NEREO continues to facilitate a number of regional networks, offering an opportunity for mutual support and sharing good practice.
Current networks supported are detailed below:
The North East Region Strategic HR Forum (NESHRF) is the network for the Directors/Heads of HR from the 12 Councils in the region plus Police and Fire Authorities.
Since 2020 the Group has met fortnightly via “Teams” to keep up to speed with COVID related issues and to provide a format for communicating with LGA colleagues.
The Network provides an opportunity to share information and best practice, discuss current ‘hot topics’ and receive presentations from invited guests.
It is also a forum where soundings on key issues can be taken helping to advise NEREO and national colleagues
Date of next meeting : Wednesday 6 March 2024, 2pm – Teams meeting
NE Working Practices Discovery Group : NEREO created the Working Practices Discovery Group in June 2020 to recognise how post COVID-19 workplace recovery and restoration challenges encountered can be overcome, to identify innovative and smarter working opportunities that will offer resilience and flexibility, and future-proof our services and public sector workforce.
This group presents a valuable opportunity for Local Authorities, Police and Fire and Rescue Services to work collaboratively, to share ideas, findings and potential barriers that the group can replicate and learn from.
From the intelligence gathered so far, and the communication received from members, it is clear that actions are in progress, and there are proactive and innovative ideas that are being shared regionally to help develop and shape a best practice approach as part of recovery goals and safer agile working practices.
The group continues to meet regularly to discuss and share restoration and recovery practices and information that, once gathered, allows for the adoption of best practices and transfer of lessons learned.
Teams forum only
North East Regional OD Network follows on from the ongoing success of the WPDG. This network was created by NEREO in November 2021 to bring together the region’s member authorities.
The purpose of the OD regional network is to:
- Provide a workspace to share ideas and best practices and see what works well on other organisations
- Act as a sounding board for problem-solving across the member organisations
- Feed into the National OD network
- Access the huge amount of OD expertise within the region
- Utilise the power of the collective when it comes to OD initiatives
- Support the OD teams in addressing the core challenges of leadership, culture and wellbeing
- Build in space for OD practitioners’ personal development
- Complement other national networks such as LGA Workforce Planning and Apprenticeships
The OD network meetings take place very eight weeks and a specific OD theme or topic forms the basis of each session. The members use the teams site to communicate outside of the regular meetings, reflecting the themese and topics discussed. Speakers have included Richard Wills – RW Training Associates Ltd, Matt Gofton – CIPD, Ernest Opuni – LGA, and Manny Sandhu – Directorship of Leadership, OD and Resourcing.
Date of next meeting : Tuesday 5 March 2024, 9.30am, MS Teams
Education / Children’s HR Group: This network is for HR staff engaged primarily in delivering HR support to schools and was originally established in 2009 as a result of plans at that time to create a new National Negotiating Body for non-teaching schools staff.
The idea was dropped, however, the group has continued to meet regularly and meetings are often attended by the LGA lead officer on Education Terms and Conditions and, on occasions, by staff from the Department of Education.
Date of next meeting : Thursday 18 April 2024, 1.30pm, MS Teams
Health and Safety Lead Officers Group allows for shared learning through regular contact between the members at quarterly meetings which are held within the NEREO area or via teams.
Sharing best practice, ideas and experiences has been the driving force behind the continued relationships of all the members within the group. This also allows for training to be advertised to all members which allows for economies of scale and, therefore, cheaper quotes being achieved.
When requested, you will always find advice forthcoming from the vast wealth of knowledge built up within the teams of the participating councils.
Meetings are always pleasant and informal with time afterwards to network with fellow practitioners or discuss the matters of the day
Date of next meeting : Tuesday 14 May 2024, 10am, Microsoft Teams
The Regional Scrutiny Officer’s Network provides a forum for officers supporting overview and scrutiny in the 12 north eastern authorities. The network was established in 2000 and continues to provide officers the chance to share information on key priorities and ideas on improving scrutiny processes.
The network supports officers to make useful contacts with others, and to share experiences on the significant scrutiny topics, working methods, joint working, delivering outcomes, and scrutiny best practice.
Having skilled officers providing support to our non-executive Members continues to be important in these challenging times. The opportunity for officers to be involved in a collaborative network can support and inform them in their day-to-day practices. The network offers real opportunities to further develop and enhance the role we undertake.
Date of next meeting : Thursday 7 March 2024, 10am, MS Teams
Joint Scrutiny Members/Officers: The Network provides a forum for elected members who have a role within the scrutiny function to meet, make useful contacts with other members and officers, and to share experiences. This includes sharing ideas on improving scrutiny processes and enhancing effectiveness. The Network provides a link between the north east authorities and the Centre for Governance and Scrutiny, for example where there is an impact on the scrutiny function of national policy developments.
The network works to forge relationships between scrutiny and partner organisations and commissioners, and council leaders or elected mayors and their executive colleagues. Most importantly for the future of scrutiny, the Network continues to consider the role of scrutiny within local government and how it adds value to public service provision.
Date of next meeting : Thursday 21 March 2024, 10am, MS Teams
Payroll Network : a Payroll Officers’ network was established in 2017 at the suggestion of one of the councils in the region.
It meets regularly with all 12 councils supporting it.
Date of next meeting : Thursday 25 April 2024, 10am, MS Teams
The Equalities and Diversity Network: The Equalities Network meets on a quarterly basis. The Equalities and Human Rights Commission has supported the Network for the past 11 years.
Date of next meeting : Tuesday, 26 March 2024, 1.30pm, MS Teams
Chairs of Equality Staff Network : this network is for Chairs and Lead Officers of local network that focus on equalities issues within the 12 councils, Police and Fire Services in the region.
The purpose of the network is to support and promote the development of best practice amongst equality staff networks and staff network chairs. Also to help strengthen the role and voice of equality staff networks so that they can positively influence equality, diversity and inclusion within their respective organisations.
The group meets quarterly with a dedicated teams site established to remain in contact and share useful information in between meetings.
Date of next meeting : Wednesday 24 April 2024, 10am, MS Teams