Agenda and minutes

Human Resources Committee - Thursday, 24th September, 2020 10.00 am

Venue: Zoom meeting

Contact: Steve Gregory  0117 92 24357

Items
No. Item

15.

Welcome, Introductions and Safety Information pdf icon PDF 99 KB

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed all parties to the meeting and introductions were made. The Chair set out the process with regard to the meeting being held via Zoom facility.

 

The Chair requested that agenda item 10 be taken after agenda item 7 to accommodate one of the Members having to leave the meeting early, this was agreed.

 

16.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

No apologies had been received.

 

17.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

There wereno declarations of interest.

 

18.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 122 KB

To agree the minutes of the last meeting as a correct record.

Minutes:

Resolved – that the Minutes of theprevious meeting held on 2 July2020 beagreed as a correct record.

 

Matter(s) arising

 

In relation to Minute No.12 the Chair confirmed that an informal meeting between HR Committee Members and Staff Led Groups had taken place on 23 July, 2020, it was considered that the meeting had been very valuable and productive.

 

 

19.

Public Forum

NB. up to 30 minutes is allowed for this item

Any member of the public or councillor may participate in Public Forum.  The detailed arrangements for so doing are set out in the Public Information Sheet at the back of this agenda.  Please note that the following deadlines will apply in relation to this meeting:-

 

Questions - Written questions must be received 3 clear working days prior to the meeting.  For this meeting, this means that your question(s) must be received in this office at the latest by5 pm on 18 September 2020.

 

Petitions and Statements - Petitions and statements must be received on the working day prior to the meeting.  For this meeting this means that your submission must be received in this office at the latest by 12.00 noon on 23 September 2020.

 

 

Minutes:

None received.

 

20.

Work Programme pdf icon PDF 47 KB

To note the work programme.

Minutes:

The Committee received and noted the updated Work Programme for 2020/21.

 

21.

Draft Workforce Strategy pdf icon PDF 166 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a detailed report from the Head of Internal Communications and Organisational Development seeking comments and observations from the Committee on the draft Workforce Strategy formerly known as the Organisational Improvement Plan. The Strategy’s purpose was to define the actions the Council was taking to achieve its vision to become an inclusive, high-performing, healthy and motivated work place and become an employer of choice.

 

Key points highlighted during discussion were –

 

1.     During the Covid-19 lockdown period a staff survey revealed that 80% of staff felt they could work effectively from home. Equipment and wifi dongles were provided to those who needed additional equipment or have broadband connectivity issues;

2.     Management was currently considering the long term effects of working from home based on emerging empirical evidence and would listen to all viewpoints from staff and trade unions having full regard to best practice and any changes to current positive feedback with regard to working from home;

3.     A further staff survey would be undertaken in October and the results would be published. It was noted that a recurring theme from staff was that they wanted to remain fully connected with colleagues. Some methods were already being piloted to achieve this eg, some meeting rooms at City Hall were being used for a limited number of in person meetings subject to covid-19 safety protocols; 

4.     Members emphasised the importance of fully understanding and integrating into future Council policy, issues such inequalities of wealth, poor living conditions and higher anxiety levels particularly amongst some of the lower paid employees;

5.     The Committee was assured that staff surveys would include a bottom up approach and would have regard to issues such broadband connectivity issues and costlier winter heating bills associated with extended periods of working from home.

 

The Committee welcomed the Strategy and thanked officers for their work. Members were invited to submit any further views and questions outside of the meeting, areas of interest expressed included areas such as equalities, intersectionality for disabled and BAME staff, recruitment audit and positive action initiatives.

                                                                      

Resolved – That the actions  being taken to achieve the Council’s vision of an inclusive, high-performing, healthy and motivated work place and becoming an employer of choice be noted.

 

At this point of the remote/virtual meeting a technical failure in respect of the live link to Youtube occurred which prevented public access to the remaining items on the Agenda. In accordance with the Council’s commitment to transparency and openness the meeting was reconvened on 8 October, 2020 at 4 pm to ratify the discussions and decisions that took place at the meeting, on 24 September 2020.