Agenda and draft minutes

Employment in Hampshire County Council Committee - Tuesday, 14th March, 2017 10.00 am

Venue: Wellington Room, EII Court, The Castle, Winchester

Items
No. Item

128.

Broadcasting Announcement

Minutes:

The Vice Chairman announced that press and members of the public were permitted to film and broadcast this meeting.  Those remaining at the meeting were consenting to being filmed and recorded, and to the possible use of those images and recording broadcasting purposes.

129.

Apologies for absence

To receive any apologies for absence received.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillors Adrian Collett, Stephen Reid and Roy Perry. In the absence of the Chairman, the Vice Chairman, Councillor Evans was chairing the meeting.

130.

Declarations of interest

All Members who believe they have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in any matter to be considered at the meeting must declare that interest and, having regard to the circumstances described in Part 3 Paragraph 1.5 of the County Council's Members' Code of Conduct, leave the meeting while the matter is discussed, save for exercising any right to speak in accordance with Paragraph 1.6 of the Code. Furthermore all Members with a Non-Pecuniary interest in a matter being considered at the meeting should consider whether such interest should be declared, and having regard to Part 5, Paragraph 2 of the Code, consider whether it is appropriate to leave the meeting while the matter is discussed, save for exercising any right to speak in accordance with the Code.

Minutes:

Members were mindful that where they believed they had a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in any matter considered at the meeting they must declare that interest at the time of the relevant debate and, having regard to the circumstances described in Part 3, Paragraph 1.5 of the County Council's Members' Code of Conduct, leave the meeting while the matter was discussed, save for exercising any right to speak in accordance with Paragraph 1.6 of the Code. Furthermore Members were mindful that where they believed they had a Non-Pecuniary interest in a matter being considered at the meeting they considered whether such interest should be declared, and having regard to Part 5, Paragraph 2 of the Code, considered whether it was appropriate to leave the meeting whilst the matter was discussed, save for exercising any right to speak in accordance with the Code.

131.

Minutes of previous meeting pdf icon PDF 94 KB

To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting

Minutes:

The non-exempt Minutes of the meeting held on 10 November (Item 3 in the Minute Book) were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

132.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive any announcements the Chairman may wish to make.

Minutes:

There were no announcements on this occasion.

133.

Pay and Policy Update pdf icon PDF 74 KB

To consider a report of the Director of Corporate Resources providing an update on proposed Government policy changes.

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Director of Corporate Resources (Item 6 in the Minute Book) providing an update on proposed Government policy changes.  In presenting the report, the Head of HR and Workforce Development that there had not been a great deal of movement since EHCC Committee had last met.  In regard to the exit payment cap and public sector exit payment recovery for those earning £80,000 or more who return to employment in the public sector within 12 months, draft regulations had been produced however a definitive timescale for commencement was still awaited. 

 

In regard to Government consultations, Members noted that a requirement for employers with more than 250 employees to report annually on the gender pay gap for public sector employments would come in to force on 31 March 2017; this requirement had been in place for the private sector for some time.  The first report would be due by 31 March 2018 and would be brought to the EHCC Committee for consideration.  Members suggested that breaking the data down into schools and non-schools, gender, and hourly rates might be an effective approach. 

 

The Director of Corporate Resources confirmed that officers were working well ahead of the first publication to ensure there was time to analyse the data coming through for presentation in the most effective way.  In response to Members’ concerns at the length of time some of the consultations were taking without tangible evidence of progress, the Director highlighted that some of the consultation were extremely complex, such as in the pensions arena, which was likely to account for the time being taken by the Government.

 

RESOLVED:


That the EHCC Committee noted that:

a)         Legislative changes will be incorporated into HCC policies once
            agreed by Government.

b)         The National Living Wage will be automatically uplifted in the
            Council’s pay framework.

 

134.

Workforce Report pdf icon PDF 474 KB

To consider a report of the Director of Corporate Resources providing a high level overview of key workforce data and trends, excluding staff based in schools.

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Director of Corporate Resources (Item 7 in the Minute book) providing a high level overview of key workforce data and trends to inform EHCC Committee’s work programme and any further areas of policy that need to be progressed.  In particular, the report covered workforce pay costs since 2010; workforce numbers (FTE); starters and leavers; turnover; sickness absence; performance and recruitment.  It was noted that the data did not include staff based in schools.

 

In presenting the report the Head of HR and Workforce Development confirmed that the report was in response to a request from the EHCC Committee that an annual report be prepared for their consideration to monitor key workforce data, which would help to identify gaps in the workforce that might affect the effective delivery of the County Council’s services.

 

During the course of discussion, Members noted that there is a high turnover of catering assistants, and that Adults’ Health & Care has a higher turnover rate than the benchmark of 3.3%, albeit this is industrially typical.  Both areas were being looked into.  HR Business Partners monitor turnover to see where trends present. 

 

Section 8 of the report covered recruitment hot spots and challenges together with the many initiatives to help with the retention of staff.  In terms of competition with the private sector, Members noted that this was not always about pay; the pay framework is monitored carefully to check it remains competitive in the market place.  Attractiveness of the organisation as a place to work is also an important factor. 

 

The performance model (Valuing Performance) was very much about managing the County Council’s workforce effectively.  Challenge had been applied to the valuing performance ratings and effort put into monitoring, reviewing and taking appropriate action through embedded HR processes, where required.  Members also noted that managing sickness was a critical area of work for HR to help individuals and managers to raise the bar.

Members welcomed the breadth and detail of the report, and requested that it be included on the agenda for a Members Briefing in the autumn after new Members had settled into the organisation and to provide returning Members with a refresh of the workforce profile.

 

RESOLVED:

            That the EHCC Committee noted:
           

a)         There are no new or unexpected trends in the workforce data and as such the organisation currently has the necessary workforce policies and measures in place to meet the requirements of the Council.

b)        The activities which are currently being undertaken and confirm
that the contents of the report is made available as part of the Member briefing programme in the autumn in order to assist new, and refresh returning Members on the workforce profile.

 

135.

Exclusion of Press and Public

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That the press and public be excluded from the meeting as it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information within Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Part I of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, being information relating to an individual and information relating to the financial affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information) which should not be disclosed for the reasons set out in the report.

 

136.

Exempt Minute

To receive the exempt minute arising from the meeting held on 10 November 2016.

Minutes:

The exempt Minute of the meeting held on 10 November 2017 (Item 7 in the Minute Book) was confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.