“This is a very happy day”, “This is a new beginning”. These words are proclaimed proudly within a group of friends wearing the new brown and green uniform of grounds and gardening. Around them, new colleagues happily swap cakes and line up to have their photographs taken with Vice-Chancellor Dr Max Price.
“We are impressed and proud of what has been achieved in such a short space of time,” said Price at the official welcome of the insourced staff from the cleaning, grounds and gardening, security and transport services, as well as some catering staff*.
The nearly 1 000 new staff represent a 25% increase in university personnel, explained Price, a mammoth task for the human resources, properties and services and finance departments. Equipment, supplies and uniforms needed to be purchased and new systems needed to be implemented.
It was no mean feat, added Price, especially when time constraints and severance negotiations with existing contractors were thrown into the mix. Many heads nodded in Price's direction while he explained what it had taken to reach this milestone.
He commended all on the many crucial roles they play in maintaining and caring for the university.
“Many of you know how the university works better than I know,” said Price. “Many of you have been here longer than I have been here.”
Price went on to underscore the value that these staff members provide in being the eyes and ears of the campus and in being the friendly and helpful face of the institution.
“There will still be some teething problems,” he said, emphasising that those staff who have yet to receive their new uniforms should not worry.
The massive insourcing has been part of a programme of accelerated transformation on campus.
“I hope we are going to have just a wonderful spirit … to create an inclusive campus and of course that means inclusive of all of the people who work here,” Price added. “Welcome to UCT.”
* Staff from C3 Food Services will be insourced when their contract ends in 2019, unless an earlier date is agreed between the parties.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Please view the republishing articles page for more information.