To receive a presentation from P Maginnis Service Director (Business Service).
The Business Services Director, P Maginnis gave an overview on the People Strategy. The main objectives were for the Council to have the right people, in the right places with the right skills, being paid competitive salaries.
The strategy was based on five workstreams which were leadership capacity; developing the organisation for the future; skills of the workforce; resourcing the organisation and pay and benefits of the Council.
Recently the Council has undergone a management restructuring process, to improve decision making and reduce the management spine, along with a common operation model separating business support from technical skills. This brought together administrations support across the Council into one area. The restructuring process for Management Levels 1-4 had now been completed.
Councillor S Rackham asked whether the Local Government Association(LGA) study had revealed that the Council was top heavy in management; whether redundancies had occurred; how the Council recruited staff; and whether any interim staff were currently employed. The Business Services Director advised that the amount of management roles within the organisation had been identified by the LGA study and that it effected the speed and process of decision making. Regarding compulsory redundancies there had not been any, although there had been a combination of voluntary redundancies and staff leaving. There were also interim staff that had been employed, to allow the Council to adapt and change to future requirements.
The Community and Partnership Services Portfolio Holder asked how the business support team would work across the various sites and whether the Council had met the relevant targets for employing staff with disabilities. The Business Services Director advised that the business support teams were not currently based together and going forward they would be using ICT and digital means to improve the services and therefore not requiring to be based in one place. Regarding the disability figures, she would have to come back to him.
Councillor R Bassett asked when members would receive an updated structure of the Council and if technical people would be managed by a technical manger. The Business Service Director advised that an update management structure would be published shortly in the members bulletin. The new Team Manager roles would be based mainly on the management experience but with the expectations that they had the relevant experience or technical knowledge to deal with their teams.
Councillor J M Whitehouse enquired about the job evaluations process; what were the currently vacancies broken down into deliberately held jobs and ones that were out for advertisement; and which service area’s required immediate attention. The Business Services Director advised that the job evaluation process was being altered to be based on job families and the organisation requirements rather than an individual requesting an evaluation, although the right appeal would remain. She was unable to give up to date figures on the vacancies but would come back to him. Furthermore, the service areas that required immediate resources, interim staff had been employed enabling the Council to consider the future needs rather than employing someone permanently and Service Manager’s were considering their areas and may not wish to recruit like for like positions going forward.
Councillor R Brookes commented that with so many changes happening, it must be very demoralising for staff. What had the agreed expenditure for the restructuring been spent on. The Business Services Director advised that the money had partially been used for support working with HAYES development and portal access to services they provide for staff and the financial strain and redundancy costs associated with the pensions with around £500,000 left. The Interim Strategic Director, N Dawe advised that the finance team were currently undergoing a tally of the costs for one-off costs associated with this, which would be available within the next couple of weeks.
Councillor H Kane endorsed the workshops that had previously been held with members as it had provided the background information on the People Strategy.
Councillor R Brookes asked whether it was the Council’s policy to complete Exit Interviews. The Business Services Director advised that it was, and they took place with the leavers line manager or a member of HR, although most staff did not take up the opportunity.
The Committee noted the update of the People Strategy.