“I aim for a perfect 10 out of 10.”

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam aspires to a new system of recognition and rewards for academic staff. What will this require from HR advisers? Marjolein Vloothuis (Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences) and Jan Thomas Cremer (Faculty of Law) exchange ideas:

“I aim for a perfect 10 out of 10.”

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam aspires to a new system of recognition and rewards for academic staff. What will this require from HR advisers? Marjolein Vloothuis (Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences) and Jan Thomas Cremer (Faculty of Law) exchange ideas:

Marjolein Vloothuis
“The work of the academic staff needs to be more balanced, in a way that reduces the high workload and creates more room for everyone’s personal development.”

Marjolein Vloothuis Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences

“The first challenge for me is informing supervisors and convincing them that things have to change. The work of the academic staff needs to be more balanced, in a way that reduces the high workload and creates more room for everyone’s personal development. As an HR adviser, I see myself as a change agent for bringing this about. Not everyone within VU sees this need yet.”

Jan Thomas Cremer
“We will have to develop a different mindset where we are no longer fixated on available positions.”

Jan Thomas Cremer Cremer Faculty of Law

“It is always good to reflect on current policies. How and why did we do what we did? And what has changed in the world? With the new system of recognition and rewards, we want to move towards a situation in which growth becomes possible without a position being available in the organization, such as that of a new associate professor. For the Faculty of Law, this will be a change from the current situation. My work starts with addressing this and explaining what this means for my faculty. We will have to develop a different mindset in which we are no longer fixated on available positions. To do this, it is necessary to formulate a minimum set of criteria that you can recognize and reward and that academics need to meet in order to take the next step in their career.”

Marjolein Vloothuis

“The principle of a university is that education cannot succeed without research and vice versa. However, in some areas we have now gone overboard in terms of numbers of research publications. As an extension of this, the question at my faculty is how education can be more in balance with research. As an HR adviser, for example, what I can learn from the Faculty of Law is how they weave the element of education into the job profiles of the academic staff.”

Jan Thomas Cremer

“The relationship between education and research is indeed different when it comes to Law. We are actively acquiring extra time and money for research. I would find it interesting to bounce ideas around even more with the HR advisers from other faculties about what quality in research and education means. What do we think is important? It’s also essential to bring clarity to policy throughout VU. And, furthermore, we need to work towards more transparency about what is and is not possible when it comes to opportunities for career advancement. I can imagine that I will be involved in setting up a working group to help develop this further.”

Marjolein Vloothuis

“We are on the right track with our current Recognition and Rewards policies, but I aim for a perfect 10 out of 10. That's mainly about creating a healthy (development) climate where academics can reach their full potential. As an HR adviser, I think it's important to do my part.”

Visit the Recognition and Rewards website.

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