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Data Futures programme update September 2021

April 2022: link to coding manual updated to 22056 coding manual, as URL structure was updated following this announcement

We emailed the following Data Futures programme update on 9 September to all Accountable Officers / Heads of provider. If you have any feedback or queries, please contact [email protected].  

We are writing to provide an update on the Data Futures programme, as it is now entering a more critical phase of its development. 

In just over a year from now providers will need to start collecting data using the Data Futures data model for submission to the HESA Data Platform (HDP). We therefore wanted to take this opportunity to provide you with a high-level summary of the Data Futures programme and highlight the need for providers to evaluate and plan system upgrades and resourcing for the transition from current student collections to the Student-Data Futures collection. 

Implementation key dates: provider readiness

  • The Student-Data Futures coding manual was published in March 2020 and updated for Alpha in February 2021: 
    • We have provided regular updates on coding manual and e-learning releases to operational contacts.
    • A specific coding manual for Beta will be released shortly, with a Transition coding manual to follow in early 2022, building upon the March 2020 release.
  • The 2022/23 collection will be an annual collection using the Student-Data Futures data model from 1 August 2022.
  • The HDP will be available to all providers to submit data from early 2023. Sign off for the 2022/23 collection will take place from September 2023.

We are working on the approach for in-year data collection for the 2023/24 collection. In England, this is dependent on the burden review consultations expected later this year, and we continue to work with funders in the Devolved Administrations on their requirements for in-year data. 

The annual collection for 2022/23 enables a phased implementation of the new platform and data model prior to in-year collection, reducing risk for the programme and providers. 

Alpha phase: progress

We are nearing completion of the Alpha phase with positive feedback from participants to date. The August Alpha progress report is now available. 
Data Futures Alpha progress report: August 2021

We continue to share information with sector groups including software suppliers and in-house providers on a regular basis. 

Beta phase: considerations

We will be providing more detailed information on the Beta phase to operational contacts later this year. We would encourage all providers to participate, as a core expectation of Beta is the submission of real data, to replicate real-world testing. This activity will support provider readiness ahead of go-live and ensure the system is robust.

To participate in Beta testing, student record systems or software solutions must be available to process Student-Data Futures data model requirements from February to August 2022. 


The Data Futures Programme Board

Paul Butler, Director of Information and Library Services, University of Greenwich, nominated member for UCISA

Paul Clark (Chair), Senior Responsible Owner, HESA

Trevor Cooper, Director of Higher Education, Department for the Economy NI

Karen Foster, Executive Director Data, Jisc

Bethan Owen, Deputy Chief Executive, HEFCW

Rob Phillpotts, Managing Director of HESA Statutory Services, HESA

Kevin Pickess, Academic Registrar, University of Worcester, nominated member for ARC

Richard Puttock, Director of Data, Foresight and Analysis, OfS

Wesley Rennison, Director of Planning at University of Dundee and Chair of HESPA, nominated member for HESPA

Phil Richards, Chief Technology Officer, Jisc

Martin Boyle, Director – Policy, Insight & Analytics, Scottish Funding Council

Kyle Summers, Chief Technology Officer, HESA

Annette Vancil, Data Futures Programme Director, HESA

Michael Weatherup, HE Policy, Department for the Economy NI

Mark Wilson, Head of Finance, HESA

Visit the Data Futures programme pages


Press Officer