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Staff profile: June Shine, Director, Local Government

June Shine, Director, Local Government

As an Insyncer for nearly three years, June previously gained 25 years’ public sector experience in NSW. Insync has a proud history conducting over 200 research projects within the local government sector and June is currently working with 55 local government councils all over Australia. We work with large councils with 2,500 staff and also regional and remote local governments that may have only 70 staff.

Q. Is there a common area of focus for local government clients at the moment?

“We work mostly with councils to measure employee engagement and customer engagement. After collecting this data we move beyond measurement and assist councils to understand how to use these findings in a powerful way to improve their business outcomes. This past year we have conducted a number of internal customer satisfaction and team climate surveys too.

“When we start each project we begin with a series of conversations to better understand where the council project fits into their strategic planning framework. We ask councils ‘why are you collecting this information?’, ‘how is it going to link back into the business?’ and ‘how it will help your council to improve?’.

“In the last six-months we’ve been measuring internal customer satisfaction regularly. These projects have been about improving relationships between the council business units and assisting employees to understand who their customers are internally, what they need and how they can improve to satisfy them for improved council outcomes.

“This type of internal customer work usually comes out of our Employee Engagement Surveys projects where results tell us that cooperation across work teams within council is crucial. Results may say cooperation between teams is poor and local governments want to understand how they can improve.”

Q. What are three tips you give clients to get the most out of their measurement and improvement project?

  1. “To first understand why you’re doing the survey and where it fits within the business framework. It’s important for councils to realise they shouldn’t collect data in a vacuum and that they need to plan ahead in terms of what the result will feed into.
  2. “The second thing is to follow through with results. This involves communicating the findings and plans back to the workforce and customers so people understand the implications for their team. It’s so important to invest time in assisting the middle management layer to understand the survey process, the rational behind why you’re doing it, what the process is and to encourage their team to be involved. It’s all about investing effort and sharing information with those people who have major responsibilities for managing and leading teams.
  3. “Celebrate the results; acknowledge the strengths and commit to improving the biggest issues that staff and customers identify.”

Q. What will your sector be tackling in 2012?

“Continuing to balance financial stability with the pressure to provide high levels of satisfaction within their communities. We can assist councils by directing their focus to the main areas that can make a difference to their performance.”

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