The Chairman welcomed Mrs Sarah Murphy-Brookman, Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development (HR&OD), Buckinghamshire County Council to the meeting. Mrs Murphy-Brookman introduced the report on Tier 2 and 3 Leadership, Reward, Terms and Conditions and highlighted the following:
· A spot salary structure had been recommended instead of a pay spine as this would help to attract and retain the best talent. Salaries would be set within the parameter of the Leadership Pay Broad Band as outlined on page 11.
· Benchmarking of terms and conditions had been undertaken using Epaycheck and Hay Paynet, which were widely used in local government. In addition, benchmarking had been carried out against other councils with populations over 300,000, e.g. Hertfordshire and Cornwall and near neighbours had been considered to ensure competiveness.
· The recruitment process for Tiers 2 and 3 would soon be underway. The advertisements for Tier 2 posts would be published on 12th August, with a view to appointment by the end of October. Tier 3 recruitment would commence in October, with a view to appointing by the end of December.
· Consultation with Senior staff regarding structures and new job summaries had already started. Anyone who chose not to apply for the Tier 2 or 3 roles or were unsuccessful would then have individual discussions about possible roles. As there was still a significant amount of transformation to take place, the expertise of existing senior managers would still be needed.
· There would be no compulsory redundancies – anyone at Tier 2 or 3 without a new post would TUPE over to the new Council on 1st April, although some senior managers had indicated that they may wish to take voluntary redundancy. There would be one year of Terms and Conditions protection, as some of the district councils currently had more generous leave allowances.
In response to members’ questions and during the subsequent discussions the following main points were noted:
· Some Tier 2 manager posts had been slotted in, namely the Director of Children’s Services (DCS) and the Director of Adult Social Care (DASS). There would be some limited slotting in at Tier 3 if job roles essentially remained the same.
· The consultation on the structure for Tier 2 and 3 would close on 5th August. It was agreed that the structure chart would be shared with the Committee, along with an outline of the number of posts currently at Tier 2 and 3 to allow for comparison.
ACTION: Sarah Murphy-Brookman
· A member asked if a reduction in terms and conditions would be a common theme that would be extended further down the pay scale, as it was important that existing staff should feel valued. In response, Mrs Murphy-Brookman explained that the total package for senior managers had to be affordable. Modelling for wider staff was progressing and trade union and employee representatives would be consulted on proposals. It was also noted that pay protection rights from the existing five councils would be transferred as part of TUPE.
· It was noted that the Hay Job evaluation methodology was used to evaluate all jobs. This generated a job size which was then used to identify a mid-point for salaries and this can be finessed further according to market scarcity, experience etc.
· In response to a question about what the criteria would be for managers to qualify for a bonus, it was explained that a performance framework was currently being designed. This would involve agreeing objectives at the start of the year and progress would be assessed at the end of the year. The Leader would agree objectives for the Chief Executive and Tier 2 roles would have objectives set by the Chief Executive.
· It was noted that clarity around objectives and bonus awards was needed for members and the public. Mrs Murphy-Brookman emphasised that bonuses would only be available to senior managers if the Council had sufficient resources. Even then if the Pay Committee were not satisfied with the level of performance, there would be no bonuses, therefore members were able to retain control.
· A member also commented that the Delivering Successful Performance (DSP) system at Buckinghamshire County Council was complex and not universally popular with staff, so it was important that any new performance management framework was robust and transparent. It was suggested that it would be helpful to get external advice on possible performance management frameworks and it was important that staff were well-trained on how any new system should work.
· A member raised concerns about the how the mid-point salaries set out in Annex 1 had been calculated, indicating that he felt they were too generous. He suggested that the mid-point for Tier 2 should be £142,000, rather than £155,000 and Tier 3 should be £107,000 rather than £120,000. A note to explain how these figures were arrived at was requested to be appended to the minutes of the meeting.
ACTION: Sarah Murphy-Brookman
The Chairman thanked Mrs Murphy-Brookman for attending the meeting.