Minutes of HSENI Senior Management Team meeting - October 2020

Minutes of Senior Management Team (SMT) meeting held on Wednesday 12 October 2020 at 9:30am (via zoom)


  • R Kidd - Chair and Chief Executive
  • L Burns - Deputy Chief Executive
  • N Monson - Deputy Chief Executive
  • B Monson - Deputy Chief Executive
  • K Neeson - Deputy Chief Executive

1. Apologies

There were no apologies

2. Minutes from previous meeting

The minutes from the September meeting were agreed 

3. Action Points

There were no action points not covered by the agenda .

4. Corporate Health, Safety and Welfare

There was a discussion on issues including –

  • The potential of some staff having to self-isolate
  • The challenges of home working
  • The work being done by NICS and HSE (GB) on Display Screen Equipment assessment for the home .  Premises Team are working on an assessment for HSENI staff for building numbers by room opening of the building. It was agreed that one day a week of general opening is sufficient and other openings can be agreed by line managers and premises to facilitate other specific activities such as interviews and statement gathering. It was agreed that premises would look at the heating in the building as staff have noted how cold it has been over the last 3 weeks.

5. Audit, Risk Management and Finance Budget

Deficit to cover DRC budget has now been confirmed as met. A new bid has been made via Department for Economy to Westminster for EU Exit funds to cover staff and programme.

Emerging Risks

It was noted that if HSENI do get approval to recruit staff for EU Exit work, this will create a pressure on accommodation. However, it was agreed that with Covid-19, we will need to consider new ways of working going forward in any case as it will not be possible to bring everyone back in to the office at the same time in the coming months

The possibility of a business disruption risk was discussed. Remote working has given us greater resilience but with a second wave we are likely to see some staff having to selfisolate and SMT will keep the situation under review to see what groups are facing the greatest pressure.

The budget update was covered as above. 

6. HR

SMT noted the Principal Inspector (PI) and Complaints Officer competitions had now completed. Two PIs will take up post at the beginning of November. Complaints Officer results are not yet known. It was agreed that following the meeting, a recommendation would be circulated regarding the best way to looking to fill the recently vacated Higher Scientific Officer post. It was agreed that in the short term, there would be no moves at Inspector grade as groups need to maintain knowledge and expertise at this busy time. Anyone expressing a desire for a move will be advised. There was also a discussion on the progress and further options for the training of trainee inspectors. A number of options were considered and these will be factored in to ongoing work by the trainee coordinator

7. Case and Project Work

Major Investigation Team (MIT) update

Nikki shared the update from the Head of MIT as a separate attachment .

EU Exit / Transition period

SMT discussed the roles and responsibilities and the possible resource implications which are emerging . L Burns is preparing a paper which will be used to update the board at the next meeting.

8. Business Planning

2020-21 Operating Plan revision approved by Minister so can now be shared with the committee. Calling note for 2021/22 Operating Plan will issue shortly with expectation that Covid issues will continue to influence outputs.

9. Performance Monitoring

B Monson stated that the latest performance statistics are contained in the recent staff brief.

10. Board Business

SMT noted that there would be a number of issues on which to update the board at the end of the month and papers are being prepared.

11. Any other business

B Monson drew attention to a number of potential media interest issues. He also updated SMT on the agreed way forward to conduct the annual penetration test on our Case Management System.

12. Date of next meeting

The next meeting will take place on 4 November at 9:30am.