Report: AEV HR Working Group Sept. 6th 2016
The Association of Event Venues (AEV) HR Working Group held its annual meeting at Olympia London, on September 7th 2016, with Rachel Parker, AEV director, standing in as chair. After thanking Susan Collyer of Olympia London for hosting the event, Parker opened the meeting with a reading of the apologies, a warm welcome to the new members, and asked the group to approve the minutes of the last meeting in November 2015.
With the formalities concluded, Parker then invited the group to review the 2016 AEV Salary Survey, released to participating members in August. This year's survey was carried out by survey specialists, Explori and the group's feedback was very positive, noting that the presentation and detail was greatly improved and easier to understand. Completing the survey on-line proved to be a welcome development, making it quicker and easier to participate.
There followed a detailed discussion about how the survey could be modified and expanded, and whether Explori had delivered a significant improvement on previous surveys that had been conducted in-house. The group confirmed it would be happy to continue using Explori for future surveys, and drew up a list of possible enhancements to the survey including an adaptation of the pension information, finer detail in the holidays section and inclusion of an overview table. AEV agreed to collate these questions and suggestions, and put them to Explori at their next meeting.
The next topic before the group was the suggestion that the HR Working Group could be opened up to Event Supplier and Services Association (ESSA) and Association of Event Organisers (AEO) members. Parker explained to the group that she has had discussions with Trevor Foley, who currently runs a HR working group open to venues, organisers and contractors, and noted that there were several venues that were members of both Foley's and the AEV's HR working groups. Parker suggested that there might be an advantage to merging the groups to bring in views from the organiser and supplier/contractor communities. The group agreed that this could be a positive development and asked the AEV to update the group on any developments.
The next discussion topic was HR systems, with some members currently on the verge of launching a new system, in the process of shortlisting new systems and providers, or actively considering updating their existing system. The discussion touched on the difficulty in finding providers that offered a full range of HR functions in one system, including absence reporting, staff scheduling, time and attendance monitoring and internal approval processes.
The group then briefly touched on potential changes and the future of the group. It was agreed that the groups future be tabled as a full agenda item at the next meeting.
Before the round table news, Parker announced that Adam Chircop, AEV HR Working Group chair for seven years, had relinquished the chair and the selection of a new chair for the group would also be tabled as a full agenda item at the next meeting.
In the busy round table discussion and member news, several members reported on the developments at their respective venues, including newly built venues, expanded facilities and job opportunities. The discussion then moved onto apprenticeships particularly with a view to accessing funding and support. Claire Bond of the NEC reported that the NEC group has had 20 apprentices over 2016, and that there were new tax rules coming into effect next year that could change how apprentices are recruited and paid for. The group also discussed staff appraisals and methods employed to improve the quality and quantity of responses.
Finally the group proposed that the HR impact of Brexit be tabled for the next meeting, with a view to understanding the future possibilities of employing European workers after Britain leaves the EU.
The date for the next meeting was suggested as Wednesday September 6th 2017 at a venue to be confirmed, after which Parker thanked all for attending and closed the meeting.