The staffing shake-up continues at Whanganui District Council, a process chief executive officer Kym Fell said is aimed specifically at making it easier for people to do business with the council.

As part of the continuing restructuring some new roles will be created and others disestablished but Mr Fell did not give numbers.

He said there had been comprehensive consultation with those employees affected and that meant working closely with union delegates.

He acknowledged this was an "unsettling time of uncertainty" but employees had been supported and while some staff will be redeployed some employees have chosen to take the opportunity to move on.


A number of positions have been advertised nationally. One is for the position of regulatory and customer services manager and the other is for a communications and marketing manager.

The second role involves leading the development of a communications, media and marketing strategy, "grow" the council's brand as well as managing print and digital communications both within and outside the council.

Mr Fell said the council's strategy group had been has been the focus of the changes and it also meant some job titles would change and there would be some changes to reporting lines.

"Gone are the days of pocket protectors, walk shorts and clipboards. We need to adjust to the needs of our customers, relax the red tape and make it easy to do business with council," he said.

He said main changes people would notice would be improved customer services, building services, compliance, and communications, "the areas where we get the most feedback seeking better services".

"Back office functions in environmental and corporate policy, and governance will also undergo changes to provide stronger capability and better alignment within the organisation.

"The new streamlined staff structure will not only provide meaningful financial savings, but will also lift performance, increase productivity and improve results allowing us to deliver better value to the community, including much improved engagement and communications," Mr Fell said.

Since taking over as council CEO in January, he said it was clear to him that there was an expectation among ratepayers, residents and elected members to improve performance.

That turn-around started in May when a more streamlined management structure was introduced to give what he called "a more adaptable and nimble senior leadership team" to deliver what the community expected.

He said it was hoped to have recruitment finished and the new strategy group structure in place in the New Year.