Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 14th November 2019
Title of Item/Report
Scrutiny Review of Smarter Working in Stockton-on-Tees - Accommodation and Buildings
Record of the Decision
Consideration was given to a report on the Scrutiny Review of Smarter Working in Stockton-on-Tees - Accommodation and Buildings - Final Report of People Select Committee.

The People Select Committee's Task and Finish Group had completed a review examining the Council's office accommodation. The Group had reviewed the arrangements within the context of the Smarter Working programme and the future needs of the Authority and workforce.

Having reviewed the options available, the Group believe the best solution would be for the Council to move towards having a single main building for its office accommodation needs. Further work would be needed to more fully investigate the financial and development requirements of the options and the Group recommends that this work should now take place.

The review had been supported and informed by Finance and Business Services. The Task and Finish Group had visited existing Council buildings (Stirling House, Kingsway, Municipal Buildings, 16 Church Road, Bayheath House) and spoken with members of staff. The Group also visited North Tyneside Council at Cobalt Business Park, Thirteen Group at Northshore, and the Cleveland Police Community Safety Hub at Hemlington.

In relation to Property implications, details of the office accommodation (including locations and associated costs) had been considered as part of the review and this information was included in the Group's report. Final decisions in relation to specific buildings would be the subject of future work, subject to agreement of the recommendations.

RESOLVED that:-

1. The aim of developing accessible and inspiring workspaces which enable collaborative and flexible working be endorsed.

2. It be noted that the Council's existing office workspace is of inconsistent condition, inflexible, and too large for the current and projected needs of the Council's workforce. The total available space should be reduced, in conjunction with the creation of a more flexible working environment to allow staff to access different types of office space.

3. When taking steps to improve the quality of its office accommodation, the Council should ensure a key focus of this work is the wellbeing and productivity of its staff.

4. In order to achieve recommendations 1-3, the Council should further explore the options to create a single building for the Council's office accommodation.

5. As part of the above work, the Council should ensure that staff and stakeholder engagement is integral to the process.
Reasons for the Decision
This topic was included in the Scrutiny Work Programme for 2019-20. The review is now complete and recommendations have been made for Cabinet to consider.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
None.
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
None.
Details of any Dispensations
N/A
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Midnight, 22 November 2019.
Attachment

Date of Publication: 18 November 2019


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