Agenda, decisions and minutes

Strata Joint Executive Committee
Monday 27th March 2017 11.00 am

Venue: Rennes Room, Civic Centre, Paris Street, Exeter. View directions

Contact: Sarah Selway, Democratic Services Manager (Committees)  Telephone 01392 265275 or email  sarah.selway@exeter.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

9.

Apologies

To receive apologies for absence from Committee members.

 

Minutes:

No apologies for absence were received.

 

10.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 77 KB

To sign the minutes of the meeting held on 16 January 2017.

 

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on the 16 January 2017 were taken as read and signed by the Chair as correct.

 

11.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors are reminded of the need to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests that relate to business on the agenda and which have not already been included in the register of interests, before any discussion takes place on the item. Unless the interest is sensitive, you must also disclose the nature of the interest. In accordance with the Council's Code of Conduct, you must then leave the room and must not participate in any further discussion of the item.  Councillors requiring clarification should seek the advice of the Monitoring Officer prior to the day of the meeting.

 

Minutes:

No declarations of disclosable pecuniary interest were made.

 

12.

Progress Report pdf icon PDF 227 KB

To consider the report of the Strata Board and Strata Managers.

 

Decision:

Agreed

 

 

that the progress of key Strata projects and activities be noted, together with the change of plan for the roll out of the Global Desktop.

Reason for Decision:

 

As set out in the report

 

 

Minutes:

The Strata Board and Managers submitted a progress report on delivery of the Infrastructure and key projects.

 

The Chairman of the Joint Strata Scrutiny Committee attended and updated the JEC on the scrutiny committee’s consideration of the report at its recent meeting.

 

He informed Members:-

 

·         The global desk top roll out had been completed at Exeter and Teignbridge. East Devon District Council was expected to complete roll out in April 2017. There had been a year’s delay, which had been caused by faulty software. The supplier had provided software fixes with compensation being negotiated.

·         The target completion dates for system convergence had been provided by Strata for progress reports.

·         The Scrutiny Committee had been reassured that priorities and progress updates had been fully discussed with programme managers from Teignbridge District Council, East Devon District Council and Exeter City Councils.

·         He would be discussing a Performance Management reporting system with the new IT Director for Strata when he took up post in April. This would enable effective scrutiny going forward.

·         The existing telephone systems at all three councils were twenty years old and no longer in production. There was a business case for upgrading the telephone systems to change from analogue to digital. The proposed new digital system would link with Skype to provide a better internal communication link for all staff. The Scrutiny Committee had supported the proposal and awaited the decision of the Strata Board on whether or not to proceed.

 

The Scrutiny Chairman thanked the Strata team for their hard work and for providing the new style progress report that could be understood by non-technical people.

 

The JEC welcomed the positive feedback from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

RESOLVED that the progress of key Strata projects and activities be noted, together with the change of plan for the roll out of the Global Desktop.

 

13.

Local Government (Access to Information) Act 1985 - Exclusion of Press and Public

RESOLVED that, under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of items 8 and 9 on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraphs 1, 2, and 3 of Part I, Schedule 12A of the Act. 

 

Decision:

Agreed

 

 

That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following item on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of Part I, Schedule 12A of the Act. 

 

 

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED that, under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following item on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of Part I, Schedule 12A of the Act. 

 

14.

Business Case - Customer Contact System

To consider the report of the Infrastructure and Support Manager

Decision:

Agreed

 

 

that the actions be endorsed.

Reason for Decision:

 

As set out in the report

 

 

 

 

Minutes:

The Teignbridge Director presented the report informing Members of the next steps in completion of Phase 2 of the Infrastructure delivery with the installation of a customer contact centre system for each Council.

 

Members discussed the need for Strata to be aware of the importance of ensuring that any potential Council customers were kept updated about future improvement projects.

 

Funds were available in the approved Strata Capital Budget for the Customer Contact System. This decision was one for the Board who were keen to share progress on the project.

 

RESOLVED that the actions be endorsed.

 

15.

Human Resources Update Report

To consider the report of the HR lead for Human Resources.

 

Decision:

Agreed

 

 

That report be noted and the actions agreed.

Reason for Decision:

 

As set out in the report

 

 

Minutes:

The Teignbridge Director presented a report providing an update on key HR information in relation to Strata Services Solutions Ltd.

 

He commented on the difficulties faced of recruiting into certain roles. Councils were competing with private sector salaries which were about 15-20% higher. Council salaries were competitive with public sector, but it was more difficult to compete with the private sector.

 

Strata were addressing the recruitment issues by making improvements to their public image to attract candidates. One development would be a corporate website with a jobs/careers promotion to establish Strata’s identity. The website was expected to be finished by May 2017. Recruitment had been improved through working with specialist agencies and using consultants to sell the benefits of working for Strata. They would continue to use the apprenticeship scheme to train and develop staff and confirmed two apprentices had been appointed to full time employment.

 

Members discussed suggestions to raise and develop Strata’s profile. The website would need to start as soon as possible to focus on recruitment and why Strata was a great company to work for.

 

The issues of recruitment had been noted and the JEC believed it was important for Strata to engage and network to promote the brand and highlight the work they had done.

 

The Staff engagement survey 2016 was discussed. There were a few areas where staff satisfaction had reduced slightly around communication, pressure of work and staff engagement. The new IT Director would analyse the results and develop an action plan to address the issues. However, it was noted that most respondents would still recommend Strata as a place to work.

 

The Teignbridge Chef Executive advised that better communication from Strata over the temporary suspension of the East Devon VDi roll out may have helped understanding at Teignbridge about available Strata resources.

 

In response to questions raised by Members the following responses were provided:

 

  • Reports on Strata staff sickness and time off in lieu could be provided outside the meeting, however this information could be added for regular reporting.
  • The issue concerning the recent communications issues at Teignbridge had been noted and been taken forward as a learning issue.
  • The Strata brand would be reviewed with the new Director and the website was a priority development.

 

RESOLVED that the report be noted and the actions agreed.