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Agenda Item No

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Cabinet Meeting: 24 February, 2014

Report of the Leader

Senior Management and Staffing Review - Corporate and Customer Services and Resources Directorates

Purpose of the Report

1.         To seek approval for management and staffing changes proposed as a consequence of the recent review of the Corporate and Customer Services Directorate and changes in other Directorates.

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet endorse the proposals in paragraphs 7 to 18 of this report subject to consideration of the details and recommendations set out at Part II of the agenda.

2.         That with the exception of recommendations 3 and 4 below, all proposals are approved as a basis for continuing consultation with staff and the trade unions.

3.         That the proposals in relation to the redesignation of Section 151 responsibility and related issues (at paragraphs 10 to 13) are referred for approval by Council.

4.         That the proposals in relation to the redesignation of statutory Lead Director for Children and Young People's Services (at paragraph 15) are referred for approval by Council.

5.         That delegated authority is given to the Managing Director in consultation with the Leader of the Council to approve and implement any changes to the proposals arising from the consultation process with the exception of recommendations 3 and 4 above.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To seek and meet saving targets set out in the 2014/15 budget report and to ensure sustainable management and corporate services functions going forward.

2.         As outlined in 1 above and to ensure that the Council meets its obligations in law and by Collective Agreement.

3.         As outlined in 1 above and in order to ensure that the Council complies with its statutory and constitutional obligations in relation to the appointment of the Council's Section 151 Officer.

4.         As outlines in 1 above and in order to ensure that  the Council complies with its statutory obligation in relation to the designation of Lead Director for Children and Young People's Services.

5.         As outlined in 1 and 2 above.

Background

2.         Members will be aware of the continuing financial challenges being faced by the Council and the need to protect services and management arrangements in the light of such challenges.  The budget report presented elsewhere on this agenda outlines the scale of the challenges being faced over the next few years.

3.         In anticipation of the above, the Council’s Corporate Workforce Plan sets out the requirement for a staffing and management review of all Directorates in order to help find supporting financial savings.  This is currently being carried out by the Head of Human Resources.

4.         The first review has taken place in the Corporate and Customer Services Directorate (formerly the Chief Executive's Directorate); the results of which have informed the proposals referred to below and detailed separately at Part II of the agenda.

5.         Although the review has taken place in the Corporate and Customer Services Directorate, the proposals impact on the majority of all other Directorates of the Council as set out in paragraphs 7 to 18.  The proposals also take account of known staffing changes and the need to put in place alternative arrangements.

6.         The main objectives and considerations in undertaking the review are set out as follows. It has been important that the review:-

·               meets the requirements of the budget targets for 2014/15 and contributes to wider targets for 2015/16.

·               reflects organisational design principles by seeking to maximise the accountability of officers and reducing levels of reporting.

·               seeks to locate service in places where they can have the best effect and where existing synergies can be exploited.

·               provides service continuity and resilience in the light of known staffing changes.

·               helps to improve capacity within services areas in the context of reducing numbers of staff and continuing service demands.

Relevant Issues and Options

7.         In the context of the objectives and considerations as set out above, approval is sought for the staffing and structural changes as detailed at Part II of this agenda and as summarised below:-

Reduced numbers of Chief Officer posts and revised Section 151 arrangements

8.         The overall reduction of Chief Officer posts in the Corporate and Customer Services and Resources Directorates (one Head of Service and one Operational Manager) to help meet savings targets whilst protecting services and management capacity.

9.         The bringing together of the Corporate and Customer Services Directorate and Resources Directorate into one Directorate (i.e. the Resources Directorate). This will reduce the need for two management teams without effecting service provision.

10.      As part of the restructuring referred to at 8 and 9 above (and the resignation of the current Head of Financial Services) the creation of a new post of Head of Finance and an Operational Manager (Accountancy) in the Resources Directorate.

11.      The new post Head of Finance to be designated as Section 151 Officer on an interim basis up to 31st July 2015 and the Operational Manager (Accountancy) to be designated as Deputy Section 151 Officer on an interim basis for the same period.

12.      The arrangements as set out above will help ensure modest financial savings, service continuity in the light of staffing changes and improved succession planning arrangements in relation to a key area of responsibility. Appointment to the Head of Finance post to be made by the Council’s Senior Management Appointments Panel.

13.      As part of the above, it is also proposed that the existing post of Operational Manager (Audit) will take on the designation of Head of Audit in accordance with the Public Sector Internal Audit Standards.

Re-configuration of Partnership Teams and LSB Support Teams

14.      The reconfiguration of the partnership teams to strengthen the operational links with services, optimise management capacity and achieve financial savings. Such proposals to include:

·               The transfer of the Children and Young People’s Partnership team and the Learning and Skills Partnership Co-ordinator to the Chief Learning and Skills Officer with effect from 1st July 2014.

·               The transfer of the Community Safety Partnership team to the Director of Visible Services and Housing with effect from 1st July 2014. This reflects the increasing synergies between the management of crime and anti-social behaviour and the community housing agenda within the Visible Services and Housing Directorate.

·               The reconfiguration of the remaining Local Service Board (LSB) Support team to accommodate the wider changes as set out above, ensure budget savings and a continuing and necessary link between the partnership teams and the LSB.

15.      It is proposed that, as part of the above, the designation of Lead Director for Children and Young People’s Services is transferred from the Director of Social Services to the Chief Learning and Skills Officer from 1 July 2014. This will help ensure a better alignment of universal and targeted services for children and young people. It is also proposed that the job title of such officer be changed to the Director of Learning and Skills to reflect the above change in statutory designation.

Reconfiguration of media, communications & marketing arrangements

16.      The strengthening of the Council’s media, communications and marketing arrangements due to the need to improve links between corporate communications and the Council's customer service strategy.The implementation of the above proposals would involve:-

·               The provision of a central media relations resource. 

·               The transfer of elements of the internal and external communications team to Contact OneVale (C1V) reporting to the Operational Manager (Customer Relations).  

·               The development of a marketing team to be progressed by the Director of Development Services and supported by the transfer of graphic design resources and the Arts Development function from the Resources Directorate to the Development Services Directorate from 1st July 2014

·               The development of clear protocols and guidelines for the work of each of the above teams and the development of robust and regular cross team working relationships. 

Changes within Contact OneVale (CIV)

17.      The current review has identified the potential for reducing the number of posts within the Contact Centre to meet budget requirements whilst protecting front line customer services support. The details of such posts are set out in the report at Part II of this Cabinet agenda.

Changes in the Improvement and Development Team

18.      The reduction of a post within the Council's Improvement and Development Team. This has already been considered and approved by the Council’s Early Retirement/Redundancy Committee and is included in this report for completeness.

Summary and Next Steps

19.      The proposals as set out above will result in savings of approximately £350k and as such will contribute to the savings targets for 2014/15 and 2015/16. If approved there will be a necessary increase in the expectations on managers within the newly combined Directorate and an increased requirement for cross service working. Members will note that the proposals set out in this report have direct implications for the majority of all other Directorates.

20.      The proposals will result in a net reduction of five full time posts across the Directorate (the deletion of eleven and creation of six).

21.      Subject to the approval by Members, the proposals will form the basis of a consultation exercise with staff during March 2014 as part of the Council’s Avoiding Redundancy Procedure. Appropriate approvals will also be sought from the Council’s Early Retirement and Redundancy Committee as necessary.

22.      As part of this report Members are asked to approve delegated authority to the Managing Director in consultation with the Leader of the Council to make any necessary changes to the proposals as a result of the consultation process. Subject to the outcome of these processes it is expected that the proposals will then be implemented from 1st July onwards. 

23.      The proposals referred to in recommendation 3 and 4 will be referred for approval to Council on the 5th March 2014 in accordance with the requirements of the Constitution. Approval will need to be sought in such timescales in view of the resignation of the Head of Financial Services and in order to ensure arrangements are in place to cover the statutory Section 151 responsibilities.

24.      The proposals will be managed in accordance with the Council's employee relations policies which include the Avoiding Redundancy Policy and appropriate consultation with staff and the recognised trade unions.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

25.      The resource implications are set out in paragraph 19 above.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

26.      None identified.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

27.      The proposals referred to in this report have a number of legal implications. In particular there are a number of areas within employment law which will arise from the proposals. The Council's policies are reflective of such arrangements. Nonetheless, where necessary and appropriate legal advice will be sought from the Council's in house legal department both in terms of employment law and other areas such as constitutional and property.

Crime and Disorder Implications

28.      The proposal to locate the Community Safety Partnership Team within Council’s Visible Services and Housing Directorate will help to strengthen the management of crime and anti-social behaviour as part of the Community Housing agenda.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

29.      The proposals set out in this report have been subject to screening as part of the Council’s Equality Impact Assessment procedures.

Corporate/Service Objectives

30.      To ensure that Council services are supported by the appointment, retention and deployment of skilled, flexible and engaged employees.

Policy Framework and Budget

31.      The recommendations as set out at 1, 2 and 5 are matters for Executive decision by Cabinet. Recommendations as set out at 3 and 4 are matters for Full Council

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

32.      The Corporate Management Team has been consulted on this report.  The recognised trade unions and relevant employees will be consulted in accordance with the Council's Avoiding Redundancy Procedures. The proposals do not require Ward Member consultation.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

33.      Corporate Resources

Background Papers

None.

 

Contact Officer

Reuben Bergman, Head of Human Resources

 

Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

 

Responsible Officer:

Reuben Bergman, Head of Human Resources

 

 

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