Tower Hamlets council and NHS trust end shared HR director role

The London Borough of Tower Hamlets and NHS Tower Hamlets are to scrap the role of joint HR director.

The two organisations, which have a combined workforce of more than 12,000, have shared HR director Deb Clarke for the past two-and-a-half years. Now the role will be ditched because of the differing agendas of both organisations.

Instead, Clarke will become HR director of NHS Tower Hamlets and an interim manager will fill the same role at the council, until a permanent member of staff is appointed.

A council spokeswoman confirmed the changes are expected to take place from mid-October

In a statement, the local authority said the changing agendas meant the model was no longer suitable and the organisations now needed to focus on their own goals.

“For NHS Tower Hamlets these include, among other things, the need to navigate a major restructure across a range of organisations in the next 12-18 months,” the statement read. “For the council the attention is now focused on the efficiency agenda and talent management. It is a strength of the partnership between the two organisations that we recognise our changed context.”

Clarke said: “I have loved doing this job and I believe we have made a real difference for the community of Tower Hamlets.Critical to being an effective HR function, though, is being quick on our feet and responsive to changes in the external environment. There is no point in holding on to joint arrangements if that is not what is needed going forward.

“I will be focusing on the transformational work for the Primary Care Trust in the coming months to support the PCT in the development of its new arrangements.”

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