Student Services Function Review

Feedback on the proposed Service Delivery Model has now closed. A summary of student feedback and how the University will respond is outlined below.


A vision for the University has been developed to enhance student services to deliver a seamless and high-quality University of Auckland experience for all current and future students, supporting participation, achievement, and success. 

The Student Services Function Review (SSFR) has been tasked with the design of an innovative service delivery model for student services that provides the building blocks for student success. 

Student-centred service, or mana motuhake, is the key driver to aligning our services and activities, so we can identify gaps in the service offering. The proposed service delivery model seeks to provide a student service experience that is consistent across all areas of the University and provides a full suite of services during your time with us. 

At its core, the Student Services Function Review will be consistent with work begun in Whakamana Tangata in holding the mauri (life principle) of Kia Whakamana i te tangata at its heart.

Update: August 2021

In May, students and staff were invited to provide feedback to the University’s proposal to enhance services for students at the University in line with Whakamana Tangata – the student services roadmap.

Feedback included a workshop with the Student Consultative Group (SCG) to gain feedback from student representatives on the proposed changes. Group and individual submissions were also received from students and staff through email and via an online survey.

A review committee met in late May to consider all individual and group feedback submissions.

Recommendations from the Committee were endorsed by University Executive Committee on 22 June. The Information below summarises the key changes for students, the feedback themes and how the University will respond.

Proposed Service delivery model guiding framework

The new service delivery model will be consistent with Waipapa Toitū, the University’s guiding framework aligned to the principles of manaakitanga,
kaitiakitanga and whanaungatanga. 

Waipapa Tangata Rau | Waipapa: The Place of Great People 

The model will be people-centred, understanding and expressing the full value of Manaakitanga and Whanaungatanga through student services.  

Waipapa ki Uta | Waipapa: The Landing Place 

Significant ongoing investment will be made into staff and student capability, ensuring understanding and expression of the deep concepts contained in Waipapa Toitū.  

Waipapa Herenga Waka | Waipapa: The Mooring Post 

Student services will provide effective outcomes for all students, embracing and working effectively with their situation, status and whakapapa.  

Waipapa Manawa Whenua | Waipapa: The Heartbeat 

The places and spaces of student service delivery (including digital) will manifest the stories, landmarks and treasures of the whenua. 

And the services will be measured against the following accountabilities: Te Tiriti o Waitangi; tika and pono; kaitiakitanga. 

Proposed changes to student services

Proposed key changes and the benefits for students is provided in more detail in the full document. Below is a summary of  key initiatives for students:

  • Establishing new Campus-based student hubs, with the main hub at City Campus and smaller hubs at Grafton, Epsom, Tai Tokerau and Tai Tonga. Student hubs will deliver a convenient and unified student ‘one-stop-shop’ for services from one place where all or most of student information, advisory and assistance will be provided by cross trained staff. Student hub staff will also connect students with expert services services in faculties and specialist services (i.e., specialist course and programme advice, health and counselling, career development) through referrals where required.
  • Specialist Programme Advisers based in faculties will provide specialist academic advice and support for students as they progress through their study to ensure they benefit from a student-centric customer experience.  
  • A  whole-of-student information and advisory providing one source of truth, that improves self-service for students on the web and other digital platforms. In addition it will enable and empower staff supporting students to provide routine information/navigation, offer advisory/consultancy under delegation and escalates complex matters to specialised experts in faculties and services based on the individual needs of the student..  
  • The transformation of the student contact centre  into a service for current and future students that:  
  1. takes positive action to support all students, including students at risk.
  2. supports future students through the decision making, application and enrolment process ,  including proactive follow-up with prospective students so they feel supported as they transition into university life.
  3. delivers enhanced call centre technology (including virtual assistant technology) enabling proactive and targeted support information and advice.
  4. gathers, analyses and translates student feedback into meaningful insights and action-based information to improve future educational and service offerings for students.
  • Support for academic leaders (Associate Deans, Academic Heads and Programme Directors) to tackle many of the demands and opportunities in their roles and ensure they have capacity to focus their efforts on the high-value activities aimed at delivering high quality student-centric educational offerings.

Student feedback and how the University will respond

What students told us How the University will respond
Overall support for the Service Delivery Model in theory, but success will depend on how it is put into practice.

Improve Information relating the Model and key changes and benefits specifically for students.

Provide clarity for students on how other services (ie, Campus Life, International Office, Student Support and Engagement) will interact with the new model, including interrelationships and responsibilities for care.

Acknowledge the importance of student input into the services that support them by maintaining effective relationships with students through existing forums and associations that foster participation and co-design.

Undertake a comprehensive review and analysis of internal processes to identify any
potential gaps (e.g. sub doctoral student support and complex admission processes)

The Service Delivery Model document was difficult to read and language hard to understand.

The timing and timeline for providing feedback was too short. 

Update and improve communication (visual and written) for students relating to key aspects of the new model, the timeline and context.

Detailed transition planning to ensure student services are not disrupted and feedback around timing is carefully considered in future opportunities for feedback. 

Perceptions that services were proposed to be centralised in the Campus based Student Hubs and faculty-based advice and support would no longer be available for students.

Provide clarity for students that specialist programme and course expertise and advice will still be available for students in faculties.

Provide clarity on how students will physically access Tier 3 specialist services (ie. in Hubs, in faculties, in service divisions) and avoid being ‘bounced’ between advice services.

The accessibility of Student Hub locations for specific groups of students (ie, Newmarket Campus, Law Faculty) Consider how Hub services are provided for key student groups at specific times of the year.
Perceptions that dedicated Māori and Pacific student support staff would be removed from faculties. Greater articulation that the Student Hubs will not take away specialist academic advice in faculties.
The desire for students to have a more active role in governance of Student Services and ongoing input into service design. Acknowledge the importance of student input into the services that support them, and maintain effective relationships with students through existing forums, hui and associations that foster participation and co-design.
  In addition, the University will also 
  Ensure spaces (physical and digital) are inclusive and welcoming for Māori; for Pacific students as well as those from all equity groups. Also need to consider how the space is reflective of the University’s place in Aotearoa and the wider Pacific.

Detailed transition planning for changes as a result of the new model for student
services will include careful considerations of the following:    

  • Ensuring student services are not disrupted.
  • Training to ensure Māori cultural competencies are prioritised to align to the new strategy and Waipapa Toitū the
    University’s new enduring framework.
  • Training specifically to develop wider Pacific cultural competencies.
  • Staff training to deliver new services is prioritised.
  • Detailed process reviews are undertaken to ensure there are no gaps in services for students.