Vice-Chancellor's Excellence Awards Guidelines


Awards for professional staff excellence have been provided since 2003. A review of the professional staff excellence awards was held in 2015. The intention of these revised awards is to recognise a wide range of activities aligned to the 5D Leadership Framework that support the achievement of the objectives outlined in the University of Auckland Strategic Plan 2013-2020.

There are five Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards for professional staff that may be given each year.

In addition there are two Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards which professional staff may also be nominated for along with academic staff and students.


These guidelines apply to all professional staff and academic staff members of the University of Auckland (either individuals or teams) who hold either permanent or fixed term positions of six months or more.

Nominations for the Health, Safety and Wellbeing and Environmental Sustainability categories may also include students, who will need to follow the designated nomination process.


The Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards recognise and reward excellence in:

  • Leadership
  • Customer/Stakeholder Experience
  • Enabling people
  • Community Engagement
  • Delivering Results
  • Health, Safety and Wellbeing
  • Environmental Sustainability

that contribute to the University’s teaching, research and community service endeavours.


There are five Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards in the Professional Staff category. These awards are aligned to the five Dimensions of the Leadership Framework and the objectives of the Strategic Plan 2013-2020.

Categories for Vice-Chancellor's Excellence Awards Professional Staff

Nominations for individual/team should be made in one of the following five categories:

Rangatiratanga Exhibiting Personal Leadership: Leadership

Excellence in leadership that inspires cooperation, higher levels of achievement, and supports the University’s values and aspirations.

This award is for an individual nomination.

Mana Tohu Setting Direction: Customer/Stakeholder Experience

Excellence in enhancing student/staff experience.

Hāpai Enabling People: Enabling People

Excellence in fostering an equitable, inclusive and engaging culture to support the development and performance of individuals/teams and/or the University’s partnership with Māori.

Whakamatāra Innovating and Engaging: Community Engagement

Excellence in creating or enhancing relationships with the wider community to foster our local, national and international standing.

Whai hua Achieving Results: Delivering Results

Excellence in providing professional services that exceed expected results and/or supports the diversification/growth of the University’s revenue sources.

A Category Information Sheet will be available on the staff intranet containing Indicators of Excellence for each award category.

Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards-Health, Safety and Wellbeing and Environmental Sustainability

Professional staff, academic staff and students (individual/team) may be nominated in one of the following two categories:

Mana Tohu Setting Direction: Health, Safety and Wellbeing

Excellence in enhancing the health, safety and wellbeing of students/staff and stakeholders.

Whai hua Achieving Results: Environmental Sustainability

Excellence in enhancing the University’s environmental performance and sustainability.

A Category Information Sheet will be available on the staff intranet containing Indicators of Excellence for the two award categories.

Nomination Process

  • Nominations for the Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards open annually on 1 February. Final nominations are to be sent to People and Organisational Development (POD) no later than 31 March each year.
  • Nominations need to be completed by the nominator(s) on the official nomination form, available online.
  • All nominations are assessed firstly by the faculty/service division leadership teams. The final nominations selected for consideration are to be signed off by the Dean or Director and forwarded to POD for presentation to the Vice Chancellor’s Excellence Awards Selection Committee.
  • Nominations should be of a high caliber and each faculty/service division does not need to nominate for all 5 categories.
  • The category of Leadership is for an individual nominee. For all other award categories an individual or a team may be nominated.

Please select the category carefully. Each nomination can be submitted for only one award category.

Selection Criteria

In assessing excellence, the selection committee will take into account supporting information which should include the following:

  • A statement about the activity that the nominee/s undertook
  • Information on the impact of the activities
  • How the activity will contribute to the achievement of the University’s strategic objectives
  • How the activity links to the 5D Leadership Framework
  • Potential for transferability of the activity to other areas of the University
  • Contributions to the development of ‘best practice’.

Selection Process

Faculties/service divisions are encouraged to recognise excellent performance within their area.

The awards are contestable across the University and carry with them a citation and monetary prize (which is taxable).

The selection committee reserves the right to change the category in which the award will be granted, or not to make awards in all categories.

The decision of the selection committee will be final.

The Vice Chancellor will appoint the Selection Committee which could include:

  • DVC (Operations) and Registrar
  • Director of Human Resources
  • People & Organisational Development Manager
  • 3-5 other members appointed annually based on their experience and skills relating to the award categories.

Presentation of Awards

The maximum individual/team amount to be awarded per category will be $2000.

The Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards will be presented by the Vice-Chancellor at a function held for the occasion at the end of Semester One – the date to be advised annually.

Expectations of Award Winners

Award winners are encouraged to make their practices more widely known throughout the University. Examples include:

  • Written report of the activity/innovation for dissemination via the website or other media
  • Presentation at the Professional Staff Conference or other appropriate conference
  • Presentation at a departmental meeting or the Professional Staff Managers Forum, other forums, stakeholder meetings
  • Contribution to professional development activities.


The following definitions apply to this document:

Staff member refers to an individual employed on a full time or part time basis; or employed in a fixed term position of six months or more.

Student refers to a currently or enrolled in the year prior to the Award.

University means the University of Auckland and including all subsidiaries.

Key relevant documents

Document management and control

Prepared by: Associate Director, Organisational Development
Owned by: Director Human Resources
Date approved: 9 December 2016
Review date: 9 December 2019