Why weren’t we told The Terrace would be closed on decision day?

QUESTION:

Why is the university so appallingly awful when it comes to communicating with staff?

On the day the official announcement about the closure of Stafford campus came out, staff and students going to the main canteen found it locked with a notice stating that it was closed due to unforeseen circumstances and directing everyone to the upstairs snack bar.

The immediate conclusion was that the university had already begun to close facilities at Stafford Campus. In fact, the closure was due to a gas problem but since there was no information, people opted for the most logical alternative explanation. Why not put up a notice saying due to equipment failure? Why not give an indication of when the canteen would be likely to reopen? Better still, why not email everyone on Stafford campus to inform them and prevent unnecessary trips across to the closed canteen?

This is a small example but it illustrates the communication gap.

 

ANSWER:

Unfortunately the Catering Team have had technical difficulties in The Terrace since Wednesday PM. Aware that this would cause disruption to staff and students, they followed the usual communications process of sending an RSS message to all staff, and also put an announcement up on the University social media sites.

All staff emails have not been used for these kind of messages since the staff blogs were set up to be shared via RSS in 2010, as a result of the staff internal communications survey.

You can view the original post on the blog, which is available through all staff members email accounts.

2 thoughts on “Why weren’t we told The Terrace would be closed on decision day?

  1. Dear Executive,

    We see so often, complaints about poor communication with staff (see Ask Executive recently: “Why weren’t we told The Terrace would be closed on decision day?”). It has, for some years, been the processes that all staff should check RSS feeds for communications on a daily basis and I personally do not believe that the University is poor at communicating to staff.

    However, whilst looking at RSS feeds is not always possible due to workload and time restrictions, it is part of my daily workload as my department’s nominated RSS feed rep, to see if there is anything necessary my colleagues need to know via the feeds. If so, messages such as closure of the Terrace, are forwarded to all the staff in my department. It takes me no more than one minute to do this on a daily basis and as a consequence, colleagues are alerted to system downtimes, training course availability, catering deals and estates announcements, etc.

    I understand that each department used to have an RSS feed rep? Perhaps the University could highlight this tip for other departments, especially in light of recent announcements?

    RSS Rep

  2. Dear Executive,

    We see so often, complaints about poor communication with staff (see Ask Executive recently: “Why weren’t we told The Terrace would be closed on decision day?”). It has, for some years, been the processes that all staff should check RSS feeds for communications on a daily basis and I personally do not believe that the University is poor at communicating to staff.

    However, whilst looking at RSS feeds is not always possible due to workload and time restrictions, it is part of my daily workload as my department’s nominated RSS feed rep, to see if there is anything necessary my colleagues need to know via the feeds. If so, messages such as closure of the Terrace, are forwarded to all the staff in my department. It takes me no more than one minute to do this on a daily basis and as a consequence, colleagues are alerted to system downtimes, training course availability, catering deals and estates announcements, etc.

    I understand that each department used to have an RSS feed rep? Perhaps the University could highlight this tip for other departments, especially in light of recent announcements?

    Regards,

    RSS Rep

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