Leadership reorganizations

Executive team restructuring

Administrative restructuring must include all aspects of administrative services on all of our campuses and research stations, including leadership positions in the President's Office. In the past couple of years, there were changes to the executive team, which included reducing the number of vice-presidents through the merger of University Relations and Advancement, and reducing the number of presidential direct reports through the merger of General Counsel and University Secretary into one role. As a result of those changes, the executive team has decreased in size by 22%, with a savings of 25%. These changes have resulted in reducing salary expenditures in the executive team by over $900,000 a year.

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Vice-president-level reorganization

To set the stage for further planning, senior leadership roles and responsibilities in the university's vice-presidential portfolios have changed to support continued restructuring of services and functions in alignment with the new operating model. This has resulted in an increase in functions and responsibilities for VPs and AVPs in central units.

The portfolios will have a clearer, expanded, and more consolidated set of responsibilities and functions, with a tighter focus on their areas of expertise; this will allow faculties to focus on their core mission of research and teaching. A number of difficult decisions have been made, with some units and activities being moved, consolidated, or redistributed within and across the portfolios.

This new structure reduces the number of direct reports to most senior leaders and streamlines to six to eight per senior leader. This results in a 33% reduction in the number of direct reports to the VPs, excluding deans.

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While the new organizational structure is effective immediately, changes will be implemented over time with completion by March 31, 2021.

VP University Services and Finance

To achieve the goals of the University of Alberta for Tomorrow initiative, our new model centralizes many services and administrative activities, processes, and functions that are common to faculties and units across the university.

The University Services and Finance portfolio will house many of the university's administrative departments, including:

  • Human Resources, Health, Safety and Environment (HRHSE)
  • Finance, Procurement and Planning (FPP)
  • Information Services and Technology (IST)
  • Shared Services
  • Performance, Analytics and Institutional Research (PAIR)
  • Internal Audit and Risk Management

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Associate vice-president structure

Within each vice-president portfolio, associate vice-presidents (AVPs) will lead the delivery of portfolio services, including Centres of Expertise and service partners.

Service partners are accountable to AVPs and indirectly to the college/faculty/unit in which they are embedded. Centres of Expertise (three to five within each central unit) oversee important strategic activities that require specialist expertise.

College, faculty, and unit structure

The new operating model aims to standardize administrative roles within each college and faculty. Each college will have a general manager (CGM) and most faculties will have a faculty general manager (FacGM). Smaller faculties may choose not to introduce this role. Note: some faculties already have an analogous position in place under a different title, and this position will simply take on the new title.

  • CGMs will report to the college dean to manage any administrative resources in the faculty and work collegially with a group of assigned, function-specific senior partners to provide operational leadership and administrative services to the college.
  • FacGMs will report to the faculty dean to manage any administrative resources in the faculty and work collegially with a group of assigned, function-specific partners to provide administrative services and to monitor the performance of the faculty.

CGMs/FacGMs will be the interface between partners (either senior partners or service partners) and the colleges/faculties/units. Service partners (and senior partners) will report directly to their central unit portfolio but will work with their FacGM (or CGM respectively).

The CGMs/FacGMs will manage administrative resources unique to the college/faculty or funded through restricted funds and directly appointed (e.g. medical secretaries, farm hands), as well as generalist faculty administrative resources such as executive assistants, teaching administrators, and department administrators in large departments. Central units will provide services such as research administration, HR, finance, IT, and external engagement. While central units, such as the Student Service Centre, will play a greater role providing student services, faculties will retain academic, program-specific, and regulated elements of student services provision.