Programme of work

Section 39 Agencies Restoration of Pay

During 2018 the National Federation will work closely with Section 39 agencies and other key stakeholders to address the issue of "restoration of pay" within these agencies. 

Human Resources / Employee Well-being & Development

To ensure that staff employed and volunteers engaged by member organisations are equipped with the competencies and skills necessary to implement national policy relating to people with intellectual disability

Engagement with the HSE

The National Federation seeks to ensure that we continually enhance the good working relationship that exists being the National Federation and the Human Resources National Directorate, HSE. In this regard key activities to be undertaken in 2018 include:

  • Office of the National Director of HR: Regular meetings with the HSE National Director of HR to address a range of human resource related issues arising for Federation members related to funding, industrial relations and employee wellbeing.
  • People Strategy 2015-2018 – Leaders in People Services: Work closely with the HSE in relation to the implementation of key actions outlined in the People Strategy.
  • HSE Human Resources / Finance Working Group: Participate in the work of this group which was established by the HSE to address the many HR and finance issues arising for Federation member organisations. The Working Group has representatives from the National Federation, Disability Federation of Ireland and the Not for Profit Business Association.
  • Corporate Employee Relations Services (CERS): During 2018 the National Federation will continue to work closely CERS, HSE. CERS is the representative body for health service employers that aims to promote the development of improved human resources practices within the health services and represents / support employers in the management of industrial relations. Key issues under discussion during 2018 relate to: implementation of the Labour Court Recommendation relating to sleepovers; compliance with the provisions of the European Working Time Directive (EWTD); national pay agreements, etc.
  • National Joint Council / Joint Information & Consultation Forum: The position in relation to industrial relations matters of relevance to agencies will be monitored and support provided to those who represented National Federation members on key national working groups such as the National Joint Council (NJC) and the Joint Information & Consultation Forum (JICF).  The NJC is the primary forum for the management of industrial relations in the health service and Ms. Olive Leonard, Muiriosa Foundation and Mr. Brian Leahy, Brothers of Charity Services Ireland, represents the interests of National Federation members on the NJC. The JICF provides a forum for information sharing and consultation in relation to HSE projects. The National Federation is represented on the JICF by Ms. Jillian Sexton, National Federation Secretariat.
  • HSE Occupational Health Scheme: The National Federation will seek to establish if there are areas in which there could be closer co-operation between the HSE and Federation members. 
  • Human Resources National Investigations Unit: One of the key actions outlined in the Health Services People Strategy 2015-2018 Leaders in People Services is the establishment of a ‘…unified National Investigations Unit which provides a timely and efficient response and uses learning outcomes to continuously improve performance.’  Ms. Pauline Brennan, Human Resources Manager, Western Care Association, is the National Federation’s nominee on the Working Group established to oversee this work.


Identify the key strategic human resource management issues facing member organisations and agree actions to address these concerns

The National Federation has identified the following strategic HR objectives to be collectively progressed during 2018 to respond to the challenges and demands currently facing organisations:

  • Development of people management skills/HR knowledge for line managers.
  • Managing change effectively (with an emphasis on employee engagement) to deliver on key challenges (e.g. New Directions, HIQA requirements, mergers and organisational restructuring).
  • Improve approach to collecting/managing HR data.
  • Adopt a proactive approach to the implementation of the HSE’s People Strategy.
  • Talent management, including recruitment and retention.

Other important areas of work to be focused on include leadership development, performance management, implementation of the European Working Time Directive, workforce planning, meeting HIQA standards and regulations. 


Ensure Training & Development Initaitives are focused on skills development to meet the requirements of the new policy direction

Managing for the Future: Building your skills as a Front Line Manager in a Person Centre Environment

  • A further cycle of the Front Line Managers Training Programme will be run in conjunction with the University of Limerick during 2018/2019. 
  • Additional relevant HR related training programmes / events / briefing sessions will be run for member organisations during 2018.  
  • A series of CPD Masterclasses are being run in conjunction with CIPD Ireland in Autumn/Winter 2018. 


Support our Membership to promote the welfare and wellbeing of their staff

Health & Safety / Employee Well-being Working Group

The National Federation’s Health & Safety / Employee Wellbeing Group is a valuable networking forum for health and safety personnel across Federation member organisations to meet and share information to support them in their role. The Health and Safety/ Employee Wellbeing Group’s plan of work focuses on a wide variety of topics to further enhance shared learning across Service Providers. Key areas of development include the implementation of the Health and Safety Audit Tool and Policies & Guidelines on incident management systems.  The HIQA registration and inspection process will also continue to be a key focus of the work of the Group during 2018. 

Employee Assistance Programme

During 2018 the Employee Assistance Programme, administered by  VhiCorporate Solutions, will continue to provide a very valuable service to employees working within National Federation member organisations – over half of National Federation members are currently members of the Scheme.  Key features of the Employee Assistance Programme include:

  • EAP online support website
  • Specialist information
  • Legal information
  • Financial information
  • Telephone counselling
  • Face-to-face counselling
  • Website -
  • Monthly EAP Promotion

Nominated Health Agencies Superannuation Scheme

A series of meetings will take place during 2018 between the HSE and members of the National Federation NHASS Working Group.  Members of the Group are seeking to address the concerns arising for Federation members in relation to the funding and overall operation of the NHASS. 


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