Reports of the coldest winter in 30 years did not stop some HR professionals from doing all they could to get themselves – and others – to work this week.
HR pros get front-line staff to work in 4x4s
Gallant council HR professionals determined not to let the snow interfere with front-line services drove key workers back and forth to schools and people's homes in their 4x4s this week.
As snow caused chaos across the UK's roads and rail routes, HR functions were left battling absence rates of up to 14% a day, according to absence management firm Firstcare.
To minimise disruption, HR teams used their own gas-guzzlers to ensure front-line staff got to work.
Leatham Green, assistant director of personnel and training at East Sussex County Council, said six of his HR team – nearly 10% of the function – had helped drive key staff to work, while more than 50 staff across the council had also made their vehicles available.
He told Personnel Today: "Our own HR staff volunteered to help out, six of them have been helping people get to work. We have also asked staff who we know have 4x4s to volunteer and help to get other staff to work."
Richard Crouch, head of HR and organisational development at Somerset County Council, also battled the icy conditions using his own car to help out. "We have staff who have used their 4x4s here and I have been one of them supporting a local primary school," he said.
He added the HR function had encouraged managers to ask staff who drove 4x4s to offer their services to other local authority services.
Meanwhile the HR team at Buckinghamshire County Council approached local 4x4 enthusiast clubs and asked them to supply vehicles to help homecare staff get to people's houses.
The disruption caused by the snow was predicted to have cost the economy more than £0.5bn a day.
HR chiefs vow not to dock wages of snowed-in staff