Your union fights for your rights and protection at work  

As a recognised trades union, Unite at Sheffield negotiates with the University and Student's Union on important matters related to all aspects of your employment.As a member of Britain’s largest trades union you have access to the skills and expertise to help and protect you, whichever area of the University or Students' Union you work in.

Email us:

REMINDER - if you have any issues from changes at work or any issues  caused by a restructure, please get in contact with out reps who will be happy to  help you.

Response to the university announcement that they will be pursuing the Schools Restructure.

We are disappointed that the University Council have come to the decision to pursue this and have not heeded the unions’ requests to significantly slow down the pace of this change, for greater reflection and to solicit feedback from staff. 

We have concerns about the level of disruption that this plan will entail for staff and its long term impact on the conditions of working at the university. It is based on what we consider to be flimsy reasoning, with limited evidence presented as to why the university thinks this change will result in achieving the schools merger’s stated goals.

While the merger of some departments may make sense, that case is far from clear in others, and the time scale is deeply concerning for all, even in the departments where this change may be welcomed. 

This was clearly evidenced in the joint union survey, instigated by UCU, where almost a thousand people shared their views, the vast majority expressing reservations. 

We, along with our sibling unions, will continue to challenge the university on its decisions and plans that may be harmful to staff, to hold the university to account and provide a watchful eye to ensure the university is following the standards set by the negotiated policies and procedures.

If you are affected by the schools merger, please get in contact with us to share your thoughts and any concerns. We can support you going through this change and help to push back against the university’s sweeping decisions. Our door is always open.

In solidarity.

Government Consultation - Minimum Service Levels in Educaiton 

The government is conducting a consultation about minimum service levels in education. Basically, it would mean that schools may be able to force staff to work during a strike, fundamentally undercutting unions' abilities to bargain for better terms and conditions and is an extremely worrying development. It is focused around primary schools, high schools and college, but it has implications for universities too. Importantly, the consultations are considering   not only  if teaching staff can be made to come in, but also  support staff. The consultation is open until 30th January. Please consider filling it in and telling the government  if you think this a good idea or not.


Branch Meetings - 2024 Academic Year

We will be holding branch meetings once a month going  forwards. These are the dates for the rest of this academic year.
Wed 17th Jan - 1pm - 2pm
Wed 14th Feb  - 1pm - 2pm
Thur 21st March  - 1pm - 2pm
Wed 17th April  - 1pm - 2pm
Thur 16th May  - 1pm - 2pm
Wed 19th June  - 1pm - 2pm
Wed 17th July  - 1pm - 2pm
Wed 21st Aug  - 1pm - 2pm
Thur 19th Sept  - 1pm - 2pm
Invites will be sent out on Google calendar. All meetings will be hybrid and in person. 
Hope you can attend, whether that is one or all of them.

Open Letter to UEB about New School Structure

The unions are sending a joint letter to the University Executive Board asking them to withdraw the proposal to create a new school structure and revise it further. You can read the full thing here:
If you would like to add your name you can do so by filling in this Google form. This will record your name and at attach it to the letter when it is sent so only sign if you are comfortable with this.
This is open to any staff or postgraduate researchers, so please share with anyone you think might be interested.
In solidarity,
Your Union Reps

Restructure Survey Results Released

The results of the UCU survey about the proposed school restructure have come back in and can be read here:
971 people took the survey, both union members and non-unionstaff and the results were clear that staff are not happy  with the proposal.
Staff are not confident  the changes will be positive, either for the university or for themselves
Staff are not confident that it will reduce workload, either for university of for themselves
Staff are not confident  it will bring about new collaborations between departments or improve consistent
Staff are not confident  this process with have a robust consultation process
Staff have serious concerns  about the proposed timeframe
UCU have forwarded the results to the university requesting a pause be made to allow for better initial talks with staff. 
Please share these findings with whoever you can, talk to whoever you can and encourage your non-union member colleagues to join a union. 
We are still seeking people's opinions about how the changes may affect the conditions of their working life at the university. Please get in contact if there is anything you would like to share. 
Together we are stronger

Proposal for Restructure of the Univeristy

On Tuesday last week, the Vice-Chancellor wrote to all staff to announce a University-wide restructure of Departments into Schools. The university trade unions were informed about the proposed restructure approximately one hour before staff were told. 

This is potentially a huge change for the majority of Departments in the University in how they are structured and run. This will have an impact across the university,  whether you are in those departments or not. We understand that many of you out there will have a lot of strong feelings about this and what this means for you.

We want to hear your opinions, worries and concerns, so as a university  community we can begin to formulate a response.

We will keep you up to date about any trade union actions going forward.

If anyone wants to have a one to one chat about, please feel free to grab one of our reps, either in person or online and we can talk it through with us, as much as we know at the moment (which is very little right now).

There is also a  joint union survey  to capture staff's feelings about  these proposal. Please fill it in and encourage other staff members too - you do not need to  be in the union to fill it in.


Consultation  Happening  at University

Unite and her sister unions at the university are currently involved in the consultation about the proposed  changes in Student Recruitment and Management. If you have any concerns about this, for yourself, your team or others, you can contact the following people:
Martin Bentley -
Taiba Yasseen -
Andrew Fairburn -
Claire Healey -

New Officers Following AGM

Thank you to everyone who came to the AGM yesterday.  Congratulations to all our officers, if they are new or returning ones!

Chair - Martin Bentley
Secretary - Claire Healey
Lifelong learning -  Taiba  Yasseen
Equalities - Anne Hayes

If anyone has any follow up questions , comments or feedback on anything we touched on  at the meeting, please drop us a line.


Our AGM will be taking place on 28th June, 1pm, Arts Tower - Lecture Theare 3. Hope to see you there.


Due to some issues we have been having, we have decided to move the AGM to 28th June. We felt like we didn't give everyone enough time to prepare and the branch has some things it needs to sort out behind the scenes. Apologise for the short notice of both the original date and the change. 
We also want to invite people to have a think about becoming union reps, if that is something they are interested in. The roles we elect are:
Lifelong Learning
Health and Safety
There is only one chair, secretary and treasurer, but we can have multiple reps for the other roles. If you are interested in getting more involved, but you didn't want to become a full rep, we also have officers who help out with smaller things. If any of this takes your fancy you can get in contact with any of our existing reps to have a chat. 
We will leave the nominations open until 16th June

Our annual general meeting is coming up and we would love to see you there. It is on at:

Wednesday 24th  May
13:00 - 14:00
Arts Tower LT3
We will also be making it a hybrid meeting with details to follow.

Please make it if you can - it is the meeting where we elect our reps and discuss the matters important to you going forward in the next year. The union is made up of its members and serves the needs of its members - without your voice the union doesn't exist! 



The ballot to elect the Executive Council 2023-2026 will take place in April.

What happens next?
Where a ballot is required, ballot papers will be sent to eligible members w/c 27th March arriving with members from Thursday 30th March. They must be returned to the Independent Scrutineer by Noon Tuesday 25th April 2023.

Executive Council Candidates and Contests

A list of the eligible candidates in each of the Executive Council’s constituencies is now available in the Useful Documents section of this website. There is a contest requiring a ballot in all 10 regions, in 12 of the 19 industrial sectors and in 5 of the 6 national constituencies.

Ballot Enquiry Service
Members who have not received a ballot paper by 13th April 2023 should contact the ballot enquiry service by emailing For any other queries about the conduct of the election please contact the Constitutional Administration Department who administer this election by email at

Candidate Webpages
Please click on the name of the contest and then on a candidates’ photographs to view the candidates’ election webpage and a list of valid nominations made by branches for each candidate.



The union ballot over play is coming up! Please see the floowing message from out Branch Secretary and Branch Chair

Good morning,

To introduce ourselves (if you don't already know us), we're Martin Bentley and Matt Eyre and we are the chair and branch secretary of Unite on campus. We write to ask if you have voted yet in the pay ballot? The union relies on a full return of papers to get a complete overview of the mood of our members.
If you have voted, thank you. If you haven't yet, we have added an extension for the return of your forms until the 14th of October. This is in recognition that it has been the start of semester and to give more time to return to normal duties following annual leave.
There does seem to be some confusion with the way the University has portrayed the grade changes as part of this year's pay rise - they were not. This was over a long standing issue regarding grade boundaries through the scale, and to address the terms of the Unite dispute gains from last year over the living wage.
This dispute is over the imposition of the University's representative body (UCEA)'s meagre offer of 3%.
We are not asking you to tell us which way you have voted (or are going to vote), that would be unacceptable, but please, if you haven't already, fill in the box on the ballot paper that was sent to your home address and post it off in the pre paid envelope
We are urging you to reject the pay offer as it stands and say yes to strike action.
Unite pays £70 per day to striking members who pay full contributions and £35 to those on part time contributions from day one. - We will not allow the loss of pay to force our members back to work.
Even if you fall in the area of the scale that has the extra %age on points 8 to 20, your pay rise this year {on top of  successive real terms pay cuts for the last 14 years) falls far short of keeping up with the cost of living.
Even if your vote is a no, please register it by returning the form. We need your view in order to collate a response.
Many thanks,
Martin & Matt


UPDATE - Movement on Grade Boundaries

You will be aware that the University and its campus unions have reached the end of our talks considering amendments to the grade boundaries of the University of Sheffield Grading Scheme. These negotiations began due to Unite’s successful 2021 campaign, which won a commitment to pay all staff at the University an hourly rate of at least £10 per hour.

Please see the proposal below:

Ground Boundary Proposal 

We recommend that you accept this proposal through this link as it represents the best that could have been achieved  through negotiation alone. We are content that we have achieved:

  • A proposal that signals an end to the university falling below the poverty pay threshold, by giving a living wage foundation guarantee. 

  • Changes to the grading structure to enable this.

  • Shift premia improvements. 

  • A commitment to further review the grade boundaries in 2024. 

This proposal will impact over 5000 staff, including most if not all of the members of staff in our negotiating sphere. We are pleased at the outcome for our members.

Please note that whilst the university has chosen - in the attached proposal - to include the UCEA cost of living increase, this is a separate issue over which the unions nationally are  still in dispute. We do not agree that forcing the increase through without agreement is right, and see it as an attempt to appease colleagues who share our opinion that the national pay offer is not good enough. We will continue to push for an increase through the national JNCHES negotiating process that more accurately reflects the cost-of-living challenges that we all face and will communicate further on this in due time.

March in Leeds for NHS!

There is still  time to fill in the Unite Pay Survery! The survey is open to everyone, not just union members, so if you have any colleagues  you think might be interested, please point them our way.

The Unite Pay Survey is LIVE!!!  

Pay Poster 

Have you say and  let your voice be heard!!


Union Meeting   -  27th May 2022

There is a union meeting this Friday (27th), 1pm - 2pm, Alfred Denny Building LT02.
Everyone welcome!


We Demand Better 

National Pay Negotiations Final Offer

Please find attached the final offer from UCEA in respect of the 2022-23 New JNCHES pay round. You will see that the pay uplift ranges from 3%-9%, we believe this is an insult to our members. With inflation running rampant, RPI recently hitting 11.1%, energy bills soaring and no-end in sight to the cost of living crisis, a real terms pay cut is not enough. 
We will shortly be conducting a pay survey, please keep this underhanded offer in mind and let your feelings known.
In solidarity,
Your University of Sheffield Unite Representatives

Pay Comparison with York

Along with other Unions, Unite will be going into talks with the uni over placement on the nation pay spine (this is separate to the national pay negotiations). If you want to get angry have a look at the comparison with York’s grade boundaries.

Pay Comparison - Sheffield & York 

Branch elections

Unite at Sheffield Univeristy and Union have held our elections. Thank you to everyone who took part and congratulations to all our reps. For the full list, look below!

Come Chat to YOUR Union Reps!

Branch reps will be coming on-site on central campus. Come and talk to them about what is going well, what is not going so well, what changes you would like to see at work. They will be at:

Wednesday 23rd March
2pm – 3pm
Diamond, Workroom 2
Wednesday 13th April
2pm – 3pm
Firth Court, Council room

No need to book, just show up.

Non-members welcome. Tell your friends and colleague

Help Grow the Union - Together we are Stronger You

These are unprecedented times.  We’re all concerned about keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe, and for many of us it’s also a time of worry and uncertainty about our incomes and job security.

Our trade unions help us to stand together when times are tough – protecting our lives and our livelihoods.

There’s never been a more important time to join a union. Ask a friend to join today! Introduce a new member to Unite and get a shopping card worth up to £25

Info Here


You Demanded No Fire & Rehire...
Member Unite and Win!

Victory for staff as University withdraws threat of fire and rehire!

Unite and our sister campus unions have achieved a huge victory for all workers at the University of Sheffield. After just 40 days of a 90-day consultation period, the University has been pressured into withdrawing Section 188, and along with it their threats to cut pay and to fire and rehire all 8,000 employees on reduced terms and conditions.

Read our S188 Victory Newsletter Here