Council workers not impressed

PUBLISHED: 11:38 01 November 2007 | UPDATED: 13:01 04 May 2010

COUNCIL workers in East Cambridgeshire are unhappy with their lot. Half don t believe the council is improving services and 40 per cent don t feel the council has good customer focus. More than a quarter of them regularly feels stressed and more than a t

COUNCIL workers in East Cambridgeshire are unhappy with their lot.

Half don't believe the council is improving services and 40 per cent don't feel the council has good customer focus.

More than a quarter of them regularly feels stressed and more than a third believe their executive directors don't listen to their concerns.

The low morale amongst staff at East Cambridgeshire District Council was revealed in a survey last year.

But council officers believe the survey was encouraging and positive, showing that 87 per cent of staff understand what the council is seeking to achieve and over 80 per cent finding their jobs interesting.

The survey showed, however, that only 52 per cent of workers believed the council had a culture of improving services compared with 76 per cent in 2003.

In the same year, 67 per cent were confident that the council had good customer focus compared with 60 per cent questioned for the survey.

Only half the staff employed by the council believe they work in a pleasant environment and 71 per cent said pay levels were an important factor in encouraging colleagues to leave

Now an action plan has been put in place and members of the personnel committee were told of progress.

The plan focused on key areas including a culture of improving services, communication issues in relation to executive directors, working environment, reducing stress and dissatisfaction with pay levels.

Since the survey, there has been customer care training for all staff, counselling services working with the individual in cases of stress and a new staff room opened last month.

Andrew Killington, East Cambridgeshire District Council's HR and IT director, said: "The 2006 survey was, in the vast majority of areas surveyed, very encouraging and positive. The survey response rate of 65 per cent in itself says a lot about the good employment relations we have at the council.

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