FAQs - TAS
FAQs - TAS
- WORKING HOURS, ABSENCE, WORKING FROM HOME & OVERTIME
- CONFERENCES, COURSES, TRAVEL & FIELD WORK
- CLINICAL STAFF
- OTHER SUPPORT
- Why is a survey of staff time required?
The University already knows what it pays individual members of staff and what salaries cost in total. Unfortunately, in order to calculate the costs of teaching, research and other activities it is necessary to collect data to show how staff utilise their time.
- Is it necessary to collect time data from all staff?
For most staff it will be necessary to collect time allocation schedules in order to find out how their time is split between teaching, research and other activities. Where possible we have sought to avoid asking staff to complete time data. We will not ask staff who work in University Services to collect time data because we can charge for their costs using another cost driver that reflects use e.g. Estates using space, and Library using a combination of purchases and people. Within Colleges we will not ask Research staff to collect time data.
- How often will I be asked to provide this information?
See TAS - Method of Collection.
- Why can't the University take this information from other sources?
There is time information in some other systems within the University. Unfortunately other sources tend to be based either on hours paid, or they may be prospective rather than retrospective. If the other sources are based on actual hours worked then it may be possible to use them instead of Time Allocation Schedule (TAS) data.
- How will this information be used?
The total hours worked by each member of staff will inform finance on how to charge their time to each of teaching, research and other. Staff costs and indirect costs are both determined by the TAS data.
- Will the completed returns be used for other purposes such as the Redeployment of Staff?
Once the completed returns have been collated, a report will be sent to Heads of Schools showing the results for their School so that the information can be verified. Other than this report, the information will be anonymous.
- Who will receive the TAS data?
Heads of School will be sent a summary and they will be asked to perform a reasonableness check.
- How can I make a Return if I don't have access to the Web-Based Form?
Please try to arrange access via the single sign-on web page but where this is not possible then please contact email@example.com for advice.
- Will staff be contacted to remind them of the need to complete a TAS schedule?
The week a staff member will need to report on will be randomly selected and advised to each individual by e-mail in advance, with an additional reminder at the start of the week.
- If I am 'multi-tasking' how do I record my time?
If you are carrying out more than one task simultaneously then it is best to make a reasonable estimate of how your time has been shared between activities.
- Where should I address questions throughout this process?
Staff can e-mail Brenda.Massie@glasgow.ac.uk at any time with any queries relating to Full Economic Costing or firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions relating to Time Allocation Schedules.
- Do SUPPORT staff need to complete TAS?
All general funds staff employed in Colleges will be required to complete a TAS. Staff who work 100% on Research or who are allocated using cost drivers (e.g. Estates - m2 and Registry - students) are not required to complete a TAS.
- If staff will be paid from profits made on particular activities, should they still complete a TAS schedule?
Yes, they are still University staff and should complete a schedule as normal.
- I understand that you are trying to keep time in the 'University, College or School Support' categories to a minimum but what if that is the only category that my time will fit into?
If this is the best description of how your time is spent then this is the category that you should use. We would really just like people to consider whether their time fits into any other category before using this so that it does not become a 'Dumping Ground' for things that should be in another category.
- I work for two Schools - how should I submit my data?
Staff who work in two or more departments will need to provide their data in a separate form for each School that funds them.
Staff in this situation submit a web-form for their main School and after that has been submitted re-open the single sign-on page and select their other School(s) and enter their hours for that School.
- When do I have access to update my TAS?
You can log in at any time during the current quarter. Even in advance to submit a NIL return if you are going to be on holiday. National rules require that the TAS is completed within 2 months of the census week. The TAS will become unavailable when that time is exceeded.
WORKING HOURS, ABSENCE, WORKING FROM HOME & OVERTIME
- How should I complete the TAS when my hours are not Monday to Friday 9.00 to 5.00?
Please record the ACTUAL hours worked. Staff work in a professional manner, and may work out-with the regular M-F 9-5 pattern. They may also work considerably in excess of 35 hours per week.
- Should holidays or absences be recorded?
It is important that returns are received even for holiday weeks and/or sick leave, otherwise the survey would show that no-one ever took a holiday or was absent due to sickness. If a staff member was absent during the designated week then the return should show nil hours in total and ideally also include a short explanation in the comments box.
- I seem to work more overtime hours than I'm paid for. Should I be recording the hours I work or the hours that I am paid to work?
The Time Allocation Schedule should show hours worked, regardless of what you are paid.
- I seem to spend hours at home in the evening reading assignments etc. Should this time be included on my TAS?
Yes, this is still hours worked in doing your job and should be included.
- How should time spent writing journal articles be coded?
Time spent writing papers on teaching should be classified as teaching support.
- How should teaching students from another College be shown?
All time spent teaching should be shown against teaching - irrespective of the College that the students belong to. More accurate recording of teaching by course would make the form much more complicated and it would take longer to record the data.
- How should time spent providing references to students be recorded?
This should be recorded as teaching support.
- How should time spent writing JOURNAL ARTICLES be coded?
Time spent writing research papers should be coded as core research time (using the same category as the research funder).
- Where should I record time spent working with LEARNED SOCIETIES?
Hours worked with Learned Societies should be included on the Research Support line.
- How should time spent writing GRANT APPLICATIONS be shown?
We are required to count time spent writing Grant proposals under support for research.
- I'm not sure exactly how my Research time is split between two funding sources but it is roughly 60:40, should I just go with this estimate?
Yes, it is better for staff to make an informed estimate than just lump everything as 'Other' and then have the FEC team make an uninformed decision of how to allocate.
- I seem to spend a lot of time booking TRAVEL for Researchers, how should this time be shown on the form?
Please record it against Research Support.
- Much of my time is spent on the administration of PhD students. Where should I show this time on the form?
You should show this in the support for Post Graduate Research (PGR) column.
- What category should work funded by the Chief Scientist's Office (CSO) be included under?
CSO, unfortunately, has two guises. The grant funding, which is akin to Research Councils, and should be reported as such, and (more occasionally) contracts, which should be UK Government.
CONFERENCES, COURSES, TRAVEL & FIELD WORK
- How should time spent in ORGANISING CONFERENCES be shown?
Conferences and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) activities should be included in the Other section. Most work that relates to a single conference or CPD activity should be classified as "Core". Drafting proposals should be included as "Support".
- Where should time spent ATTENDING CONFERENCES be shown?
Time spent attending conferences should be shown under support for teaching or research, depending on the purpose of the conference.
- How should time spent TRAVELLING be recorded?
Time spent travelling is often essential to the activity being undertaken and may be instead of other activities. As such, travelling time should be recognised as a core element of the activity that is being performed. If other work is performed while travelling then the time may be attributed to that activity. If the travel occurs overnight and the time is spent sleeping then it would be more reasonable to exclude such time.
- If I am out on Field Work for days at a time, should the TAS show all the time I spend away from home?
The TAS should show all the hours worked while you are out 'in the Field' even if it is from Dawn until Dusk. It should not include any rest time that you may have.
- Do Clinical staff, who work for both the NHS and the University have to complete these forms?
Yes, we need to know both the actual hours worked and the activities that the time is spent on. This may be informed by job plans. Time spent on clinical services with the NHS should be shown under Other - Clinical Services.
- What happens if a Technician is undertaking some teaching?
The hours spent teaching (i.e. actually delivering the Teaching not supporting a course) should be included in the Core column rather than as Support.
- If I am employed as a Technician but am not Lab-based (e.g. Sport technicians, Stores), how should I record my time?
If there is no reasonable approximate way to split time between Research and Teaching, it should be shown as 'Other Faculty & Dept Support.'
- Where should I record my time for teaching admin?
All time spent on teaching admin should be recorded as "Teaching Support". Only hours worked on activities that support teaching and research for the department as a whole should be recorded as "Other Department Support".
- How should time spent on UNION duties be classified?
Time spent on union duties is unlikely to be related directly to either teaching or research and so should be classified as "Other Department Support".