The universities chart the course of the association in three steering groups: the Education, Research & Valorisation Steering Group (SOOV), the Business Operations and Finance Steering Group (SBF) and the Strategy, Public Affairs & Governance Steering Group (SSPG). These steering groups consist of 14 members: each university is represented in each steering group by the portfolio holder of its Executive Board. These bodies can therefore express their ideas and opinions on behalf of the entire association. The steering groups provide important recommendations to the Board and meet five times per year. The VSNU office supplies the secretary and supports the steering groups.
In addition to the steering groups, there are official working groups in which colleagues from universities join forces to strengthen the university sector and exchange knowledge. Some of these groups are supported by the VSNU office.