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  1. 1. Introduction The ONS annual Corporate Learning Plan is produced for the purpose of communicating the learning priorities agreed by the OMB, for the forthcoming financial year, and in support of the ONS achieving its longer term Learning Strategy. ONS staff need to develop their skills to respond to modernisation and new ways of working, become more effective and efficient at change management and the use of technology, and increase the overall leadership capacity across the organisation. Corporate Learning & Development branch and other ONS internal learning providers offer a variety of learning opportunities to ensure that the learning options support the business strategy and change programmes. This document is designed to help individuals and business areas to understand the context for learning priorities, what learning opportunities are available and how to take advantage of them. In conjunction with the Learning Strategy, the ONS Corporate Learning Plan sets out ONS' approach to learning, outlines corporate learning priorities for 2004/05, and describes learning and development opportunities and activities available to staff. The Plan will assist: Business areas in writing their own Learning Plans - by describing the corporate priorities linked to the business strategy, the availability of learning and development activities and associated charges, and the support for learning across the organisation. Individuals - once business areas build the Corporate Learning Plan into Divisional Learning Plans, individuals will be better informed of developments to support them. This will help individuals when they discuss their PDPs for 2004-05. The Office Management Board and the HR Programme Board - by communicating corporate learning priorities and as a basis for checking that Divisional Learning Plans and learning activities within divisions reflect those corporate priorities. ONS has a clear vision to become a world class statistical office and 21st century registration service. Delivering the vision will require modernisation and organisational change, and with the investment, which is currently being made in ONS, we have a unique opportunity to do this. The vision statement places the following as critical to delivering world class status: Getting the best out of our people - ensuring that ONS staff are better led and managed, that they are encouraged to learn and acquire the skills and expertise needed by the ONS of the future and that we have pay and performance management systems appropriate to the demands we place on them. Information management (overhauling the way we manage, process and broadcast statistical data) - by building a highly automated data repository for National Statistics, linking it with robust statistical processes which draw on a standard set of world class methodologies and softwares and issuing our products to customers in the way which best suits them.
  2. 2. Sound common practices and methods - by completing implementation of the National Statistics Code of Practice and the remaining protocols under it, by ensuring that the Code is monitored effectively and by encouraging sound practice applied consistently and expertly in all statistics. All of the above will require us to develop our skills and expertise and to learn new ways of working. Everyone in the ONS will need to have access to the learning activities they need to understand the nature of the change and its implications for them. There are learning implications for staff within each aspect of the business strategy. Equality of opportunity in learning - all ONS staff should have access to the learning they need to perform their jobs satisfactorily and to prepare for changes. Nobody should be disadvantaged because of their grade, the site they work on, their working patterns (full-time/part-time), etc. This does not mean that everyone undertakes the same learning activities; but does mean that all differences in access to learning and differences in learning activities should be justifiable on business grounds. Funding for learning & development - currently budgets for learning & development are determined by Divisions, with part of their Divisional allocation being profiled for their divisional training needs at the beginning of the year. There is also an amount held centrally by learning providers, such as HRD, IMG etc. to offer corporately funded activities. Divisional Learning Plans - all divisions (or appropriate business areas) are required to compile and maintain an up-to-date Learning Plan which is an integral part of business planning. They describe a business area's learning strategy and outline specific planned activities for the coming year. This plan is a living document that is monitored and reviewed on a regular basis. All staff should know what is in their divisional Learning Plan. Personal Development Plans - all staff should have, and maintain an up-to-date Personal Development Plan (PDP). Currently the PDP is a record of learning & development activities agreed and supported by a line manager. A PDP should be a living document that is updated throughout the year, and reviewed formally at least twice a year. Supporting different forms of learning - learning can take many forms: from listening and observing on the job, through informal instruction, reading books and guidance and using computer based training, through attending seminars and conferences and work shadowing and visits to formal training or development courses, internal or external and further education. Evaluation of learning & development - evaluation of learning & development activity takes place at different levels and at different times. For example, ONS learning providers have responsibility for post-course evaluation, line managers have a role to play to ensure they have discussions with staff pre and post learning activity and at suitable periods thereafter to assess learning transfer and impact. Divisional directors have a role to play in evaluating the Divisional Learning Plans - this will form the basis of the learning section of the Stewardship Report. More detailed guidance on evaluation is available here.
  3. 3. Not everyone will need to undertake all of the learning priorities listed below. Each person will start from a different skills base. In addition, there will be business-specific learning needs to be addressed. These should all form part of the business area Learning Plans. 1 Management & Leadership During 2003, ONS launched the New Manager Programme and the Established Manager Programme, new programmes in leadership and management. During 2004--05 there will be a continued roll out of these programmes and the initial rollout of the Advanced Manager Programme. The Advanced Manager Programme has been designed in partnership with Henley Management College and DDs and above have been invited to attend. Two events have taken place so far and another event is scheduled for January 2005. D band staff are currently attending programmes which are currently scheduled up until the end of 2005. Henley designed modules for B and C grades will be available in-house from January 2005. All three programmes aim at enhancing the skills, knowledge and performance of individuals across the ONS, in leadership and management, change management, and people and team management, all within the context of current organisational challenges eg Modernisation, relocation, Gershon, efficiency, business as usual etc The programmes are all modular. Management and leadership development has been identified by OMB as a corporate priority and it should be noted that there are mandatory elements that staff will benefit from attending as well as voluntary modules. Senior management should ensure that their staff attend as appropriate. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries 2 New Employee Programme In April 2004 the Learning & Development branch introduced a revised New Employee Programme(updated ONS Induction training programme for new staff). This programme has been developed over the last year and has the same basic structure of 4 modules of: Induction: An Introduction To The ONS, Equality Of Opportunity Awareness, Performance Management For Job Holders and Introduction to ONS Desktop. New staff should attend all 4 modules as soon as possible after starting. A review of the ONS approach to induction is being led by L&D during 2004 to further enhance the induction of new staff. A review of SCS induction is also in progress. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries
  4. 4. 3 General Skills In accordance with OMB/HRPB decision, the provision of general skills training, has been 'outsourced' to the external provider (GBS Corporate plc) following tender process and hard-charging for attendance commenced 1st April 2004 for staff attendance as appropriate. All general skills training should be undertaken via this provider as a 'preferred supplier', unless agreed otherwise via corporate L&D branch. The current list of courses provided through GBS Corporate plc is Assertiveness, Building Self-Esteem, Counselling Skills, Minutes Secretary, Report Writing, Telephone Techniques, Time Management, Communication Skills, Dealing with Change, Developing People, Effective Meetings, Effective Presentations, Handling Stress Positively, Negotiating and Influencing Skills. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries 4 Diversity Diversity awareness is an ONS priority and as such, following the recent delivery of performance management and diversity awareness sessions in early 2004, corporate diversity awareness is being re-visited with a view to providing ongoing opportunities for staff attendance on diversity development. Further information will be released when available early 2005. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries 5 Blended/E. Learning Electronic Learning is regarded as a priority in support of ONS e business strategy. As such, the Learning and Development Project (under the umbrella of the People Strategy) will be developing an ONS corporate blended/E Learning Strategy during 2004/5. E Learning in Microsoft software packages is currently being offered via IM. A pilot scheme offering general skills training via e learning will take place towards the end of 2004 and run for an initial period of 12 months. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries 6 Relocation The relocation of staff affects all of ONS in different ways. The profile of ONS will change and the work we do will change. The reskilling of staff will play a major part in supporting the transition to a different ONS. The challenge for ONS will be to assess staff needs and provide appropriate support within the resources available and within the current timescales of 2005-08. Line Managers will also play a key role in establishing staff needs, as will the staff themselves. The re-skilling of staff will be different depending on the situation they are in; be it relocating to another site, moving to a new post on their current site, moving to another government department, resigning from ONS or being made redundant. We will also need to consider how to attract staff with the right skills and experience to ONS. Contact: email
  5. 5. 7 Information Management Programme The Information Management Programme will, by 2006, deliver an integrated system for the production, management and dissemination of ONS data and information. It will provide consistency in the way data is structured and managed at all stages in the statistical process, increasing the scope for integration and improving accessibility to our products through the web. The new system will be piloted during 2002-03 using Neighbourhood Statistics. In the future, all ONS data will be migrated to this new infrastructure. The learning implications of changes to ONS systems and business management will include: Improving risk management skills, with learning events to support risk management closely tied-in to the project management training programme. Contact: Brian Meakings, Peter Gittins (Risk Management), Ray Harris (Project Management). 8 Statistical Infrastructure Development Programme The SIDP in conjunction with the Methodology Group (see below), will identify and roll out the statistical processes and tools by which we produce our key products. (SIDP is not running the major re-engineering programmes - these are being led by Divisional Directors). It will introduce standardised methodology, statistical tools and software across ONS, drawing on best-practice from around the world. It will mean simpler and more robust processes with IT providing greater help with many routine tasks. There will be two aspects to this work. Firstly, new tools will be identified (for example for automatic editing of data) which can be used across ONS. Secondly, the programme will identify processes for re-engineering. The first processes to undergo review have been agreed and others will follow over the next 4 - 5 years. Training will be needed in these new tools & processes. Contact: Ceri Underwood 9 Statistical Education Programme: Over the next few years, Methodology Group will review the provision of statistical training across the office, will highlight the gaps in the training and will make recommendations for new training courses. These will be developed (not necessarily by MG) and rolled out across the office by the end of 2005. The aim is to ensure that all staff are adequately trained to be able to carry out their jobs (and the jobs of the future) to the best of their ability. This work programme is reporting via the corporate Learning & Development project under the People Strategy. The Statistical Education Project will work closely with HRD and SIDP throughout the development to ensure it aligns with the changing office environment. A new Statistical Training Strategy, Policy and Implementation plan will be devised. The new Statistical Training Strategy will cover learning needs required by the Statistical Value Chain and will link to the statistical competence frameworks used by the ONS. Contact: Ceri Underwood
  6. 6. 10 Statistical Modernisation Programme The modernisation programme is likely to bring about many changes to ONS. Staff will need to be developed in the new processes, statistical tools, computing environment and culture (e.g. CORD, metadata). This development will be encouraged for all staff as one of the benefits of the modernisation programme is that staff working in any production area of the office will be familiar with the basic environment, thereby facilitating easier movement of staff around the business areas. Contact: Rob Williams 11 Freedom of Information (FoI) The primary objectives in relation to FOI is to provide a framework for the disclosure of information by ONS by providing for a general right of access, subject to prescribed exemptions. The FOI Act will be fully implemented by January 2005. Prior to this time there needs to be varying basic awareness training packages for all staff and further in-depth specialist training for staff with responsibilities e.g Directors . After implementation of the Act there needs to be ongoing training available for all staff. Contact: Paul Jackson, Jane Twigg & Nicola Shearman 12 Data Protection The primary objective in relation to the Data Protection Act 1998 is to ensure that ONS is open and accountable for the usage of personal data and to prevent damage or distress to individuals as a result of processing such data and the Act confers rights on any individual about whom personal data are processed or held. The training specific recommendation from recent audit report November 2002 has highlighted the need to investigate options for providing Data Protection training e.g. e-learning and computer based training facility for all staff, where the results of the training can be collated to be used for future training schedules. There also needs to be further in-depth specialist training for staff with responsibilities e.g Directors. Contact: Paul Jackson
  7. 7. 13 Civil Registration Review Programme The Civil Registration Review Programme is reforming the delivery of Registration services in England and Wales to take advantage of Information Technology and provide greater choice for the public in accessing services. The Programme is expected to last until 2008 with incremental introduction of reforms once enabling legislation is in place (anticipated 2005). Initially, learning will be required for Programme Team members at various levels, i.e. those working on the policy development, the technical infrastructure aspects and implementation of the reforms. As the Programme develops staffing will increase on the individual projects within the Programme. Learning activities will vary depending on the existing skill base of new project members. Many of the product deliverables will be achieved by staff working in the policy areas of Registration Division and not working as part of the Programme team. In the main these will comprise of guidance and help text for the public, local registration officers and for internal use. Relevant training will be provided for these staff once it becomes clearer how and when the systems are to be developed e.g. Writing for the Web. Full functionality training will also need to be provided for internal and external users. Contact: Cheryl Proctor 14 Performance Management As part of the People Strategy Pay & Reward Project, job family modelling and new competencies will be introduced. This will impact on the performance management training that is currently delivered to managers & staff. Details of changes are anticipated to be know early 2005 when training will be adjusted accordingly. It may be necessary for all staff to undergo training in any changes to the scheme although this will not be known until the scheme revisions have been agreed. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries
  8. 8. 15 Atlas HR - The Oracle E-Business suite ATLAS is the brand name for our Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERPS) and Atlas HR is the first module to go live. Over time, we plan to introduce additional HR modules such as Career Management and i-Recruitment and other ERPS modules, for example Projects, Financials and Procurement. Currently, the range of HR information available via your desktop is limited. You can see and update some of the information about yourself or your staff (through NCD changes, for example) but there is a lot of information that you have to request from HRD (a sick absence print, for example). The aim of self-service in Atlas HR is to provide information to employees and managers at their desks that is up-to-date and accurate. Staff will receive guidance notes and intranet based 'viewlets' that show staff how to carry out actions. When they have self service access staff and their Line Managers should be ensuring they develop their skills in the new system using the materials provided. ONS Learning Providers will be using the system to administer development events and will attend training courses in the training administration part of Atlas HR. Contact: Email ATLAS HR Implementation Team 16 Welsh Language The Office for National Statistics has adopted the principle that in the conduct of public business which involves dealing with the Welsh speaking public, it will treat both the English and Welsh languages on a basis of equality. In order to secure the implementation of this striving holistic policy the ONS has a Welsh Language Scheme with detailed guidance notes on how to go about it. Further to that the ONS has recently appointed a full time Welsh Language Adviser to drive the scheme forward. The ONS are also committed to train their staff to learn Welsh and there is a strong network of learners from beginners to advanced levels enrolled on Welsh classes. Those who have succeeded and completed their Welsh studies are then entered on a data base which has a pool of able Welsh speaking staff who can deal with any enquiry or issue that need to be dealt with through the medium of Welsh. Contact: Aled Davies
  9. 9. Other information related to Learning & Development in ONS The Adult Further Education scheme or AFE is available to ONS staff and can provide help in the form of 100% sponsorship for course and examination fees as well as a contribution towards books for people who wish to pursue qualifications outside ONS. AFE has provided an accessible way for people to gain recognised qualifications such as A-levels's, Diploma's and Degrees whilst still working in ONS. AFE funding encompasses new applications as well as continuations for those students who applied for courses spanning more than one year. AFE should not be confused with job specific training which under the principles of IiP the business area is liable to pay for from their own training budget. More information on the Adult Further Education policy is available in the ONS guide under chapter 7- career development. Included is all the criteria for applying for sponsorship and also a link to the application form. The AFE scheme will be reviewed by L & D branch late 2004, to determine whether it is meeting needs as intended and/or may be better delivered in a different way. Contact: James Broom ONS Self-Directed Learning Guide In 2002, HRD launched Version 1 of a new Self-Directed Learning Guide. The Guide offers guidance to individuals and their managers on identifying the most appropriate activities and planning to use them. By listing learning options, many of which are available quicker than training courses, the Guide also helps staff to access learning materials when they need them, and to reduce the time it takes to address some learning needs. Contact: Email Learning Enquiries