A. Professional Services Hubs

1. What does a Professional Services Hub look like at ACU?

Our six Professional Services Hubs at ACU consist of a group of professional staff located across several campuses.

The Hubs are not a replacement for Service Central and most staff will continue to access Service Central for service requests. The hubs are key enablers for staff and students to access the right services, depending on the needs of the client.

At ACU we have two types of hubs: Portfolio Hubs and Faculty Hubs which differ in focus and scale to meet the different needs of their clients.

Portfolio Hubs solve complex problems. They ensure specialist support and resources are applied in a consistent and holistic way for executive and senior managers within portfolios.

There are three Portfolio Hubs: Corporate Services, Education and Vice President, and Provost and DVCRE.

Faculty Hubs collaborate to efficiently streamline Faculty-based processes in service delivery for a seamless experience for all staff and students.

There are three Faculty Hubs: Faculty of Education and Arts, Faculty of Health Sciences and a combined Faculty of Law and Business and Faculty of Theology and Philosophy.

The hubs include Business Partners from Service Directorates to assist with providing direct services to staff without unnecessary layers. Service Directorates are generally not part of the Hubs,

2. Why did ACU introduce the Professional Services Hubs model?

ACU introduced a Professional Services Hubs model as the university identified silos and a level of duplication across the delivery of professional services. ACU recognised that complex problems required the integration of advice from several different specialist professional areas.

This service model was introduced to provide portfolios and faculties with a greater level of proactive coordination and integration across specialist professional services to ultimately improve services for staff and students.

The objectives of the Professional Services Hubs model include:

  • To centralise specialist activities enabling central strategy setting, capability building and greater efficiency through streamlining processes, service improvements and an optimal workforce.
  • To create stronger partnerships across portfolios and faculties by providing closer support, coordinated decision making and governance that aligns to the assigned area.
  • To reduce fragmentation and silos by integrating distributed services, shifting the culture from top-down management and providing aligned processes and services.
  • To model support teams consistently across Faculties where beneficial, to suit faculty specific activity such as laboratory, clinical, technical and placement support.

3. Who are accountable for the hubs?

There are six Professional Services Hubs across ACU each governed by a Director, Strategy and Operations (DSO) who is responsible for each hub's performance. The DSO keep their relevant Portfolio Head or Faculty Executive Dean informed of developments, important issues and seek their approval within the delegations.

The Portfolio Head or Faculty Executive Dean is accountable for their respective hub.

4. What is a DSO and what do they do?

Reporting to their respective Portfolio Head or Faculty Executive Dean, a Director, Strategy and Operations (DSO), is a member of the Executive - a new strategic role which leads the implementation and ongoing delivery of the services within their respective hubs. The role works collaboratively with the Professional Services Group, Service Directorates and faculties to achieve this in alignment with the ACU mission and strategic plan.

The primary responsibility of a DSO is to coordinate and to advocate on behalf of their portfolio or faculty executive member to achieve the outcomes of their portfolio or faculty.

Specifically, the DSO contributes to the performance of the hub through:

  1. Providing strategic leadership and oversight of university processes and working on common matters that impact on cost and workforce efficiencies.
  2. Analysing and identifying deficiencies in practices and collaborating closely with subject matter experts within individual Service Directorates, Faculties or Schools to provide holistic solutions.
  3. Providing professional development opportunities to hub staff to enhance participation and uplift culture.
  4. collaborating across hubs, building a shared understanding of processes across the university and ensuring hubs are key stewards for the entire university.

5. What is the Professional Services Hub Group?

The Professional Services Hub Group supports the implementation and ongoing delivery of the Professional Services Hubs across the university. The DSOs work in collaboration through the Professional Services Hub Group.

This group works to mature the service model and ensures collaboration, alignment, and collective prioritisation of service improvement initiatives.

6. What do the hubs look like?

The following diagrams provide a visual overview of the Portfolio Hubs and Faculty Hubs.

Corporate Services

Provost and DVCRE

Education and Vice President

Faculty of Health Sciences

Faculty of Education and Arts

Faculty of Law and Business and Faculty of Theology and Philosophy

B. Business Partners

7. What is a Business Partner and what is their role in the hubs?

The six hubs have a unique set of distributed or specific functions and Business Partners bring dedicated expertise to enable the hubs to work effectively.

Professional Service Hubs

Business Partners

PSH - Corporate Services Portfolio

  • Finance & Planning
  • People & Capability
  • Service Improvement

PSH - Education and Vice President Portfolios

  • Finance & Planning
  • People & Capability
  • Service Improvement

PSH - Provost and DVC Research and Enterprise Portfolios

  • Finance & Planning
  • People & Capability
  • Service Improvement

PSH - Faculty of Education and Arts

  • Finance & Planning
  • People & Capability
  • Marketing
  • Service Improvement

PSH - Faculty of Health Sciences

  • Finance & Planning
  • People & Capability
  • Marketing
  • Service Improvement

PSH - Faculty of Law and Business, and Faculty of Theology and Philosophy

  • Finance & Planning
  • People & Capability
  • Marketing
  • Service Improvement

The role of a Business Partner in hubs is to:

  • Be a strategic partner and change agent.
  • Provide professional advice, coaching and consulting to enable to effective alignment of financial/people/service improvement strategies with portfolio/faculty objectives.
  • Provide subject matter expertise and relationship management across the portfolio/faculty.
  • Develop a deep understanding of the 'business', working closely with staff to set priorities and achieve stated goals.
  • Cultivate productive, collaborative working relationships and outcomes through open and inclusive planning, continuous information sharing and transparent work practices.
  • Support business transformation and operational effectiveness.
  • Develop and deliver quality solutions and initiatives to drive capability uplift and organisational advancement.
  • Analyse data to identify trends and develop recommendations for improvement and for contribution to reports.

8. How do Business Partners work together and collectively prioritise their work?

Business Partners work with their Associate Director/Director to prioritise and distribute work within the Service Directorate. The Associate Director/Director guides the prioritisation and allocation of resourcing to deliver work in-line with university priorities. Business Partners co-located within a hub also work together to solve complex portfolio or faculty problems, and to provide holistic solutions which may be shared across hubs for broader organisational benefit.

Business Partners report to an Associate Director or Director in their Service Directorate with a dotted line to their respective DSO.

9. Will there be more Business Partners at some point?

The hubs model will evolve and the DSOs will continuously review offerings and business partnering following the establishment period.

C. Hub access and service

10. How do the hubs differ from Service Central?

Service Central continues to be the first point for service requests and enquiries. The hubs provide another layer to the Service Model to service those enquiries of a more complex nature than Service Central. The hubs are an escalation point and also coordinate responses involving multiple functions or services.

ACU Service Model



11. How do I access the hubs?

While the DSO is the coordination point for liaising with the hubs, professional staff services in the hubs will continue as usual. ACU staff will be notified of any changes as they evolve.

12. How do I provide feedback on a hub?

Direct feedback on hubs can be provided to the relevant DSO. Professional Services Hubs will analyse feedback from staff, identify issues and gaps, and refine their services.

13. How do I escalate a matter if not resolved by a hub?

The ACU Service Catalogue defines Services and Service Leads. Hub services will soon be added to the ACU Service Catalogue. The first escalation for an issue with a hub matter is to the DSO.

Page last updated on 20/03/2024

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