developed to ensure La Trobe is in a strong position for future growth.

It will secure our financial position in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to have major implications for the finances and operations of all universities across Australia.

The proposal strongly reinforces our commitment to our regional campuses as well as to our students and partners in Melbourne and overseas.

If implemented, the Proposal will strengthen the University’s ability to collaborate and engage with industry and will expand work integrated learning opportunities for our students, demonstrating our focus in this important area.

The Jobs Protection Framework, voted on by staff and implemented in July 2020, and which terminated at the end of June 2021, provided time for the University to plan strategically for our future. The change proposal is the outcome of that planning and is informed by extensive reviews of supporting strategies, staff surveys, School business plans, and operating and service delivery models.

The change proposal includes significant changes to the way we are structured. This will result in both new opportunities and redundancies. The current modelling estimates a loss of around 200 FTE positions (full time – financial equivalent) – less than previously forecast and communicated with staff.

Around 300 proposed new roles addressing workforce need, aligned with the University’s strategic goals, will offer opportunities for some staff displaced in the new structure. Around a third of those roles (about 100) are location-independent positions, designed to maximise opportunities to staff across all of our campuses. It is not currently possible to confirm exactly how many staff will be made redundant.

The proposal is part of La Trobe’s Transformation Program which supports the University’s Strategic Plan 2020-2030, developed last year to help the University emerge from COVID-19 as a more resilient, future-focused and efficient institution.

The Transformation Program also builds on work that was underway prior to the pandemic to offer greater subject choice and flexible modes of learning to our students and to make changes to the way we work.

The majority of courses and subjects are not affected by the change proposal; we will continue to provide most of our highly sought-after programs across all disciplines and across our regional campuses.  The proposed changes will offer greater breadth and depth of subject and elective offerings in some areas; the online offer will significantly increase majors and subjects for regional students, and some new staff appointments in specialist areas will also increase choice for our students.

We recognise that the proposed scope of this change will be a challenging time for our staff and we are providing a wide range of support during this time.

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