Training about use of Modern.gov and other IT software was discussed. Cllr Freedman suggested that a questionnaire was sent prior to the training to optimise the training session. LF suggested that a drop-in session was held allowing IT and members to discuss issues and provide support. This could be a hybrid session as well to allow virtual attendance. Cllr Freedman asked that this be extended into the evening to allow attendance for those who cannot be there during the working day and LF agreed to stay until 7-7.30pm to accommodate this. LF thought it would be helpful for those members who are proficient with the IT systems to offer support in the session to those members who are struggling. Cllr Bhinder thought this was a positive idea based on the number of IT questions other members ask him.
MK noted the reduced capacity in the team to put something together but agreed that by the end of October a date could be set for the training and the questionnaire could be sent out.
LF added that other officers could also attend this training depending on what the training covered e.g. HR would be required if training was about DORIS. The questionnaire will help gauge and shape the training to know what needs to be covered.
• MK to put together a questionnaire and arrange a date for the training by the end of October.
Additional planning training
At the planning training in June there was not enough time to cover enforcement. The enforcement team are currently recruiting so have not yet been able to give their availability for a future training session. Cllr Freedman felt a lot of time was spent on the Q&A throughout the session which meant the presentation part did not get finished as time ran out. Instead there should be the Q&A at the end of the session only. It was felt that members interjected giving examples where they did not feel procedures had not been followed as the training set out based on historic occasions and this was not the best use of the time. Cllr Bhinder asked that licensing be added to this training as well. Cllr Douris added that this was okay but it had to be clear that the first hour was for presentation and the second for Q&A so all of the topics were covered.
• MK to organise a future training session on enforcement and licensing
MK asked how many people read Members’ News. Cllr Freedman scans through it. Cllr Silwal, Cllr Griffiths and Cllr Douris read it. Cllr Bhinder does not read it. Cllr Griffiths finds the links in it useful. Members were keen that Members’ News was circulated but did not want it to take too much staff time if people were not going to read it
The member development programme training took place in June and July and the planning, enforcement and development management and the housing and improvement engagement team training took place in July as well. The budget setting and finance training on 30th September will be delivered by Fiona Jump. Later in the meeting it was noted that this training would clash with the tenant and leaseholders committee and the portfolio holder COG meetings. Mosaic, an external company, will undertake the social media training on 7th October. There was a discrepancy between those who have attended the training and the records on DORIS for the social media training, but MK and LF have now resolved this with members.
The rent and income team for housing are due to hold training on 27th October but are unable to attend as it’s half term. Therefore, an amended date of 25th November for this training was agreed by all.
An external consultant will deliver training in 2 parts on licensing and these will be on 1st November and 4th November and both will be virtual sessions. Community partnership and wellbeing training will take place on 18th November and the health hubs sports and wellbeing training will be on 26th January. MK proposed having local plan training in February.
MK to add a section to Members’ News asking what training people would like in the future.
LF shared her spreadsheet showing non-compliance of mandatory training among members. It is important that members remember that all of the mandatory training must be carried out in each term, so whilst members think they may have done the training before, this could have been in a previous term so it will need doing again. There has been an issue with DORIS not recording training prior to the date DORIS was implemented.
Members discussed the timing of training and felt a start time of 7-7.30pm would suit those who are working in the day better than 6pm or 6.30pm. MK confirmed that all training that is already booked will remain at a start time of 6-6.30pm but future training will be booked for 7-9pm.
LF committed to calling all members about their outstanding mandatory training in a bid to get the mandatory training records compliant. Members queried whether mandatory training had to be attended live or whether members could watch pre-recorded training. MK confirmed they had to attend live sessions, even if they were on Teams, as pre-recorded training would not count.
The Community Partnerships and Wellbeing team who are delivering training in November have asked whether they could present live training in the Forum. The benefits and negatives of live or virtual meetings were discussed. Cllr Griffiths felt it should be down to the facilitator to decide what training there is. Cllr Bhinder however considers that the risk of COVID is such that training should continue to be virtual. Cllr Bhinder was critical of policy changes needing to be made in person, but it was clarified that this was a government requirement that was unlikely to change. For Cllr Douris, a hybrid system works best and it should be down to the facilitator to decide on how to deliver their training best. MK confirmed that external trainers do charge significantly more money to deliver training in person and this should also be considered in the future.
· MK to add a section to Members’ News asking what training people would like in the future.
LF to call members about their outstanding mandatory training