Challenges surrounding the capacity and capability of the local government workforce are a priority this year. Our workforce improvement offer provides support to councils that recognises and responds to significant workforce needs faced by councils.
Workforce data and research
This year we are focusing on improving the quantitative and qualitative data regarding:
- council use of agency staff
- senior pay benchmarking
- current and future capacity needs in skill shortage areas
- what key HR indicators are needed to benchmark progress.
All of which aims to improve how we respond as a sector to address these challenges. A key aspect of this approach will include working with regional employers organisations to maximise the usefulness of this data for councils.
Skills partnership hubs support offer
We are providing facilitation of collaborative working among local authorities to support workforce planning to address capacity challenges in the five skill shortages (outside of social care, children’s services and town planning which is being supported through other initiatives). This year these include (maybe subject to change based on demand):
- environmental Health and associated housing related skill shortages
- ICT professionals
- legal professionals
- finance professionals
- specific ‘place based’ professionals e.g. civil engineers, highways engineering, economic development.
Apprenticeship support offer
We are continuing to provide our apprenticeship support offer to help councils make best use of their apprenticeship levy to develop and recruit to key skill shortage areas. This offer includes:
- a series of apprenticeship support events that support councils through the key aspects of managing an apprenticeship programme
- apprenticeship health checks and reports for councils to assess how they perform in relation to the Apprenticeships Maturity Model.
Targeted workforce support
The LGA Workforce Team is able to provide support to up to forty councils this year with tailored workforce support to those with the greatest need. This bespoke support aims to address specific and complex workforce challenges. This type of support includes:
- support on creating effective council organisational structures, including a complete organisation review or focused on a particular council service area
- training and support for councils on job evaluation and reward management
- support to help councils improve their understanding of their organisational culture
- support to help a council review and improve its' approach to recruitment specially focused on developing their approach to recruiting and retaining young people using our early careers toolkit
- support to help council HR Teams improve the way they provide their HR service using the CIPD’s HR Insights Tool or through a HR service peer review
- support to councils to develop their senior and middle managers through the use of team development tool Emergenetics and our 360 chief executive appraisal tool for council leaders
- support to council to improve workforce planning by accessing our Workforce Planning Support offer which this year provides councils with a Bite Size Workforce planning workshop series
- bespoke workforce support on council’s workforce challenges helping council chief Executives and leaders with expert advice and guidance to review the councils specific challenge and help develop tailored solutions to meet workforce needs.
HR and employment law advice and guidance
We are continuing to provide expert HR and employment law support to councils this year this includes:
- council having access to specialist HR and employment law advice
- providing councils with regular updates on workforce issues and employment law information, via our e-bulletins – Employment Law Advisory bulletin and Workforce bulletin, social media and our website.
Sharing HR practice and learning through networks and online forums
This year we will continue to support regional employers by contributing to their regional heads of HR networks and support the national regional employer’s association providing regular updates and information.
We will also provide support to councils to share practice and learning by providing national network opportunities working across regional boundaries. These national networks for councils include:
- Strategic Workforce Planning Network
- Organisational Development leads network – CODE (Culture and OD exchange)
- Apprenticeship leads Khub.
National collective bargaining
In addition to the above, the LGA will continue to act as the secretariat and officer function for National Employers in the various collective bargaining units within the local government and associated workforces. We progress negotiations covering the pay and core terms and conditions covering over 1.9 million local government workers as well as conducting national industrial relations engagement for chief officers, chief executives, teachers and an array of other collectively bargained groups.