Training and Development Policy

Document Version Control

Version No.

Date Change Made

New Version No.

Changes Made By (initial)



April 2020



New document. Adopted at Full Council on 16.5.20 Agenda item 10.14.


February 2023



Approved at Full Council 06 03 23

Spelling and Grammar mistakes amended



toc goes in here

1 Introduction

1.1 Macclesfield Town Council is committed to providing training for both its members and staff to enable them to undertake their respective roles for the betterment of not only the Council and the Community it serves, but also the Councillor and Officer personnel development.


2 Training

2.1 Training is defined as “a planned process to develop the abilities of the individual and to satisfy the current and future needs of the Organisation”.

2.2 Learning can be categorised into the following:

  • Intuitive – learning which happens by chance and we may not be conscious of it.
  • Incidental – learning by reflection on particular events or activities.
  • Retrospective – a system approach to reflecting on activities and identifying what we learned from them.
  • Proactive – planning to learn from an activity, reflecting on it and planning to use what we learned.

2.3 It is anticipated that member/staff learning will reflect many of the above.


3 Training Aims

3.1 The Council’s training aims are the following:

  1. To improve the understanding of its members, of their role as a local Councillor, the powers available to the Council and how best to utilise the resource available to the Council for the betterment of the residents it serves.
  2. To provide the necessary training to its staff to ensure that they are able to undertake their respective roles. 
  3. To ensure an acceptable level of succession planning in order to:
  1. Ensure the Council can operate effectively following local elections and potential changes to the Council membership.
  2. Ensure the Council can continue to operate during times where staff may be unavailable (e.g. holidays, sickness staff turnover etc.)


4 Staff Training

4.1 Training and Development are the responsibility of each member of staff and therefore all employees are encouraged to be proactive in identifying their training and development needs.

4.2 Induction training is provided for all new employees.

4.3 The Clerk will be responsible for identifying training needs due to changing circumstances, health and safety issues or new legislation and appropriate training will be given whenever necessary.

4.4 Future training requirements will form part of the annual appraisal for every member of staff.

4.5 The Clerk may suggest additional training at any time.

4.6 All staff are encouraged to read regular publications such as ‘The Clerk’ and updates from council support services such as SLCC and NALC.

4.7 Any member of staff may apply to take qualification training. Authorisation and sponsorship will be dependent upon corporate and service priorities and each application will be considered on this basis.

4.8 Any training and development key to the Career Personal Development of an individual will be supported.


5 Councillors’ Training

5.1 All new Councillors will be provided with an Induction pack following Local Council Elections and receive a short training session as soon as practicable after the local elections.

5.2 New Councillors will be encouraged to complete a skills audit to identify training needs.

5.3 Individual training requirements will be discussed with Councillors.

5.4 All Councillors are encouraged to read the following publications: Guidance for New Councillors, A Councillor’s Workbook on Local Government Finance and Governance & Accountability.

5.5 All Councillors are encouraged to attend conferences and training events as appropriate to members and Councils needs and responsibilities

5.6 Councillors training and development opportunities will be arranged mainly through the Cheshire Association of Local Councils (ChALC) and also in- house.


6 Prioritising Training and Development

6.1 Any personal development training will be prioritised as follows:

  1. i) Corporate/Service delivery,
  2. ii) Specialist needs,

iii) Improving existing skills,

  1. iv) Personal development.


7 Financial Assistance

7.1 A training budget will be set and approved annually to cover provision of training activities, attendance at conferences and training publications for members & staff.

7.2 Where training is approved, the Town Council will pay and/or assist with expenses incurred which may cover such items as tuition and examination fees.

7.3 Travel expenses will be met by the Town Council following pre-approval from the Town Clerk.

7.4 Individual employees are responsible for their own registration on a course, but not before approval has been obtained. The Town Council will not meet a financial commitment where prior approval has not been granted.


8 Evaluation and Training Records

8.1 All employees and members who undertake training are expected to complete a training evaluation form upon completion of the training to measure its relevance and effectiveness. A record of all training will be kept on the staff training matrix.

8.2 Members training will be recorded in the members’ training folder.

8.3 An annual record of employee training will be presented to the Personnel Committee.

8.4 In certain circumstances an employee may be required to provide a briefing note or discuss the training at a team meeting.

8.5 All employees are expected to keep their training record up to date.