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Councils' HR team up for a national award

Tuesday, 13th May 2014.

The human resource team which supported significant organisation change and staff structure transformation of two West Suffolk councils has been shortlisted for a national award.

The West Suffolk HR team, led by head of service Karen Points, worked with cabinet members from Forest Heath District and St Edmundsbury Borough councils, and joint chief executive Ian Gallin, to create a single staffing structure, and a completely new pay and benefits package, for all staff working across West Suffolk.

The transformation led to ongoing shared savings of £3.5million a year through new ways of working and a 14 per cent reduction in staff.

The HR team’s work has now been recognised in the national HR Excellence 2014 Awards where they have been shortlisted in the ‘Best HR Team’ category.

The joint Forest Heath and St Edmundsbury entry is the only council team in that category – most of the other finalists are major private sector firms – and the result will be known on July 1.

In a joint statement, the cabinet members responsible for resources, including HR and staffing, Cllr Stephen Edwards (Forest Heath) and Cllr David Ray (St Edmundsbury) said: “Our human resources team was at the absolute heart of the staff restructure process and their professionalism was – and continues to be – second to none. We add our congratulations to this thoroughly-deserved national recognition.”

The single staffing structure was achieved within 12 months of the appointment of the joint leadership team (chief executive, directors and heads of service).

The HR team worked closely with Unison to develop a single employment package for all employees across both organisations which included a commitment to pay the national living wage, as a minimum. The Unison ballot on the package saw 91 per cent voting in favour of acceptance.

Haverhill Online News

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