No, they are quite different. Fully centralized services are entirely controlled and supplied by an organization and its staff tied to a central campus administrative unit. Think, for example, of the heat and water provided to all campus buildings, or campus legal affairs. Occasionally a centralized campus service will introduce one of its staff into a local unit (School or College Division), typically when the volume of activity there is unusually high (e.g., a campus attorney for UCLA Health). Normally, however, fully centralized services do not require implementing staff to be part of any School or Division’s own administrative team.

In recent decades, many UCLA services (e.g., academic personnel, staff human resources, research administration, IT) have been quite decentralized. Although policies have been established and approvals have been required by organizations at the center led by Vice Chancellors or other senior administrators, initial processing and administration have often been undertaken at the School or Division level by staff who are hired and supervised at those local levels. Sometimes one of those local units will establish a “service center” that works with multiple other local units (e.g., the International Institute’s research administration operation).

“Hub and Spoke” is a way of linking the hiring, training, and supervision of local staff (the “spokes,” including locally-run service centers) to organizations at the center (the “hubs”) to increase communication and ensure a more equitable level of service across the institution, while retaining local expertise knowledgeable of local needs. In a “Hub and Spoke” arrangement, the reporting relationships for some staff in Schools and Divisions will include an administrator at the center; but the arrangement does not mandate any changes in the organizational placement of staff or in necessary approvals for actions. Not all “Hub and Spoke” systems partake of every feature. For example, some involve the center in decisions about dismissal, and others (e.g., UCLA Development) give full decision-making authority regarding dismissals to the center. Different administrative sectors of the campus may lend themselves to different variants of “Hub and Spoke,” to be worked out in consultation with senior administrative leaders and the Senate.

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See paragraph three of response to Question 1, above. In some iterations, “Hub and Spoke” may actually promote greater decentralization of services. For example, as staff at the School or Division level become better trained and more expert, more authority may be delegated to them, requiring fewer approvals at the center. Conversely, where the campus has independently determined that greater centralization is needed (e.g., for IT security), “Hub and Spoke” may promote the effective implementation of that initiative.

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First, UCLA has had “Hub and Spoke” in place for some time in one of its organizations, the Development division of External Affairs. Senior development staff in various UCLA Schools and Divisions have had dual reporting relationships to their deans and to central UCLA Development. Central Development has participated in the hiring and dismissal of these dual- reporting staff, and has created mechanisms for training, information-sharing, and evaluating staff performance. The success/effectiveness of “Hub and Spoke” in this setting suggests it is compatible with UCLA’s relatively decentralized forms of organization.

Second, UCLA has long been devoted to continuous improvement and “leading the way.” Even a university at the top of its game must constantly advance and innovate in order to remain at that level, especially as technologies, compliance requirements, and other changes occur affecting academia. Where “Hub and Spoke” can contribute to greater administrative effectiveness (see responses to Questions 6 and 7 below), it makes sense to consider introducing that type of system. UCLA’s commitment to strong deanships and shared governance means that any implementation will be carried out with considerable incorporation of ideas and concerns of the very academic community that the administrative operation is designed to serve, with greater effectiveness.

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Typically, the chief staff member responsible for a particular administrative function within a School or Division would serve as the “spoke” in a “Hub and Spoke” system. There would be only one “spoke” in each unit for any given administrative function. For example, within Academic Personnel, the “spoke” would be the chief academic personnel staffer within any given School or Division. Within Research Administration, the “spoke” would be the chief research administration staffer. If a School or Division was receiving services from a service center operated by another School or Division, the head of that service center would function as the “spoke” for all the units it serves.

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No.  “Hub and Spoke” does not create new approval processes.  In fact, it may promote further decentralization of approvals, or may coincide with independently needed centralization initiatives.  (See response to Question 2 above.)  The EVC/P’s Busting Bureaucracy Working Group is currently finding ways to make processes less complex, with fewer instances and layers of approvals.  In a “Hub and Spoke” system, local autonomy remains, within a framework of enhanced training, support, and accountability for effective performance.

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A well-functioning “Hub and Spoke” system promotes a higher and more uniformly excellent level of service to all campus constituents. It does so by bringing each unit’s representative “spoke” into regular, well-crafted trainings; by enabling greater sharing of knowledge, best practices, and communication among functional specialists in units across campus; and by creating opportunities for staff advancement. In such a system, work is performed more accurately and effectively at the local School or Division level, reducing the amount of corrective work required at the center.

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No. See answer to Question 5, above. “Hub and Spoke” is designed to increase and enhance communication among personnel performing similar functions in different units.

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The impetus for considering “Hub and Spoke” is improvement and standardization of common services to the campus community and in most cases would not result in the reduction of staff positions in Schools and Divisions.

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“Hub and Spoke” will place demands on the center to develop and administer trainings, as well as to engage in hiring and supervision of dual-reporting staff in the Schools and Divisions. In some rare situations, where “Hub and Spoke” is accompanied by initiatives to provide services best operated in the hub, such as networking, there may be some increased need for employees at the hub. It is also possible that in the near term, developing trainings may require some additional up-front investment. Ultimately, however, “Hub and Spoke” should reduce the need for some staffing overall, as individual Schools and Divisions perform their functions more accurately and effectively, especially as more tools are developed for common activities.

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See first paragraph in response to Question 3 above.

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