Planning and Reporting Framework - Procedures

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Planning and Reporting Framework - Procedures

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Approval authority
Vice-Chancellor and President
Responsible officer
Vice-Chancellor and President
Designated officer
Chief Operating Officer
First approved
25 June 2013
Last amended
18 December 2015
Effective start date
25 June 2013
Review date
18 June 2018
Status
Active
Related documents
Planning and Reporting Framework - Governing Policy
Related legislation / standards
Financial and Performance Management Standard 2009 (Qld)
Financial Accountability Act 2009 (Qld)

1. General guidelines

The following procedures must be read in conjunction with the Planning and Reporting Framework – Governing Policy. The Planning and Reporting Framework is implemented through the annual planning process.

2. Planning process - overview

2.1 The Planning process is essentially an annual cycle of events that are undertaken to update University-level plans, translate those high-level plans into operational and action plans, and finally review, evaluate and report on the outcomes of those plans. Responsibility for the steps in the process lies with key responsible officers of the University.

2.2 While the process is designed to ensure that the University’s plans, and associated strategies and targets are regularly updated and responsible officers account for their performance against those plans, it is recognised that the steps and associated plans described in the process can be varied with the specific authorisation of senior officers of the University in response to changing circumstances and requirements, such as emerging opportunities and threats and changes in statutory requirements. However the underlying principle is that the University will develop plans and articulate associated strategies to deliver the objectives articulated in those plans and ultimately account for its performance against targets specified in the plans on a regular basis.

2.3 These principles are illustrated in the Planning and Reporting Framework diagram included in the Planning and Reporting Framework – Governing Policy and further detailed in Diagram 1 below - Planning and Reporting Matrix.

2.4 The University Strategic Plan and Top Level Plans outline our objectives for the next five years. They are monitored and rolled forward annually, and undergo major reviews before conclusion of the plan’s lifespan with new plans then developed for public release at the end of the cycle.

2.5 The performance measures contained in the Strategic Plan are monitored through:

(a)   the Corporate Performance Report, which is prepared for Council twice-yearly; and

(b)   the University’s Annual Report.

2.6 The performance measures contained in the Top Level Plans are monitored through:

(a)   the Top Level Plan Performance Reports, which are prepared for Council twice-yearly; and

(b)   the University’s Annual Report.

2.7 The University’s Operational Plan and Budget follow a three-year cycle and are updated and renewed each year for the next three-year period. Status and outcome reports are prepared quarterly to monitor implementation as follows:

(a)   April Reforecast – 31 March Status Report;

(b)   August Reforecast – 30 June Status Report;

(c)   October planning meeting – 30 September Status Report (as part of planning process for following year);

(d)   Year-End – brief summary of changes since October.

2.8 Cost centre action plans and budgets also follow a three-year cycle and are updated and renewed each year for the next three-year period.

Diagram 1 – Planning and Reporting Matrix

3. Strategic Plan

3.1 The Vice-Chancellor and President is responsible to Council for initiating development, implementation, monitoring and review of the Strategic Plan and is accountable to Council for achievement of the Plan.

3.2 The Strategic Plan:

(a)   will be developed through a consultative process involving key University bodies, relevant external stakeholder bodies (as determined by the Vice-Chancellor and President), and staff and students for example through their participation in any of the key University bodies;

(b)   will identify key goals and strategies for pursuit of the University’s Vision over a specific period, usually five years;

(c)   will identify through those goals and strategies the priorities for planning at all lower tiers;

(d)   may include statements of values, context and other matters that underpin or contribute to the plan; and

(e)   will be developed in the context of anticipated resources and used to inform University budgeting.

3.3 Following approval of the Strategic Plan, the Vice-Chancellor and President will ensure that the Plan is presented for discussion by all key University bodies with a view to informing and guiding subsequent planning and budget decisions.

3.4 Performance against the Strategic Plan will be reported to Council on a regular basis throughout each year. In addition the University’s Annual Report will include a report on performance against the Strategic Plan.

4. Top Level Plans

4.1 For each Top Level Plan, the Vice-Chancellor and President will nominate a responsible officer (sponsor) who will be allocated responsibility for initiating development, implementation, monitoring and review of the plan. The sponsor will be accountable to the Vice-Chancellor and President for those operational elements, while the Vice-Chancellor and President will be accountable to Council for achievement of the plan.

4.2 Top Level Plans:

(a)   will have University-wide application;

(b)   will be designed to elaborate on goals and strategies in the Strategic Plan in relation to a specified area of focus over a specific period, usually five years;

(c)   will, for its specified area of focus, identify goals and strategies that address and expand on those given in the Strategic Plan;

(d)   will be developed through a consultative process involving the Academic Board, Planning and Resources Committee, relevant other internal and external stakeholder bodies (as determined by the Vice-Chancellor and President), and staff and students for example through their participation in any of the key University bodies;

(e)   will identify through its goals and strategies the priorities for concerted University action in its area of focus; and

(f)   will be developed in the context of anticipated resources and used to inform University budgeting.

4.3 Following approval of a Top Level Plan, the sponsor will ensure that the plan is presented for discussion by all key University bodies with a view to informing and guiding subsequent planning and budget decisions.

4.4 Performance against Top Level Plans will be reported to Council on a regular basis throughout the year. In addition, sponsors of each Top Level Plan will be responsible for providing a report on performance against goals and targets which will be included in the University’s Annual Report.

5. Support plans

5.1 Support plans are generally University-wide and may include:

(a)   specific support plans that articulate strategies needed to enable students to succeed (e.g. retention, disability, reconciliation); or

(b)   other support plans that align resources to priorities (e.g. asset management, risk management and workforce planning).

5.2 For all support plans, the Vice-Chancellor and President will nominate a responsible officer who will be allocated responsibility for initiating development, implementation, monitoring and review of the plan. The responsible officer will be accountable to the Vice-Chancellor and President for those operational elements, while the Vice-Chancellor and President will be accountable to Council for achievement of the plan.

5.3 A support plan:

(a)   will have University-wide application;

(b)   will be designed to elaborate on goals and strategies in the Strategic Plan or Top Level Plans in relation to a specified area of focus over a specific period;

(c)   will be developed through a consultative process involving relevant internal and external stakeholder bodies (as determined by the Vice-Chancellor and President), including staff and students where applicable;

(d)   will be developed in the context of anticipated resources and used to inform University budgeting.

6. Review of the Strategic Plan, Top Level Plans and support plans

6.1 During the lifespan of the Strategic Plan, Top Level Plans or a support plan, there may be ad hoc reviews to adjust either the plan or the implementation processes.

6.2 Council and other University bodies with a stake in the Strategic Plan, Top Level Plans or a support plan will be presented with a report on any changes arising from the ad hoc review and those changes will be widely publicised within the University community.

7. Operational Plan

7.1 The University-wide Operational Plan is developed on a triennial basis, with the first year being a detailed operational business plan and the two following years developed at a broader level. Triennial planning is undertaken as part of the University’s annual planning and budget process to assist with strategic analysis and decision making.

7.2 The Operational Plan is a consolidation of key priorities from across the University and is developed following the University’s annual Planning meetings and the submission of draft cost centre action plans.

7.3 The University budget is expected to mirror and give effect to the approved Operational Plan.

7.4 A cost centre manager will be allocated responsibility for initiatives in the Operational Plan and will be accountable for implementing and achieving these.

7.5 The Operational Plan:

(a)   will apply to the whole of the University;

(b)   will identify priority goals, objectives, strategies and initiatives for a specific budget period and will be a rolling plan of up to three years;

(c)   will be designed to result in:

(i)   effective implementation of goals and strategies within the Strategic Plan and Top Level Plans;

(ii)   effective implementation of University policy;

(iii)   compliance with all external requirements affecting the operations of the University;

(d)   will be developed in association with periodic University budgeting processes;

(e)   will be developed based on key University priorities identified as part of the University’s annual planning process; and

(f)   may be adjusted over time in order to align the Plan with the University’s resource capacity or in light of other matters that may affect achievement of the Plan, provided that the Vice-Chancellor and President approves the proposed adjustment of the Plan.

7.6 The Vice-Chancellor and President may require that the Operational Plan will include specific goals, strategies or actions.

8. Monitoring of the Operational Plan

8.1 The officer responsible for each initiative in the University’s Operational Plan will:

(a)   complete the relevant update to the Operational Plan Status Report, reporting on performance towards achievement of the plan; and

(b)   ensure that a review of performance against each initiative in the Operational Plan relevant to them, is undertaken annually, with a view to identifying strengths and weaknesses in performance and for informing development of the next annual iteration of the Plan.

8.2 The Operational Plan Status Reports will be provided in writing to the Vice-Chancellor and President quarterly, through the Chief Operating Officer, and will report on progress across the University towards achievement of the Plan.

8.3 There will be at least annual meetings between the Vice-Chancellor and President, the Chief Operating Officer, and the Executive member and the officers responsible for specific initiatives in the University’s Operational Plan for the purpose of:

(a)   identifying and reviewing progress and performance in achieving the Operational Plan goals and targets within approved budgets; and

(b)   identifying any weaknesses in or obstacles to implementation and performance with a view to adjusting the Plan or the implementation processes.

8.3 Any proposed adjustment to the Operational Plan must be approved by the Vice-Chancellor and President and the revised plan must be made available to all relevant staff.

9. Action plans

9.1 Cost centre action plans are developed on a triennial basis, with the first year being a detailed operational business plan and the two following years developed at a broader level. Triennial planning is undertaken as part of the University’s planning and budget process to assist with strategic analysis and decision making.

9.2 The action plans are developed as part of the University’s annual planning process. Cost centres will submit draft action plans prior to the annual Planning Meeting and following review and discussion at the meeting, the action plan will be finalised and submitted to individual responsible Executive members (Vice-Chancellor and President, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Chief Operating Officer or Pro Vice-Chancellor) for approval.

9.3 The cost centre budget is expected to mirror and give effect to the approved cost centre action plan.

9.4 A cost centre manager is responsible for developing and implementing a cost centre action plan and will be accountable for its achievement.

9.5 An action plan:

(a)   will apply to a specific organisational unit or a group of organisational units;

(b)   will identify priority goals, objectives, strategies and actions for the organisational unit or units for a specific budget period;

(c)   will be designed to result in:

(i)   effective implementation of goals and strategies within the Strategic Plan and Top Level Plans in relation to the purpose and role of the organisational unit or units;

(ii)   effective implementation of University policy as it pertains to the organisational unit or units;

(iii)   compliance with all external requirements affecting the operations of the unit or units;

(d)   will be developed in association with periodic University budgeting processes;

(e)   will be developed through a consultative process involving staff of the organisational unit or units, any relevant internal and external stakeholders as determined by the cost centre manager, and student representatives where appropriate; and

(f)   may be adjusted over time in order to align plans with resource capacity or in light of other matters that may affect achievement of the plan, provided that the responsible individual Executive member approves the proposed adjustment of the plan.

9.6 The Vice-Chancellor and President or the responsible Executive member may require that a cost centre’s action plan will include specific goals, strategies or actions.

10. Monitoring of action plans

10.1 The officer responsible for each cost centre action plan will:

(a)   complete the update to the cost centre action plan status report, reporting on performance towards achievement of the plan, as required by the individual responsible Executive member; and

(b)   ensure that a review of performance against the plan is undertaken annually, with a view to identifying strengths and weaknesses in performance and for informing development of the next annual iteration of the plan.

10.2 There will be at least annual meetings between the Vice-Chancellor and President, the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Corporate Services), and the Executive member and officers responsible for cost centre action plans for the purpose of:

(a)   identifying and reviewing progress and performance in achieving the action plan goals and targets within approved budgets; and

(b)   identifying any weaknesses in or obstacles to implementation and performance with a view to adjusting the plan or the implementation processes.

10.3 Any proposed adjustment to an action plan must be approved by the responsible Executive member and the revised plan must be made available to all relevant staff.

11. University and cost centre budgets

11.1 The University Budget quantifies planned revenue and expenditure for the next triennium. It is developed in the context of a three-year outlook which considers the impacts of the University's Strategic Plan objectives and any other relevant factors, such as Commonwealth Government reforms or changes in regulation and competition.

11.2 The budget development process, as overseen by the Chief Operating Officer is as follows:

  • The University's funding priorities for the Budget are determined in the context of the objectives of the University's Strategic and Operational Plans.
  • Targets for student load and research income are prepared for the triennium in consultation with the University Executive and discretionary revenue calculated for the budget based on the agreed targets and known Commonwealth funding parameters.
  • Additional revenue is allocated or reserved, based on the financial initiatives set by the Vice-Chancellor and President.
  • Expenditure is calculated using previous expenditure limits, any required improvement in the operating surplus, Enterprise Bargaining and other indexation costs, increased strategic funding and other growth/cost pressures.
  • Cost centres managers update their action plans and budget packs on the basis of agreed budget parameters.
  • The University Budget is finalised.

11.3 The University's Budget is a "collegiate" and priority-based model. It is not formulaic and the decisions taken on resource allocation should be transparent to all cost centres.

11.4 The University Budget is reviewed by the University Executive, endorsed by the Vice-Chancellor and President and then recommended by the Planning and Resources Committee for approval by Council.

12. Individual staff performance and development plans

12.1 Staff performance and development plans should be designed to contribute to achievement of the Strategic Plan, relevant Top Level Plans, the Operational Plan and the action plan pertaining to the organisational unit within which a staff member is deployed.

12.2 Staff performance and development plans and achievement of those plans will be reviewed in accordance with the PPR Policy and procedures.

12.3 Aggregated and permanently de-identified data from staff members’ performance and development plans may be used by cost centre managers and Human Resources to inform University planning, e.g. for the purposes of planning staff development programs.

13. Records management

13.1 Effective systems will be in place for record-keeping and records management in relation to plans, their implementation, monitoring reports, review, and any revisions or amendments.

13.2 A register of University plans at tiers one to three will be maintained that records, at a minimum, the name of each plan (and subsequent iteration thereof), lifespan dates, latest date of approval, the position/s of the person/s with overall responsibility for development, implementation, monitoring and reporting performance, and review of the plan.

END

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