What’s best practice in student staff employment?

Friday 08-01-2016 - 14:24

A new guide sets out our understanding of best practice when employing student staff.

This guide has been built from conversations and case studies of students’ unions by the NUS HR Support Unit in the last couple of years. It is rooted in our national policy and collective beliefs, but I’ve made sure it is practical in its suggestions – considerate of how we might implement progressive structures within the context of students’ unions and the economy more generally.

I know our students’ unions have to make the numbers add up, but there are many opportunities in our employment practices to live our values wholeheartedly. If we believe students’ unions are here to benefit students and society – to make our world more democratic, more equal, more collectivist – then we must define success against our values, and be prepared to make ambitious decisions in their pursuit.

If we believe that working together, be that in a commercial, student support or campaigning capacity, is more powerful than going it alone we must encourage collective action where we can.

If we believe in responsible business, we must use our influence on our supply chains to encourage pro-social attitudes, sustainable behaviours and ethical practices.

If we believe in a certain standard of job, we must be trailblazers for its implementation; to show that it’s not just possible to make employment fair, but it’s the only way to - creating a happier, more effective staff team and a better society.

It is our responsibility, as well as our great opportunity, to shape students’ expectations of employment and how tomorrow’s employers will respect and take care of their staff. It is my pleasure to share this guide with you today.


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