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Rewarding Talent

Issue 3


Celebrating your innovative excellence at this year’s Staff Awards

Bid Legacy

Rhona McGrath


Council Plan

Paisley looks forward to the future

Find out more about our Head of Customer and Business Services

Your guide to the Council budget 2018–19

How you help Renfrewshire thrive

Get the most out of working for Renfrewshire Council





IN THIS ISSUE… Revealing Renfrewshire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Send in your favourite pics of this beautiful area MAGAZINE

Our journey continues . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Paisley looks forward to the future

Staff stories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 From conquering Kilimanjaro to slamming poetry, we’re a talented bunch

Delivering the Council Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12


How you play your part

All about . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Development and Housing Services

A day in the life . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

What's on across Renfrewshire…

Join our care at home and extra care staff as they support local people to live independently

Team Up to Clean Up . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

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Find out how you can get involved

Recognising talent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17

It’s another packed programme of events this year—get these dates in your diary.

All the nominees, winners and photos from this year’s sensational Staff Recognition Awards

Council Budget 2018–19 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

FYI: What do you need to know?

Find out how these funds will protect vital public services

The Lens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 While shortlisting gets underway for Phase 2, lets check in on last year’s winning projects

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Spotlight: Rhona McGrath . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25

• • • • •

Our Head of Customer and Business Services talks engine rooms, friendly frontline and engaging employees

Meet the team . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Hello from HR’s Organisational Development and Workforce Planning Team

Social sense Customer Strategy Take note! Getting the right advice Have your say—Intranet

Charitable Giving . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 A look back at your fabulous festive fundraising

R Magazine is produced by the Council's communication and marketing teams. Other formats are available. Please email: internalcommunications

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Welcome Welcome to the third edition of our staff publication R Magazine. There has been lots of positive feedback and we are always to keen to hear what you think— so let us know if you have ideas or contributions for the future. We are looking forward to another exciting year in Renfrewshire and can view the future from a position of strength after our achievements over the last 12 months. Of course we were disappointed not to have won the UK City of Culture title, but the bidding process itself has generated a new-found confidence and pride across our communities, businesses and partners and we will continue to build on this. As a result of bidding for the title, we have secured a £100million package of investment to reinvigorate some of our key venues in Paisley and also make a number of improvements to our town centre. We have transformed perceptions of the area by changing the profile and being positive about everything Renfrewshire has to offer, while ensuring that views of communities and the people we work with have been at the heart of our decision making. The Legacy Plan will continue the ambition to achieve the bid’s original long-term aims to significantly grow Paisley’s creative economy, transform its reputation, see the town recognised for its cultural excellence, lift communities out of poverty, and turn Paisley town centre into a vibrant destination.

You play a vital role in ensuring we deliver the best services we can to ensure a thriving Renfrewshire and the staff awards last month highlighted many examples of the great work teams have delivered across the organisation for the benefit of communities. It was a privilege to be able to recognise this work and hear so many inspiring stories. I hope many of you have taken the opportunity to get involved in the second round of our Lens programme. This is a fantastic opportunity not only to turn your ideas into reality but also to develop your skills and experience —I’m excited to see what innovative projects this year’s intrapreneurs will create. As always, I thank you for your continued hard work and commitment as we work together for a thriving, connected Renfrewshire, creating opportunities for all.

Sandra Black, Chief Executive



'The White Cart' Joyce Hards This gorgoeus photograph was submitted by Joyce Hards, Park Mains High School. Send us your photos of Renfrewshire —perhaps a favourite place to walk, an event you've been to or one of our many historic buildings—and we'll feature it in the next edition of the magazine. We might even throw in some tickets to one of our fabulous events! Send them to by 31 March and we’ll pick a winner.



Send your photos to:



Paisley looks forward to the future Last year saw Paisley’s bid for UK City of Culture 2021 come to a close and while the town didn’t win, the bid delivered enormous positive benefits for the area and the people that live and work here. The bid was instrumental in transforming Paisley’s reputation and creating a new-found awareness of the town’s place in a national, UK and worldwide context. Paisley’s profile was elevated to unprecedented levels during the process through the heightened media and online presence highlighting the bid. One of the major positives to take from competing is the renewed sense of self-confidence it has instilled in the people who live here. From a national stand-point Paisley has shown that it can host fantastic large-scale events that attract visitors to the town. During the bid period we saw more and more people coming to Paisley—visits to Renfrewshire attractions rose by 25% in 2016,


outperforming the rest of the Glasgow City Region, and event attendances rose by 25% in 2016 and another 23% in 2017. That gives us a solid platform to build on—to enable us to build new visitor infrastructure, turn Paisley into a thriving destination and attract new types of investment and partnerships that would have otherwise been difficult to secure. The last two years saw a new partnership of local people and groups unite behind a shared vision for the area’s future, while new alliances were formed at national and international level, showing what Paisley can offer Scotland, the UK and the world. We will continue to build on all of that. Staff and partners played a pivotal

role in making the bid process a success and helping to garner support for Paisley. A big thank you goes out to everyone involved for their hard work and commitment throughout the bidding process, which continues to play an important role in helping achieve our ambitions for Paisley and Renfrewshire’s future.

Visits to Renfrewshire attractions rose by 25% in 2016, outperforming the rest of the Glasgow City Region


The journey continues The bid was only ever one part of a bigger plan to transform our future for the better using the area's unique culture and heritage story—this is still happening. Major infrastructure investment

Work is already taking place around the town centre to revitalise our economy with major infrastructure investment confirmed over the next ten years including the Glasgow City Region City Deal, £100m investment in town centre venues and infrastructure, and the news that the National Manufacturing Institute for Scotland will be built in Renfrewshire.

Growing our cultural scene

The bid showed the incredible diversity and strength of Paisley’s grassroots cultural scene. With a bid legacy of fresh investment in the Culture Heritage and Events (CHE) Fund, new funding to support creative businesses and grow the local cultural sector and partnerships with national organisations like the Scottish National Orchestra and Scottish Opera, our culture will keep enriching lives.

A new Paisley pattern

We are also reinventing our textile heritage for the 21st century—commercialising the global design icon that is the Paisley Pattern, linking with international design houses such as Pringle of Scotland, and bringing creative entrepreneurs into our town centre through our innovative InCube programme.

Growing our events and festivals

Paisley is now firmly established as a key destination on Scotland’s events map. Existing popular events such as The Halloween Festival, Sma' Shot Day/Weave and The Spree will continue to grow, while the British Pipe Band Championships will be held here until 2021. The Royal National Mòd will also return and we will be programming new events in the town.

People have seen the potential of what can be achieved through using culture to transform people’s lives and the town’s future. Paisley already had a vibrant cultural scene anyway.

The incredible energy harnessed by the bid will still be channelled in that direction and the future’s definitely looking bright for Paisley.



Conquering Kilimanjaro for charity Huge congratulations to Peter MacLeod who recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and raised £1,500 to help support street children in Tanzania.

The adventure was a family affair with Peter’s wife, two children and nephew joining him in the ascent to raise funds for the charity Amani (peace) kids. For seven days the group scaled the heights of Kilimanjaro, which is almost five times the height of Ben Nevis! They reached the summit at night time, experiencing air with 50 per cent less oxygen than at sea level. The family also spent time volunteering on the ground to help care for street children. Now back in his role as Director of Children’s Services, Peter highly recommends signing up for the Kilimanjaro charity expedition to help fundraise for this most worthy cause. 10

There is 50% less oxygen at the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro than at sea level!


We have a poet in our midst…

By day Shaun Moore works with the Throughcare team in Children’s Services; by night he transforms into Renfrewshire’s very own alternative performance poet. Taking the spoken word to open mic nights all around Paisley and Glasgow, Shaun has written and performed for community groups, fundraisers, and book launches. Our wordsmith not only teams up with musicians of varying styles, but has also branched out from the regular poetry circuit to surprise local pub audiences with his live show. His unconventional style has netted him an army of fans and he is now Master of Ceremonies for the poetry slam competition—an annual event he created for all local poetry enthusiasts that takes place as part of Sma’ Shot Day. He made a huge impact at our recent Staff Recognition Awards ceremony with a pulsing, lyrical journey through Renfrewshire, our community and our people. Many of us won’t have listened to a poem since our school days, but Shaun is definitely the man to expand our poetic minds! You can catch Shaun at Paisley's Bianco E Nero on Gauze Street the first Tuesday of every month, and opening for Hardeep Sing Kohli's tour on 22 March at St Luke's, Glasgow and at Falkirk Town Hall on 7 April.

What do you want to share? Let us know. Working on an inspiring project? Tell us about it! Has your department won an award? Let us know! Been to an event in Renfrewshire? Write about it! Are your colleagues going the extra mile? We want to know!

R magazine is designed to inform you about what’s going on within your workplace. We want to make sure you are informed and engaged with what's happening across the Council.

And this is your magazine too. So tell us your ideas for content, your inspiring stories and showcase the great work in your department. Email us at and we will bring together your submissions to create the next edition of our magazine.



Delivering the Council Plan How do you play your part in helping Renfrewshire thrive.


Team Service Improvement Plan Council Plan 2017–2022 Our Renfrewshire Community Plan 2017–2027 Our Renfrewshire Community Plan 2017–2027 This ten year plan is prepared jointly by 23 community planning partners from across Renfrewshire, including representatives from West College Scotland, University of West of Scotland, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board and housing associations. The plan was developed in tandem with the Council Plan, focusing the work of the Council and our partners towards shared objectives and a shared vision for Renfrewshire. The four community plan themes are: • Our Renfrewshire is thriving: maximising economic growth that is inclusive and sustainable. • Our Renfrewshire is well: supporting the wellness and resilience of our citizens and communities. • Our Renfrewshire is fair: addressing the inequalities that limit life chances. • Our Renfrewshire is safe: protecting vulnerable people, and working together to manage the risk of harm.


Council Plan 2017–2022 ‘Thriving People, Connected Communities’ The Council Plan sets out the Council’s priorities for Renfrewshire, and along with the Community Plan, sets out an ambitious programme of work.

Our vision

Working together for a thriving and connected Renfrewshire, creating opportunities for all. There are five key outcomes the plan aims to deliver. These are • Reshaping our place, our economy and our future • Building strong, safe and resilient communities • Tackling inequality, ensuring opportunities for all • Creating a sustainable Renfrewshire for all to enjoy • Working together to improve outcomes


Together with our partners, these are just some of the things we aim to do:

Install free public Wifi across our town centres

Attract 590,000 more visits to Renfrewshire by 2020

Build 200 affordable homes every year

Support adults to live independently

Make Renfrewshire a cleaner more attractive place to live

Work closely with communities to develop local area plans

Lead the way in supporting community volunteering

Tackle drug related deaths

Service Improvement Plans (SIPs) Each service area will have its own plan which will set out how its activities contribute to achieving the Council and Community Plan objectives. • Chief Executive’s • Children’s Services • Environment and Communities • Development and Housing Services • Finance and Resources Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership have a separate strategic plan.

How you contribute Both your team and personal work plans are informed by the Community, Council and Service Improvement Plan objectives. Together this creates a ‘golden thread’ through each of the plans to your role in delivering our shared vision for Renfrewshire.

How will we track progress? All Service Improvement Plans have performace indicators and updates will be presented every six months to the Council’s Leadership Board, with the first due in spring.



All about… Development and Housing Services Who are we? 440 staff members based in several locations across Renfrewshire: • Housing Advice and Homeless Services at Abercorn Street and George Street • Clark Street Housing Investment Team • Neighbourhood Housing Offices in Paisley, Renfrew and Johnstone • Russell Institute Not forgetting: Our concierges, caretakers and staff across our 14 multi-storey flats and 10 sheltered housing complexes. As Renfrewshire’s largest landlord we have an important strategic housing and planning role providing affordable homes, supporting sustainable development and managing our housing stock to ensure we offer safe, secure homes. We are responsible for maximising the potential economic benefits offered through City Deal and the regeneration of our town centres.

“We have a great team who are all committed to help and support people across Renfrewshire who are faced with homelessness.” Tom Irvine, Homeless and Housing Support Services Manager


Our achievements • Achieved a 10 per cent increase in local people supported into employment • £5million refurbishment of the iconic Russell Institute into a skills and employability hub • Implementing the agreed town centre strategies and plans for Johnstone, Erskine, Renfrew, Linwood and Braehead • Secured £4.9million Heritage Lottery Funding towards the £42m project to transform Paisley Museum into an international-class destination showcasing the town’s outstanding collections and globally-significant textile heritage. • Established Renfrewshire’s Economic Leadership Panel to support development of a 10-year economic strategy for Renfrewshire Current projects • Delivering the £274million City Deal projects for Renfrewshire including facilitating a new investment area around Glasgow Airport which will be the home to the National Manufacturing Institute for Scotland. • Managing the £100m-plus package of investment in Paisley's cultural venues and town centre including major internal refurbishments to the Town Hall and Arts Centre. • Building more than 1000 affordable homes across Renfrewshire by 2021.

Our Director is Mary Crearie, who joined the Council in 2008 from Glasgow Housing Association. The daughter of a police officer from Ayrshire, Mary has more than 30 years’ experience in housing and local authorities, including a spell in Australia. Mary has recently been performing the role of Strategic Director for the Paisley 2021 bid team.

“This is an exciting time to work in the Regeneration Team—delivering an ambitious programme of regeneration projects which celebrate Renfrewshire's rich heritage and support the area's future growth and success.” Susan Jones, Regeneration Manager

Did you know? We manage more than 12,200 houses and consider 2,400 planning and building warrant applications each year.


A Day in the life of… Our Care at Home teams Staff who work at Care at Home and Extra Care Housing complexes across Renfrewshire do a fantastic job of giving people the opportunity to live independently while having the security of access to care and support facilities 24hrs per day. Team leaders Rhona and Eileen talk us through a typical day in the life of Extra Care staff. The team begin by attending to personal care and medication assistance. Throughout the day they respond to calls from residents seeking assistance for a variety of care needs. Calls can be anything from the person just requiring some reassurance following a period of illness or assisting with a fall.

“Whatever the need, we approach every call with respect and understanding.”

As well as managing their teams, Rhona and Eileen also assist with duties on behalf of the Housing Association such as maintaining the log book, carrying out weekly observations and making sure the building is safe. Afternoon activities such as bingo, singing and arts and crafts are planned as well as evening entertainment, day trips and ideas for fundraising events and fetes.

“As you can see, we’re always on the go, but it’s a very rewarding job and it’s great to see people getting to know one another and making friends through these activities.”

Christmas Care at Home The Care at Home team are up early on Christmas Day to go see their service users. For some, it’s getting them out of bed, washed and dressed in time for any loved ones coming to visit, for others it’s more about some company and a cup of tea. Pictured above at Arnott Gardens, Linwood, our home care workers Lavanya Prasanth and Jenny McDonnell with resident Isa Henderson.



Can you help us?

Recycling Reduce—Change the way you buy and use products to reduce the amount that gets thrown away Reuse— Old gift bags, boxes for storage or give unwanted clothes to charity. Recycle—Make use of the bins provided to you and separate your waste from what can be recycled. If you don’t know what goes where, ask us!

Last year, we invested £250,000 to improve the cleanliness of Renfrewshire’s streets. We’re serious about making a real difference to the quality of Renfrewshire’s environment. We’ve increased gully cleaning and road sweeping crews, enlisted new dedicated litter pickers and expanded our Rapid Response Team. But this is a community initiative—and we need your help! Here’s how you can get involved:

Did You Know? There are five household waste recycling centres in Renfrewshire: • Erskine Barrhill Road PA8 6BU • Johnstone Miller Street PA5 8HP • Paisley Underwood Road PA3 1TL • Renfrew Haining Road PA4 0AJ • Linwood Middleton Road, PA3 3DP

Community clean ups We're leading a number of community clean ups throughout the year and you're invited to take part! Find out where your local clean ups are at teamuptocleanup. If you’d prefer to organise your own, we can provide lots of support, equipment and advice to help make your clean up a success. Give us a ring on 0300 300 1375 or email


Fly tipping We want to eradicate fly tipping from Renfrewshire. It’s unsightly and can be an environmental hazard. There’s no excuse for fly tipping your waste. If you see anyone fly tipping or discover dumped waste, report it to us on 0300 300 0380 or phone the National Stopline on 08452 30 40 90.

Volunteering Have you heard about ‘Your Time to Give’? It’s an opportunity for employees to dedicate two working days per year to volunteering. Staff have previously taken part in collections for the local foodbank or spent a day offering their services to a charity. We’ll be on the lookout for volunteers to help with our community clean ups throughout 2018 so keep an eye on the intranet for details on our 'Team Up to Clean Up' campaign. If you’d like to get involved, have a chat with your line manager about volunteering.

FACT In Scotland, 69% of people rate dog fouling as the item on streets, parks and beaches that bothers them the most. (Keep Scotland Beautiful, Public Attitudes to Litter and Littering in Scotland, 2007)

Dog Fouling

ners in The majority of dog ow ponsible. res y ver are Renfrewshire campaign want The Team Up to Clean Up jority to all. to change it from the ma ble Dog Owner Sign up to our Responsi pledge via: www.surveym ResponsibleDogOwner

FACT If you need help to remove domestic and garden waste, or white goods, you can request a special uplift by the Council on 0300 300 0300.


Recognising Talent Paisley Town Hall played host to this year’s Staff Recognition Awards, a fabulous evening showcasing the talent, commitment and ambition of our hardworking teams and young achievers across the Council family. Our Council vision focuses on ‘working together for a thriving and connected Renfrewshire, creating opportunities for all’, and this year’s awards celebrate your innovative partnership working. We received more than 100 nominations this year and

the judges remarked that the quality of entries made deciding on the winners a tough, but thoroughly inspiring task. Our Chief Executive describes the Staff Recognition Awards scheme as a highlight of her job —here's why…



With ‘Innovation through Partnership’ at the heart of this year’s awards, the shortlisted finalists for each category were:

Young Achievers

• Angela Graham, Renfrewshire Leisure • Caitlin Martin, City Deal, Development and Housing Services • Kieran Kelly, I Am Me • Lauren Lochhead, Corporate Procurement Unit, Chief Executive’s Service • Linzi Clark, Paisley 2021 Bid Team • Sarah Murphy, Customer and Business Services, Finance and Resources

Community—Building strong, safe and resilient communities • I Am Me • Pre & Post Birth Team • Complex Benefits Team

Organisation—Working together to improve outcomes

• Accommodation Assistants Team • MyAccount Team • Mental Health Officers Team • Cancer & Palliative Care Team—Advice Works

People—Tacking inequality ensuring opportunities for all

• Family Learning Team – St Margaret’s Primary School • ALLS West Johnstone Team— St David’s Primary School • Working Matters Team

Place—Reshaping our place, our economy and our future: • Events Team • Paisley 2021 Bid Team • City Deal Team

Sustainability—Creating a sustainable Renfrewshire for all to enjoy • LED Street Lighting Investment Programme Delivery Team • Rapid Response Team • Energy Management Unit

Bryan Burnett was the guest host for the evening with entertainment from Renfrewshire Schools Ceilidh Band, local duo Mandula & Hephzibah and our very own poet Shaun Moore.



And the winners are… YOUNG ACHIEVER Linzi Clark, Paisley 2021 Since joining Renfrewshire Council as an engagement intern in 2016, Linzi has made a huge impact—bringing a youthful, energetic dynamic to the Paisley 2021 bid team. Her creativity and commitment to promoting culture to communities across Renfrewshire impressed both her service and the wider Partnership Board. She has represented Paisley 2021 at local, national and UK-wide events including Renfrewshire’s Positive About Youth awards and the Scottish Album of the Year longlist. She has engaged with vulnerable young people to develop activities via the Street Stuff project, as well as volunteering her time for song writing, poetry and design.

COMMUNITY I Am Me—Staff and Community Volunteers

"I was really quite shocked to be nominated so to win is just fantastic. It's great to know that all your hard work over the last 18 months has paid off—I'm absolutely thrilled!" Linzi Clark, Young Achiever Award Winner

The charity aims to raise awareness and tackle disability hate crime in local authority areas in Scotland. Working closely with Police Scotland and local businesses, I Am Me’s successful Keep Safe initiative now provides 128 safe spaces for vulnerable people throughout Renfrewshire with a further 327 across Scotland. Training for young people has reached over 10,000 primary aged children while a new partnership with the British Transport Police and Transport Scotland will extend the initiative across the public transport network.

“Winning the Community Award has helped to provide recognition for the fantastic work of not only the small staff team, but also to all of the wonderful I Am Me and Keep Safe volunteers across Scotland.” I Am Me, Community Award Winners



SUSTAINABILITY LED Street Lighting Investment Delivery Team Programme Described by project auditors Capita as the ‘best installation programme’ they have seen in the UK’, our ambitious Street Lighting Investment Programme set out to convert the area’s 30,000 plus streetlights to LED Lanterns. A multi-disciplinary team of Council officers and partners was established to deliver, audit and verify the work which completed in 20 months. The programme has resulted in annual savings of £1.3million while the Council’s overall carbon consumption has reduced by eight per cent.

PEOPLE ALLS West Johnstone Team— St David's Primary School Selected as one of the Scottish Government’s Attainment Challenge Schools, St David’s focused on the pupils’ transition to high school and life skills. Building on their innovative ‘Pizza Reading’ programme, they created a joint plan with the Adult Literacy and Learning team to extend this across the entire 63-pupil school. Parents and siblings are invited to join pupils in arts and crafts, icebreaker games and book reading then enjoy some pizza together. The club, now in its third year, has boosted attainment and strengthened the school community.

"Winning the Sustainability award meant a great deal to the whole project team whose hard work and dedication was integral to the delivery of this project." LED Street Lighting Investment Programme Delivery Team, Sustainability Award Winners

ORGANISATION Accomodation Assistants Team

“It feels great to win this award, to be recognised for the hard work that we do as the face of the Council and a front line service” Accommodation Assistants, Organisation Award Winners


Based at two furnished accommodation sites, the team of ten work 24/7 to provide help, advice and support to individuals who may be experiencing a housing crisis. Responsible for the out-of-hours emergency stand –by service, they answer helpline calls, enquiries from the emergency services as well as placing households into suitable temporary accommodation. The staff often work alone in this challenging and demanding environment, where their generosity and willingness to go the extra mile can have a life changing impact for the people they help.



PLACE Paisley 2021 The bid for Paisley to be named UK City of Culture 2021 brought the area together like never before. Using Paisley’s internationally significant collection of heritage and cultural assets, the team’s partnership working—supported by officers across the council—brought immediate benefits to the town. Telling Paisley's untold story, more than 35,000 local people have engaged in cultural conversations; café, restaurant and small businesses are on the rise and the town’s reputation as a host of culturally significant events has been greatly enhanced.

“I’m sure you will agree that 2017 was quite an exceptional and special year for the Council, its partners and local people, and much of that wouldn’t have been possible without the sheer energy, commitment and creativity of everyone involved in Paisley’s bid. Demonstrating exceptional commitment to partnership and teamworking, they have already left a remarkable legacy for the town and everyone who lives and works here. What an amazing achievement!” Sandra Black, Chief Executive

“The evening was a fantastic way of recognising the enormous contributions made by officers from across the Council to Paisley's bid for UK City of Culture. There was a lot of pride, pleasure and emotion when our team were announced as winners. Thank you to the judges and everyone who has supported us. #ourjourneycontinues” Paisley 2021, Place and Chief Executive’s Award Winners



Budget 2018–19 The Council has approved its budget for 2018–19, providing £391million for public services in the area and putting the needs of people first. We’re making Renfrewshire a place that people want to work in, live, study and visit. It includes focused investment to tackle poverty and support the most vulnerable people in our communities, including extra funding for residents adversely affected by UK Government Welfare Reform changes.

A new employability programme will help Renfrewshire people secure jobs and have the skills they need to make the most of the major employment opportunities coming to Renfrewshire. The local area is changing, with an ageing population requiring tailored support and funding for adult social care services will assist the work of Renfrewshire’s Health and Social Care Partnership.

There are also new funds being established to support the transfer of facilities into community ownership and a Villages Investment Fund for community-led projects. There’s no place like home and further funding will improve Renfrewshire roads network, clean up the streets and enhance the local environment. budget18

How the Council is funded Most of Renfrewshire Council’s budget is funded through the Scottish Government grant settlement. The rest of the budget is made up of Council Tax revenue. How much money Scottish Councils’ receive each year will determine the amount each council can afford to spend to run local services.

For every pound that is spent by Renfrewshire Council, around 78p comes from the Scottish Government and around 22p comes from Council Tax. The budget must cover the costs of all the services we provide and the costs of meeting the conditions of the grant settlement.



78% Government Grant 22% Council Tax

Where it is spent Just under half of the Council’s budget is spent on education, early years and children’s social work. The next two big spend areas are Adult Social Care and Environment and Communities, who do everything from roads maintenance, street cleaning, waste and recycling, school meals, cleaning and trading standards. The rest is spent on leisure, libraries and museums, housing and planning, transport links and supporting our customers.



Jobs and economy

We’re investing in jobs and training.

We’re making Renfrewshire a place to for everyone to enjoy.

£4.5million in a new

employability programme—which is expected to lever an additional £2.4million in European funding— providing people with training and employment opportunities. • •£7.2million in the largest ever single-year investment in our roads and footpath network. • £2million to connect communities, expanding our digital infrastructure.

Tackling inequality

Sustainable environment

£2.5million to enhance the

cleanliness of our towns and villages over the next five years, supporting the Team Up to Clean Up campaign with road sweeping, gully cleaning, litter picking and the Rapid Response team. • £1million to improve cemetery grounds. • Continued investment to support Fair Trade.

Opportunities for all

We’re making a commitment to tackle inequality.

We’re ensuring children have the best start in life.

£5million in a new 5-year

• Continuing free music tuition across all schools, with additional funding to encourage all young people to be able to learn to play a musical instrument. • Free concessionary swimming for parents accompanying a child under one, supporting young families and parents on maternity and paternity leave. • Financial support for children with a gift for sport from a low income family to participate in key sporting events. • A new fund to support parents and siblings of deaf and blind children learn Sign Language and Braille.

tackling poverty programme to support our most vulnerable families accessing services we know that work for them including Families First, the Cost of the School Day fund, StreetStuff and Breakfast Clubs. • £2.1million into Adult Social Care Services to support growing care costs and demand. • Provide an affordable funeral service to support families through the most difficult of times and remove burial and registration fees for families who lose a child under 16. • Extra funding to support residents adversely affected through UK Government Welfare Reform changes.

Strong, safe Communities We’re investing in our communities and villages. •

£1.5million Community

Empowerment Fund to support the transfer of facilities into community ownership. • £1.5million for green spaces and play parks, including funding for a Multi-Use-Games-Area in Erskine. • A new village investment fund to support community-led projects and attract match funding.

Council Tax From 1 April 2018, Council Tax will increase by 3% across Renfrewshire. That means a maximum additional £3.11 a month for the majority of Renfrewshire households who are in bands A-C. It is estimated to raise an additional £2.1million that contributes to vital public services. Separate water and sewerage charges, set by Scottish Water, will also be outlined in your new bill, which will arrive through the letterbox from the middle of March. Renfrewshire residents can manage their bill and enjoy 24/7 access to Council services online by registering at



Lens 2 shortlisting gets underway

This year our Lens finalists are bidding to secure a share of up to £50,000 to turn their idea into reality with support from our Project Management Unit and Lens mentors. Shortlisting is currently underway with judges, made up from staff across the council, deciding which applicants will be invited to attend a series of workshops in preparation for a final showcase pitch in June. Watch this space.

What's happening with last year's winners and finalists?

Renfrewshire Language Bank A bank of community interpreters will be piloted in five Renfrewshire schools. A training company has been appointed and 24 trainee public service interpreters have been recruited.

Rediscover Glennifer Braes A film is being developed to promote Glennifer Braes as a cultural asset, increase awareness and generate greater footfall. A feasibility study to identify further opportunities will be completed by April.

Buddies Recycle The project team are currently exploring options for a suitable facility to store items donated or recycled from abandoned tenancies. These items can then be passed on to tenants and service users.

Soopir Bus This community bus—for older and disabled people who can’t access public transport—is on course for a summer launch. Additional funding has been provided by Strathclyde Passenger Transport and our Environment a Communities service.

Smart Share & I will be there Smart Share is a flat sharing app for young people aged 16–24. I Will Be There helps people to co-ordinate and prioritise appointments with our services using a pictorial diary app. Both now have a dedicated IT resource on board with ongoing meetings at UWS and West College Scotland to establish proof of concept and design options.

Renfrewshire Council is the first local authority in Scotland to adopt The Lens intrapreneurship programme.

Finalists who secured funding elsewhere Branching Out This project extends the reach of the ‘Seasons for Growth’ peer support programme for young people and adults who have been affected by change and loss in their life. Several group sessions have been delivered with further staff training in progress.


This is your life In addition to offering an existing family mediation service, this Youth Homeless Prevention Service will also deliver a life coaching programme. Nine staff have now been trained in life coaching and mentoring and the service plan to co-locate some housing and youth prevention teams to facilitate a drop in service.


Rhona McGrath based in Renfrewshire House. es, vic Ser ess sin Bu d an r me sto Cu Rhona is Head of



Can you give us a brief overview of your role?

I lead the strategic development and operational management of the Customer and Business Services (CBS) function in Finance & Resources. It's a large operational service with lots of variety, which I love. I spend a lot of time with my management team looking at how we can develop and improve the services we provide.

What attracted you to the job at Renfrewshire Council?

I was looking for a new challenge and service delivery is in my blood! It sounds trite, but for me it was about making a difference and knowing that my skills and experience could be put to good use. I joined Renfrewshire Council from East Ayrshire Council in May 2006 having previously worked for the Department for Work and Pensions for several years. As Operational Services Manager, I took on a lead role developing the Council’s response to Welfare Reform before being seconded to support the Renfrewshire Tackling Poverty Commission throughout 2014/15. I was appointed as Head of Customer and Business Services in June 2015.

Do you enjoy living/working in Renfrewshire? If so why?

I love working in Renfrewshire and for Renfrewshire Council. It feels so vibrant and energetic. I love that staff take such a pride in what they do and that we all achieve so much together.

How does your department facilitate the work of the Council?

Where to start! I’m sure many colleagues across the Council don’t realise the breadth of service provided by CBS—there’s around 800 staff fulfilling a huge variety of roles. Essentially, we are both the welcoming front face and engine room of the Council. Our frontline customer service staff in Paisley,


Johnstone and Renfrew handle 400,000 customer contacts a year. We provide the administrative support for Renfrewshire schools, are the first contact point for child and adult protection referrals and support the care at home network. CBS is responsible for welfare benefits, administering around £80 million in financial support each year. Annually we bill and collect £78 million in Council Tax and £98 million was collected in business rates last year. We also oversee the payment of £250 million to the Council’s suppliers, many of whom are small local businesses. We provide a payroll service to all employees of the Council, elected members and partners such as Renfrewshire Leisure and Scotland Excel. CBS also administer the Council’s recruitment process which has been significantly improved in recent months. It really is a massive operation and we are essential to the smooth running of the Council.

Are there any major projects for your team currently or on the horizon?

There certainly are. CBS is leading on the approved Customer Strategy for the Council. The whole ethos is about putting our customers right at the heart of what we do. Easy enough to say but it requires a huge amount of effort and shared commitment from every service to deliver. We also lead the Digital First workstream, part of the Better Council programme, which aims to improve the service provided to local people by looking at innovative technology and developing services that are based upon the needs of our customers. We introduced MyAccount in March 2015, which now boasts over 28,000 customers and 1500 users each day. Later this year we will go live with an online process for special uplift which will radically alter how local residents use this service. Accessible

Getting to grips with virtual reality equipment at West College Scotland via MyAccount, future collections of bulky items will have clear timescales for customers with a fully automated uplift schedule direct to driver in-cab technology. Our customers have been involved throughout development, with a focus group of 75 local people helping to shape our latest product for testing. CBS staff also support the Business World project which will replace the Council’s HR, Financial and procurement systems. It will radically change the way we all work, so my team are working hard to make sure that the transition to the new ways of working are a smooth as possible.

How do you engage with your diverse workforce?

Engaging regularly with staff is very important to me and I try to get out and about to schools and local offices as much as possible. CBS staff had


lots of brilliant suggestions about how to improve communication so we revamped the CBS ‘Expresso’ newsletter—which is a great mix of news and staff stories—and organised some innovative learning events. Their feedback highlighted the importance of colleagues coming together and celebrating all we do, while making the links to the broader Council priorities. And, while it wasn’t possible to get everyone together at once, the feedback from the staff was extremely positive—the rumours about staff being hypnotised are only party true!!

How do you see the Council progressing in the future?

More customers will expect to be able to access what they need online. To meet this demand the council will need to re-design how we deliver services, from the method of contact through to fulfilment of their requests. Automation—the use of software to handle routine, manual processes— is currently in being tried out and if successful, will free up time and let us focus on the complex requirements of our more vulnerable citizens.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Cycling in Spain

I used to run a fair bit but injury put paid to that, so I took up road cycling in January 2016 after buying a road bike through the Council’s cycle to work scheme. I love it (apart from steep hills) and try to get out and about as much as possible. I recently cycled around Arran and enjoyed wonderful cycling holidays in Spain and Italy last year.

Tell us something we wouldn’t know about you.

That’s a tough one. I have a couple of small claims to fame… I shared a lift with Morrisey at Glasgow Uni QM Union in the '80s and chatted to John Peel for an hour at the QM too. I did spend a lot of time there! I also make a mean millionaire’s shortbread.

With Scotland International Sean Maitland and Council pals Lisa Dickie (left) and Aileen Watson (second left) at Murrayfield.

FACTFILE: Originally from

Ayrshire-born and brought up in Kilmarnock but I have a strong allegiance to Paisley. My mum was born in Ferguslie Park in the mid-1930s and then spent her childhood and teenage years in Walker Street, attending the John Neilston Institute. I loved visiting the aunts and uncles at Christmas time just so I could tour the Christmas lights.

Family life

I have two daughters aged 23 and 20. One has just finished her degree and the other is midway through her third year at Strathclyde Uni. Both still live with me, and they’re fabulous…but maybe one day they’ll move out!


When I’m not out on my bike I love watching rugby and follow the Glasgow Warriors and Scotland. Every year I go with friends and my partner to one of the Scotland away games, we’ve ticked off Dublin and Cardiff—but the less said about Cardiff this year the better!



We've got another packed programme of events in 2018! Paisley Food and Drink Festival 27–28 April Paisley town centre Join us for a two-day culinary carnival showcasing the best that Scotland’s larder has to offer. There will be plenty of food-related fun to entertain families and friends. Don’t forget that Paisley Beer Festival will also take place in Paisley Town Hall from 25–28 April.

British Pipe Band Championships 19 May St James’ Playing Fields, Paisley Paisley comes alive to the skirl of the pipes and the beat of the drums! Over 150 of the finest bands from across the world will compete for some of the most prestigious titles in bagpiping—and there will be a whole day of free family activities.

Sma’ Shot Day/Weave 7 July Paisley town centre This popular multi-arts festival celebrates Paisley's rich history of weaving and radicalism, encapsulated in the famous victory of the town's weavers in the historic 'sma' shot' dispute.

We also promote a lot of community events throughout the year. If you have an event you’d like to promote, contact us at 28


Renfrewshire Doors Open Days 8–9 September Across Renfrewshire Explore architectural treasures, hidden gems and some curiosities (have you ever see the Paisley Abbey gargoyle inspired by the movie Alien?) as venues across Renfrewshire throw their doors open to visitors.

The Spree 12–20 October Paisley town centre Paisley's hugely-popular arts festival returns for its seventh edition and promises another packed programme of music, comedy, drama, dance and film— as well as plenty of free cultural activities for kids.

Paisley Halloween Festival 26–27 October Paisley town centre Expect some ghoulishly good fun for all the family with a full weekend 'spooktacular' of Halloween activities! Paisley Halloween Festival is fast establishing a reputation as a must-see event—so join us in 2018 and be a part of something special!

Paisley Fireworks Spectacular 3 November Abbey Close, Paisley Paisley Abbey is the stunning backdrop to a spectacular display of fireworks topping off another day of family fun in Paisley town centre.

And don’t forget our festive family favourites when we switch on the Christmas lights in Paisley (17 November), Renfrew (24 November) and Johnstone (1 December)



Meet the Organisational Development and Workforce Planning Team. We’re a key part of HR&OD, within the Finance and Resources service based at Renfrewshire House annexe. Raymond Cree Organisational Development & Workforce Planning Manager

Lenore Robson Principal HR & OD Adviser

Graham Campbell Principal HR & OD Adviser Morna Armstrong Principal HR & OD Adviser

Derek Noble

Principal HR & OD Adviser

Richard McKenzie HR & OD Adviser


Simon Hall HR & OD Adviser Josephine Dick HR & OD Adviser

Amna Latif Graduate Intern

Andrew Brown HR & OD Workforce Analyst


Your Development, Our Future What is Organisational Development (OD) and Workforce Planning? It's an approach to improve organisational effectiveness by aligning our people, strategy and processes whilst building workforce capability and capacity.

What’s our purpose? We work in partnership with our services to achieve the key priorities and actions of the Council’s OD Strategy 2016–2019, providing expert advice and support to services on: • Workforce Planning • People Development • Performance Appraisal Our vision is simple. Supporting you to be skilled, engaged, motivated and adaptive to achieve your full potential.

Some of our current key projects are: • Delivering ASPIRE and Leaders of the Future development programmes • Delivering Accredited Chartered Management Institute Level 3 Certificate and Diploma for First Line Managers • Reviewing how we develop our workforce and what development needs to be provided in the future • Supporting the council and services to implement their workforce plans, ensuring the right people, in the right place, at the right time • Reviewing and implementing a new suite of HR & OD policies to support change

Coming soon • New coaching and mentoring programmes • A new People, Performance and Talent Policy which will replace current appraisal processes (MTIPD/MDP) • New levels of Accredited CMI programmes and further launches of ASPIRE and Leaders of the Future

• Working in partnership with our colleagues in Chief Executives to deliver a calendar of events to promote equality and value diversity • Digital Skills training for our frontline employees. We’ll need volunteers— or ‘digi-teers’ to support this so look out for further details

Have your say! We’re reviewing our people development activities and would welcome your feedback to help us shape future provision. Look out for the People Development Survey coming soon.



Generous staff dig deep for charitable causes Big hearted staff have shown their charitable side by raising money over the festive season for a raft of worthy causes.

Charitable Giving

The Shoebox Appeal

A total of 176 shoe boxes and gift bags were donated, plus two large boxes of blankets, hats, gloves and scarves, as well as toys, books and selection boxes. Many local businesses and partners also contributed including William Tracey Group, Linwood Onyx, Anderson Bell Christie Ltd, the Disability Resource Centre and Kilbarchan Smile. Groups to benefit from the donations included Holy Trinity and St Barnabas Church —St Vincent de Paul, Women’s Aid and Refugee Families. 32

There was an overwhelming response to the Three Box Challenge organised by Renfrewshire Health & Social Care Partnership (RHSCP) after a call went out for donations for the foodbank, warm clothing and blankets, and gifts for the Christmas Gift Appeal in collaboration with Social Work at Abbey House. Renfrewshire Foodbank received two full van loads of provisions while the Homeless Services received 184 gifts and the Children's Gift appeal welcomed an incredible 340 donated presents. The pre-Christmas charity raffle raised £1,832, including a donation of £500 from Steven Brown Art. Evie Campbell, from RHSCP said “A huge thank you must go to staff who helped by keeping

the homeless a little bit warmer and ensuring the foodbank had provisions. “Staff also helped put smiles on the faces of children through the Christmas Gift Appeal. “Thanks also to those who helped coordinate the appeal and sold raffle tickets on each floor of Renfrewshire House.” Funds were shared among The Foodbank, The Homeless Service, The Children’s Gift Appeal and The Salvation Army. Radio Clyde's Gina McKie opened the raffle at Renfrewshire House, where prizes included a dinner and tribute night for four, photo booth hire and beauty vouchers. Provost Lorraine Cameron was joined by the Cotton Street Singers Choir as well as our very own Father Christmas.



Raised by the pre-Christmas charity raffle, including a donation of £500 from Steven Brown Art.

“A huge thank you must go to staff who helped by keeping the homeless a little bit warmer and ensuring the foodbank had provisions." Evie Campbell, RHSCP

Sleep in the Park

Anne Gall and Morag MacLeod see the impact of homelessness first hand every day through their work in the Housing Advice and Homeless Service. They wanted to help raise cash to ensure everyone in Scotland has a roof over their heads to call their own, even if it meant spending a night outside their own homes. The pair joined around eight thousand people to brave the cold to bed down in the world’s biggest sleep out in Edinburgh’s Prince’s Street Gardens on December 9th. Organised by Social Bite, the Sleep in the Park event raised almost £4M to help homeless people.


Raised by Anne and Morag. They want to thank the generous colleagues who sponsored them.

“It was very cold and difficult to get to sleep but it gave me an awareness of what it must be like for people—especially women—to sleep rough for a period of time and how vulnerable they must feel on the streets. But we got to go back to our warm beds the next night.” Morag

Are you fundraising? Got some great news you've love to share with your colleagues? Send us your stories and pictures to 33

FYI: What do you need to know?

FYI What do you need to know?

Social Sense Social media is part of everyday life for many of us, so all council employees should be aware of their conduct and responsibilities when communicating online and using social media sites.

Your intranet, your views Now that you’ve had some time to get to grips with the design and layout of the new intranet we’d love to hear your thoughts on it. Is it easy to use? Does it have everything you need? Are there some additional features you’d like to see?

Please take five minutes to give us some feedback and help us develop the right digital tool for you. The survey is available at XHNYNV2. Alternatively you can email your feedback to internalcommunications@

So, it’s over to you—have your say and help us develop the best intranet channel for you.


Employees are permitted to access social media sites on the council network for business purposes and also for personal use outside your normal working hours. If you are granted access to social media sites for work purposes, please ensure that you are familiar with the council’s ICT Acceptable Use Policy and Social Media Guidelines, and any professional code of conduct that applies to your role. Social media shouldn't be used to promote, encourage or express any personal or political views or opinions that may bring the council into disrepute, harm the council’s reputation or breach any of the council’s other policies. Remember—if in doubt, don’t post it! This applies both when at work and in your personal life. You can read more about using social media for business under the HR and Organisational Development, Policies, Procedures and Guidelines on the Intranet.

FYI: What do you need to know?

Customer Strategy What is it? As the name suggests, it’s the new strategy explaining how we will engage with our customers across all Council services. It’s a five year plan and has been developed following extensive customer research and consultation.

Getting the right advice

Any more detail? It is aligned to the new Council Plan, and the Renfrewshire Digital Strategy and has five key themes: • customers • service fulfilment • access to services • communication • developing digital skills There’s a strong focus on simplifying services and on making the most of innovative digital technologies like MyAccount as well as increasing contact via social media platforms.

Why do we need it? Each year customers contact us around three million times. Expectations are changing so a onesize-fits-all approach won’t work. It’s vital that we understand who our customers are and the service they require to meet their needs and enhance their experience.

Where do I come in? This is a strategy for all staff to play their part in delivering. The customer experience is formed from a whole host of interactions with us so whether you answer the call, process the payment or sweep the street, you can make the crucial difference to the outcome.

Ok, sold. So what should I do next? First off, read the full strategy—it’s a concise 14 pages—then think about your role and how you can ensure we deliver tailored services which meet our customer needs. customer-strategy

Take note!

Wondering what’s happening in your workplace? Next time you’re online, click on the 'Noticeboard' section in the 'News and Views' area of the new intranet for all the latest staff announcements, offers, market stalls and charity fundraising events.

If you need some advice, check out the Advice Renfrewshire website It’s a ‘one-stop-shop’ to help you find free, confidential and impartial advice services on anything from debt and welfare benefits to housing and health. You can also ask for advice on fuel bills, energy suppliers and keeping your house warm for less with the Council’s Energy Advocacy team, who are part of the advice family. The team offer support to all Renfrewshire residents regardless of what type of accommodation you live in. You can even request a home visit from them. To book an appointment or for more help and advice, call 0808 1642922 free of charge.

It’s a move away from those ‘All User’ emails that clog up your inbox! There’s even a space for the latest Atrium menu and those ad hoc requests for surplus equipment. If you have something to share, email internalcommunications@ 35

DO YOU NEED TO GET SOMETHING PRINTED? Even in a world becoming ‘digital first’, you still find that sometimes, only print will do! If that’s the case, the first place you should go is our own Document Solution Centre. This in-house team guarantees an accurate, professional and confidential service with quick turnaround times— from as little as two working days.

A high-quality product delivered straight to your desk…sound good? It gets better—with the new Skyline service, you can go online and make an order, whenever you need to. To sign up for Skyline web-to-print and start ordering, go to today.

Not sure what you need? Call the Document Solution Centre on 0141 618 2588 or email Document Solution Centre and the team can talk you through some of the bespoke products and services available.



R Magazine Issue 3  
R Magazine Issue 3  

The magazine for employees of Renfrewshire Council