Manchester City Council

Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Human Resources Sub Group
Wednesday, 31st July, 2019 10.00 am

Venue: Council Antechamber, Level 2, Town Hall Extension

Contact: Mike Williamson 

Items
No. Item

6.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 264 KB

To receive the minutes of the HR Subgroup meeting held on 21 February 2019

Minutes:

Decision

 

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 21 February 2019 as a correct record.

7.

Adults Workforce pdf icon PDF 3 MB

Presentation by the Executive Director of Adult Social Services attached.

Minutes:

The Sub Group considered the presentation provided by the Executive Director of Adult Social Services.

 

The Executive Director of Adult Social Services referred to the main points and themes within the presentation which included: -

 

·                An overview of what had been developed so far;

·                What was planned;

·                An overview of the senior structure;

·                Information on the different teams working in the Manchester Local Care Organisation and within Manchester Health and Care Commissioning;

·                Information on the teams retained within Manchester City Council;

·                Information on the workforce profile;

·                Data on the absence rate across the workforce and the work to reduce this;

·                Data on performance management and capability conduct;

·                Information on the use of resources;

·                Spend and the work to reduce agency spend;

·                Training and development information;

·                B-Heard survey outcomes and response;

·                A summary of the key areas of the Adult Improvement Plan; and

·                A summary of the challenges, opportunities and good news.

 

Some of the key points that arose from the Sub Group’s discussions were: -

 

·                Further information on the recruitment of permanent staff was sought and how this would impact on the use of agency staff;

·                What savings would be achieved by recruiting permanent staff compared to paying agency fees;

·                What were the budget arrangements for the funding of the post of Deputy Director of Adult Social Services;

·                Information was sought on performance reviews and supervision of staff;

·                What was the percentage of Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) staff above Grade 10 and what percentage of staff above Grade 10 were female;

·                Information was sought on the arrangements for capability management of staff; and

·                Further clarification was sought regarding the role of the Director of Homelessness.

 

The Executive Director of Adult Social Services stated that the staff were the most valuable asset and she and her team were committed to supporting and developing them. She said that doing so, in collaboration with colleagues in Health, would allow for the recruitment and retention of a workforce that would drive improvements across a range of services and deliver the best outcomes for Manchester residents. She said she took personal responsibility to visit teams and meet with the Team Managers to understand issue and establish communications. She stated that both herself and the Executive Member were accessible to staff and every member of staff received regular communications from the senior management team.

 

The Executive Director of Adult Social Services commented that the recruitment of permanent staff would reduce the expenditure on agency staff, however she commented that it was important to understand that delays in the recruitment of staff that were due to statutory legal checks meant that agency staff would still be required at times. She further commented that the recruitment of permanent staff would also contribute to addressing capacity issues and pressures experienced in teams. In response to a specific question the Executive Director of Adult Social Services stated that the role of Deputy the Deputy Director of Adult Social Services would be funded from existing budgets.

 

The Programme Lead  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Apprenticeships pdf icon PDF 1013 KB

Presentation by the Head of Workforce Strategy

 

This presentation provides an update on the Council’s apprenticeship strategy and activity since the introduction of the apprenticeship levy and includes information on the number of Our Children employed as apprentices.

Minutes:

The Sub Group considered the presentation that had been submitted for consideration that provided information on the following areas of activity: -

 

·                An overview of the apprenticeship system;

·                Data on the apprentice sign ups by Directorate 2018/19;

·                Feedback following the National Apprenticeship Week;

·                Demographic breakdown of 2018/19 sign ups;

·                Levy expenditure to date;

·                Highlights from year two;

·                Headlines for 2019/20;

·                Actions proposed to ensure continued improvement;

·                Strengthening the approach with schools;

·                Targets for 2019/20 by Directorate;

·                Describing the opportunities across Health and Social Care; and

·                How apprenticeships are being used to create opportunities for Our Children.

 

Some of the key points that arose from the Sub Group’s discussions were: -

 

·                What was being done to address the challenges experienced with schools and the take up of apprentices;

·                Were all of Our Children currently on apprenticeships recruited directly;

·                Did we work with the Manchester College to deliver apprenticeships;

·                What Social Value was being achieved via apprenticeships; and

·                How were apprenticeships advertised.

 

The Head of Workforce Strategy confirmed that all of Our Children on an apprenticeship programme had been directly recruited, adding that options for the possible development of a pre-apprenticeship/traineeship programme aimed at Our Children, with a link into apprenticeship roles were currently ongoing with the Independent Living Service.

 

The Head of Workforce Strategy confirmed that the service did work in partnership with the Manchester College to deliver apprenticeships, and this was one of a range of providers. He described that the Levy had been used to scale up the apprenticeship offer at an entry level and develop innovative approaches to higher level programmes.

 

The Head of Workforce Strategy stated that the majority of Council entry level apprenticeships undertaken by external candidates had been recruited through partnership working with a range of partners, such as Big Life and the Department of Work and Pensions He said that working with these and other partners allowed for conversations to be had with prospective applicants about the training, progression and career opportunities within the Council. He added that conversations were being had with the Communications Team to showcase this message and promote the Council as an attractive employer.

 

The Interim Director of HROD supported this comment and added that providing meaningful learning and development would help promote the Council as an employer of choice and help with the recruitment and retention of staff.

 

The Head of Workforce Strategy stated that Manchester was not unique in the relationship and uptake from schools, however conversations were ongoing with Rochdale Council as they were an authority that had a good uptake of apprenticeships from schools.

 

In response to a Member’s request for a breakdown of apprentices by level based on the indices of multiple deprivation, the Head of Workforce Strategy said that this would be provided. He further advised that examples and information in relation to Social Value and apprenticeships would be provided to the Sub Group following the meeting.

 

Decision

 

1. To note the presentation.

 

2. To request that a breakdown of apprentices by level based  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Update on the recruitment to vacant senior officer posts

Update by the Interim Director HROD

 

To receive an verbal update report on the progress that has been made with the recruitment to vacant senior officer posts of the Director of HROD and the Director of ICT.

Minutes:

The Sub Group received a verbal update report on the progress that had been made with the recruitment to vacant senior officer posts of the Director of HROD and the Director of ICT.

 

The Interim Director of HROD informed the Members that a panel would convene on the 8 August to consider the candidates for the post of Director of HROD. She said the candidates would also undergo an assessment that would include the involvement of a number of partners in recognition of the important function of this role. She stated that subject to a candidate being appointed the individual would be in post in approximately three months.

 

In regard to the post of Director of ICT, the Interim Director of HROD stated that discussions were currently ongoing to agree the future remit of this post to ensure it was fit for purpose going forward. She said that the post would then go out to advert and it was anticipated that the shortlisted candidates would be interviewed in September 2019.  

 

The Executive Member for Finance and Human Resources responded to a question from a Member by stating that it was anticipated that this strategic role would not be split across two posts.

 

Decision

 

To note the update.

10.

Update on BAME Workforce Review pdf icon PDF 209 KB

Report of the Head of Workforce Strategy

 

This report provides an update on work to review the Council’s policy and procedures as they relate to race equality. This work is being progressed in the context of data on employee disciplinary cases considered by the Resources and Governance Scrutiny Committee at its February meeting. 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Sub Group considered the report of the Head of Workforce Strategy that provided an update on work to review the Council’s policy and procedures as they related to race equality. This work was being progressed in the context of data on employee disciplinary cases considered by the Resources and Governance Scrutiny Committee at its February 2019 meeting. 

 

Officers referred to the main points and themes within the report which included: -

 

·                Providing an overview of the Our Manchester Approach to Workforce Equality, Diversity & Inclusion;

·                The work undertaken to review Our Manchester Approaches to Ensuring Race Equality; and

·                Emerging Key Lines of Enquiry.

 

Some of the key points that arose from the Sub Group’s discussions were: -

 

·                Would Senior Management be interviewed as part of the independent analysis of Council policies and practices;

·                How were the staff appointed to undertake the independent analysis chosen;

·                Welcoming the inclusion of the definitions of Institutional Racism, noting the importance of recognising these;

·                What was being done to enable and increase the progression and promotion of employees from protected groups, in particular BAME and disabled employees, to support diversity at all levels of the organisation; and

·                Further analysis of the numbers and factors that contributed to disciplinary cases against BAME staff.   

 

The Head of Workforce Strategy advised that Senior Management would be interviewed as part of the independent analysis of Council policies and practices, commenting that Service Leads and Equalities Champions would be consulted with. He advised that the staff appointed to undertake the independent analysis had been chosen due to their skills and ability to deliver this work, adding that all of the information they collected would be treated with the upmost confidentiality when they returned to their substantive posts within the Health Service.

 

The Head of Workforce Strategy acknowledged the comments made by a Member regarding the lack of BAME staff at a senior level and commented that it was recognised that more needed to be done to address this. He said that work was ongoing to engage with BAME staff so as to understand the barriers and challenges experienced to progression so that practical and proactive strategies could be developed and co-designed with staff. He stated that it was important that time was taken to undertake this exercise to deliver the required outcomes.

 

The Executive Member for Neighbourhoods stated that he was confident that the staff appointed to undertake the review were capable of delivering this work. He said they were approaching this project in an objective manner and engaging with a range of staff at all levels of the organisation, including front line staff.

 

The Chair commented that the Sub Group would welcome the opportunity to consider the report at an appropriate time following conclusion of the review.

 

Decision

 

To note the report.

11.

Work Programme pdf icon PDF 291 KB

Report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit

 

To review and agree the Work Programme for the Subgroup.

Minutes:

The Sub Group were invited to consider and agree the work programme.

 

Decision

 

To agree the work programme.