How Bradford Council created a new culture of performance management
How do you continue to serve one of the UK’s largest districts by population, while working towards ambitious targets for cost reduction? It’s a challenge Bradford Metropolitan District Council chose to tackle head-on – not least by creating a new culture of sensitive but effective performance management.
Like many UK public authorities, Bradford Metropolitan District Council was being asked to do more with less. In response, it embarked on a sweeping programme of cultural transformation – to boost its line managers’ confidence, and reduce the costs associated with under-performing employees.
The Council’s bold solution was to invest in management training – exactly the kind of area normally cut in austere times.
reduction in disciplinary case duration
The MI AdviserPlus provided really helped us prove that performance management was an area we needed to address, and drive this message home with management teams at every level.
The AdviserPlus solution
AdviserPlus worked with the Council to analyse two years’ worth of management information (MI), creating a compelling case for investment – and the blueprint for its brave new strategy.
The Council found:
• 37% of absence cases related to mental health, with managers lacking confidence in holding sensitive conversations
• Managers tended to avoid issues that aren’t ‘black and white’
• Protracted cases were negatively impacting all involved
• There was a disconnect between the number of absences requiring proactive management and the number of absence cases opened
Its new strategy would see the Council invest in its managers at every level – to boost their confidence and engagement, develop their leadership capabilities, and empower them to sensitively raise and resolve performance issues before they have a chance to escalate.
The Council also invested in its mental health resources – from an online mental health toolkit, to a series of ‘Managing Mental Health in the Workplace’ workshops for 100 staff across the business.