Trade Unions at the University of Glasgow

The University of Glasgow recognises four Trade Unions for consultation and negotiation purposes. Each represents a different group of staff but employees who wish to join a Trade Union may join any that they wish.

We value the role that the Union representatives play within the University and the support that they provide to their members. Nominated representatives will be provided with reasonable paid time off to attend Union accreditation training sessions, as well as to fulfil their duties as representatives.

Learn more about each of the Unions:

Union Recognition and Coverage


Recognition by Job Family as per the Recognition Agreement*

University and College Union (UCU)

Research and Teaching
Management Professional and Administration
(Grades 6 – 9)


Management Professional and Administration
(Grades 2 – 7)


Technical and Specialist



*In 2017 the University agreed some changes to the Job Family structure by extending the Technical and Specialist (formally Technical and Related) to include Grades 8 & 9. Based on the Agreement such roles would naturally fall in to the UCU coverage as they would previously have been either R&T or MPA.

As indicated in the introduction, employees who wish to join a Trade Union may join any that they wish irrespective of their job family or grade and have them represent/support them on an individual basis. 

The University has a formal Recognition Agreement signed by all of the Trade Unions above. This sets out the formal arrangements for collective consultation and negotiation and the staff groups each Union has such formal collective rights for. During Collective consultation the unions represent all employees that fall within the Recognition Agreement whether they are members or not of that union.

The Agreement also includes details of the time off granted to the elected Union Officers, also known as Facilities Time. Finally it includes the terms of reference for the Joint Committee of Consultation and Negotiation which includes representatives from each of the Trade Unions along with Senior Managers on behalf of the University. This is a 'single table' arrangement so all topics are discussed with all the Unions in this forum.

If there are topics for consultation which only impact some groups of staff these may be discussed in ad-hoc sub-groups of the JCCN with a summary report being presented to all members at the next full meeting. The minutes of the JCCN are shared with the HR Committee which is a sub-committee of the University Court.

Partnership Working

The University is keen to promote a culture of partnership working with the recognised Trade Unions. Managers and HR have regular formal and informal contact with Union Representatives and we value the contribution the Reps make to the University community, both in support of individual members and when involved in collective consultation or negotiation.

The University is committed to working positively with the Trade Unions and promoting a culture of open, honest dialogue and joint working. Where differences or disputes arise we will work hard to explore the issues and seek resolution through the sharing of ideas and views and strive to engage positively, utilising the formal agreed mechanisms.

Regular Consultation/ Engagement Meetings

There are three key meetings where the University work closely with the recognised Unions. They are:

Meeting Frequency
JCCN (Joint Committee of Consultation
& Negotiation)
 One per semester
CCF (Collective Consultation Forum)  Quarterly
PRG (Policy Review Group)  Monthly, excluding summer

The JCCN is the main consultation forum where Senior Managers meet with representatives of the four recognised Trade Unions. The agenda is agreed jointly between HR and the Unions with topics including strategic updates on key issues affecting the University and its staff.

Where there is a need for consultation on individual matters such as organisational changes, meetings are typically arranged locally between relevant managers and Union representatives chaired by either the Head of HR or Deputy Director of HR. A summary report is then presented to the JCCN. 

The CCF is the meeting in which the University shares information with the Trade Unions regarding any potential redundancies arising from the ending of external funding or the end of fixed term contracts associated with short-term projects and/or funding. The data is presented in summary form with all personal details removed and, as well as looking forwards, also includes information regarding the outcome for those staff previously identified as at risk in previous quarters.

The PRG meets most months and provides an opportunity for members of the HR Team to meet with Union representatives and discuss policy reviews and proposals for any significant changes to policies and procedures. Whilst the majority of such policies are not contractual, and hence are not subject to formal collective agreements with the Unions, this consultation is critical to the successful development and implementation of management policies such as Managing Attendance and Performance Development and Review (PDR).  

The annual pay negotiations are carried out at a national level with UCEA representing the member Universities including the University of Glasgow.  Each of the recognised Trade Unions participate in this national bargaining process via the New Joint Negotiating Committee for Higher Education Staff (New JNCHES) that is the central committee for multi-employer negotiations and dialogue on pay and pay-related issues.

Facility Time Reporting