Renfrewshire Council

Right for Renfrewshire Update - Programme on Hold

Given the need for the council to focus its resources to tackle the immediate Coronavirus crisis, the Right for Renfrewshire transformation programme has been put on hold with immediate effect.

This means that the changes we planned to make in this financial year 2020/21 will be delayed. There is no decision on when the programme will restart.

Why this is necessary?

The impact of the virus on council services and people in our community is unprecedented. Services are working tirelessly to respond, keep essential services running and protect people who need our support to survive through this outbreak.

Our response includes deploying staff to other service areas to bolster resilience and providing services that are new—such as local humanitarian aid and the provision of food and medicines to people at serious risk of becoming critically ill from coronavirus, and to those who are very vulnerable.

The support from all services has been remarkable. It would simply not be possible to ask more of our workforce at this time.

The decision recognises that we have not been able to make the operational changes we had planned, that would enable the release of staff. Without those changes in place we risk placing additional pressure on our remaining workforce, which contradicts the very principles of our change programme.

This will allow the council to manage the crisis, support staff through the uncertainty and recover as quickly as possible.

What does this mean for staff leaving through VR/VER?

Those who have a formally agreed Voluntary Redundancy (VR) or Voluntary Early Retirement (VER) leaving date as part of Right for Renfrewshire are being asked to postpone this date and remain in the council's employment until March 31, 2021. At this time release will be guaranteed, based on updated figures, and under the terms of Renfrewshire Council's Voluntary Redundancy and Voluntary Early Retirement Scheme. A letter is being sent to staff within this group.

The decision to postpone will be on a voluntary basis and will be up to each individual and their own personal circumstances. All those affected will shortly receive a letter from HR and OD asking if they wish to postpone.

For those who continued to express an interest in VR/VER and have not yet received confirmation of an outcome and/or agreed leave date, this will be kept on hold and until the programme restarts. They will not have to re-apply. A letter is being sent to staff within this group.

What does this mean for posts in-scope in year 1?

For employees whose posts are in-scope within a year 1 service design and did not continue to express an interest in VR or VER, they will continue in their current post and service structure as normal, for now.

Next steps?

If you have a formally agreed leave date, you will shortly receive a letter asking you to postpone your end date and remain in the council's employment until March 31, 2021.

You will be asked to email your decision to vrverteam@renfrewshire.gov.uk as soon as possible and by close of business on Thursday 30 April 2020, stating your clear intention to POSTPONE or LEAVE AS PLANNED.   In your email, you must also provide your name, service you work in employee number.  If you do not have access to email, please ask your line manager to do this for you.

We recognise this is a difficult time for many and we would like to thank you for your continued support for our response to this pandemic and for your patience and understanding at this time.

Where can I find out more?

You can find out more about the programme on the intranet http://intranet.renfrewshire.gov.uk/rightforrenfrewshire and the public website http://www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/right-for-renfrewshire

If you require any more information about the decision to pause the programme and what this means for you, please speak to your manager.