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Outsourcing requires thorough preparation and a fair process

To provide the university with a solid process for evaluating the pros and cons of outsourcing, AU has developed a strategy for the competitive tendering of business operations. At appropriate intervals, technical and administrative business operations must be evaluated, and their market valuation assessed. One aspect of the strategy is that affected employees must be treated with respect and consideration.

2018.10.31 | Louise Asmund-Hjorth

Photo: Lars Kruse

At Aarhus University, outsourcing is nothing new. Today, external suppliers already perform business operations such as security, waste collection, auditing, window cleaning, construction and maintenance, postal services and legal assistance. What is new is that AU has now articulated its approach in a strategy to be used across the entire university. One explicit element of the strategy is consideration for affected employees, emphasises University Director Arnold Boon:

When we outsource, this must be done with care and with due consideration for the best and most efficient way to carry out AU’s operations. At the same time, it is important to treat the affected employees with respect and consideration. They must be heard and involved in the process.” Read the strategy for competitive tendering of operations here (In Danish).

Outsourcing is not a goal in itself

 As a government institution, the university has a legal obligation to regularly review technical and administrative functions which an external supplier would also be able to perform, and to assess whether they are candidates for competitive tendering. But outsourcing is not a goal in itself for Aarhus University.

"Outsourcing will take place when it’s sensible and well-founded – but not at any price,” Boon states. In his most recent blog post, he explains the reasoning behind the strategy.


  • University Director Arnold Boon or Deputy Director Niels Jørgen Rasmussen, AU Finance and Estates Projects and Development, can answer general questions about the strategy.
  • If you have questions about your own position or your unit, you should contact your line manager.

Competitive tendering
Competitive tendering is about testing whether a particular function is being performed efficiently at at the best possible quality for the price. The objective of the strategy is to provide a framework for the ongoing process of assessing when outsourcing makes sense for Aarhus University.

Administrative, Administration (Academic), All groups, All AU units, Aarhus University