TRAC and the workload model
One of the objectives of the Innovation and Transformation Fund project was to gather best practices to help define the sector’s TRAC (Transparent Approach to Costing) requirements deemed acceptable for using a workload model as the basis for the University’s TRAC submission.
Below is a brief summary of the work that was done on TRAC in the context of the workload model.
In November 2011, UWE carried out a limited pilot involving three departments based on the spreadsheet and focusing on the data from the academic year 2010/2011. The data was compared to the Time Allocation Schedule (TAS) survey results.
In February 2012, there was a KPMG initial internal audit which made recommendations to put together a formal project on workload planning improvement. The audit identified a way forward including the need for a new system and changes to make the workload planning process compliant for TRAC purposes.
In 2013, UWE ran an extended pilot which aimed at comparing TRAC data generated from the previous TAS and the data generated from the workload model spreadsheets. The results from the pilot allowed the project team to make adjustments to the data collection process and confirm that the data generated from the workload model was as robust (if not more robust) as the data generated from the Time Allocation Schedule.
Benchmarking and best practice
Since January 2013, UWE has researched how TRAC data from WLM systems is generated in other HEIs. UWE has worked with KPMG, the TRAC Development Group (TDG) and several institutions via the Innovation and Trasnformation Fund project's Advisory Group, to propose and implement within WAMS a solution for producing a compliant TRAC data reporting process.
Review and compliance
In September 2013, KPMG carried out a TRAC compliance review which resulted in two non-vital improvements for UWE and its workload management system (WAMS) to be TRAC compliant.
As per the UWE experience, KPMG recommend that the data generated from TAS and the TRAC data generated from the WLM are run together in parallel in order to monitor and understand any variation between the two methods of collection. It is advisable to get input from the University's internal auditor as a sense check.
Did you know?
UWE contributed to the TRAC Development Group practitioners conference in London (October 2013).
Classification of TRAC categories
All allocations of workload must be attributed to a TRAC category code. Please consult the UWE classification of TRAC categories.