Agenda Item No


The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Cabinet Meeting: 14 January, 2013

Report of the Leader

Review of Organisational Structures

Purpose of the Report

1.         To set out proposals for a review of management and staffing structures across all service areas as part of the budget review.


2.         To approve proposals for a preliminary review of management and staffing structures in January and February 2013, with a view to reporting back to Cabinet before the end of the financial year.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To review and rationalise management and staffing structures in order to optimise capacity within the organisation and to help deal with the financial challenges over the next four years.


2.         Members will be aware of the significant financial challenges facing the Council in the context of the current economic recession. The financial projections as reported to Cabinet on 19th November 2012 indicated a revenue shortfall of some £26 million over the next four years.

3.         All Service Managers have been asked to identify appropriate four-year saving proposals to meet the above challenge and as part of the preparations for the setting of the budget for 2013/2014.

4.         Over the last three years the Council has been successful in managing budget reductions whilst at the same time minimising the need for compulsory redundancies. The response to the current challenge will, however require a more fundamental approach to service redesign than has previously been considered.

5.         The above approach will require an increase in the pace and scale of collaboration and the exploration of alternative methods of service delivery. It is particularly important that any collaboration activity contributes to the savings that the authority needs to make and also improves the resilience of services.

6.         The response to the above will also require a review of our current management and staffing structures to ensure that they are best placed to deliver services in the increasingly challenging environment.

7.         This report sets out a proposal for undertaking a preliminary review of management and staffing structures in accordance with the above.

Relevant Issues and Options

8.         It is proposed that the review of management and staffing structures is undertaken during January and February 2013. The review will be undertaken by the Managing Director in conjunction with all Corporate Management Team members.

9.         The exercise will be based on a review of structures across all service areas to ensure there is consistency in design and that such structures support the efficient delivery of services and that they optimise capacity.

10.      If approved, the review will be carried out using ‘decision making accountability’ (DMA) principles of organisational design. This approach emphasises the need for structures to be designed to support effective decision-making, to reduce duplication and to emphasise clear management accountabilities at all levels.

11.      The first stage of the review will include a ‘desk-top’ examination of all current management and staffing structures using the above principles and in order to:

·               Identify the numbers of ‘layers of management’ in individual service areas (i.e. the levels of management between Director and front-line service providers) and to see whether there is consistency across all Directorates.

·               Identify any ‘over-layering’ in the number of layers of management which may be slowing down decision making, diluting employee accountability and adding unnecessarily to staffing costs.

·               Identify any gaps in management levels which impede the effective delivery of services and undermine the quality of decision making.

·               Identify any significant differences in management ‘spans of control’ across service areas i.e. the numbers of employees reporting directly to individual managers at any one time.

·               Ensure that any differences in management ‘spans’ are appropriate to the needs of the service and ensure the best use of management resources across service areas.

12.      An example of a DMA template is attached at Appendix 'A'. A version of the form will be used to examine structures within our own service areas and to help identify where further exploration may be necessary. 

13.      Members will be aware that the review of management and staffing structures is one of a number of measures set out in the Corporate Workforce Plan as approved by Cabinet on 17th December 2012.

14.      Other measures include an examination of the use of agency workers, a review of employment terms to support greater employee flexibility, the development of a ‘job family’ approach to job design, a greater emphasis on working across service and agency boundaries and the strengthening of our approach to staff engagement and leadership development.

15.      It is important that the proposals within this report are seen as part of an overall and ‘joined-up’ approach to workforce redesign in order to meet the challenges of the next four years.

16.      The review of management and staffing structures will be carried out in accordance with the Council’s project management system and a further report will be presented to Cabinet prior to the end of the financial year.


Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

17.      There are no immediate resource implications associated with the proposals in the report, other than the officer time in undertaking the internal review.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

18.      There are no sustainability and climate change implications arising from the content of this report.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

19.      There are no legal implications directly arising from the content of this report.

Crime and Disorder Implications

20.      None identified.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

21.      None identified in undertaking the initial review.

Corporate/Service Objectives

22.      The underlying aim of the review will be to support the delivery of service objectives set out in the redrafted Corporate Plan and individual service plans.

Policy Framework and Budget

23.      This report is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

24.      The need for a review of management and staffing structures is included in the Council’s draft Workforce Plan, which has been the subject of consultation with the trade unions.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

Corporate Resources.

Background Papers

Corporate Workforce Plan - Cabinet 17 December 2012


Contact Officer

Reuben Bergman, Head of Human Resources


Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team


Responsible Officer:

Sian Davies, Managing Director