During its recent borough council meeting, Lachine signed a new services agreement to transfer human resources to the central city.
“We’ve already made a similar agreement with Montreal for computer services, and we are very satisfied and we are confident that we can have a similar success with human resources,” said Lachine Mayor Claude Dauphin. “This is a good way to maintain local powers while benefiting from the expertise we need.”
Since this was done voluntarily, we can end the agreement whenever we wish to do so, said Dauphin.
Once the agreement is signed, the employment agreements and budget for two employees who work on human resources in the borough will be transferred to the city central budget. The employees themselves will continue to work in offices in the borough. One of those employees currently handles financial and administrative tasks, but those will be transferred to others so that she can focus entirely on human resources.
“We want to handle a lot of development projects like improving employee absentee rates,” said Benoit Glorieux, Lachine’s director of Administrative Services. “We want to be in a more preventive mode than a fireman’s mode.”
The borough also hopes to save money with the new agreement, in part because the city has the infrastructure to assist with complicated issues, such as medical leave because of illness or accidental injury.
“Right now, we’re dealing with private medical clinics,” said Glorieux. “We’ll spend $10,000 or $20,000 a year on medical services, so that will be cut in half.”
Lachine is confident that the agreement will work because they signed a similar agreement to transfer their two information technology employees to the city centre at the beginning of 2016. Glorieux says they are already seeing benefits.
“In the past, if we had a complex IT problem, like networking or security, we had to hire consultants,” he said. Another area that improved was software licencing and making sure that we are compliant. We have now joined the corporate computer renewal program. Every year, a certain percentage of the IT material has to be renewed.”
Lachine used to used Windows XP, so soon after they signed the agreement, their computers were upgraded. They expect that their human resources employees will find similar benefits by working with the experts in Montreal’s central department.
“The City of Montreal human resources department is taking efforts to become the best in the world,” says Glorieux. “We’re part of that now.”