The Institutional Planning and Performance Framework
The Vice-Chancellor's Committee (VCC) endorsed a project on 23 June 2004 to establish an Institutional Planning and Performance Framework (IPPF). The intention was to provide a coherent and transparent university-wide framework for performance monitoring, reporting, and planning which fulfils internal and external accountabilities and is consistent with good practice in Australian higher education.
The IPPF enables the University to:
- systematically monitor and report on outcomes against the University's objectives and targets
- integrate planning and resource allocation cycles for the purposes of making realistic and informed decisions on the University's core business activities
- use its performance reports and plans as the principal tools to effectively oversee progress against its strategic directions, statutory obligations and quality improvements
Under the IPPF model the University reviews performance and undertakes planning at all levels. This process is guided by a number of underlying elements:
- the need to ensure that the University's mission, vision and values are embedded in a Strategic Plan that supports the commitment to excellence needed for the organisation to thrive
- its strategic goals, objectives and targets
- the external environment in which it operates
- active collaboration and consultation with all stakeholders
- integration of University-level plans with Division/Unit-level and Faculty/School-level plans and budgets
- ensuring that plans consider past performance and continuous improvement principles
- ensuring ongoing financial sustainability
The key University Performance Reports that guide the development of all plans include:
- The University Annual Benchmarking Report
- Faculty Performance Reports
- Program Performance Reports
The key plans or groups of plans that outline the University’s direction include:
- The University Strategic Plan, which outlines its future direction and major strategies
- The University Operational Plan, which highlights how these strategies will be implemented
- The University Portfolio Operational Plans, which identify key activities and projects in the three divisions needed to support the achievement of University goals and Faculty plans
- The Faculty Business Plans, which identify specific plans, targets and resource needs of the academic faculties
- The University Capital Management Plan, which quantifies the investment required to sustain the University's facilities and infrastructure
- The University Budget, which comprises individual budgets for each major business unit and quantifies the revenue expectations and expenditure limits in each of those areas
Planning and Analytics is responsible for the University-wide planning and performance framework and related issues. The Planning and Analytics team provides management information on a predictable and cyclic basis, as well as conducting ad hoc statistical enquiries and analyses. The team is also responsible for the coordination of the University's statutory reporting obligations; for supporting internal load management and budget processes; survey management; and management of the data warehouse. In addition, the team supports the University Planning and Budgeting Committee, in cooperation with the Financial Services team.
University Planning and Budgeting Committee
The Planning and Budgeting Committee (PBC) provides advice to the Vice-Chancellor and President on matters relating to the planning and budgeting of the University.
Since its establishment in 2006, the PBC has overseen the ongoing integration of the University's planning and budgeting processes, the implementation of the key planning elements of the Institutional Planning and Performance Framework (IPPF) and the performance reporting requirements of the IPPF.
The Committee is convened by the Vice-Chancellor and President and its membership includes the:
- Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President (Academic)
- Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President (Research)
- Chief Operating Officer
- Executive Deans
- Chief Financial Officer
The Terms of Reference and scope of the Committee is determined by the Vice-Chancellor and President but may include the provision of advice on:
- development and implementation of strategic, operational and unit business and resource plans
- development and implementation of annual budgets and triennial budget planning processes
- issues of resource allocation
- development and implementation of integrated planning and budgeting processes
- development and implementation of targets and Key Performance Indicators
- investigation of any matters referred to it by the Vice-Chancellor and President
The Executive Officer of the committee is Mr Greg de Cure. He can be contacted by email: email@example.com or by phone: 8313 6075.
Guidelines for the preparation of papers can be found at
The Strategic Plan
The first Strategic Plan developed as part of the IPPF was Future Directions: The University Strategic Plan 2004-2008. This plan provided the University with a clear direction for the future and enabled achievement of its main goals - a commitment to our students and growth and sustainability in its traditional areas of strength – intensive research and high quality teaching.
It also focussed and directed the University to maximise opportunities and meet the challenges of a competitive Higher Education environment by setting out clear, high-level goals for the core areas of its business.
The 2008-2012 Strategic Plan sought to capitalise on the University's existing strengths but also take advantage of emerging opportunities, particularly in research. Building a Great Research University: The University of Adelaide Strategic Plan 2008-2012 was approved by Council on December 3, 2007 and formally reviewed and revised mid-cycle in late 2009.
With the inauguration of Professor Warren Bebbington as the University's 20th Vice-Chancellor in July 2012, the development of a new Strategic Plan commenced immediately.
Prepared in consultation with Council, staff and students, and external stakeholders, Beacon of Enlightenment: Strategic Plan 2013-2023, set a new and exciting direction for the University and took effect in January 2013.
In this plan, the University committed to a distinctive approach which recaptured the ideal of a research university, and sought an internationally-focussed staff and a tolerant, progressive student mix to prepare students for global citizenship in an increasingly borderless world.
On 4 March 2019, the Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Rathjen, announced the University of Adelaide's new Strategic Plan: Future Making. Future Making will challenge the University to realise our potential for the State and to claim our place as the truly global 21st century university for South Australia.
The Operational Plans
University Operational Plan
All University plans are based on the goals, strategies and targets established in the Strategic Plan. The University Operational Plan (UOP) lists medium-term, operational planning decisions at all levels.
The UOP highlights how the Strategic Plan will be put into effect by outlining the major operational activities for each of the Strategic Plan’s strategies for the next three years. It has a shorter and more immediate focus than the Strategic Plan and is reviewed and revised annually.
It identifies the key performance objectives and accountabilities, targets and major operational plans for the core of our business: Research and Research Training, Education, and Enabling activities.
It also highlights the major priorities and accountabilities of the Divisions and Faculties for the next three years, determined during the annual planning and budget process.
The University Operational Plan, and component Portfolio (Divisional) Operational Plans are reviewed by the University Planning and Budgeting Committee and approved by the Vice-Chancellor.
Faculty Business Plans
Faculty Business Plans describe how their areas will contribute to meeting the Strategic Plan's goals and key performance objectives, by addressing their specific plans for meeting growth targets, enhancing quality and service, and doing so in an efficient and sustainable manner.
They are three year plans that are revised and rolled forward annually. They are developed in response to the objectives established in the University Strategic Plan and help shape the annual budget process.
It is the responsibility of the Executive Deans to ensure that the Faculty Business Plans encapsulate the individual plans and contributions that will be made by their respective Schools.
Faculty Executive Deans are responsible for developing their Business Plans in line with the requirements of the planning and budget cycle and these plans are approved by the University Planning and Budgeting Committee.
The Financial Plans
The University Capital Management Plan
The University Capital Management Plan quantifies the University's capital investment plans and priorities for physical facilities and infrastructure.
It is a five year plan that is revised and rolled forward annually, forming a crucial component of the annual budget for the following year.
It is the responsibility of the Chief Operating Officer (University Operations) to ensure that the UCMP encapsulates the priority facilities requirements of all business areas in order that the University can meet its strategic objectives and targets.
The University Capital Management Plan is reviewed by the University Planning and Budgeting Committee and endorsed for approval by the Vice-Chancellor and President. As for the University Budget, Council gives final approval for the UCMP at its December meeting.
The University Budget
The University Budget quantifies planned revenue and expenditure for the next financial year. It is an annual plan but is developed in the context of long-term strategic goals and the operational priorities determined in the University Operational Plan. Equally, it considers the impacts of other relevant factors, such as Commonwealth Government reforms or changes in regulation and competition.
The budget development process is as follows:
- The University's previous year's financial performance is benchmarked and financial budget targets set in consultation with the Vice-Chancellor & President and in line with Council approved targets
- The University's funding priorities for the Budget are determined in the context of the objectives of the University's Strategic and Operational Plans
- Targets for student load and research income are prepared for the following year in consultation with Executive Deans and discretionary revenue calculated for the budget based on the agreed targets and known Commonwealth funding parameters
- Expected revenue is automatically allocated on an as-earned basis, based on the agreed financial budget targets set by the Vice-Chancellor & President and approved by Council
- Expenditure is calculated and allocated under agreed Budget parameters
- The University Budget is finalised
The Chief Financial Officer oversees the development of the Budget with PBC approving Faculty student load, research income and Higher Degrees by Research targets.
The University Budget is reviewed by PBC and endorsed for approval by Council.
Current strategic, operational and financial plans are available from the University Plans and Performance Reports page.
Performance Reporting is an integral component of the Institutional Planning and Performance Framework. It involves the development of a series of annual reports that support and inform management decision-making across the University. Each report serves a specific purpose and audience. They are delivered at the beginning of annual planning cycle and each contains the most up to date information available at the time of production.
Current performance reports are available from the University Plans and Performance Reports page.
- The University Annual Benchmarking Report
The primary audience for this report is The University of Adelaide Council. It is also a key management planning tool to review performance against the objectives of the University Strategic Plan.
Only the most critical indicators of organisational performance are presented in the report. Critical in that they measure performance in areas of most risk to the University, can be reported with greater frequency, be forecast and be benchmarked.
Lead indicators of organisation performance such as the four drivers of Research Block Grant performance are presented. The majority of indicators are also ‘Line of Sight’ indicators providing demonstrable alignment between individual contributions, management accountabilities and organisational goals.
For each indicator, the University’s current year result and Target are presented and a Status marker indicates whether the Target was met or where performance has fallen significantly short of target. A 5 year time series of past University performance for each indicator is also shown. A 5 year time series of Benchmarking is presented as relative performance against National or State and Go8 averages.
Specific definitions of the indicators and the report legend are provided on the last page of the report.
More detail on each indicator, such as Student Load at the Commencing/Continuing level, remains available for analysis upon request.
- The Faculty Annual Performance Reports
The primary audience of this report will be Academic Board, Faculty Boards and Faculty management within the schools. It is a key management planning tool used to review performance against the objectives of the University Strategic Plan and in developing each Faculty's Business Plans.
The Faculty Performance Scorecard which presents the Faculty cut of the University Performance Scorecard which has been designed to illustrate performance against targets set in the Strategic Plan. Only the most critical indicators of organisational performance are presented on the scorecard. Lead indicators of organisation performance such as the four drivers of Research Block Grant performance are presented. The majority of indicators are also ‘Line of Sight’ indicators providing demonstrable alignment between individual contributions, management accountabilities and organisational goal.
For each indicator, the Faculty’s previous year result and Target are presented and a Status marker indicates whether the Target was met or where performance has fallen significantly short of target. A 5 year time series of past Faculty performance for each indicator is also shown. A 5 year time series of benchmarking is presented as relative performance against the University result. Specific definitions of the indicators and the report legend are provided as the final page of the scorecard.