What our staff told us
We employ over 7,500 full time equivalent staff, with the majority of staff providing services directly to people in their homes and communities or are employed in schools. 96 per cent of staff are located in the areas they serve, with 4 per cent of staff working from our headquarters in Inverness.
The job satisfaction, motivation and personal development which people experience as a result of working for us, has a direct impact on our capacity to deliver high quality services to the public. We regularly survey staff to make sure we know how well we support and manage staff and where we could improve. Since 2000, we have conducted seven employee surveys.
The analysis of our most recent employee survey identifies the top factors impacting on staff satisfaction with their present job. These have then been analysed in terms of importance and priorities for improvement are:
- To make sure staff are consulted on management decisions which affect them and their work
- To make sure change is well-managed
- To Make sure staff receive sufficient training and support when change happens
Actions from employee survey
Whilst the results of the survey are extremely encouraging there are still areas for improvement. Analysis has identified that staff identify 'being valued and recognised for the work they do' and 'morale in the work place' of high importance but satisfaction levels are lower for these than with other aspects of employment in the council. Staff induction training for all new starts and employee review and training for all staff should contribute to an improvement in staff morale.
Corporately, the priorities for action were agreed as being:
1. Value and recognise staff through managers engaging with their staff
2. Communicate with employees in the way they prefer and interpret and present information to meet their needs
3. Provide appropriate training and career development opportunities for all staff
4. Create and sustain mentally healthy workplaces
5. Put people at the centre of change management activity
As a result of staff feedback, improvements were identified under the following key themes:
- Communicating and listening to staff
- Providing training and support to staff to do their jobs well
- Valuing and recognising staff
In support of the above actions the Staff Partnership Forum confirmed the importance of:
- Managers having regular conversations with staff about their work and completing an annual review
- Managers attending the training provided, particularly people management and minimising and dealing with stress
- Identifying ways to overcome the challenge of communicating with staff not on Council email
- Making sure change management happens at a local level with staff engaged in a way that makes sense of the change for them
Progress on improvement actions
An action plan has been developed with a target date and a lead officer for each improvement action. Progress against the corporate and service action plans are monitored through the Chief Executive's quarterly performance reviews.