FTSE 100 pharmaceuticals company

Managing consultation processes as part of an international relocation programme

250 roles relocated in six months with no appeals or tribunal claims received.

The brief

As part of a merger a proposal was developed to close the client’s first UK office with 250 employees affected with relocation options to four other UK and international office locations.

The client was keen to engage with an external HR consulting supplier as all of their HR team was impacted by the office closure. They needed a supplier who understood the commercial challenges they were facing as well as the ability to flex their style and approach so that all employees felt supported and engaged with throughout the entire consultation process.

Why Connor?

“We had worked with Connor before on a big company reorganisation. They delivered against the brief then which gave us confidence that they could deliver again this time round. We trusted them to provide a turnkey solution on the A-Z of this complex relocation programme that included project management, data tracking and case management.” said the client’s head of HR.

The approach

We listened carefully to the complex brief and formed a Connor programme team that fitted the exact needs of the business. We gave the client confidence that we could deliver on this programme as our programme team built robust project plans, KPI’s with contingency plans in place, if needed. We also ensured that all stakeholders were listened to and we demonstrated that we could deliver on the task elements as well as showing that we could adopt an empathetic approach to all affected employees.

What we did for the client

Project management

  • We defined the project management plan in conjunction with the key stakeholders and managed the stakeholders expectations at all times
  • We provided monthly updates to the client on major milestones, achievements, next 30 day deliverables and any major risks to the project
  • We delivered the project on time within budget and with zero employee relations issues, such as appeals or employment tribunal claims.

Complex employee relations

  • We ran the employee representative election process
  • We devised and delivered the training for both employee representatives (for collective consultation) and the line managers (for individual consultation)
  • We attended all collective consultation meetings ensuring that accurate notes were taken and turned around in 24 hours – also responding to all Q and A’s within the designated timescale
  • Connor devised and ran all individual consultation meetings (245 employees for a minimum of 2, sometimes 3 meetings – with a team of 11 experienced, professional HR consultants
  • Responsible for all documentation including forms for the individual consultation meetings, the management information tracker, the Qs and As, outcome letters etc
  • We devised and sent out the outcome letters for all individuals once decisions had been made.

Business outcomes

“I cannot thank you enough for your support, for your professionalism, your empathy with the employees and managers, your accuracy in keeping track of the data, your help in sorting the various processes out and your flexibility and availability for numerous ad hoc meetings, calls, emergency activities.” said the client’s head of HR.

The client was most impressed with our responsiveness and commented that everybody within our team knew their role and executed their responsibilities in a timely manner.

They liked the fact that we provided both a project manager and a quality director (guardian of quality), which meant that we kept our eyes on both the operational aspects of the project as well as the big picture quality delivery piece.

We also received excellent feedback on the quality of our programme team (15 HR consultants and directors) who were perceived as being high calibre both from a knowledge and communications viewpoint.

In addition the client commented that:

  • Connor delivered a complex project of consulting on relocating about 250 roles to four distinct alternative locations
  • Resulted in no appeals being lodged or employment tribunal claims received
  • The programme was delivered within the necessary timescale of six months
  • We remained flexible with some of the team permanently working on the programme, whilst other members of the team worked on an as-needed basis.
  • The data management was clear and fed back to the key stakeholders weekly
  • High levels of employee engagement were maintained throughout the programme
  • The programme was delivered ensuring legal compliance at all times.

What the client said

“The biggest compliment I can give you guys is that you are indeed a trusted partner. Trust has been established between Connor and our employees and also between Connor and I. Our people did not see a difference between Connor and the internal HR team. You are certainly experts in your field and you acted completely confidentially working with us in a collaborative way to ensure the project was brought to a successful conclusion.

The Connor team was very collaborative and customer orientated. The process was as smooth as it can be. Not a single grievance or employee appeal against the decisions which is a staggering statistic.”
Head of HR

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