Tenth Guiding Principle – Reorganisation and Implementation of Change

(Accepted with commentary by the N.I. Executive on 17/01/08)


This Guiding Principle deals with the issues and approaches which should underpin the consultative processes for the RPA.

Guiding Principle

The Commission recommends that:

  • Employers plan thoroughly for the implementation of the change process arising from RPA and adopt a collaborative approach, which actively engages staff, trade unions and other staff representatives and encourages their participation throughout the change process.
  • All parties in the employment relationship comply with relevant human rights and employment rights legislation,  taking into account relevant Codes of Practice and be committed to establishing, developing and maintaining a supportive and harmonious working environment.

Associated Recommendations

The Commission recommends the employers:

  • Ensure, in conjunction with the trade unions, that there are appropriate and robust mechanisms and structures in place to facilitate effective employment relations at both central and local level.
  • Develop effective and efficient organisational staffing structures, in consultation, and with a view to reaching agreement, with trade unions and other staff representatives and take all reasonable steps to ensure a fully participative, inclusive and transparent process.
  • Strive to minimise staff uncertainty by regular, effective communication. All possible opportunities should be taken to alleviate staff concern. Face-to-face communication should be the preferred approach when managing the sensitive aspects of organisational change and should be used where possible.
  • Use the dispute resolution process as set out in the RPA Code of Practice to resolve individual and collective disputes.
  • Maximise the development of leadership capacity within organisations in the realisation that competent leaders at all levels will drive the change process by effective articulation of their vision of the successful organisation.
  • Invest in appropriate management training and development as managers at all levels are instrumental in interpreting, communicating, facilitating and enabling change.
  • Establish at the earliest opportunity, a corporate culture to unite staff who may come from very different workplace cultures and who may have competing outlooks and values. The development of the corporate culture can be aided by, for example, staff induction, training sessions and team briefings
  • In consultation, as appropriate, with employees, their representatives and trade unions, develop, implement, monitor and evaluate good practice employment policies and procedures (all parties may refer to the services of the Labour Relations Agency for information, advice and guidance on good employment practice, as and when necessary).
  • Fully implement the Commission’s Guiding Principles and Associated Recommendations as accepted by the Executive.

Further Guidance/Information

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