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Varying employment contracts in HE: A masterclass for HR professionals

10:00AM, 28 March 2018
Central London

  1. Programme
  2. Booking

This masterclass covers key issues and actions for employers regarding the variation of employment contracts in higher education – whether via collective negotiation or individually. 

The masterclass will take the legal input on varying employment contracts from the previous well-received Managing Organisational Change events in the 2016/17 academic year and expand upon it. There will be opportunity for discussion and debate around a range of contract change ‘scenarios’ to enhance participants’ understanding of the issues that need to be considered, the range of options for achieving contractual change, how to achieve agreement and mitigating risks. The legal input will be supplemented and brought to life by a case study, reflecting on an institution’s steps/efforts/actions/moves to achieve contractual change. 

Participants at this masterclass will understand:

  • the importance of planning and anticipating challenges before commencing the process 
  • the different options that exist for achieving a variation to contractual terms 
  • when agreement is needed and how this can be achieved
  • the legal risks that will apply and how these can be mitigated. 

The masterclass will take a step by step approach with ample opportunity to ask questions. On the day participants will work through examples and scenarios to help attendees understand the practical steps that need to be taken from an HR perspective.


The masterclass will be facilitated by Diane Gilhooley, Head of Eversheds Sutherland’s UK and International Education Practice and David O’Hara, Principal Associate at Eversheds Sutherland, who are experienced in advising higher education institutions on their legal obligations in a variation of contract situation, assessing the options which may be available and providing guidance on the best approach to take to introduce changes. 

There will be an HEI case study from Durham University which will share the institution’s experience of introducing contractual change, reflecting on the approaches taken, the outcomes and learning with colleagues. 

A timed programme can be found below

Varying employment contracts - programme

Prices and booking processes:

Delegates from UCEA member HEIs

£335 per place

If you work at a UCEA member institution book places via the online booking form

Delegates from other HEIs and HE sector agencies

£435 per place

If you work for an HEI not in UCEA membership or another HE sector agency please email for more details.