Your Councillors

EMPLOYMENT COMMITTEE

01 February 2017

Is the final decision on the recommendations in this report to be made at this meeting?

Yes

 

Workforce Strategy Update Report

 

Final Decision-Maker

Employment Committee

Lead Head of Service

Head of HR Shared Services

Lead Officer and Report Author

Dena Smart, Head of HR Shared Services

Classification

Public

Wards affected

 

 

 

This report makes the following recommendations to this Committee:

1.   That the Committee note the progress of the actions set out in the Workforce Strategy.

 

 

This report relates to the following corporate priorities:

·         Keeping Maidstone Borough an attractive place for all – the Workforce Strategy is an overarching strategy that affects all staff and therefore can have an impact on the council’s ability to deliver all priorities.

·         Securing a successful economy for Maidstone Borough - the Workforce Strategy is an overarching strategy that affects all staff and therefore can have an impact on the council’s ability to deliver all priorities.

 

 

Timetable

Meeting

Date

Employment Committee

01 February 2017



Workforce Strategy Update Report

 

 

1.        PURPOSE OF REPORT AND EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

1.1     The council has had a Workforce Strategy since 2008 and this has been reviewed and developed as the priorities and environment has changed. The most recent version covers the period 2016- 2020 and was agreed at the Policy and Resources Committee 29 June 2016. As part of the approval the P&R Committee requested that the Employment Committee should receive progress updates twice per year.

 

1.2     At Appendix II the report sets out the progress made against specific action areas that form the Workforce Plan.

 

 

2.        INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

 

2.1     The key themes of the Workforce Strategy are:

 

·         Organisation culture and change;

·         Resourcing;

·         Development, and

·         Rewards.

 

2.2     There have been developments in all of these areas and many of the developments are cross cutting and affect more than one of the themes. Some of the most significant developments are set out below:

 

·         Senior management appointments – this has included the appointment of two new directors with the skills and professional knowledge to align the operations of the council to the key priorities, particularly in the area of regeneration and commercialisation. These key appointments have inevitably led to some structural changes and this is likely to continue with the appointment of a substantive Mid Kent Services Director who will join in April  2017.

 

·         With these senior changes there has been recognition of the need to develop the senior managers into a cohesive team and a senior management development programme commenced in July 2016; this will continue into late 2017. We have continued with our established programme of Seven Habits training for managers which gives a common framework across Mid Kent Services and developed a “Maidstone Manager” model through engagement with both managers and staff

 

·         A new programme of stress and resilience training for staff and managers in recognition that across the UK stress, whatever the cause, is one of the highest causes of absence from work and this is reflected in sickness absence for Maidstone.

 

·         The council has been recognised through the KCC Healthy Business Awards at the ‘excellence’ level for its approach to managing absence and health and safety.

 

·         The revised Health and Safety Strategy aligned to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) priorities has been agreed by the P&R Committee.

 

·         Our reward package has been re-launched to ensure staff are fully aware of the benefits of the employment package. Ninety employees received a free flu vaccination in September, the 2016 STRIVE awards ceremony took place  in January 2017 complemented by our regular “One Council” briefing which incorporated themes of pride (in our borough and our work), drawing inspiration from our achievements and being positive about change.

 

·         The council is currently taking part in an assessment against the revised Investors in People (IiP) standard. The new standard incorporates a staff engagement survey which ran during December 2016 and this will help to inform the information gathered during the interviews and focus groups run by the assessors during January 2017. The outcome of the IiP assessment will be used to inform the next steps to further develop the organisation.

 

2.3     The Workforce Strategy sets out the key themes for the period 2016-2020, there is an associated action plan that will be updated on a regular basis to ensure the council continues to develop. The action plan that was agreed in June 2016 is at Appendix II and it has been updated with the progress to date.

 

 

 

3.        AVAILABLE OPTIONS

 

3.1     The Committee is asked to note the progress to date, and agree that work continues on the current action plan. Members could substitute alternative actions or add to the existing ones.

 

 

4.        PREFERRED OPTION AND REASONS FOR RECOMMENDATIONS

 

4.1     The preferred option is for the Committee to note the developments and support the on-going work.

 

 

 

5.       CONSULTATION RESULTS AND PREVIOUS COMMITTEE FEEDBACK

 

 

5.1     The Workforce Strategy was developed with input from the managers in the organisation and discussed with both the trade unions and Staff Forum.

 

 

 

6.       NEXT STEPS: COMMUNICATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DECISION

 

6.1     Developments based on the Workforce Strategy are regularly communicated to managers and staff through Wakey Wakey, Team Talk activities, consultation with trade unions Staff forum and by email.

 

6.2    Actions within the Workforce Strategy are regularly reviewed by the Wider Leadership Team and twice a year by the Policy and Resources Committee.

7.       CROSS-CUTTING ISSUES AND IMPLICATIONS

Issue

Implications

Sign-off

Impact on Corporate Priorities

The Workforce Strategy has an impact on all aspects of the corporate priorities.

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Risk Management

The overarching risk is that if the council does not have a Workforce Strategy it may fail to put in place the actions to deliver the priorities

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Financial

There are areas of the Workforce Strategy that may have a financial impact but these would be costed within the normal annual budget

[Section 151 Officer & Finance Team]

Staffing

The Workforce Strategy will have an impact on staff – this should be a positive impact as we work to ensure that there are improvements.

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Legal

Although there may be specific actions that have legal implications there is nothing identified in the plan overall that will have legal implications.

[Legal Team]

Equality Impact Needs Assessment

No impact identified at this time

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Environmental/Sustainable Development

No impact identified at this time

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Community Safety

No impact identified at this time

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Human Rights Act

No impact identified at this time

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Procurement

No impact identified at this time

Dena Smart

Head of HR

Asset Management

No impact identified at this time

Dena Smart

Head of HR

 

8.        REPORT APPENDICES

 

The following documents are to be published with this report and form part of the report:

·         Appendix I: Workforce Strategy 2016 – 2020 (agreed by Policy and Resources Committee 29 June 2016)

·         Appendix II: Workforce Plan Update

 

 

9.        BACKGROUND PAPERS

 

None