Consideration of requests

Within 28 days of receiving a valid request the University must either:

  • accept the request on the basis of the information set out in the individual's written request and inform the employee of the decision in writing;
  • meet with the employee to discuss their request - then within 14 days of that meeting, inform the employee of the decision in writing.

However, if the manager has received a valid request but considers that additional information is needed before the request can be properly considered, the employee can be asked (in writing) to provide additional information. If the employee refuses to provide the additional information, the University can treat their request as withdrawn. The manager should inform the employee in writing that the University considers their request to be withdrawn.

The University may:

  • accept in full the employee's proposals for training as set out in their request;
  • accept the request, but think the training need can be met in a different way to the request proposal. (eg to deliver training in-house rather than using an external training provider, or a different course or qualification that would better meet the training need the employee has highlighted): in such cases, the manager will need to discuss the employee's request with them before reaching a final decision and confirming it, in writing, to the employee.
  • refuse an employee's request but only for one of the following business reasons:
    • the proposed study or training would not improve the employee's effectiveness in the business;
    • the proposed study or training would not improve the performance of the business;
    • the burden of additional costs;
    • agreeing to the request would have a detrimental effect on the University’s ability to meet customer demand;
    • the University would be unable to reorganise work among existing staff;
    • the University would be unable to recruit additional staff;
    • agreeing to the request would have a detrimental impact on quality;
    • agreeing to the request would have a detrimental impact on performance;
    • there would be an insufficiency of work during the periods the employee proposes to work;
    • there are planned structural changes during the proposed study or training period.

Requests for training should be evaluated against the Learning and Development Strategy and Training Plan of the College or Service.

Managers may seek further advice from Staff Learning and Development on how to consider and evaluate requests from employees:

  • Managers in Professional Services should contact Clive Betts (Tel: 01392-725348)
  • Managers in Colleges should contact the Head of Staff Learning and Development (sldadmin@exeter.ac.uk)