Time Allocation Survey
To support the awarding of additional research funding to the Higher Education Sector and to improve public accountability, all UK Universities are required to submit an annual Transparent Approach to Costing (TRAC) return to HEFCE.
TRAC is a standard costing methodology used by all higher education institutions in the UK to cost their main activities of Teaching, Research and Other core activities. The costing information produced is also used to inform the full economic costing (fEC) of research grants, a current national review of the Governments teaching funding methodology and a review of the Government block grant research funding methodology. Increasingly, the costing data produced by TRAC is also used for internal management information purposes and to inform pricing decisions.
As academic staff costs represent the largest single component of a University's total costs it is a fundamental requirement of TRAC that these costs are attributed to activities in a robust and auditable manner. This is achieved by each member of academic staff completing Time Allocation Schedules.
Time Allocation Schedule (TAS)
A Time Allocation Schedule (TAS) has been developed to collect staff time and has now been used in the University for the past eleven years. Currently, the University operates the minimum national requirement which is that academic staff must complete at least three schedules covering a 12 month period, once every three years.
Since the completion of the schedule was last undertaken in 2008-09 there is now a need for all academic staff to participate in 2011-12. The three completion periods align with the teaching semesters and are as follows:
- 26 September 2011 - 29 January 2012
- 30 January 2012 - 3 June 2012
- 4 June 2012 - 23 September 2012
Whilst the University performed very well in the most recent RCUK Quality Assurance and Validation (QAV) review, one point which was raised was that it is imperative that all TASs are returned as soon after the period to which they relate as possible. All staff are therefore urged to return their completed schedules to their Heads of School as soon as possible, but no later than two weeks after the end of the period in question.
Staff who should complete a TAS
Academic staff who work on core school activities (coded to A, D, M, or N projects) should participate in the TAS exercise. Academic and research staff who are coded 100% to a R project do not need to complete a TAS.
For any queries please contact Stephen Grant in the Costing and Capital section of the Finance department on 5232 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org