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​Remote Work Communication Platform

Dear Colleagues

The past months have presented the country with a spectrum of challenges, with the COVID-19 pandemic. UJ is no exception and the challenges faced by leadership are greater in ensuring business continuity amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The work-life balance has also been immensely inundated with pressure to deliver on work and family demands as uniquely experienced with several common challenges amongst ourselves in ensuring sanity as individual.

The Change Management team has seen a need to create a platform to encourage conversations as colleagues in sharing experiences, challenges, information, and measures that can be implemented in effectively dealing with the current circumstances of remote operations of the institution. The discussions will also include wellness and people management dynamics.

The project will be rolled out as indicated below:

WHAT IS THE COMMUNICATION PLATFORM ABOUT:

  • MS Teams will be utilised as the platform for the Communication Platform
  • The platform will be conducted in a video format. This is to enhance engagement as well as to create a more amicable atmosphere between participants.
  • Work-life balance related topics will be discussed, including, but not limited to, managing virtually, managing my stress levels, prioritizing my work, and online etiquette.
  • A comprehensive programme will be drafted for the remainder of the Lockdown period indicating topics, date, and time for the sessions.

 

WHO CAN MAKE USE OF THE PLATFORM:

  • Participation is voluntary; anyone invited to the session can participate.
  • The Change Management Team will send out invitations to the identified stakeholder group/s.
  • Staff to be divided into different stakeholder groups based on the needs already identified for groups such as administrative, managerial, the categories are not exhaustive. This is necessary to ensure that the content is specific to the target audience.

HOW WILL THE SESSIONS TAKE PLACE:

  • The Change Management team will nominate a knowledgeable facilitator assigned for specific topics. Voluntary nomination and facilitation of a topic of choice will also be considered.
  • The role of the facilitator is to ensure that the platform has structure as well as promote active conversation in terms of the identified topic.
  • Facilitators will be rotated depending on the topic being discussed.
  • A representative from the Change Management team will be nominated to coordinate the platform.
  • Sessions will be for an hour, participants will be able to pose questions, suggestions, solutions, and ideas on topics.

 

WHEN WILL THE COMMUNICATION PLATFORM BE OPEN?

  • The platform will be opened every week for two different groups. Initially the programme is set for Friday mornings between 10:00 and 12;00.
  • The programme will be made available with every discussion.
  • Communication will take place on a regular basis.

The way forward:

The different groups provisionally identified include:

  • Senior Management (MEC & ELG)
  • Academic Management (HODs & Vice Deans)
  • Support Management
  • Academic Administration
  • Support Administration
 

TOPIC 1The challenges of Working remotely
GROUP 1: ManagersSupport Administration Group
DATEFriday, 5 June 2020
TIME10:00 – 11:00 (1 hour)
FACILITATORVivian Monyela (monyelav@uj.ac.za)
ADMINISTRATORSinqobile Ndlovu via 4IRChange@uj.ac.za
NOTES• Invites will be posted to all the relevant staff members, informing them of the topic as well as other rules of engagement

• Participants can give recommendations, ideas, and suggestions of different topics.

• Evaluation and debriefing will be done after the chat
 

TOPIC 1The challenges of Working remotely
Group 2: AdministratorsSupport Academic Group

DATEFriday, 5 June 2020
TIME11:00 – 12:00 (1 hour)
FACILITATORRonelle van Wyk (ronellevw@uj.ac.za)
ADMINISTRATORSinqobileNdlovu via 4IRChange@uj.ac.za
NOTES• Invites will be posted to all the relevant staff members, informing them of the topic as well as other rules of engagement

• Participants can give recommendations, ideas, and suggestions of different topics.

• Evaluation and debriefing will be done after the chat

 

COMMUNICATION PLATFORM PROGRAMME GOING FORWARD (June):

The Change Management Team has identified the following provisional topics for further consideration, however, as the process unfolds the topics will be further defined.

DATETOPIC
12 JuneManaging my stress and anxiety levels,
19 JunePrioritising my work,
26 JuneOnline etiquette, including how to manage an online meeting


Ms. Tokoza Kwinana

Executive Director: Human Resources