Manchester City Council

M People

M for Manchester in this case. Only been back blogging for a couple of weeks and already beginning to fall behind. Back to yesterday which started with a short but important meeting looking at how we manage personnel and organisational development issues over the next 4/5 years.

This is part of the planning for cuts that we started early in 2009. If we are going to continue to deliver the priorities for Manchester the Council as an organisation is going to have to be more flexible, more creative, and find ways of doing more with less. Of course what that really means is that the people who work for us directly (and our suppliers) are going to have to be more flexible, more creative and find ways of doing more with less.

That can't be a one-sided arrangement and the Council's side of the bargain is to offer better (physical) working conditions, job security, more training and staff development aimed at better career progression, and more opportunities to move around the Council. The old-style redeployment will disappear and instead, as the Council changes, employees will be matched to jobs by competencies and given chances to try new areas of work. As people progress through the Council entry-level jobs will be filled entirely from unemployed and/or young Manchester residents helping us meet another of our priorities of tackling worklessness - an even harder task after this week's budget.

All of this will be driven by our core values of people, pride and place. The bottom line is that the Council is only as good as the people who deliver for us and we have to give them the best chance of being able to deliver at the highest level.

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There are 17 responses to “M People”

  1. Dave Says:

    It is a worrying time for all people who work for MCC none of whom caused the finicial problems the country see's itself in. Any company that sees its future budget slashed by 25% will struggle. I just hope that there will not have to be forced lay offs. This budget will not only effect MCC employees but also a large section of the private sector that recieves work via MCC. It is worrying times I just hope if there are cuts its not just the lowest paid that are forced to take them.....In next years local election just remember who jumped into this government with David Camourn a good motto to remember 'A liberial vote is a vote for the Tories' just what manchester wants for the future.......

  2. Lazyitis Says:

    Having just been involved in a restructure (Housing) where the lowest grade is 4, and the next one up is 7, I would welcome any chance to be able to progress up the ladder in other departments.

  3. Disheartened Says:

    Having gone through the 'old' style of redeployment, the only advice I can offer to anyone finding themselves facing redeployment in the future is - make sure your designated personnel officer attends interviews with you, panel's have too much latitude otherwise!

  4. Duke Fame Says:

    Reather than redeploymnet, why not simply keep the people who can deliver th services needed in hte most efficient way.

    People are like pens, if they don't work, give 'em a shake, if they still don't work, hoy 'em oot.

  5. bunnyWabbit Says:

    I have worked for MCC for 20 years and remember thinking when I started how good the 'no redundancy' policy was. Over the years, I've since seen many reorganisations and restructures and now I'm not so sure. I've seen too many good people who - through no fault of their own - have lost out in restructures and been left feeling unvalued and demotivated and are then made to jump through various humiliating hoops to end up in an alternative job nothing like their original contract of employment and often at a lower grade. Quite a few of these good people have subsequently left MCC as they feel so degraded and sad over the process they've been through that it is untenable for them to stay. This isn't helped by the fact that sometimes reorganisations are used to get rid of 'dead wood', so that people who end up on the redeployment list through sheer bad luck are then lumped in with this dead wood. The dead wood should have been dealt with as a separate management issue. I also dread to think of the management costs that have been spent on continual restructures over the years - usually this just means changing job titles, team titles and service titles, forcing colleagues to compete with each other for their own jobs and then pushing a few people onto the redepolyment list. Most people I know who work for MCC are quite capable of evolving their work to reflect political and societal changes and other changing priorities and don't need a pig's ear of a reorganisation to do it for them. If people are going to be got rid of, just do it instead of making people perform like seals and compete against their mates. I do feel like the no-redundancy policy - established as a noble idea -has ended up almost giving permission for the council to inflict stressful and regular (average every couple of years)reorganisations onto its staff in a way that would be unacceptable in any other employment arena. It's actually become a habitual action for departments instead of an exceptional action.
    Now that there is a real big threat with the 25%+ cuts, I've come to the conclusion that MCC should rethink its redundancy policy. A reasonable mid-level redundancy pay package should be created (similar to other councils and private companies - more than the legal minimum but not excessive) and then staff should be invited to register an interest in voluntary redundancy. I think there are probably quite a few employees who would take their chances and opt for this rather than participate in some patronising ugly jobs lotto called M People (which ironically is probably also costing us). There might even be enough people so that the requisite savings are made and the rest of us can get on with our jobs and deal with the ominous changes that are coming over the next few years.

  6. Duke Fame Says:

    The fact is, local govt is far too big and needed trimming.

    The fact that there ever was a no-redundancy agreement shows what dire leadership the local council has had. You simply cannot run an efficient organisation and rule out redundancy.

    Here we have an opportunity to cut back to what is really required and then there should be no more indugences and waste.

  7. shades of grey Says:

    By 'better (physical) working conditions, job security, more training and staff development aimed at better career progression, and more opportunities to move around the Council.' what Sir Richard really means is a de-skilled, generic workforce that will be moved around to fill gaps in the service. This will lead to a worse service for us, the residents of Manchester. And who decided that calling it after mid 90's band (who's rise to fame turned out to be brief and unsustainable) was a good idea. Imaginative? Is this really the best you can do?

  8. Lulu Says:

    Dave, you say that none of the financial problems have been caused by MCC staff. Hang on a moment, there are plenty of staff who have, and continue to "milk" the very generous sick pay given by MCC as an employer. These people who regularly ring in sick, neglecting their duties and adding to the pressure felt by loyal hardworking colleagues, need to realist that this costs MCC millions of pounds each year. This cannot be sustained and now we are facing the consequences of these selfish staff members actions. Bring in statutory sick pay and see how many abuse the system then. Bet attendance would be 100%. This has had an impact on services and paying millions of pounds to lazy good for nothing staff in sick pay each year has crippled the City Council. If you are one of the culprets reading this, shame on you.

  9. Helena Says:

    Lulu - what brought that rant on? Is the City Council crippled by paying sick pay? I get the feeling you are a disgruntled employee who works with someone that you think is 'swinging the lead'. I am sorry for you if that is the case but the City Council has measures in place to deal with sickness and often these measures see people attending work when they are not fit to do so. So please try and get things in to perspective. The Council wastes a great deal of money on crazy initiatives such as M People and on unecessary jobs (several highly paid ones in HR as pointed out by another contributer, all with almost identical descriptions). There are far too many chief officers and of course the issue of Sir Howard's pay exceeding the Primeminister's is certainly cause for a rethink but don't take a swipe at the many loyal and hard working staff, who provide much needed services for the residents of Manchester. Remember, however difficult things are now, they will only get worse once this Government really gets going with the cuts in Autumn. Many of us will pay for the excesses of the Banks with our jobs.

  10. Lulu Says:

    Helena, I'm not ranting. I just don't think people fully understand how much money is wasted and has been wasted over many years by staff taking advantage of MCC's rather generous sick pay policy. Thankfully no one I work with swings the lead as we have a good committed team here. However, I see the sickness stats and how much money is wasted, we are talking millions of pounds here. This has been going on for years and years. When will people wake up and understand that MCC is an employer not a charitable organisation who pays you for doing nothing. As for Chief Officers pay, I wouldn't do what they do for the pay they get. Look at the comparison between their pay and chief officers in banks etc. You can't honestly say our chief officers are overpaid? Would you do their job? You don't need to tell me things will get worse. The issue of how much MCC shells out on sick pay each year is frankly shocking.

  11. Helena Says:

    Yes Lulu, absolutely a rant. You have access to the sickeness staistics so you are making a wild assumtion that everyone who has received sick pay is taking advantage of the system. I doubt you have in-depth medical knowledge of each person, therefore you are generalising and ranting. What percentage of the overal budget idoes sickness represent? For your information SSP is deducted from the Council's own sick pay.As for the chief officers pay, yes I would do their job for their pay. I already work for a Council in a very demanding role for less pay than I would get for a similar role in the private sector (that 'Sacred Cow' you seem to worship). The reason I do is that I am commited to my community and to my city, as a whole. The same reason that I would hope the Chief Officers in Manchester are doing their jobs. It is a vocation and at senior level, they are more than adequately compensated.

  12. lee Says:

    Helena

    I believe there is a hemp skirt sale on at hippys are us.....I take it you've spent a lot of time at festivals being a hippy and all. You need to get real, Lulu talks sense....

  13. Helena Says:

    Lee, your childish outburst made me laugh. You really could not be further from the truth about me.
    I simply do not like to see assertions, such as Lulu's, purporting to be fact with no supporting evidence. There is an old saying " better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt". You would do well to remember that.

  14. lee Says:

    Helena, why are you still talking then?

  15. jenny Says:

    i think its disgraceful that jobs are being cut and there are still agency staff working for the council

  16. andy pandy Says:

    in reponse to lulu here is one person with 34 yrs service behind them that did abuse the sick i had a mild heart attack last year and was off work 11 weeks i went back even though the doc recommended i stay off longer why because i love my job and did not want to take advantage of getting paid you might be right but dont tar all of the council employees with the same brush thank you

  17. Nicola Says:

    Those that say the public sector is too big and inefficient should remember who caused the economic mess we are in and the level of incompetency that must have been involved. Added to this, where is the efficiency and effectiveness in bankers bonus pay! Not that the present government needed any excuse to cut the public sector. Let's not not put the private sector on a pedestal eh!
    As far as the redeployment programme is going, it would be useful for staff to feel that HR has a good steer on the process, better communication may help as well. The matching process could have really positive results if HR look at the full range of peoples skills not just what post they were in previously.

 

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The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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