HM Prison Service has recently appointed Dean Morley to the new role of head
of resource management. He will be responsible for leading the reshaping of the
Prison Service’s approach to recruitment, selection and succession management
for its 47,000 staff. He joins from AMP UK Financial Services, where he was
head of HR for finance.
What will be the duties in your new role?
I’m responsible for recruitment, succession and workforce planning policy.
It is a huge challenge, given the desire to move into a more progressive HR
policy and practice, while also upskilling HR staff who have tended to follow a
more general career path.
What do you hope to achieve in your new role?
A significant change to the way we recruit. Taking into account current
needs and projected growth/wastage, we need to recruit around 5,000 people per
year. We also have a major challenge in succession planning for more senior
Which aspects are you most looking forward to?
Helping to improve the profile of a major and diverse employer. I have
already visited several jails and was extremely impressed with the people I
met. Working in prison is a varied and demanding job that is currently little
understood or appreciated. I hope I can play a part in changing that through
the brand work we have started.
What is the strangest situation you have been in at work?
Probably helping to rescue someone stranded up a tree after their aircraft
crashed. It was part of an executive development programme I arranged, and we
had actors playing injured passengers lying all over the place in the dark in
the middle of some fields. It seemed like a good idea at the time…
How do you think the role of HR will change over the next five years?
HR must be more outcome-focused, and I can see the human capital movement
gaining strength. If HR doesn’t take up the baton now, I’m sure finance will.
What is your essential viewing?
I am one of those insane long-distance commuters, so by the time I get home
and catch up on the day’s happenings with my wife and kids, I don’t really have
much time for planned television viewing.
What is the greatest risk you have ever taken?
Probably two key decisions: leaving Nat West after 17 years – my first job
after college – and my recent move from the private to public sector.
What advice would you give to people starting out in HR?
Make sure whatever you do is clearly linked to the business’ priorities and
that you have a way of evaluating it.
If you could do any job in the world, what would it be?
Right now it would be a bricklayer, so I could get some more progress made
with the extension I’m having built.
2002 Head of resource management, HM
2000 Head of HR for finance and legal, AMP Pearl
1997 Head of HR for sales and marketing, Nat West Mortgage
1995 Regional resourcing manager, Nat West Retail Banking