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Council workplace practices recognised at national HR awards

29 February 2024

Clare County Council’s workplace practices have been recognised at the CIPD HR Awards in Ireland 2024.

The local authority was named winner of the ‘Embracing New Ways of Working’ award at the Mansion House, Dublin, on Friday, 23rd February.
This award recognises organisations of any size that can demonstrate how they are excelling in their support for their people and managers in embedding new ways of working.
Clare County Council was shortlisted in the category along with Bank of Ireland, ESB, KPMG and McKesson Cork. The organisers of the awards noted that all entries were very strong across this category.
The judges commented that, “Clare County Council’s approach focused on how to embed hybrid working and deliver on the benefits. The judges were impressed with the approach that moved beyond a Covid response to be a real retention and inclusion initiative. With multiple strategies for different staff, it resulted in quantifiable and demonstrable benefits on culture, learning and development, and achieved cost benefits.”
“The Council adopted innovative methods, especially for outdoor staff. They significantly progressed the digitalisation of activities, using digital check-ins, new digital devices, reducing paperwork and the need for time in office, allowing more time on-site,” the judges added.
The Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, Cllr Joe Cooney, congratulated the Council’s Human Resources staff on winning the award: “I want to commend the staff and management of the Council on achieving this award and on maintaining such high standards of work practices in the delivery of services. The Council’s success is testimony to the commitment of staff to improving public services in County Clare and to improving the working environment within Clare County Council. I would like to acknowledge their adaptability in responding to the need to enhance the way we work.”
Pat Dowling, Chief Executive, Clare County Council, said, “Clare County Council has a proven track record of innovation and change management. Embracing new ways of working has clearly been demonstrated by our staff and this level of commitment is crucial to being a successful and a responsive organisation. This award is a reflection of the central importance that Clare County Council places on its staff. We are to the forefront in advancing our services, in being able to work on the move while improving health and safety and quality of life for our staff. We will continue to innovate and progress new ways of working well into the future.”
Noeleen Fitzgerald, Director of Finance and Support Services in Clare County Council, added, “Innovation and future focused solutions are driven by the staff through working groups and staff consultation. Advances in new ways of working have been accelerated by necessity during Covid-19 and it has been proven that staff across the organisation are willing to embrace change and can work safely and effectively both remotely and in the office.”
Monica Meehan, Head of Human Resources, Clare County Council, acknowledged the significant change that has been spearheaded by the Human Resources Department over the past 2-3 years. Initiatives such as e-learning platforms, reduction of paper-based forms, introduction of blended working processes and most recently e-recruitment have made a real impact and are of benefit to the staff of Clare County Council.
The CIPD HR Awards in Ireland celebrate and showcase the outstanding work and impact of the people profession – reflecting both core areas of work and current trends. Recipients of awards are noted among their peers as having achieved the top tier within their field. Clare County Council’s application demonstrated advances in digital solutions, hybrid working solutions, remote working on sites and many projects which allow more efficient and safer ways of working around the county.
2024 is the second year that Clare County Council has been recognised for its HR practices. In 2023 the Council won the award for ‘Embedding a Culture of Workplace Wellbeing’.
Clare County Council is accredited with the Excellence Through People (ETP) award by the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) gold standard certification.
CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) Ireland is the professional body for HR and people development and career partner to 6,000 members in Ireland.

Pictured are: (back row, l-r) Monica Meehan, Head of Human Resources; James O’Neill, Senior Account Manager with Softworks, who sponsored the award category; Cllr Joe Cooney, Cathaoirleach; Deirdre Power, Administrative Officer; Noeleen Fitzgerald, Director of Finance and Support Services; Patricia McNamara, Administrative Officer; Pat Dowling, Chief Executive; and (front row, l-r) Jim O’Sullivan, IS Analyst Developer; and Bhavesh Patadiya, IS Analyst Developer (all Clare County Council unless otherwise stated). Photo: Chris Bellew, Fennell Photography.

Page last reviewed: 29/02/24

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