Appendix 1 – Our People Promise Activity


This list highlights many developments, initiatives, projects and pieces of work undertaken under the remit of Our People Promise (OPP) since 2017.  It is not an exhaustive list with a great deal of work happening all of the time and on an ongoing basis.  Many of the activities highlighted below involved extensive collaboration with services and groups across the council including Human Resources & Organisational Development, Public Health, Property & Design, Information Technology & Data, Education & Skills, Communities, Equalities & Third Sector, our staff networks and our Trade Unions.


Good Place to  Work / Working Together for the City


·         Our People Promise engagement sessions delivered across the council exploring what staff wanted and valued in terms of the employer offer.  38 sessions took place in 2019, many in frontline work place settings, with a total of 432 staff members attending

·         A new induction programme including a welcome session on supporting wellbeing

·         2-yearly Staff Surveys used as a key measure for the OPP taking since 2014 in current format

·         New ways of working quickly introduced in response to the Covid 19 pandemic, working from home.  We have implemented a Future Ways of Working programme responding to the challenges and opportunities of the changing ways of work.  

·         Trialling new Collaborative Spaces

·         Implementation and ongoing development of Team Agreements

·         Development of technology to support new ways of working, communicating and collaborating.  For example Microsoft 365 and the Connecting You programme


Recruitment Reward and Recognition


·         Implementation of My Staff Shop employee benefits portal including enabling access to foster careers and shared lives carers and later expansion to carers in the city

·         Shared Cost AVC Scheme launched to help staff plan/save more for retirement with regular relaunches to maintain awareness and increase uptake.

·         Implemented a policy for reimbursement of staff professional fees/registrations that are required to undertake a particular role.   

·         Annual Leave Purchase Scheme implemented

·         Rental Deposit Loan scheme implemented       

·         Pension awareness training provided such as Pension Information, Pre-retirement planning and Shared Cost AVCs     

·         Low Pay review and redesign of the grading structure and temporary mileage review.  The proposals included an increase in the minimum hourly rate paid by the Council from £9.90 to £10.60, and increases of pay between 2% and 9.2% for approximately 3,800 council staff, many of who are in frontline roles including in schools.

·         Implemented a temporary mileage rate increase for most of the 2022/2023 financial year to recognise the substantial increase in fuel costs and impact on staff who use their own vehicles for work, which particularly impacted many front line staff.

·         Development of a new recruitment model investing in resources to provide a greater level of strategic and professional advice and support to the organisation to communication our brand as an employer, what it’s like to work for the council and better enable the council to recruit the skilled and diverse workforce that we need

·         External recognition as a fostering friendly employer by the Fostering Network for the support and policies we have in place for our staff who wish to consider fostering

·         Awarded the ‘employer with heart’ charter mark for our Premature Babies Leave policy by The Smallest Things charity.


Learning & Development


·         360 degree feedback for senior managers embedded into the rated senior manager PDP process Ongoing since 2017

·         A new PDP process including establishing agreed council behaviour expectations for the whole organisation.

·         Launch of a Leadership Development Programme in April 2019 with 3 mandatory elements following a successful pilot.  This was co developed by a group of senior managers who would be subject to the programme.

·         Increasing support for line managers developing a new Induction Programme for Line Managers, a new Management Development page was created on or learning management system to clearly signpost to all relevant development opportunities and launched our new Managers Network

·         Facilitated the participation of teams from the Council in the South East Local Authority Challenge (now known as the trisector challenge) and successfully entered three winning teams over the past three years.  We are further developing past participants through the delivery of the Managers’ Network.

·         Established a coaching scheme with continued professional development in place for trained internal coaches and a mentoring scheme in development.

·         Response to Covid involving significant shift in ways of delivering learning and development supported by e-learning and virtual training.

·         Implemented a Diverse Talent Programme for BME staff underrepresented in our workforce which has been run again and expanded in 2023 in light of the experience and feedback of the first cohort.





·         Wellbeing Zone developed for the council website providing comprehensive information and advice staff and the public related to Covid 19 2020

·         Well Workforce Survey delivered in 2018 and 2020 with subsequent action plans developed

·         Pulse Survey regarding impact of Covid-19 on council employees took place in July 2020 to identify what was working and not working for staff at this unprecedented time.

·         Wellbeing support embedded into induction checklist.

·         Mental health awareness and practical training for managers regarding mental health implemented.

·         Launch of new Attendance Management Policy in April 2021 with a focus on managing attendance and wellbeing across the council, with a new training package to support this.

·         With Albion in the Community we have delivered courses on Prostate Cancer Awareness, Breast Cancer & Cervical Cancer Awareness, Keep Yourself Safe in the Sun, Lung Cancer and Bowel Cancer. 

·         A leaflet to support better sleep practices was produced to coincide with National World Sleep Day on 13 March 2020

·         We create monthly wellbeing content for national health awareness events/raising awareness of staff support

·         Established a financial wellbeing hub on website and Wave in response to rising inflation and cost of living crisis

·         Delivery of pilots projects such as onsite physiotherapy, mental health first aid, and menopause support groups.


Fair & Inclusive


·         Fair & Inclusive Action Plan Co-created with the organisation and launched          

·         Mandatory Fair and Inclusive briefing session delivered online to 3400 staff          

·         Definitions of racism and zero tolerance agreed and published        

·         ‘Improving practice workshops’ delivered with HR Advisory Team and the Black, and Minority Ethnic Workers’ Forum      

·         A virtual Fair and Inclusive team established as safe space for staff to report issues       

·         Held BME Wellbeing Listening workshops facilitated by senior leaders       

·         Published ‘Recruiting Virtually’ and ‘Managing Remote Teams’ e-learning 

·         Delivered Anti-racism and White Privilege training online       

·         Positive action training programme established for BME staff

·         A workplace mediation offer put in place to encourage informal resolution of issues and reduce formal grievances and disputes  

·         We need to talk about Race campaign launched to raise awareness and communicate the council’s zero tolerance approach.          

·         Explored and developed new approaches to recruitment including establishing a dedicated resource to deliver this.      

·         Increased community engagement on recruitment for example attendance at job fairs and community events   

·         Recruitment campaigns provided with increased support to encourage diverse applicants and an increase in positive action (such as provision of training for BME applicants)       

·         Development of work experience programme   

·         Assistive Technology Review       

·         Developed E-learning regarding Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

·         Training related to menopause delivered- which includes Menopause Demystified for women, Supporting People during the Menopause for managers.  A new course regarding Midlife Matters for Men.  These courses have now been embedded in the corporate programme.

·         Used the new Managers network to deliver Bi-Awareness development session.

·         Reviewed and updated the Trans Policy and trans toolkit

·         Senior recruitment external review and subsequent action plans.    

·         Implemented a practice of having ethnically diverse panels for all roles for all roles graded M8 and above where at all possible.       

·         Collaboration with Disabled Workers and Carers forum on accessibility and assistive technology               

·         Launch of volunteering policy and support for carers including a support page on the Wave for unpaid carers a carer’s passport developed.