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MINUTES OF THE HUMAN MANAGERS FORUM

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MINUTES OF THE HUMAN MANAGERS FORUM Powered By Docstoc
					             MINUTES OF THE HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGERS FORUM
                       held on Wednesday, 10th December 2008
                         at Blackburn Rovers Football Club

Present, Apologies and Non Attendance:

Company                                Contact                             Attendance
ACAS                                   John Conway/Jan Bond                   Yes - JC
Addison Psychotherapy                  Adam Gibson                              Yes
Aircelle                               Caroline Hurley/Jackie Taylor
Akzo Nobel Decorative Coatings
Ltd/Crown Paints                       Sarah Murphy/Fiona Clarke
APM Design Ltd                         Tracey McClusky
Arc Fabrication                        Heath Kershaw
Ashleigh Industrial Supplies Ltd       Ebrahim Ghiwala
Aston Pharmacy                         Naomi Jeffers
B Global Metering                      Neil Hemmingway/Gill Clewer             Yes x 2
Beechwood HR                           Andrea Jackson                             Yes
                                       Lynsey Pickup/Amy               Apologies - LP, Yes VD x
Blackburn Microtech Solutions          Hargreaves/Valerie Dudley                   2
Blackburn Rovers Football Club         Kim Healey/Dawn Dunn                    Yes x 2
Blackburn Rovers Football Club Trust   Claire Stock/Jamie Hopwood           Did not arrive
Blackburn with Darwen Borough
Council                                Gilbert Riley
Blackburn with Darwen Borough
Council - No Limits                    Adam Holden/Rona McFall
Blackburn with Darwen Borough
Council                                Barbara Ramsey                            Yes
Blackburn with Darwen Borough
Council - IAG Team                     Emma Coster                               Yes
Bootstrap Enterprises                  Ashfaq Sabir
Bowlplex                               Tasheem Munshi
Brabners CS                            Kevin James
BRM Business Solutions                 Brian Mizon
Brookhouse Holdings Ltd                Karen McManus                             Yes
Btnetworkconnect                       Yvonne Haddad
Burnley Football Club                  Louise Spencer
Business Link NW                       Julie Toplis
Butlers Cheeses                        Helen Williams
Cad-Capture Ltd                        Teresa Thomasson                   Apology Received
Canopies UK Ltd                        Mr Eastwood
Capita                                 Karen Latham/Patricia Stewart      Apology Received
Capita Business Services Ltd           Gillian Clarke
Capita TVL                             Cheryl Henry
Catchpoint (UK) Ltd                    Michael Lynch
Cavalier Carpets Ltd                  Brenda Thomas                               Yes
Cavalier Insurance Service Centre     Andrew Taylor                               Yes
cga Recruitment                       Claire Gibson/Claire Griffiths
Cherry Tree Machines Ltd              Paul Carroll
CMC HR                                Caroline McNamee
CMI Lexaire Ltd                       Chantelle I'Anson-Sparks                   Yes
Cobble Blackburn Ltd                  Joyce Wallace/David Dallison             Yes - JW
Cobham Defence Communications
Ltd                                   Phil Lavin/Cath Duxbury
Community & Business Partners Ltd     Linda Grimshaw - Project Manager     Apology Received
Community & Business Partners Ltd     Andrea Goodall                       Apology Received
Community & Business Partners Ltd     Jane Houghton-Fenning                      Yes
Community & Business Partners Ltd     Beryl Martin                               Yes
Connexions                            Liane Baron
Consultant - HR                       Chris Threlfall
Consultant - HR                       Christine Mellalieu
Crystal HR                            Joanne Jacks
Cummins Mellor Recruitment            Angela Thomas/Taryn Hindle         Yes - TH, Apology - AT
CXL                                   Beverly Marshall                            Yes
Dynamax Technologies Ltd              Audrey Dunstan/Debra Coulson              Yes x 2
East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust   Imran Barkat/Karen Proctor
East Lancs Moneyline                  Ian Clough
East Lancs PCT                        Ian McGoay
EDC Blackburn Ltd                     Larry Lawton/Kay Baxter                Late Apology
Elan Partnership                      Ann Wright
Europrint Group                       Alan Rogers                            Did not arrive
F D Sims Ltd                          David Stanford
Financial Affairs                     Michael O'Connor
                                      Joanne Pickering(CHAIR)/Emma
Forbes Solicitors                     Fitzsimmons                              Yes - JP
Futaba Tenneco Ltd                    Dianne Evans                         Apology Received
GAP UK                                Amy Hargreaves/Soma Formby                Yes x 2
GGI Office Furniture UK Ltd           Andrew Newton/Judith Halstead        Apology Received
Glisten Confectionery                 Katie Mason/ Rachel Harling               Yes x 2
GM Group Ltd                          Caroline Worthington
Golf Point UK                         Simon Hardman
Graham Johnston                       Johnston Partnership
Groundwork Trust                      Gail Smalley/Nicky Heaton
Herbert Parkinson Ltd                 Russell Brown                               Yes
Heritage Envelopes Ltd                Anita Golds                                 Yes
HML                                   Joanne Alcock                               Yes
Holiday Cottages                      Helen Khan/Julie Roberts
Homecare (Mellor) Ltd                 Angela Birkett/Jeanette Taylor
ICQ Solutions Ltd                     Garry Pearson
India Mill                            Pam Blackwell
Invotec Circuits Blackburn Ltd        Andy Hobbis
J & A Kay Ltd                         David Kay
Job Centre Plus                       Michael Downey                              Yes
Johnsons Apparelmaster                Geoff Pilgrim                          Did not arrive
Lanway                                Lynne Firth
LEBP                                  Debra Thackrah/Julie Henderson
Littlewoods                           Heather Lloyd/Philip Homer
Lucite International                  Karen Nattrass/Shirley Hanson             Yes x 2
Lupton & Place Ltd                    Maureen Howarth                        Did not arrive
M People                              Danielle Crowther
Madison Wire (Europe) Ltd             Jeff Thornton/Linda Taylor
MDA                                   Kelley Spencer                              Yes
Mellor Electrics Ltd                   Les Halliwell
Micro Matic Ltd                        Jill Brown                                    Yes
Moorhouses                             David Grant
National Autistic                      Helen Clarkson                                Yes
National Teaching & Advisory Service   Karen Duckworth
Natural Selection                      Donnie Doran                              Did not arrive
Natwest Bank                           Valerie Gillibrand
Neales Waste                           Sarah Parkes                              Did not arrive
Neville Gee                            Donna Johnson
Optare                                 Brian Barker                              Did not arrive
Oswaldtwistle Mills                    Deborah Connell
Pendle Leisure Trust                   Vanessa Kelly                             Did not arrive
Peninsula                              Greg Turnball
Pentland                               Claire Schofield
Piolax Ltd                             Cheryl Barker
PM+M Solutions for Business LLP        Linda Whalley/Jackie Gouldsbrough            Yes x 2
Precision Polymer Engineering Ltd      Stewart Porter/Gary Rae
Premier Office Supplies UK Ltd         Gordon Wilson
Promethean Technologies Group Ltd      Alison Southworth
Reed in Partnership                    Joey Smith                                    Yes
Ritherdon & Co Ltd                     John Wright
Robert McBride                         Claire Lemon/Gloria Rawson                Did not arrive
Rourkes                                Julie Robinson
Royal Bank of Scotland                 Arif Aziz
RPC Containers Ltd                     Carol Lee/Donna Willets               CL- Apology Received
RTE Fabrications Ltd                   Mr Eastwood
S Reed Medical & Co Ltd                Neville Rowlands/Wendy Bleasdale            Yes - WB
Sainsburys                             Joan Ashton
Sally Salon Services                   Brenda Cuthill-Brown/Janet Talbot     Apology Received -BCB
Sappi                                  David Nicholson/Pat Leyland
Shire Hotels Ltd                       Kelly Topping
Shop Direct                            Louise Whittaker                        Apology Received
Sky                                    Ian Routh
Spice Fusion                           Farida Daud
                                       Oliver McCann/Elaine Hurn/ Michelle
Taylors Solicitors                     Lawton                                  Apology Received
The Mall Shopping Centre Blackburn     Loraine Jones
Thwaites Brewery                       Lynn Jepson
Town Centre Manager, Blackburn         Tony Fitzgerald
Transdev Blazefield                    John Threlfall
Twin Valley Homes Ltd                  Deborah Hull/Deryn Williams                   Yes
UK Insulations Ltd                     Ian Billing
Ultra Group                            Eileen Irwin/Karen Wilde
VBI Limited                            Subuhe Faruqui
Vedas                                  Lesley Burrows
Veka                                   G. Hammond
Veritas                                Meboob Vadiya/Imran Badat                    Yes x 2
Vouchers 4 Kids                        Mark Newton
Wallace Cameron                        Stephen Hurn
                                       Carole Marsden/Janet Barker/David
Walter Hollands                        Salmon
                                       Phillip Thompson/Elton
Watson Ramsbottom Partnership          Ashworth/Carol Broadley
Weltonhurst Ltd                        Anne Slater                                   Yes
Wolstenholme International Ltd         Heather Brown
Worms Eye Geotechnical                 Graham Cannon
1      WELCOME AND INTRODUCTION

Joanne Pickering, Forum Chair, welcomed everyone to the meeting.

2      MATTERS ARISING

The issue of CRB checks discussed at the last meeting is covered in the Chair’s Report attached to
these minutes.

3      PRESENTATION BY JOHN CONWAY, SENIOR ADVISOR, ACAS

John’s presentation covered the topic of resolving disputes in the workplace, which is subject to
new Employment Law from April 2009. This follows a review of the 2002 Employment Act led by
Michael Gibbons who was appointed to identify options for simplifying the system and making it
work better for employers and employees. He said that there needs to be more flexibility in the
system, for example in the past if a mistake was made at any stage then the whole thing was void.

A draft of the new code can be found on the ACAS website. £35M has been awarded to ACAS for
expansion of the help-line service, whereby employers and employees can make contact for advice
and/or the involvement of ACAS in settling disputes/grievances, which is based on Pre-Claim
Conciliation. The help-line will be accessible 8.00 am – 8.00 pm weekdays and Saturday mornings
and a major investment has been made in training and coaching staff. The launch of the help-line
follows a pilot study done in Manchester, Newcastle and Nottingham.

The mediation is a 5 stage process, which John discussed in detail, and cuts out a whole swathe of
procedures and there are no witnesses, investigations or representation by unions or works
committees.

A full copy of John’s presentation is attached to these minutes.

Answers to questions from the floor included:

John confirmed the service was free because it was statutory.
Under the new rules, employees can still be at work and not under notice.
ACAS has 2 officers who specifically deal with Trade Union grievances.
There could be a view that the help-line will encourage claims.
Mediators are specially trained to deal with the power balance between employers and employees as
a junior employee may feel uncomfortable being in the same room as a senior manager. The
mediator has techniques to try and draw out the employee, but it could be that the mediator has to
end the mediation.
Many employers use the ACAS procedures on disciplinary and grievance in their Handbooks; this
will need reviewing in April.
The new Code is not being actively promoted at the moment.
Mediators have an accredited qualification. Some companies are training staff to be mediators in
their own workplace and currently ACAS want to form a body to ensure that mediation
qualification is regulated.


Update on Flexible Working

Changes in legislation to expand the areas of flexible working are expected. However it is John’s
view that these will not actually come in (in April) as there has been considerable discussion on
whether this is the right time to be putting, what many believe is, an additional burden on industry.
Changes will be brought in, but may be delayed in view of the present economic situation.
4      OPEN DISCUSSION

This was held as a ‘round the table’ discussion. The following topics were of interest to the
members:

Alcohol and Drugs policy – a third of the companies present have a policy. Since the forum we
have had contact from CXL who have advised that they have a department to help with issues
surrounding Alcohol and Drug issues. CXL can be contacted via Bev Marshall, Consultant
(Business Development) beverley.marshall@cxl-uk.com

Non Fault Accident – situations where employees were being paid sick pay whilst recovering from
an accident. Once the insurance claim had been sorted out (which could take 2 years), how to
reclaim the sick pay.
Flexible working – Joanne stated she is handling this on a 1-1 basis. One company has made
start/finish times more flexible to help with traffic problems. It is more difficult for larger
employers to monitor flexible timekeeping.
Job swapping – the effect on pay rates of employees being asked to job share on higher/lower paid
jobs.
Introduction of new policies – Joanne advised the members that her company took half a day out
twice a year to look at procedures and see which are relevant.

John was asked to do a critique on what is on the boil at the moment and what changes are coming
up shortly.

5      ANY OTHER BUSINESS

Chair’s Report – Joanne went through her very comprehensive report, highlighting various contacts
and websites which may be of use to the members. In particular Joanne encouraged members to
work with Education Business Partnership on CRB check requirements for individual placements
and also encouraged them to contact Suzanne Murray, EBP (01254 584000) re involvement with
the 14 – 19 Diploma. A full copy of the report is attached to these minutes.

Joanne also brought to the notice of Members ‘forbesreview’, a quarterly bulletin on Employment
Law. Any members wishing to receive this bulletin electronically should contact Joanne.
(joanne.pickering@forbessolicitors.co.uk)

Jobcentreplus - Michael Downey advised that his organisation will visit companies in redundancy
situations to give support to employees (michael.downey@jobcentreplus.gsi.gov.uk). Emma Coster
from Blackburn with Darwen Council Redundancy Taskforce was also tasked with support for
companies/employees finding themselves in a redundancy situation
(emma.coster@blackburn.gov.uk).

Blackburn Microtech – this company will shortly have vacancies. If you wish to discuss please
contact Lynsey Pickup via email – lynsey.pickup@lpdisplays.com

6      NEXT MEETING

The next Human Resources Managers Forum will be held on Thursday, 11th June 2009. Suggested
agenda items to Joanne Pickering or Linda Grimshaw.

				
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