We hear a great deal about 'partnership working', but what does it actually mean and how does it work?
TUS has a workforce partnership agreement with management. It is a commitment by both parties to work together to make the organisation a better place to work for everyone, through joint problem solving, joint involvement in strategic planning and joint information sharing, with the aim of reaching an agreement to benefit the organisation.
One example of partnership working is the closure of the Welsh Government office North Penrallt in Caernarfon. PCS has actively campaigned over many years to maintain a Welsh Government presence in Caernarfon and has resisted any suggestion that posts be transferred to Llandudno Junction.
Sadly for North Penrallt the building is no longer suitable for its requirements as it is approximately six times too large for its business needs and in a poor state of repair. While recognising the requirement to be able to support business needs and enhance operational effectiveness, one of the main areas of concern was that there would be no Welsh Government presence in Caernarfon to serve the local community. Through partnership working a commitment has been given to retain a key presence in Caernarfon and relocate staff to Victoria Dock, a short walk from the current office. This should preserve a similar level of Welsh Government presence within Caernarfon.
The Caernarfon accommodation project group was set up in order to manage the relocation from North Penrallt to Victoria Dock. The project group is committed to Partnership working providing engagement through nominated user representatives, TUS and disability awareness and support (DAAS). A Caernarfon intranet team site has been put in place to provide news, updates and to share thoughts and suggestions on the project. After each meeting a project bulletin is produced providing an update on progress, staff and TUS have been fully engaged in the project planning, demonstrating a collaborative approach.
There will always be areas where management and TUS will have different views. Through partnership working we are able to tackle the challenges for the benefit of both staff and the organisation.