Skip to main content

Staff record 2017/18 - Coverage of the record

Back to C17025

Version 1.1 Produced 2017-10-23

Contents: General definition | Exclusions to the coverage | Atypical staff | Academic staff | Non-academic staff

General definition

Inclusion of an individual in the Staff record will depend on the existence of one or more contracts of employment between the higher education provider (HEP) and the individual and/or the liability of the HEP to pay Class 1 National Insurance contributions for that individual (see the HM Revenue and Customs website for further guidance). An individual's employment with a HEP will be governed by one or more legally binding contracts, with the details of each contract recorded on the Staff record in the Contract entity. A member of staff may be employed under a single contract of employment or a number of separate contracts: this will depend on the HEP's employment practices.

Staff with honorary contracts should only be returned if the honorary contract is deemed to be a contract of employment.

Staff record data is collected in respect of those staff employed in the UK. Staff employed wholly overseas, for example those working at overseas campuses, must not be included in the record. Where a staff member spends part of their time in the UK and the remainder overseas the record returned should reflect only the time spent in the UK. The FTE should not be reduced to reflect time spent abroad as part of their normal UK based employment; for example, staff undertaking research overseas but where the focus of the research remains in the UK department.

The range of data that is required about an individual and the contract(s) that they hold will depend on the nature of those contracts and also the classification of the activities for which the contract exists.

Members of a HE providers' governing body are eligible for the 2017/18 Staff return.

The reporting period is from 01 August in year 1, to 31 July in year 2.

Exclusions to the coverage

The following types of staff should be excluded from the Staff record because they do not meet the coverage criteria (they do not have a contract of employment with the HEP, nor is the HEP liable to pay Class 1 National Insurance):

  • Agency staff.
  • Self-employed staff.
  • Honorary contracts where the contract is not deemed to be a contract of employment.
  • Staff employed not by the HEP, but by a company consolidated into the HEP's accounts.
  • Staff working for a provider through an intermediary, such as a personal service company, where the provider will be liable for secondary Class 1 National Insurance contributions.

In addition, non-academic atypical staff are excluded from the coverage of the record, therefore all contracts that have Contract.TERMS 3 'Atypical' and either Activity.ACTSOC is in SOC2010 Major Groups 4-9 or Contract.ACEMPFUN 4 'Not an academic contract' must not be returned.

If the organisation consolidated into the HEP's accounts is considered to be a campus of the HEP where the primary purpose of the organisation is the delivery of HE or FE, the campus previously existed in its own right, and the organisation is now part of the HEP as a result of a merger or takeover, then if the contract of employment is with the organisation and/or the organisation has liability to pay Class 1 National Insurance contributions, the staff of that organisation should be included in the Staff record as if they are employed by the HEP and are therefore outside the list of exclusions.

Atypical staff

Atypical staff are defined as individuals with contracts of employment and/or for whom the HEP is liable to pay Class 1 National Insurance contributions, and whose relationship with the HEP during the reporting period would meet the following definition:

'Atypical' should include staff whose working arrangements are not permanent, involve complex employment relationships and/or involve work away from the supervision of the normal work provider. These may be characterised by a high degree of flexibility for both the work provider and the working person, and may involve a triangular relationship that includes an agent (source: DTI Discussion Document on Employment Status, July 2003, paragraph 23).

In addition to this definition from the DTI, some HE specific guidance has been devised by HESA in consultation with HEPs. Atypical contracts meet one or more of the following conditions:

  • Are for less than four consecutive weeks - meaning that no statement of terms and conditions needs to be issued.
  • Are for one-off/short-term tasks - for example answering phones during clearing, staging an exhibition, organising a conference. There is no mutual obligation between the work provider and working person beyond the given period of work or project. In some cases individuals will be paid a fixed fee for the piece of work unrelated to hours/time spent.
  • Involve work away from the supervision of the normal work provider - but not as part of teaching company schemes or for teaching and research supervision associated with the provision of distance learning education.
  • Involve a high degree of flexibility often in a contract to work as-and-when required - for example conference catering, student ambassadors, student demonstrators.

Academic staff

Academic staff are defined as staff at least one of whose contracts of employment relate to an academic function and whose contract activity can be categorised as 'Managers, directors and senior officials', 'Professional occupations' or 'Associate professional and technical occupations' as defined by the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) major groups 1, 2 or 3. This may therefore include vice-chancellors and other senior academic managers, medical practitioners, dentists, veterinarians and other health care professionals whose contract of employment includes an academic function.

The academic function may be teaching, research, teaching and research or neither teaching nor research (where an academic professional that has taken up a senior administrative responsibility but there is no change to the academic function in their contract of employment). The full SOC2010 listing (.xls), indicating the major, sub-major, and minor groups can be downloaded from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) website.

Non-academic staff

Non-academic staff are defined as staff whose contract of employment does not relate to an academic function, irrespective of the categorisation of their contract activity. This may therefore include managers, non-academic professionals, student welfare workers, secretaries, caretakers and cleaners, or any other staff whose contract of employment does not include an academic function.

The range of data that is required about an individual and the contract(s) that they hold will depend on the nature of those contracts and also the classification of the activities for which the contract exists.

For those individuals whose relationship with the HEP, for one or more of the contracts held during the reporting year, cannot be defined as 'atypical' there is a requirement to return data relating mainly to salary information as well as start and end dates of contracts and employment.

When individuals have contracts to undertake activities classified in SOC2010 Major groups 1-3 there is a requirement for additional data relating to qualifications, previous employment and leaving information. This information is required as many in this area are likely to have careers within the higher education sector that involve moving between HEPs (e.g. in planning, libraries and registries). There is also a requirement to track the use of staff identifiers for this group when staff move between HEPs.

For the subset of those with activities classified in SOC2010 Major groups 1-3 who are defined as academic, additional data relating to subject and teaching qualifications are required.

For those academics identified in the record as 'Clinical' then further additional data relating to their clinical status and specialism are also needed.

The improved Data items page now allows providers to filter different staff groups to obtain the fields required.

Need help?

Contact Liaison by email or on +44 (0)1242 388 531.