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HR People Services – Organisational Change meeting with Trade


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HR Operations – Organisational Change meeting with Trade Union Side

                                      1 MAY 2008


Steve Verdon (SV) – Head HR Operations
Mike Baker (MB) – HRD
Dave Allen (DA) – Prospect
Caroline Milton (CM) – FDA
Nick McCarthy (NM) – PCS
Derrick Gartshore (DG) – PCS
Sharon Leslie (SL) – PCS
Tony Thorpe (TT) – PCS NOMS
Declan Hickey (DH) – DTUS

 This note constitutes a record of the meeting – they are not intended to be a
verbatim record


1. MB welcomed colleagues to the meeting, MB apologised for the late circulation of
   the restructure paper – see annex A


2. SV highlighted that the following 3 reasons were the driving force behind the

      To offer staff more certainty in the period leading up to Shared Services
      Improve the services to staff within the MoJ
      Allow maximum opportunity to take advantage of re-deployment posts

   SV mentioned that currently People Services works from 7 separate sites across
   England and Wales and highlighted the need to concentrate functions in single
   locations to aid process and service development.

3. SV confirmed that there was significant use of fixed term appointment and
   agency staff within his area; this resulted in difficulties with training, retention and
   had been necessary with the uncertain backdrop to shared service

4. NM referred to the last meeting and his subsequent letter covering Shared
   Services, highlighting the 2 options which were available:

       a. Using the current arrangements available – Phoenix Shared Services
          (NOMS) based in Newport
       b. Going to a private supplier of the service

   NM confirming that the recommended option would be to retain what we currently
   have. NM questioned how these proposals were linked to Shared Services.

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5. SV confirmed that these proposals are separate from the Shared Services
   programme, but they had been constructed with shared service provision in mind.
   He acknowledged that he understood staff have faced uncertainty over the last 2
   years prior to any decision on shared services being made. SV confirmed that no
   decision has yet been made on the provider of shared services.

6. TT stated that any steps to create certainty for the staff involved was welcomed.
   However, the bigger picture was the link to the shared services decision; where a
   decision was needed within the next 2-3 months at the latest.

7. SV highlighted the following in his structure:

       Currently there is no firm management structure below his post, and so
        proposals include the creation of band A‟s
       Timings were around the preference not to subject staff to two moves arising
        from the decant from Milbank Tower as part of the MoJ HQ accommodation
       Staff are already looking for other posts due to uncertain nature of their roles.
        The need to retain staff to maintain an effective service was essential.
       Approximately 26 people to be redeployed in London.
       The first moves would be at Chelmsford where redeployment prospects were
        good, with obvious priority being given to permanent staff.

8. SV confirmed the future structure of HR Operations as:

       A new Resourcing model reporting to a new Head of Resourcing
       Payroll, transactional and other “cradle to grave” employment issues around
        pensions, promotions, staff moves etc.

9. SV acknowledged that given the specialist nature of the skill sets needed for
   some of the band A posts he needed to recruit, it was likely that a cross-
   Whitehall trawl and external advertising to fill the posts, however the posts would
   be advertised in the normal way across the Ministry.

10. SV highlighted his intended timetable as follows:

       6 May - produce paper confirming proposals for TUS
       Week commencing 12 May – hold team meetings to inform staff
       Week commencing 19 May – TUS talk to staff
       TUS staff meeting (likely end of May, due to Conference)

11. SL asked for sight of the Business Case and the Equality Impact Assessment
    required for these proposals. SV confirmed that as these changes were within
    scope and funding of business as usual, no formal business case was required
    but a shortened document would be provided. SV noted the request for the
    impact assessment which would be supplied, commenting that it was unlikely to
    be of major concern in light of the proposals and similar communities to which the
    work was being transferred. NM highlighted the need to ensure that due process
    was followed and SV agreed.

12. DG stated the important issue for staff was the shared services issue, and
    questioned how these proposals would help staff.

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13. SV re-iterated that these proposals would benefit the staff concerned by giving
    them a period of stability, as he had been asked for at all team meetings since his

14. TT commented that, given the number of FTE and Agency staff, it was essential
    that this be tackled first. This would create opportunities for permanent staff. SV
    agreed with TT‟s comments, confirming that permanent staff would take priority
    for re-deployment.

15. SL enquired if any monies would be made available for any staff wanting
    severance for the Ministry. SV confirmed that there was no early severance
    scheme available to staff affected by the proposals, and that he would be actively
    liasing with colleagues across HR to ensure all possible opportunities were
    available to staff for re-deployment.

The following action points were agreed:

  NO.                       ACTION POINT                                STATUS
           SV to provide current details of staffing and how
           the proposals will change the current staffing
           These details will be made available from
           current telephone lists; emphasis is to be
           placed on grade, location, and status.
           SV to arrange, via the Employee Relations team,
           a further meeting with the TUS at the end of May,
           giving an update on the current situation and
           future timescales.

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                                                                                     Annex A

                       RESTRUCTURE OF HR OPERATIONS

HR Operations, part of the Human Resources Directorate, provides a variety of transactional
services to staff within the MoJ (other than NOMS). This spans internal and external
recruitment, payroll, pensions, and transactional services. It is currently delivered in 7
locations throughout England and Wales, has some 132 staff (mainly at E and F grades) of
which approximately 30% are Fixed Term Contract or Agency staff.

Drivers for change
The announcement of the establishment of a shared services function for HR was made
some two years ago; plans for taking this work forward have only recently been brought to a
conclusion leaving a hiatus during which posts have been filled on a temporary basis pending
a decision. Whilst the final supplier of the service has yet to be decided the current timetable
for implementation is planned for the 2010/11 financial year.

The key drivers are:
            o delivering improved services to the department in the interim period whilst
                ensuring that any developments take into account, where possible, the final
                shared services model and giving staff some certainty of role and location in
                the interim;
            o centralisation of resource to provide better cover, increased skill base,
                retention of staff and centralised files;
            o a new resourcing model for the department – including recruitment – which
                will look at the workforce planning and skills for the department as a whole;
            o delivering value for money.

The proposed change will be managed using the Managing Organisational Change
Framework. There will be two main streams of work – Resourcing and People Services, led
by senior managers and overseen by the SCS Head of Operations. A project manager will
be appointed to support the integrated planning, risk and issue management and the wider
HR team will be appropriately engaged – particularly in terms of employee support.

The change
In the proposed new structure external recruitment will be centred in Bristol, internal
recruitment and relocations/excess fares in Birmingham, People Services (and staff files) in
Leeds and pensions and payroll (both outsourced administration) in London. An improved
management structure will be in place with 2 new Band A posts supporting the SCS post
(People Services and Payroll, Pensions and Contract Management). There will be a small
number of re-graded posts and the rest will remain at current levels. People
Services/recruitment „offices‟ in Millbank (London), Staines, Chelmsford and Cardiff will be
closed on a phased basis.

The changes are proposed to take place over a period from late May through until December
2008 at the latest.

The proposed change is expected to affect some 70 civil servants – some requiring to move
to new roles, others with termination of Fixed Term Contracts. Staff will be redeployed within
HR or elsewhere in the department (replacing fixed term and agency staff) and its agencies;
there is neither funding nor requirement for departures.

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The proposed restructure will provide stability for staff during the run-up to Shared Services
(and reduce the levels of redeployment at a later date), improved delivery of operational
services, an opportunity to undertake a full data cleanse (paper files, pension benefits
statement and personal print exercises and a better management structure promoting good


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