BBR update

Building better rotas

As you're aware, the working parties for the Building Better Rotas project commenced last week as planned. They were well attended and very positive with constructive challenges. 

We are in the process of producing an FAQ's document generated from your representatives from the Working Party 5 meetings, we will share as soon as this is ready. 

In the meantime we would like to share with you some of the questions raised by your Working Party Representatives at the recent Town Hall event. The full FAQ's and slide pack will be available on East24

What considerations have been given to those that can't change their hours – carers, court access etc?
Flexible working should continue to be encouraged across the EEAST, and each request is considered on its own merit in line with Trust policy. For the purposes of BBR any potential impact on flexible working hours, as a result of the chosen (voted) rota, will be discussed during the consultation phase with the individuals affected, supported by a Flexible Working Core Principle to facilitate such discussion and assist in a mutually agreed outcome.

The original proposal was for a minimum percentage of relief staff. Does the “no relief” option change the percentage?
There is flexibility on the ratios based on local requirements with the facility to consider multiple options, such as build in 24% in Core, with 14.5% in Relief, or if 0% in Core, there will be 38.5% in relief.

For “Relief In” some rotas have fixed relief days but are these restricted by Core Principles?
Where requirement of relief working is low (e.g. 11hrs) we look in to spare capacity days (SCD) instead of relief days. There will be some limitations e.g. wouldn’t want one straight after night shift as you would do night/night, but these are generally due to statutory requirements within he Working Time Regulations or to ensure the health, wellbeing and safety of staff.

Is it likely to go live in November ahead of Christmas rush?
We recognise the Christmas leave period is always contentious; however we will consider the need for booked leave at Christmas and hope to reflect current arrangements in the new rota. We also recognise we will be open to abuse of the leave process if unresolved and this could realise a very real shortage in resource. We will work with local managers around what it currently looks like, so if it is your first Christmas off in 7 years, we hope to be in a position to honour your Christmas leave.

The original data is from last year, will it be reviewed?
The original data was reviewed against current and future requirements negating any need to undertake a further review ahead of phase 2 of the BBR project. 

Will there be a union rep at each WP?
Unisons intention is to offer this, but mindful this may not be possible in all areas due to current resource. However, Unison have been supporting and representing views, especially regarding the BBR project where challenges made in phase one were worked through collaboratively leading to a more attractive offering in phase two.

There are no restrictions on any local union reps abstracted for work place issues relating to Unison duties and the Exec are keen to support abstraction for BBR.

Can the Trust support East24 access from personal devices (Guest WiFi/I-Pads/VPN)?
This is currently being reviewed, however it’s in the very early stages and there is currently no timeframe as to when this will be available from personal devices.

In the meantime, we will make the BBR pages on East24 accessible to staff by generating a PDF version for distribution which can then also be printed. The PDF version will be updated and distributed as and when East24 is.   

Can we have clarification on who will be allowed to vote please?
Yes. The Rota Voting Process document is at the final stage of sign off and will then be published on East24 BBR pages within the next few weeks.


The upcoming Working Parties will be taking place on the following dates;
Working Party 6 - 4th & 5th June
Working Party 7 - 9th & 10th July
Working Party 8 - 6th & 7th August


The BBR team are here to support you throughout this process. You can email us at  and a member of our team will respond at the earliest opportunity. 

Published 16th May 2019

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