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The University of Southampton
Professional Development

Planning your development

In order to be as successful as you can be in your current role, reach your full potential and, where possible, achieve your ambitions, it is important to take control of your own development.

Others are available to offer support, your manager, professional development colleagues and your mentor (if you have chosen to have one), but ultimately your development and career progression is in your hands.

Using this website

This website contains information about a range of development opportunities available and helpful resources. It has been broken down into relevant focus areas. For more assistance, speak to your Line Manager.

Learning and teachingResearch and impactLeadership and management
TechniciansDigital SkillsEnterprise

Taking control

As a starting point, set aside time to reflect on your current knowledge, experience, skills and behaviours. Identify your strengths and those areas that perhaps need further development, if you are to achieve greater success in your current role, or be in a position to progress to a role to which you aspire.

Having identified areas for development, investigate the different ways that you can meet those needs, and with the support of your manager and/or mentor create and put into action a development action plan. Be realistic with your timescales. Following this action plan will then put yourself in control of your learning and subsequent career.

When to start

Identifying your current development needs and creating and updating your personal development action plan can take place at any time; it is never too soon for you to start thinking. As a minimum, you will have the opportunity to discuss your development as part of your induction, probation and at your annual Appraisal meeting.

What information is available to guide me?

Comparison of your current knowledge, experience, skills and behaviours against those expected of someone at your current level/role, or role to which you aspire, will help you identify your priorities for development.

The expected contribution from Education, Research and Enterprise (ERE) staff at every level, is set out in the University's Career Pathways Framework supplemented by faculty specific requirements.

Expectations of Management, Specialist and Administrative (MSA), Community and Operational (CAO), Technical and Experimental (TAE) posts can be found on the job description and person specification for the role.

The range of development opportunities available

Having identified your development needs, avoid the temptation to instantly search for the corresponding workshop. There are many routes to development, with the most appropriate one depending on the nature of the development need and your preferred learning style. 

Options include:

Some of the above options may incur cost/absence from the workplace and as such are subject to operational requirements and the approval of the relevant budget holder, Head of Academic Unit/Service or in some instances the COO/Dean. Approval of staff development requests are subject to faculty/service priorities and budgets, so if your chosen option is not possible, you may need to think of an alternative route to meeting a development need.

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