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Wiltshire Council agrees staff cuts
8:20am Thursday 15th August 2013 in News
Wiltshire Council has announced the final figures of its voluntary redundancy programme this week, with 252 applications accepted from the 419 that were submitted.
The programme, which ran from June 11 to July 26, was part of a cost cutting exercise, which meant staff were not placed at risk of redundancy, but were instead invited to apply for voluntary redundancy.
Overall, the full-time equivalent workforce has been reduced by 5.7 per cent, with applications accepted across all service areas and at all levels.
The impact across the council will be eased by the requirement for most staff to work their notice, to ensure new structures can be implemented and to allow for handover or completion of work.
Maggie Rae, Wiltshire Council corporate director, said: “It’s been quite a smooth process and the plan has been executed with minimal disruption, with most people getting the result they hoped for.
“This was a better way of helping those who wanted to move on, while also making savings. We want to thank staff for their support.
“We have asked staff to work their notice, so we have more time to restructure and to make sure we protect front-line services. I think that a measure of success is that people haven’t noticed much change. Morale would have had a bigger dip if we had put lots of people at risk through forced redundancies. ”
The council said the programme has achieved its aim of delivering savings of £4 million from the staffing structure for 2013/14, with ongoing annual savings of £6.9 million from salary costs.
Over the next four years, the council intends to make around £120million of cuts to its budget. A restructure of the management is also proposed, to begin in October, which could see 18 service directors offered voluntary redundancy too.
She added: “We have no plans for any more voluntary redundancies, but we still have a challenging programme over the next few years, so I wouldn’t rule out looking at this again.”
Leader of Wiltshire Council Jane Scott spoke yesterday at the launch of the Olympic Legacy Business Dinner, announcing that Olympian James Cracknell will be a guest speaker at the event on October 25.
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