JobWise Case Study: Auckland Transition Agency and Auckland Council

Auckland Transition Agency & Auckland Council

The process of amalgamating Auckland council brought about the largest job evaluation project in New Zealand’s history. Time deadlines and limited budgets threatened the success of the Human Resources integration phase. Strategic Pay were called in to assist.

Project Background

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The Auckland Transition Agency (ATA) was established in 2009 by the Government to amalgamate
the eight councils across the Auckland Region into the Auckland Council by October 2010.

The ATA ceased to exist after to the establishment of the Auckland Council and CCOs which occurred on 1 November 2010.

The focus of the agency was on the processes required to establish the Auckland Council. Tasks were divided into work streams to ensure the demanding timeline was met. More information on the role and responsibilities of the ATA is contained in legislation, the Local Government (Tamaki Makaurau Reorganisation) Act 2009.

The workforce and human resources work stream was led by Laila Harré and within this stream a change support team was led by Tim Mycock and a recruitment team was led by Corrine Gaddie. The Strategic Pay team, including John McGill and Michelle Gapes provided all the strategic remuneration advice and support to these work streams.


Assistance needed and services provided by Strategic Pay

Our work involved reviewing senior executive remuneration and developing a robust, consistent and reliable job evaluation and banding framework in the form of JobWise, remuneration strategy and policy advice. The JobWise methodology brought together all legacy remuneration banding models together into one, something that staff were unsure would be possible given the different job evaluation systems, organisation structures and remuneration policies of the eight organisations. Time constraints were significant, yet 4,000 staff had to be recruited while another 4,500 staff had ‘no change’ to their existing role. Over 2,000 unique roles were then to be job evaluated – the largest remuneration and job evaluation project in New Zealand history.

Tim Mycock has said “the work could not have been done without JobWise – this tool is the new way of doing job evaluation and makes life so much easier. JobWise sliced through the complexity, providing a simple and easy solution that was both time and cost efficient. No longer does job evaluation seem like a foreign language. This is a meaningful tool that you can easily communicate to executives, managers, unions, staff and they understand it.”

After the ATA process was concluded Tim Mycock was appointed to the role of Remuneration Manager for Auckland Council and with his oversight and continued support from Strategic Pay, the council has continued to use the JobWise methodology to evaluate roles. The value of the JobWise technology has continued to prove its worth. Auckland Council has been subject to continual change since its formation and over the last year alone almost 700 roles required evaluation. Traditional job evaluation methods, such as full job size profiles or job evaluation committees would have not been able to cope with this level of demand.

The approach we undertook at ATA, and what we promote as best practice, was to job evaluate a proportion of benchmark roles and then ‘map’ the remaining roles using JobWise. The 2,000 jobs to evaluate then became 200, drastically cutting the timeframe from 100 days to 10 days. We then mapped the remaining roles, meaning that every role had a band, making it possible to recruit to roles in a timely fashion.

It is always important in any project such as this to have robust quality assurance and acceptance, and this was achieved through thorough consultation with work stream leaders, HR and union involvement.

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