Wow – Lots of Passion, Purpose and Performance at our Annual Seminar last week in Bristol!


Hello PPMA members and friends

As your PPMA, President it is going to be a pleasure and honour to be able to build on the 40 year legacy defined by our founders of SOCPO.

I am passionate and proud to be involved in the PPMA and I look forward to leading debate and shaping the public services workforce agenda in 2015/16 and like predecessors, make my own unique contribution.

At our recent and successful PPMA annual seminar 2015 “Our past, Our present and Our future” We celebrated 40 years of PPMA and its predecessor SOCPO (Society of Chief Personnel Officers) looking back at the last 40 years and at what has influenced us all to the present day. You can see all of the speakers slides here.

This coming year we will be looking forward to the next 40 years of HR, People Management and Organisational Development, in the local, regional, central government arena in fact across all public services. We will recognise 40 years of progress, celebrate the achievements of members and partners, and look forward to equipping the workforce of the future.

Some would say that it’s been a journey of evolution for HR /OD as a profession and many would argue we have been reactors to circumstance and this has shaped our role and determined how we are perceived as either value adding business partners or still showing too many signs of our compliance, policy policing characteristics from the 1960’s when these issues seemed to dominate.

My challenging view has been Austerity has been good for the public sector – it has forced our organisations to think beyond incremental change and reinvent how they/we work

  • I believe that we in many areas across HR/OD in Public Services are leading creativity and innovation in business transformational change and introduction of different business delivery models.
  • I believe HR/OD have been given the opportunity to excel and change our offer and position ourselves in a leading role in our organisations
  • I believe many of you/us have grasped the challenge and are delivering high performance in challenging yet exciting times
  • I don’t think I would want to have missed this journey for anything and am hanging on this rollercoaster journey for some time yet!!!!
  • The landscape has changed so much and will continue to change? And we need to be at the leading edge of this change

The quality of public service provision sits at the heart of all our communities and I believe HR/OD and PPMA has a key role to play in helping our organisations deliver this. As President I am confident I can build on the legacy of the last 40 years and take us onto the next phase of our development.

I will not be doing any of this without huge ongoing support from the PPMA Principal officers, Board Members our sponsors and partners and all of you our members

If you attended the seminar, I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback…to leave your views, just click on the comments box underneath the headline above –  many thanks


Barry Pirie

PPMA President

By | 2017-07-30T12:23:15+00:00 April 21st, 2015|Categories: Barry Pirie, PPMA Annual Seminar 2015, PPMA President|2 Comments


  1. Perry Timms 21st April 2015 at 6:49 pm - Reply

    Nicely put Barry. I sensed a huge amount of resolve, willingness and vision at the PPMA conference last week. I was delighted to play a small part in it.

    Having learned my trade as a line manager in the public sector, I’ve got fond memories of how the L&D and HR support there frustrated me at times but enlightened me more. Much more. Determined, applied and clever managers inspired me to achieve more and build myself into a manager and a leader that I realised I could be and wanted to be.

    Now more than ever, the coming together of the hearts, minds and spirits of people managers and people professionals is needed.

    Overwhelmed employees, stretched managers and challenging budgets are de rigeur and coupled with technology advancement and shifting expectations of customers we really do have a lot more to think about and act upon.

    So we need each other – for the sake of all who want work to be better.

    Else we sleepwalk into more meaningless toil just to get a wage.

    It is time to stand on the shoulders of giants – each other. We’re all giants when we put our minds to it.

    Here’s to more collective intelligence. Standing with you and PPMA members all the way.

  2. Barry Pirie 26th April 2015 at 2:26 pm - Reply

    Hi Perry,

    Many thanks for your profound and heartfelt comments.

    It was great to finally meet you and hear you speak with Peter Cheese

    An inspiring and though provoking session and a great double act! many, many thanks

    I hope we can work together again soon



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