6 Development of feedback to QAA reviewers and providing coaching to QAA staff.

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1 QAA Board of Directors Human Resources and Organisational Development (HROD) annual report BD Item 24 BD/2012/93 Topic 1 This paper reports on Human Resources and Organisational Development achievements and activity across QAA during , and includes key HR data trends up to at Annex A. It is a report on the broad range of HR and Organisational Development activities not simply the HR & OD function. The report includes employed staff and not self employed reviewers or other contractors. Benefits 2 In reporting HR data it is possible for the Board to see progress in organisational change key trends in how QAA is recruiting, managing and developing its people. Issues of concern are also highlighted early enough to take action. Effective leadership, motivation, deployment and management of people helps ensure that QAA s business is conducted effectively and to the benefit of our members and the public. Through benchmarking relevant data it is also possible to compare QAA to cognate organisations and national data. Summary 3 The report sets out key achievements in four areas. Change and development 4 The reorganisation of QAA has been completed with restructuring in Resources, Reviews and QAA Scotland and the creation of a coordinated central resources team providing administrative support across Reviews and Resources groups. 5 Migration of document management onto Qmmunity and a focus on benefits realisation, including piloting workflow implementation in the Performance review process. 6 Development of feedback to QAA reviewers and providing coaching to QAA staff. Communication and training 7 An exceptionally high return rate of 93% in the staff survey, with positive feedback on the whole, and action plans developed to address areas of concern. 8 Follow up work led by the Chief Executive on concerns over bullying and harassment. 9 Annual staff conference, regular staff briefings, a leadership programme for senior managers and 11 staff achieving Institute of Leadership and Management qualifications. 1

2 Workforce management 10 A significant growth in workforce numbers with high levels of recruitment and applications to join QAA. 11 A revised pay and grading system with reward linked to performance and contribution. 12 Significantly reduced staff turnover and very low absence rates. Compliance 13 A positive internal audit of HR. 14 A positive inspection by UKBA. 15 No reportable accidents. Looking ahead 16 The recently restructured Human Resources and Organisational Development function has clear aims to support effective management and leadership, internal service provision, delegation and empowerment through the management structure and in the delivery of an organisational performance management framework and reward system. Recommendations 17 The Board is invited to note progress made in Timing 18 The report highlights relevant data for the past year and compares this with previous years. Financial implications 19 Objectives for were achieved within the allocated budget, HR budget was 182,000 and the training and development budget was 97,000. Risk implications 20 The key risks to QAA in relation to staff are: failure to support managers to manage individual and team performance, and through changes particularly connected with the new salary structure and performance management system failures to recruit and retain appropriate staff and plan succession effectively failure to develop and motivate staff in post leading to retention problems and failure to deal with changing demands of QAA s work failure to support staff through changes at QAA failure to prioritise leading to excessive workloads/working hours and risk of objectives not being achieved 2

3 Communication and information 21 Specific HR data, all HR policies are published on Q-nection and on the QAA website. Equality and diversity implications 22 The annual report highlights equality and diversity issues and data is at Annex A. Enquiries: to Liz Clegg ( ) 3

4 QAA Human Resources & Organisational Development (HROD) Achievements in Change and development 23 HROD have provided support for following restructures and reshaping: Reviews restructure in support of the common review framework. The purpose was to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of Reviews Group, to integrate its activities more closely with the rest of the Agency and to improve working relations. The revised structure enabled greater devolution of responsibility with key individuals taking more responsibility for the day-to-day management of activities and greater opportunities for collaborative working. It also defined a new role for Assistant Directors as managers of defined areas of activity, and a coordinated administrative infrastructure. Resources Group reshaping to increasingly focus on delivering service excellence and driving improvement across the organisation. This reshaping exercise is currently being evaluated. A new Central Resources Team (CRT) was formed to provide administrative support across the organisation. QAA Scotland restructure to facilitate more effective leadership, strategic development, line management and opportunity for career development. 24 The Qmmunity (SharePoint) migration project has been completed and all teams are using their Qmmunity sites. We do now need to invest more time in training and familiarisation amongst staff to get the benefits out of the system changes. Managers also need to lead by example in supporting system changes and ensuring they are utilised by staff. 25 We have also started to place greater emphasis on benefits realisation with plans being developed for IRENI, PIQ and the Enhancement Themes website. These aim to identify and measure benefits both during the implementation phase as well as once the new systems are in place. We have also made a stronger link to benefits as part of the Project Appraisal Document template which all projects need to complete. 26 We have started to use the workflow facilities within Qmmunity with this year's Performance review process being hosted on a Qmmunity site. This ensured one single document was generated with restricted read and edit access initially allowing just the individual and their line manager to complete the form, before it was made available to the line managers' manager for final sign off. We received very positive feedback on the process. Being an online system also meant that we could monitor progress during the review period and keep Directors informed of any issues. 27 QAA s last Investors in People (IIP) assessment took place In July 2010 At that time QAA was assessed against the full IIP Framework which is much more far-reaching than the basic standard, and we were awarded the Bronze Award, a significant step forwards. We are now working towards the next level of Silver. 28 In terms of IiP Actions, good progress has been made in the key areas of KPIs, giving feedback to reviewers and auditors, and in the strengthening of line management capabilities and practice as these had been identified in the IiP review. Regarding KPIs, significant work has been done by the Planning and Monitoring Group on Group 4

5 SDS and Staffing planning, and the Executive and Operational Dashboards being developed in 2012 will further bring to life the relevance of KPIs for each Group and team. Feedback to reviewers is now collected and offered by Reviews Group which is a very positive step forwards. Regarding leadership and management development, this is detailed separately below. 29 A further IiP action was to develop a Recognition Scheme to further improve colleagues sense of appreciation for their contribution, in a non-pay related sense. The Than-Q! Award scheme was devised following a mini-staff survey and a discussion at the Staff Conference. The scheme was launched in the Spring with a further round of awards made in the Summer. The scheme has proved popular, with staff, managers and Directors making nominations for colleagues in one of six different categories. 30 The use of the coaching provided by the HROD team has grown significantly, particularly in the area of informal coaching sessions for line managers. This is line with the push to empower managers to proactively motivate, inspire and performance manage their staff. 31 In terms of mentoring, we have successfully piloted a maternity mentoring scheme. The mentoring scheme for new colleagues and new line managers continues to be effective with positive feedback received on the support that this offers. Communication and training 32 A staff survey was carried out in March by an external provider VaLUENTiS, who ran the survey, and compiled and analysed the results. Using an external company has enabled us to benchmark with other organisations and provide comparability between staff surveys in the future. 33 There was a very high level of staff participation in the survey with a response rate of 93 per cent (64 per cent in 2009 Staff survey). Three out of the five Directorate Groups had a 100 per cent response rate. 34 The main themes from this survey were compared with the last survey, which took place in The outcomes of the survey were communicated and both organisational and Group action plans were produced to address any areas of concern. 35 An employee engagement framework was used to assess engagement at QAA. Overall QAA scored 719, which was higher than the comparison, HE norm of 640 and Professional Services norm of 662. These scores were also broken down further by Group, grade, length of service, contract type and employment type. The highest engagement scores were found to be for grades D, F and Directorate/Chief Executive, those with less than one year s service or who are fixed-term, and part time staff. 36 Examples of questions that received high scores (at least 67 per cent agree) are: I am confident I have the skills to carry out my job (92 per cent) I am proud to work for QAA (75 per cent) I understand QAA s strategy and annual priorities for the next 12 months (81 per cent). 5

6 37 One of the questions that received mid-range scores (50 to 66 per cent agree) included: I have confidence in the way this organisation is led (55 per cent) 38 Examples of questions that had low-range scores (less than 50 per cent agree) included: communication within QAA is effective (31 per cent) action will be taken as a result of this survey (35 per cent) 39 One area of concern was the reported level of bullying and harassment. Whilst this had reduced compared to the previous survey, it was important to explore these issues in more detail. VaLUENTiS were asked to conduct a more focused and confidential survey into bullying and harassment, along with the opportunity for all staff to discuss in confidence any issues with our Investors in People assessor, Mary Leszkiewicz. The key findings of this were reviewed by the Chief Executive and these were shared confidentially with members of QAA staff, along with recommendations on taking this forward. The survey will be repeated in March. 40 A staff conference was held in November. Key themes included: QAA achievements and challenges, together with a focus on each Group s priorities and their individual challenges. HROD had particular involvement with running sessions on what does it mean to be an excellent organisation? and Reward and recognition and employee engagement. 41 HROD supports QAA wide communication and personal development by offering a range of Information talks that are held during the lunch period. This year we have provided five talks. Speakers have included the HE Policy Adviser at HEfCE and JISC as well as internal colleagues communicating on their areas of work. Topics for discussion have included: The Employer Based Training Accreditation (EBTA), HEfCE Consultation: A risk-based approach to quality Assurance and JISC - its current role and its transition into a new type of organisation. 42 We also hold regular called Chats with the Chief, six of which have been held this year. A small group of colleagues from across the organisation are invited for tea with the Chief Executive to discuss a particular theme or issue. This has proved to be a valuable way for the Chief Executive to connect informally with colleagues across the organisation and receive direct ideas and feedback. 43 The online training course to raise awareness of equality and diversity issues is now undertaken by new staff as part of their induction programme. 44 Building on the Leadership programme started in 2010 for the Chief Executive and Directors with the Leadership Foundation for HE, and the programme which was carried out for senior managers in 2011 by John Cooper Associates (JCA), first line managers and Assistant Directors have now attended leadership development. All managers attending this programme also received coaching based around their 360 degree feedback and an Emotional Intelligence self-questionnaire. 45 Equality and diversity was also incorporated into the ethos of this programme. 6

7 46 Eleven members of staff completed the ILM Level 3 Certificate in Work Place Coaching. A further eight members of staff were given support to undertake professional qualifications and first degrees. 47 We have worked with colleagues across the business to deliver training programmes, for example Writing for the Web, Writing in clear English, QMIS training giving advice on session planning; writing aims, objectives and workplace outcomes; ensuring a variety of different training styles are met; considering questions of accessibility and equality; and ensuring evaluation is planned and carried out. Workforce management 48 Charts 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4, 2.5 and 2.6 in Annex A contain data on workforce composition. This year the total number of staff has increased by 24, (17 per cent), to 163, from the corresponding period last year and FTE has increased by 19 per cent accordingly. The increase was partly due to a Voluntary Severance Scheme which ran during 2010/11 enabling Group structures to be reviewed and reshaped. As a result of these reshaping exercises additional posts were created to support new streams of work undertaken by QAA. 49 The rapid growth has resulted in 29 per cent of staff having less than one year s service and induction processes and mentoring have been a key element of work this year. 50 There are no concerns about the diversity of the workforce. (Annex A - Chart 2.2) 51 This year a full review of QAA s salary and grading structure was carried out to realign the structure with the strategic direction and values of QAA, and to encourage high performance. Beamans Management Consultants were appointed to provide support. 52 The outcome of the project has resulted in a restructure of our pay and grading arrangements along with a new approach to managing performance. This approach will reward staff for their performance and contribution to QAA. Other changes included moving the pay settlement date to 1 November and abolishing the incremental pay system. The new arrangements were implemented in November All managers and staff have received training to ensure that they understand the new arrangements and managers are equipped to assess their staff and apply a rating to their performance. 53 Religion/belief and sexual orientation of the workforce is now monitored and this information will enable QAA to review the diversity of people who are applying for jobs, who raise a grievance and who leave the organisation. 54 Following an application process, QAA was granted permission to use the disability Two Ticks symbol by Jobcentre Plus. The symbol lets jobseekers know that QAA has a positive attitude about applications from disabled people, and is awarded to employers who have made commitments to employ, retain and develop the abilities of disabled staff. Employers who use the disability symbol make five commitments regarding recruitment, training, retention, consultation and disability awareness jobs were advertised, an increase of 173 per cent over the previous year. This was due to reshaping the organisation and winning new work; Educational Oversight having had a significant impact. 7

8 56 QAA s turnover has reduced significantly as a number of staff left as part of the Voluntary Severance in A more accurate comparator is the turnover for which was the same as at 9.5 per cent. This is lower than that of the national average, which is at 12.7 per cent; that of the voluntary sector, which is at 13 per cent; and that of the public sector which is at 10.1 per cent (source: CIPD Resourcing and Talent Planning survey 2011). (Annex A - Table 3.1) 57 HROD proactively manages health and well being through working closely with managers, reporting on absence data, ensuring that Return to work interviews are conducted and maintaining an effective Occupational health service. The sickness absence rate was 1.9 per cent, which is well below the national average of 3.4 per cent, 3.1 per cent for private sector and 4 per cent for public services (source: CIPD: Absence Management Annual Survey Report 2011). (Annex A - Chart 4.2) 58 The Occupational Health nurse has seen, assessed and helped with approximately 500 separate appointments in the last year. Approximately 180 of these appointments were referred by HROD. 59 A review of HR policies was completed to ensure that they reflect organisational and legal requirements. Feedback from colleagues who have used the polices in practice was taken account of, and each policy was reviewed and agreed with the recognised Trade union, PCS. We are undertaking further work to streamline policies where possible. 60 The current database is obsolete and a replacement has been selected that integrates with the in-house payroll system. Implementation will take place in and will include self service modules for managers and staff to enable further streamlining of processes. 61 There have been six formal cases, which have included issues of capability, and disciplinary. There have been four informal warnings given as a result of these cases and there has been one departure using a Compromise agreement. HROD have also provided support to resolve informal cases and issues through coaching, mentoring and advising line managers. Compliance 62 An internal audit of HROD processes and procedures took place this year. The results were very positive underlining the professional nature of the processes and the way they are carried out. 63 An unannounced onsite inspection by UKBA officers took place this year. The inspection included employees, reviewers and internal reviewers used in the ELIR process. There were no issues of concern raised. 64 We have introduced online induction programmes that take new starters through office Health and Safety training with modules on Fire, Display Screen Equipment, and Manual Handling. 65 New fire roll call software was introduced to account for people at the fire assembly point. All of the fire wardens have received refresher training, with the Scottish office to receive theirs in QAA first aiders have received refresher training with St John s Ambulance. There were no reportable accidents during the year. 8

9 67 Annual portable appliance testing has been carried out. 68 A new Overseas Risk Assessment form/checklist for those travelling overseas on QAA business has been developed. Looking ahead The team has been reorganised with a determined approach to strategic HROD encompassing QAA s stated aims, commitments and values 69 HROD has four key aims; to improve performance management, develop leadership and the organisation, and to increase the autonomy of managers. The approach has been developed taking into consideration HROD s mission statement, the QAA strategy and QAA Culture: Our ways of working. 70 The HROD Service delivery statements over the next two years will include the objectives that will enable these aims to be met. 71 HROD are a key function in the strategic management of QAA, which requires a proactive approach, using mechanisms of delegation and empowerment but also accountability and, where appropriate, control and direction to make the best use of QAA s resources. 72 Operating in the context of an increasing emphasis of organisational and individual performance management and monitoring, we will increasingly focus on delivering service excellence ourselves and driving improvement across the organisation. Performance management 73 The HR team will support staff and managers to achieve the highest possible levels of performance, allowing people to excel and contribute across the breadth of QAA. We will do this by: creating an expectation of high standards of performance at QAA driving improvement. Leadership 74 The HR team will support senior staff to develop as leaders who are role models and who adopt the QAA Culture: Ways of working. We will do this by: supporting managers to have clarity of vision and leadership encouraging trust and confidence. Organisational development 75 The HR team will encourage an organisational development approach to managing change by: becoming trusted experts in advising and supporting QAA to develop as a whole organisation consulting on the development of our work and assessing its impact. 9

10 Autonomy 76 The HR team will work in partnership with colleagues and devolve decision making where possible. We will do this by: taking a creative and risk-based approach to finding solutions, within the parameters of QAA policies and the legal infrastructure directing our resources towards services of genuine value to QAA providing relevant and effective services. 77 The HROD team will carry out their work by being: fair and objective, setting high professional standards. open and approachable. communicating clearly and accessibly. supportive, fair, just and free from discrimination. 78 HR will continue to seek improvement and to benchmark against relevant, available comparative data. 10

11 Key HR data trends up to Annex A Data used is at 31 July for each year. Chart 2.1 Chart

12 Chart 2.3 Chart

13 Chart 2.5 Chart

14 Table 3.1 Staff turnover Year Turnover % Comparative data % education 11.8% non profit 8.1% public sector 18.3% national average % education 12.9% non profit 7.8% public sector 18.1% national average (figures based on CIPD recruitment, retention and turnover 2007 survey) % education 12.0% non profit 17.3% national average (sources: CIPD recruitment, retention and turnover 2008 survey) Comparisons from 4 cognate organisations 18.8%, 19.8%, 20.96% (including temporary staff), 12.0% % - private sector 7.6 % - public sector 11.0% - voluntary/not for profit sector 15.7% - national average (sources: CIPD recruitment, retention and turnover 2009 survey) % - private sector 5.8% - public sector 10.2% - voluntary/not for profit sector 13.5% - national average (source: CIPD recruitment, retention and turnover 2010 survey) 13.65% - Southwest 9.43% - Scotland (source: IRS Labour turnover and absence survey 2010) Comparisons from cognate organisations 4%, 8.1%, 14.3% 20.6% % 14.6% - private sector 8.6% - public sector 15.9% - voluntary/not for profit sector 13.5% - national average (source: CIPD recruitment, retention and turnover 2011 survey) 11.5% - Scotland 13.7% - South West (source: IRS Labour turnover and absence survey 2011) % 8.5% - public sector 13.8% - private sector 13.1%- voluntary/not for profit sector 9.5% - national average (source: CIPD Resourcing and Talent Planning 2011 survey). 9.7% - Scotland 10.4% - South West (source: IRS Labour turnover and absence survey 2011) 14

15 Chart 4.1 The mean number of days lost per employee has decreased since and at 4.8 days in is below the national average of 7.7 days lost in 2010 and 8.7 days lost in 2011(source: CIPD Absence Management survey 2011). Chart 4.2 There has been a decrease in the absence rate since At 1.9 per cent this is well below the national average of 3.4 per cent in 2010 and 3.8 per cent in This is also below the 2011 average absence rates of 4.0 per cent for the public sector and 3.9 per cent for the voluntary/not for profit sector (source: IRS Labour turnover and absence survey 2011). 15

16 Chart Qualifications In , 25 staff were supported to undertake a total of 14 different qualifications between them, with colleagues completing professional qualifications in HR, Facilities and Management, other colleagues furthering their higher education through a first undergraduate degree and 12 members of staff studying for the ILM Certificate in Workplace Coaching for First Line Managers (Level 3). In , colleagues completed their Workplace Coaching certificates, and a further 11 colleagues also studied for qualifications from First Aider to a Professional Doctorate in Education. Colleagues continue to successfully complete their qualifications, and to demonstrate good progress for those qualifications continuing over a number of years. 2 Investment in staff development (not including spend on IS training until when this was consolidated into the whole QAA Training and development budget) Year Total spend ( ) Average no. employees in year (not fte) Average per employee ( ) , , , , , , , Table

17 Chart 6.2 The total spend on staff development was higher than in previous years as it included 43k on leadership and management development which has been a high priority for us since we began the Executive leadership development programme in , and has now been cascaded through the whole organisation to all line managers and to Assistant Directors who manage internal and external colleagues with no formal line management responsibility. 17

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