The UKâ€™s European university
VISITING & HONORARY APPOINTMENTS New policies, procedures and support
Table of contents 3 4 10 11 12 13 34
Stakeholder’s involvement UKVI Immigration Rules EG update – internal checks Visiting and Honorary application process Important considerations – the academic host Important considerations – the school administrator Summary
Stakeholders’ involvement •
Anthony Manning To ensure compliance and to support and enhance the experience of visitors and honorary appointments for institutional benefit. •
HR Department To protect the University license and reputation and to support the process, implementation and training for all staff involved. •
Head of Schools (HoS) To meet the HoS responsibilities as described in the Policy.
School V&H Administrators (SVHA) To manage and administer the application through the different stages.
Academic Hosts (AH) To meet the Academic Host responsibilities as described in the Policy.
UKVI Immigration Rules UKVI â€“ Visitor Immigration rules introduced in 2015 Definition: â€˜A visitor is a person who is coming to the UK, usually for up to six months, for a temporary purpose, for example as a tourist, to visit friends or family or to carry out a business activity. Visitors cannot work or study in the UK unless this is allowed by the permitted activities that are set out in these Visitor Rules. Each visitor must meet the requirements of these Visitor Rules. Applications are decided based on the information provided by the applicant and any other relevant circumstances at the date of decision.â€™
Visitors from overseas Visitors coming to the University from outside the EEA are required to enter the UK under an immigration category appropriate for their intended activities. Why is it important? So that the University retains its sponsor licence, it is important that we comply with immigration rules and protect the UK immigration system. We also want to ensure that our visitors obtain the correct visa and have a trouble free application process and enter the UK without being stopped. Who do the visitor immigration rules apply to? Anyone who is not a UK, EEA or Swiss national will need to enter the UK with the correct type of visit visa.
Relevant Visitor Visas Visit Visa
• • • •
• • •
Permitted Paid Engagements (PPE) visit
• • • •
The maximum length of stay that can be granted:
Independent research whilst on sabbatical leave Gather information or advise on an international project led from the UK (through meetings) Give a one off or short series of talks (not for commercial gain) Must be employed by an academic institution overseas
Attend meetings conferences or interviews Gathering information for their employment overseas including planning future research collaborations (but not conducting the research) Give a one off or short series of talks (not for commercial gain)
Give lectures in their subject area (but not filling a teaching role) Act as an examiner Must be paid a fee Must be employed by an academic institution overseas
Tier 5 (Government Authorised Exchange) • Aims to ‘share knowledge, experience and best practice’ without harming the resident labour market. • Allows individuals to undertake research programmes and fellowships on a scientific, academic, medical, or government research project at a UK Higher Education Institution for a maximum of 24 months. • Researchers are usually employed by an overseas institution, and/or may have been awarded a grant to fund their research in the UK. They are not employed by the University, but are collaborating on research projects within the University on a temporary basis.
Sponsored researchers – UKVI definition ‘A person who wishes to come to the UK to lead or to take part in any formal research project. Formal research projects are those hosted but not necessarily funded by a UK research institution including universities. The sponsored researcher fills a research post and works under the full or partial control of the institution, which will itself benefit from the research. Sponsored researchers can be funded from sources in the UK or overseas.’ Page 7
The purpose of the visit and correct visa route
Points to consider • Consider any immigration restrictions before the visit is planned. • Consider the planned activities and is there an appropriate visa route. • What is the start date of the visit and is there adequate time for a visa application? • Does the visitor need to apply for a visa before arriving in the UK? • Who is funding the visit and will the visitor receive expenses from a UK source? • Ensure the correct visa letter is issued. • Understand the permitted activities so that the visitor is not asked to undertake duties which breach their visa conditions. Further information, guidance and support can be found on the Staff Immigration Website.
EG update – document checks To meet internal requirements, a check must be conducted on ALL visitors coming to Kent for 4 weeks or more. The type of check we do is dependant upon where the visitor is travelling from, directed as follows: • To undertake a document check on all visitors travelling from outside of the UK, on the first day of their visit. • To make subsequent annual checks where the initial check identifies that a visa is required. • To undertake informal checks for all other visitors.
Visiting and Honorary Application Process This process involves 2 stages: 1. 2.
Application of an appointment online through the Visiting and Honorary SharePoint site. Management of the application on SharePoint through the various steps.
This process only needs to be followed for appointments lasting 4 weeks or more, OR if an IT account and access to the library is required regardless of length of appointment.
Please note: some SharePoint functions do not work in Chrome. We therefore recommend you use Internet Explorer when accessing the V&H and SharePoint sites. Page 11
Important considerations – the Academic Host It is really important that the AH prepares as much as possible for an application and uses the checklist below to prevent delays in the process. They should also make themselves familiar with the Host Responsibilities as outlined in the Visiting and Honorary Applications Policy available on the V&H website. Pre-application checklist Has a discussion taken place with the HoS about the appointment? Do you know the name of the appointee as it appears on their passport? Is the visitor a non-EEA national? If so – seek advice from website or HR Immigration Team. Do you have a current CV for the applicant? Have you ensured that the start/end dates of the visiting appointment are on a University of Kent working weekday?
Important considerations – the School V&H Administrator It is important that the School Administrator writes notes and/or uploads correspondence to the SharePoint record (e.g. minor changes such as name errors, incorrect title or arrival date, HoS approved 01/01/18) that are made to the application, for auditing and compliance purposes. Notes or emails should include the details of the change, including the reason and the date that the change was made. More significant changes, which would require re-approval through completion of a new application form, include: • • •
extension of the original approved period; change in the nature or justification of the visit; changes to planned activities.
V&H website homepage The V&H homepage has two sections; one for staff and the other for visitors. Staff need their Kent ID to access the staff pages where they can make an application and find supportive documentation (policy, visa information, training documents, FAQ etc.) Kent staff access here Visitor information here The homepage is designed to be more customer facing as V&H appointees can be directed to this page for support. The URL for the website is as follows: https://www.kent.ac.uk/hon-vis/
Kent staff homepage
Schools can access these training slides and the V&H Application Process Map through the training and support section of the V&H website.
These training slides are numbered to correspond with the steps in the V&H Application Process Map.
Clicking the application form button will transfer to the secure SharePoint site which can be accessed here.
AH fills out application form online. Before submitting the form we highly recommend the AH discusses the appointment with the HoS.
The application form should be completed accurately by the AH. Once the form has been submitted, it will automatically be populated into SharePoint. If there are mistakes to the form once submitted, the SharePoint record can be amended by the SVHA, not by the AH. The form contains supportive links and prompts which should be used to minimise mistakes and time lost resolving queries.
The form can be saved at any time by
clicking the ‘save as draft’ at bottom of the form.
A link to the application form will be sent by email to the person completing the form indicating that a draft version has been saved and how to edit it.
Application form (visa considerations)
Any visa considerations for the applicant should not be confused with internal checks required by the University. The application form contains a response for visa requirements. Hosts and Schools need to understand some simple visa legislation but do not guess – HR Immigration are on hand to offer support and advice where needed.
Consideration should be given to the type of activities the visitor will be carrying out at Kent. The correct visa route should be chosen (page 8) and entered into the visa notes in the SharePoint record. Visitors coming for less than 4 weeks do not need an internal check but may still need a visa to enter the UK. Anyone that does not feel confident should contact Immigration for further training.
Application form (internal checks: travelling from outside UK)
ALL visitors must have a check carried out if visiting for 4 weeks or more and should answer either question 1 OR 2 as directed on the form. The type of check depends on whether they are travelling from outside the UK or not. If a visitor is travelling from outside the UK, question 1 should be answered to indicate whether they are visiting for 4 weeks or more, and therefore whether a document check is required on their first day.
Consideration should be given to whether the applicant is travelling from outside the UK or not. Visitors travelling from outside the UK must have their documents checked, copied and uploaded to the SharePoint record on their first day if visiting for 4 weeks or more. Subsequent annual visa checks should be made if the initial check identifies that a visa is required.
NOTE: If a visitor is travelling from outside the UK to visit Kent for less than 4 weeks but require IT account / library access, a form should be submitted but a document check is NOT required. Page 18
Application form (internal checks: UK-based visitors)
Documentation checks are not required on visitors already based in the UK, however an informal check must be undertaken. The form contains drop down options of ways in which the informal check can be met. This should be quite straightforward but there is the option of ‘other’ should a suitable alternative not be listed and should be specified in the box below it.
If the visitor is already based in the UK, ensure the AH has completed a check and uploaded necessary evidence to the SharePoint form. The AH should tick to confirm they have carried out the informal check, where applicable. If the appointment is less than 4 weeks, then no check is required and the appropriate selection should be made.
Application form (professors)
Those applicants wishing to convey the title of Professor should have authorisation from Keith Lampard, Secretary to the Council, to maintain University standards.
If ‘Professor’ title is selected, the AH must liaise with Keith Lampard for approval before continuing.
The justification for the title should be explained in an email to KL.
The AH must tick the box to confirm
that approval has been granted from Keith Lampard and that it has been attached to the form.
Submission of the online form by the
AH triggers an email to SVHA informing them that an application has been made.
The email contains a link to the SharePoint form.
The SVHA should check the application and raise any queries with the AH before forwarding to the HoS for approval. The HoS will receive the email link to the application form, querying any content with the AH. Any changes should be communicated to the SVHA to change on SharePoint (this is unlikely if the AH has discussed the appointment in advance with the HoS).
If approval is granted, a statement of
approval should be written via return email and sent back to the SVHA.
SVHA then uploads approval email to the SharePoint record.
SVHA then changes the status to ‘approved HoS’.
Statuses allow the system to be transparent and are therefore critical to ensure the smooth running of the process.
Quick Help: Changing Status
Go into Edit Mode: Click on a record Select ‘List’ (top left in the ribbon) Select ‘Quick Edit’ (top left) Make your status change Select ‘View’ (top left)
The SVHA needs to email HR about the HoS approval so that the application can be forwarded for final approval by David Nightingale (DRN) on behalf of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for the University (OVC).
SVHA emails the HR V&H Admin informing that approval is met.
Schools can locally add and remove staff to
their V&H admin email boxes. This is helpful if you have to cover for sickness and holidays within the School. This will NOT give them permission to access the School SharePoint records – please contact HR for this.
HR requests approval
Following approval from the HoS, the HR V&H Admin will check the application and if there are queries will raise this with the SVHA.
HR V&H Admin communicates to PA of DRN (Heather Harrow) to seek final approval.
HR V&H Admin then change application status to ‘awaiting OVC approval’.
DRN reviews the application and makes the decision to approve or reject.
Heather changes the status to ‘OVC approved’.
Once the status has been changed,
Heather will no longer be able to see the appointment.
Heather returns the email link to HR V&H Admin informing the outcome.
HR V&H Admin uploads the confirmation to the SharePoint record.
HR create an employee number
HR V&H Admin informs the School of the decision of the appointment.
HR V&H Admin organises the generation of an employee number and adds it into the ‘Emp. No.’ column in SharePoint.
HR V&H Admin informs the School of the employee number.
The SVHA uses the employee number to
arrange an IT account to be created, access to the library to be granted, and a ‘KentOne’ card to be created.
The notes box can be freely edited and
used as a communication channel between departments if necessary. It is also useful as a log of any key changes that have taken place regarding the appointment.
Quick Help: Making notes
Go into Edit Mode (see Slide 26). Click on the notes box. Make your desired changes. Select ‘View’ (top left) to finish.
Letters are sent out
The SVHA can now inform the AH of the outcome of the appointment as all approval steps have been undertaken.
SVHA generates a letter using one of the
appropriate templates for the HoS to sign and are available on the V&H website:
A copy of this letter, and any other
correspondence, should be uploaded to the SharePoint record.
There are template letters for appointment offers, cancellations, suspensions, revisions, renewals, and also for visa related matters.
A new letter should be sent if the appointment changes.
Do not save the templates to desktop, as updated letters may be introduced.
Preparing for the visit
The SVHA should notify the AH a week before the start of the appointment, reminding that a copy of documentation is required, if travelling from outside the UK. If the arrival dates change or the visit has been cancelled/delayed inform HR V&H Admin. If Tier 5, HR Immigration must also be informed.
ďƒź SVHA to update the status accordingly, if the appointment is delayed or cancelled.
ďƒź Appropriate letters confirming the changes
to the original appointment should be sent.
ďƒź Notes must be written if there are changes
to the planned start date of the appointment so that it is clear what has changed and why.
The visitor arrives
The visitor should report in person to the SVHA on the first day of the appointment in order to undertake a document check if travelling from outside the UK (where applicable), and to provide a KentOne card, IT account details and arrange a health and safety induction. To satisfy internal requirements, the SVHA is required to enter details into the SharePoint record to confirm arrival of the visitor and confirm whether checks were undertaken.
ďƒź SVHA verifies, copies, stamps and uploads documents to SharePoint record, if the visitor is travelling from outside of the UK.
ďƒź If the visitor has been granted a visa to enter the UK, ensure the period of leave covers the duration of the visit and the planned duties are permitted.
ďƒź If the visitor has been granted a visa and the planned visit appointment is more than one year, an annual visa check should be diarised and once completed recorded in the correct column.
When the end of an appointment approaches, the SVHA should check whether a renewal is required with the AH. Appointments can be viewed best by filtering them so that the first appointment is expiring soonest. A renewal should be continuous from the previous appointment – no gaps – and ‘renewal’ is selected on the application form. If there is a gap of 1 day or more between the end date and the proposed new start date, then it is not a renewal and a new appointment should be applied for; ‘new’ is selected on the application form.
SVHA should notify the AH at least 30 days prior to the end date to enable time for the renewal to be approved.
For good practice, it is advised to check the
appointments at least weekly for your school to ensure that they do not expire and that the AH is kept informed of the status should the end date be approaching.
Quick Help: filtering by date
Select the column you want to sort (E.g. date). Click on the small arrow next to the column title. Select Ascending from the drop down list. Select ‘View’ (top left) to finish.
When a renewal has been submitted there will be 2 records in SharePoint: one that is active, and one being processed (or one that has been approved waiting to start).
SVHA should ensure that there is continuous service, as in the example below. 2 records will be held until the ‘old’ appointment expires at which point it can be archived by the school.
The status needs changing to ‘ARCHIVED’ at which point it will disappear into the School Archived
folder (e.g. Psychology – ARCHIVED). Note – this is the only occasion that a School would archive a record in SharePoint. When an appointment ends, this is managed by HR (step 14).
No records can be deleted, only archived - these have a separate view in SharePoint. If you need to delete a record, please contact HR.
IMPORTANT: For renewals, it is vital that a new entry is created rather than changing data in the approved SharePoint record as it will be unauthorised.
The end of the appointment
When a visiting appointment end date approaches, the record will need to be prepared for closing down and archiving.
ďƒź SVHA should advise the AH 7 days before the end of the appointment informing that card access and IT login will cease.
ďƒź The AH needs to know because we must ensure that on the end date of the appointment the visitor has actually left campus (this is one reason why the end date should be on a weekday).
The visitor leaves
The visitor should leave on the end date of the appointment. If there is a problem, they should inform the SVHA immediately who should liaise with HR V&H Admin.
AH should confirm in writing that the visitor has left and the date that this occurred.
If Tier 5, this email should be forwarded to HR Immigration and HR V&H Admin to action.
All emails should be uploaded to SharePoint by the SVHA.
Reporting on the movements of visitors is
important especially if they came to Kent on a visa.
Closing the record
Once the appointment has ended and confirmation has been received from the AH, the record within SharePoint and HR can be formally closed down.
SVHA emails HR V&H Admin to request that
the SharePoint entry be archived and that the Staff Connect entry be closed down.
HR V&H Admin will archive the record by
changing the status to ‘ARCHIVED’. It will disappear in the School view, and appear in the School Archived view.
In Summary The new V&H process will place more ownership with the schools to manage their visiting and honorary appointments. It comes with the following benefits for the schools:
• • • • • •
There will be more control to manage your own appointments closely; The process will be secure with no unnecessary duplication of paperwork; The process will be much quicker as many of the steps are managed on SharePoint; There is greater transparency of what stage each application is at; All supportive documentation is centralised and easy to access on the V&H website; There will be ongoing support from various departments to ensure the process is smooth.
THE UKâ€™S EUROPEAN UNIVERSITY