"Effective Employee Forum" training for Alabare

Alabare is a charity that was formed in 1991 with the aim of supporting homeless people in getting back into mainstream society and being able to resume normal life.

In recent years, their sphere of support has grown to also include young people and individuals with learning difficulties.  With a staff of 262 and their headquarters in Salisbury, they support individuals across the South West and Wales.

The Alabare forum, which meets every quarter in Salisbury, was formed in order to more effectively cascade information up and down throughout the charity.

With the organisation being divided into several specialisms (learning disabilities, general homelessness, veterans, young people and commercial), each sector, including back office staff, sends a representative to the forum meeting, as well as there being a rep from HR and Health & Safety and the CEO in attendance at each forum meeting.  Most reps travel from across the country to attend.

Information shared during the forums would focus on, for example, policy changes or amendments to procedures which might affect the workforce.

The forum also acts as a consultation method where colleagues can provide their feedback or recommendations which are then heard by all the members.

Workers are encouraged to speak with their reps about any issues, concerns or comments they wish to be raised at the forum, with the anticipation of their questions being answered.

Kieren Lucas, Compliance Manager and Head of Health & Safety at Alabare, is responsible for ensuring the charity complies with ICE (Information and Consultation with Employees) regulations and as part of this role he identified that their forum meetings were not effective. The specific issues he identified were;

  • reps did not fully understand the point of the meeting
  • they didn't understand the scope of their role
  • they didn't realise what was expected of them
  • they needed to be more engaged with the process

Wanting to provide reps with the confidence and skills to be more effective, Kieren began a search on google for a training partner.  

After speaking with Roselle at Crisp Professional Development to describe his objectives for his team and several conversations with our trainer Jo in order that she be able to tailor the content accordingly, training dates were agreed.

Kieren feels that the content of the workshop "100% matched" the objectives he had set for the training and he has seen great results.  As a result of the training; 

  • the meetings have become significantly more effective
  • Reps have a much better understand of their role
  • They are coming along more prepared and more engaged
  • Their improved listening and feedback skills mean they can more effectively share information learned at the meetings or from their teams

Alabare are also looking into increasing the frequency of the meetings to increase the flow of information.

If you want make your Employee Forums more effective, give us a call on 01392 409 198.