The PIU Team

The team is comprised of the Head of Process Improvement, one Senior Process Improvement Consultant, one Process Improvement Facilitator and one Clerical Officer.     


Rachel McAssey - Head of Process Improvement 

Rachel McAssey

Rachel graduated from The University of Sheffield in 1996, with a degree in Modern History. She also has a Postgraduate Diploma in Education Management and Leadership. She has twenty years of experience working in a variety of roles in Higher Education.

Rachel is on the Lean HE Steering Committee www.leanhe.ac.uk and is Vice-Chair for the UCISA Project and Change Management Group.

Rachel said “Higher Education is in the midst of dealing with so many changes, both internally and externally; I see colleagues struggling with many processes; I hope that my role in the Process Improvement Unit helps people to redesign and review processes to improve their working life and give a better service to our students and staff".


Senior Business Process Analyst (vacancy)



Leah March - Process Improvement Facilitator 

Leah graduated from Newcastle University in 2012, with a BSc Biology and went on to gain an MSc in Plant Science and Biotechnology from The University of Leeds in 2013.

After graduating from Leeds, Leah started working in the Process Improvement Unit as the Project Administrator before holding the position of Assistant Process Improvement Coordinator from January 2015. Leah recently returned to the Process Improvement Unit after working as a Process Improvement Analyst at The University of Liverpool.

“Lean methodology really appeals to my way of thinking and problem solving and after working in two different HE institutions I have seen how it can play a crucial role in helping to secure and improve the future of Higher Education, particularly in light of increasing student expectations and decreasing public investment.”


Gillian Norton - Clerical Officer

Gillian commenced the role of Clerical Officer in the Process Improvement Unit in January 2015 and provides administrative support to the Unit.

Gillian has held various posts within the University since 2009. Firstly as Secretary to Professor Henry Smithson within the Academic Unit of Primary Medical Care, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health and subsequently in the role of Faculty Administration Assistant within the Pro-Vice Chancellor’s Office, Faculty of Engineering.