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Employee benefits

Middlesex University - a great place to work

Here, you can explore details of some of the benefits available to staff working for  Middlesex University and MU Services Limited, which is wholly owned by Middlesex and provides professional services directly to the University.

We are dedicated to being an inclusive and stimulating modern university, both as a place of study and as a place of work. Colleagues can expect to join a friendly, highly valued staff community where equality of opportunity, diversity, openness, freedom of expression and social responsibility; are key to our success.

Key benefits

Annual leave

We offer 25-30 days of annual leave to professional services staff and 35 days for academic staff, Professors and Senior Managers. In addition we are closed for all Bank Holidays.

University Closure Days

In addition to the generous leave and bank holidays, we also offer 7 days extra leave over the Christmas holiday period for all staff.

Spaces to eat, drink and relax

Across campus we have a range of café spaces, eat-in and take-away outlets, including Costa, CostCutter, Starbucks and Subway, as well as in-house brands serving a wide range of delicious food and drink, catering for a wide range of dietary needs including halal, kosher, vegan, vegetarian and gluten free.

There are plenty of affordable eateries, shops and cafes nearby too, including Hendon Bagel Bakery and the Co-op, both of which offer discounts to MDX staff and students on presentation of a valid staff or student card.

Our campus environment also means we have outdoor spaces - Grove Park, The Paddock and Sunny Hill Park - to take a walk, have a picnic or simply unwind.

  • More key benefits

    • Automatic library membership

      As a staff member, you will receive full, free membership to our on-campus Sheppard Library via your staff ID card, and will be able to access an incredibly wide ranging suite of academic material and literature, as well as non-academic resources, library services and space for personal and professional use.

    • Career development

      We support our employees with learning and training related to their role and career.  This includes leadership and management development; in house courses, seminars, workshops, online modules and coaching. We also offer fee waivers for employees wishing to follow a relevant Middlesex degree programme.

    • Discounted Costco membership

      Staff are entitled to discounted membership to Costco. Costco's warehouses present one of the largest and most exclusive product category selections to be found under a single roof. Categories include catering supplies, confectionery, appliances, television and media, automotive supplies, tyres, toys, hardware, sporting goods, jewellery, watches, cameras, books, housewares, apparel, health and beauty aids, tobacco, furniture, office supplies and office equipment. Costco is known for carrying top quality national and regional brands, at prices consistently below traditional wholesale or retail outlets.

Employee wellbeing and support

We care about our community, and the wellbeing of our staff and students is our first priority. We promote a caring culture of compassion and kindness, and actively encourage everyone to embrace wellbeing opportunities across the University whenever they are needed. We offer a wide range of free-to-access information, support and advice resources for employees and their families including confidential counselling, specialist legal advice, help and support on issues around domestic abuse, and specialist bereavement support, as well as membership to health and wellbeing platforms Fika and Togetherall and more.

Ever mindful of the impacts of COVID and recent times on the ways of working and wellbeing, we are continually developing our suite of support to help everyone.

In 2012, we were the first university to be awarded the Mayor for London's Healthy Workplace Excellence Award.

  • More wellbeing and support

    • Employee relations

      We have a positive employee relations environment with our recognised Trade Unions , University College Union (UCU) and UNISON, who provide guidance and support to staff on a range of employment related matters. .

    • Access to Occupational Health service

      The occupational health service provides independent and professional specialist medical advice to employees and managers on the effect of health at work.

      Our aim is to encourage and support an environment within the University which helps staff fulfil their potential, irrespective of disability and ill health. Our  aim is to prevent work-related illness and injury and to assist staff to return to work after sickness absence.

    • Family-friendly and work-life balance policies

      We offer 52 weeks' maternity and adoption leave and generous maternity and adoption pay. (subject to terms and conditions within the policy) The non-primary carer may take two weeks' paid paternity leave with the option of up to 26 weeks' additional paternity leave. Parental leave and the opportunity to take a career break are also available.

    • Carers can take up to 5 days of dependency leave per year

      Subject to terms and conditions staff are entitled to up to 5 days paid leave (pro rata for part-timers), in any one annual leave year, to deal with an unexpected emergency involving a dependent. An emergency may include sickness, accident, criminal injury, unexpected absence of the usual carer or serious problems at the child's school.

    • Tax-free childcare

      This is a government-run scheme. Parents/guardians can check their eligibility and apply via the tax-free childcare pages on the GOV.UK website.

    • Nursery

      We have a Nursery at our Hendon campus, here to help staff and students to successfully combine work or academic study with parenthood. We take a principled approach to young children's care and education, with an emphasis on parental involvement and collaborative working.

    • Flexible working

      Any member of staff may request to change their working pattern or hours.  Where possible and taking into consideration the needs of the business, we support compressed hours, job-sharing, part-time working and homeworking one or two days a week. Staff may also apply for a career break.

      We understand that working in a pandemic is unlike any working before, and as a University we are committed to being as flexible as possible in helping support colleagues and students to manage their wellbeing and work-life balance.

    • Eye care voucher scheme

      All staff are entitled to a free eye test once every two years, along with a spectacles voucher towards the cost of glasses where they are required for DSE use. This spectacles voucher can only be issued where a certificate of recommendation is supplied by the Optician.

Pension and retirement

We do not have a defined retirement age and staff may continue to work into their late 60s and early 70s. If staff choose to retire they can draw their pension at any time between age 55 and 75.

The University makes a generous contribution to your pension.  The current pension provisions are as below.

  • More info on pension schemes

    • Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS)

      Eligible members employed directly by Middlesex University will be automatically enrolled into the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) administered by West Yorkshire Pension Fund (WYPF), subject to terms and conditions.  The scheme is contracted out of the State Earnings Related Scheme.  Staff can opt out of the scheme at any time, once staff have become an active member.

      Individuals can make contributions ranging from 5.5% to 12.5% of pay depending on salary levels.

    • Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS)

      Eligible members employed directly by Middlesex University will be automatically enrolled into the Teachers’ Pension Scheme, subject to terms and conditions.  Staff can make contributions ranging from 7.4% to 11.7% depending on salary levels.  The scheme is contracted out of the State Earnings Related Scheme.  Staff can opt out of the scheme at any time, once staff have become an active member. The opting out election can be actioned by using My Pension Online within the secure member area of the Teachers Pensions website.

      Both LGPS and TPS are defined benefit pension schemes – i.e. a guaranteed pension based on the career average salary on retirement.

      We operate a flexible retirement policy for members of the LGPS and TPS scheme, i.e. staff are able to reduce their hours and commence drawing their pension at any time between age 55 and 75.

    • Middlesex University Defined Contribution Pension Scheme

      As of 1 February 2021, any new Professional Services staff employed will be contracted by MU Services Limited, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Middlesex University, and will be subject to Middlesex University policies and procedures, unless advised otherwise, and will be eligible to participate in a Defined contribution pension scheme – administered by Scottish Widows Pension. Individuals do not need to contribute but the default for employees will be set at 5%. MU Services Limited will contribute a flat rate of 10%.

      Staff will be auto-enrolled into the Defined Contribution (DC) Scheme, subject to eligibility criteria.   Staff can opt out of the scheme at any time, once staff become an active member. Any eligible staff who opt out will be automatically re-enrolled into the scheme every 3 years on their enrolment

      There is an option for salary sacrifice for staff within this scheme, subject to HMRC limitations and employer consent.  All staff in the Defined Contribution scheme will be given the option once a year in line with the tax year (6 April) to take up the  salary sacrifice provision. Enquiries can be made to: WorkplacePensionsSupport@scottishwidows.co.uk

      An additional benefit associated to membership of the Defined contribution scheme, provides members with income protection during sickness absence for those absent on sick leave for over 52 weeks.

      This scheme also offers its members additional life cover, also known as Death in Service cover.

Pay schemes and expenses

Contribution Pay Scheme

The University recognises and values the hard work, commitment and achievements of all its staff.  Subject to terms and conditions and with Executive approval, the University usually operates a Contribution Pay Scheme annually, which is specifically designed to reward academic and professional services staff, whose contribution, on a sustained basis, exceeds that normally expected in their role. in terms of high levels of outcomes and competence and demonstration of our Values.

Progressive Pay Structure

Increments where due are payable on 1 August each year for staff who have been on the current salary point for at least 6 months at the date the increment takes effect (i,e by 1st February), subject to the maximum of their particular scale and to satisfying appropriate criteria for progression.

  • More on expenses

    • Staff travel, cycle schemes and city car

      We offer an interest-free annual Season Ticket Loan; a motorcycle loan and a Cycle to Work scheme.

      If pedal power is your thing Middlesex University has partnered with Cyclescheme to offer staff savings on the cost of a new bike and accessories up to £3000. The scheme is administered through a salary sacrifice/hire agreement, allowing staff to spread the cost over 12 months and make savings as the initiative is free of income tax and national insurance contributions (NIC). At the end of the hire period, staff will be given the option to purchase the bicycle at a fair market value. This scheme applies to electric bikes also – brilliant at taking the sting out of the hills around Hendon campus!

      We also have a range of Green Travel initiatives and benefits to support staff and the environment.

    • Relocation expenses for difficult to recruit roles

      Relocation expenses can only be offered at the interview/appointment stage of a recruitment process and are at the discretion of the employing Faculty or Service. They are usually only offered for senior, specialised or “difficult to fill” posts.  Reimbursement can be offered to new permanent staff providing they are moving from further than one hour’s commuting distance (at peak travel time) to within one hour’s commuting time and providing they are moving their main family home.  These expenses are not applicable to an employee buying or renting a secondary home. Part-time staff are eligible for these benefits on a pro rata basis.  Relocation expenses cannot be offered to staff on casual or temporary contracts, including part-time hourly paid teaching contracts.

Special leave

Special Leave and Compassionate Leave

The University recognises that there are special circumstances in which an individual may seek an absence from duty outside of their normal annual leave. Such special leave may be granted as paid or unpaid depending on the circumstances and subject to terms and conditions.

  • More info on special leave

    • Sabbatical leave

      We recognise the value both to an individual member of staff and to the University of a period of sabbatical leave. We will therefore, consider on merit and within available resources, applications for sabbatical leave with or without pay as a part of planned staff development and/or research programmes.  Sabbatical leave is defined as a period of leave, normally up to six months and not more than twelve months in duration, during which time a member of staff completes an agreed programme of work as part of a planned staff development or research programme.

      Sabbatical leave is normally available to all permanent staff who have been employed by the University for a period of five years and every five years thereafter. However, it is not a contractual right and an application will be considered on its merits as listed in the sabbatical policy and within available resources and subject to terms and conditions.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

At Middlesex, we respect, learn from, and support each other. We are inclusive and fair in how we operate and we are a learning organisation, passionate about self-development and the development of others. Our aim is to encourage and support an environment within the University which helps staff fulfil their potential, irrespective of disability and ill health.

We are proud of our diverse community of staff, students and partners and we are committed to creating a positive working environment where diversity is a strength, everyone is treated with dignity and respect, and staff can be their best selves at work.

  • More on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

    • Athena SWAN – Bronze Award

      At Middlesex we believe in the importance of gender equality. We signed up to the Athena Swan Charter to strengthen our efforts in this area and have been awarded a highly-esteemed Bronze Award.

      The Athena Swan Charter recognises and celebrates good practice in higher education and research institutions towards the advancement of gender equality: representation, progression and success for all.

      Find out more about our work towards gender equality in higher education

    • Stonewall Workplace Equality Index – Gold Award and Top 100 Employers list

      Middlesex University received a Gold Award and secured a place in the Top 100 list for leading LGBTQ+ inclusive employers in the workplace in the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index 2023.

      We also ranked 58th out of 268 institutions in the overall ranking, and came 8th out of the 30 higher education institutions that took part this year. This is a significant achievement for the University and our community, substantially building upon our previous Bronze status and climbing up 45 places from 2022.

      Stonewall is Europe’s largest charity for LGBTQ+ rights. The Stonewall Workplace Equality Index is a benchmarking tool for employers to measure their pro­gress on LGBTQ+ inclusion and it recognises institutions that do significant work towards supporting their LGBTQ+ employees. The Top Employers list is compiled from submissions to the Workplace Equality Index.

      Find out more about our work towards the inclusion of LGBTQ+ people in the workplace

    • Race Equality Charter – Bronze Award

      We have signed up to Advance HE's Race Equality Charter (REC) and have been awarded a REC Bronze Award, which demonstrate our commitment to improving the representation, progression and success of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic staff and students within higher education.

      Find out more about our work towards race equality in higher education

    • Business in the Community – Race at Work Charter

      Business in the Community (BITC) is committed to empowering employers to tap into this economic potential by accelerating change for ethnically diverse employees.

      Find out more about our work towards race equality in higher education

    • Disability Confident Leader

      Middlesex University has gained the highest Disability Confident Leader (level 3) status. Disability Confident organisations play a leading role in changing attitudes for the better. They’re changing behaviour and cultures in their own businesses, networks and communities, and reaping the benefits of inclusive recruitment practices.

    • Business Disability Forum

      We are a member of Business Disability Forum, which exists to transform the life chances of disabled people, working through and with businesses to create a disability-smart world.

    • Working Families

      Working Families leads the way in helping organisations and employees build enabling and flexible environments that enhance productivity, creativity and wellbeing so that work works for everyone.

    • The Inter Faith Network (IFN)

      The Inter Faith Network for the UK works to promote understanding, cooperation and good relations between organisations and persons of different faiths in the UK.

    • Barnet Multi Faith Forum

      Middlesex University is located within the London Borough of Barnet. The Borough has a ‘Faith Covenant’ with Barnet’s Multi Faith Forum. The Forum is widely represented by the 12 faith groups within Barnet and works to promote the value of faith groups within our community and the contribution they make to a peaceful, caring society.

    • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Staff Networks

      We have a number of Staff Networks that are proactive and successful in instigating and developing new ideas, raising awareness across different issues and experiences, and holding supportive and informative events. They are also instrumental in influencing policy through the University Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

      The main purpose of these Networks is to provide a safe and welcoming environment for staff to learn about each other in an inclusive and respectful way, and to provide support to the University’s equalities plans. The Networks are: Anti-Racism Network (MDX-ARN), Parents’ and Carers’ Network, Disability Network, Gender Network, Inter Faith Network (MDX IFN), LGBT+ Network.

      Find out more about the Networks and how to join them

Awards for our talented staff

Recognising and valuing the talent and hard work across our staff community is important at Middlesex, and we do this in a variety of different ways across the year.  Through our One Middlesex Staff Awards usually celebrated annually, we invite colleagues to nominate those who they feel have excelled in different ways and as a whole staff community, we celebrate the successes and achievements of one another.

Working environment

In 2012, our state-of-the-art campus was shortlisted for the University Facilities Award in the annual The Guardian University Awards; our Hatchcroft Building was awarded an "Excellent" rating for its environmental sustainability credentials.

Our Ritterman Building is a five storey, innovative teaching space for the Faculty of Science and Technology and the Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries, with its design incorporating a number of environmentally friendly features, including a living wall.

We are working towards having facilities among the best anywhere, with more than £200 million invested in creating one of London's biggest and best campuses – part of our commitment to providing an excellent student experience.

We have created outstanding learning environments for teaching and research, including state-of-the-art laboratories, workshops and modern lecture theatres. We've also added new spaces where staff can relax, drink and eat with colleagues. We are listening to our staff to continuously improve the working accommodation.

The campus has a variety of outdoor spaces to enjoy a walk; numerous cafes and a bar, as well as all the facilities that Hendon has to offer.

Working during the COVID-19 pandemic has been and continues to be a challenging and unprecedented time, in an evolving and dynamic environment. Working from home in these ways are very different to regular working from home, and the University continues to support colleagues to adjust and adapt in various ways – including wellbeing support for working from home, virtual workplace assessments and access to appropriate equipment to work safely remotely.

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