CIPD Manchester | Special Interest Groups

Learn more about CIPD Manchester, its volunteers and special interest groups. #cipdMCR

Chair's welcome

Additionally, I began our initial events on Flexible Working, hosted a fringe event on Modern Slavery at the CIPD ’ s Annual Conference and Exhibition in November 2019 and led last year ' s social media campaign raising awareness of Neurodiversity at Work. This is a hugely challenging time for all HR professionals and individuals as we manage the impact of Covid - 19, the most significant economic challenges of our lifetime, Brexit and the need to create a much fairer and more inclusive society.

I am delighted to take up the role of Chair of CIPD Manchester Branch, working alongside a great team of fellow committee members and Ambassadors. We are here to serve our profession and Manchester area people professional ' s community. I bring over 30 years of HR experience to the role of Chair, firstly in - house with several charities and then, for the past 20 years, running my L & D consultancy. I am passionate about L & D and the difference it can make to the performance and effectiveness of organisations. I have been volunteering with CIPD Manchester Branch for many years, initially as its Public Policy Lead and more recently leading its L & D Special Interest Group.

We have a lot to do as a profession, and I am looking forward to working with you, as we step up to these challenges together.

Rachel Burnham

About us

As the largest local CIPD branch in the world, we are proud to play our part in serving our area membership and the wider business community across Manchester and its suburbs. Our volunteer committee works hard to develop, produce and deliver our annual programme of activities designed to meet the diverse needs of people professionals, students, the self - employed and SMEs through our events & campaigns. We offer membership guidance and upgrading workshops, debate and discussion forums for senior leaders and gather your frontline views to help influence public policy and government consultations. Your insights also help to shape the CIPD ' s reports on best practice.

We send out a regular newsletter to over 7,000 subscribers, keeping you up to date on news, events and campaigns. You ' ll also find us active on social media. We send out quarterly newsletters to CIPD Students, Chartered Fellows and our standalone HR practitioner and public policy group members. By engaging with our branch and its activities you ' ll gain new perspectives, have an opportunity to share your insights and network with like - minded people.

Regularly participating in our branch activities will help you to raise your profile by getting your name and work ' out there ' .

Feel free to reach out to us at any time.

Vision 2020-2023

Career Partner

Dynamic Connector

We are a dedicated career partner for the people profession. We engage our area membership and the wider business communit y, as trusted advisors, role models and mentors, at every stage in people ' s working lives

Established Voice We are an established voice for Greater Manchester. We are an essential partner in the development of an inclusive and thriving community and the people professionals within it

We are a dynamic connector. We offer diverse opportunities to network, and we convene groups of passionate people who want to make a difference, share learning and give back to the profession

Innovative & Creative We are innovative and creative. We enable our members to adapt and evolve in the

fast - changing world of work

Meet the committee

Rachel Burnham Branch Chair

Samantha Lubanzu Vice-Chair (maternity )

Emma Brookes Vice-Chair (interim)

Jenn Hulme Vice-Chair

Adele Thorley Branch Secretary & FlexibleWorking

David Beech Branch Treasurer

Carol Atkinson The Fellows Forum

Sarah Chadbourne Solo HR

Paul Hamlin Well-being

Gary Hewins Special Projects

Stephen McDonough Social Media

Liz Needham Org. Development

Denise Nolan Labour Market Insights

Emma Smart Students & Centres

Daniel Taylor L&D

Rebecca Westaway Employment Law

Membership & Upgrading

We are keen to engage with our members locally, supporting you on your career journey and providing direction and help as trusted advisors. As well as upgrading surgery ' s and support in getting the most out of your membership, ( whatever your level ); we will also provide networking opportunities for all, to meet with other enthusiastic members keen to progress in their careers.

Subscribe to our branch newsletter for future articles on getting the most from your membership.

Find out more about the benefits of CIPD Membership



The student group creates a valuable opportunity for student members to network, learn about the industry from experienced experts, and share their views. We aim to provide real value for student members by creating opportunities for you to develop the skills you need and access information to help deal with the challenges associated with working in and studying HR.

We are fortunate to be able to provide expert speakers who genuinely want to add value and care, as much as we do, about supporting students during their academic journey. There is no typical CIPD student, and having somewhere to voice your opinions, share your challenges and debate with fellow students is invaluable.

Find out more about Student membership.

Our group enables students to network with other students ; you never know who is in the room, from full - time


undergraduate students to career changers and business owners.

The Fellows Forum

Our Fellows Forum brings together Chartered fellows and Senior HR professionals ( HR Directors, CHROs ) to discuss the critical challenges faced by HR. We provide a space to share innovative practice, cutting - edge research and a forum to debate, share ideas and build supportive senior - level peer networks.

Events will take various formats, including round tables and seminar discussions, all facilitating interactive discussion and peer learning. If you are interested in finding out more about our group activities, please contact me via our branch email manchester @

Carol Atkinson

Flexible Working

Flexible working has been a growing area of interest for HR practitioners over the last few years due to all the benefits it can deliver to employers and employees including inclusivity, attracting and retaining talent and providing a work / life balance. This has been turbo charged with the COVID 19 pandemic and government direction to work from home where possible.

Organisations are now starting to re - open workplaces and grappling with how much flexibility can be built in permanently to suit business needs and also the increasing demand from employees for flexibility. We will deliver a number of sessions on the different challenges of flexible working and provide opportunities for peer to peer sharing of best practice and challenges

More on Flexible Working


Solo HR Practitioners

The Solo HR Practitioner ' s Group is a place for standalone HR professionals to network, receive support from, and share best practice with, others who work in similar settings.

Our group continues to grow in numbers and experience, with members working across a broad range of sectors and sizes of business. Members are usually in environments without the day to day support of a corporate HR department. If you are interested in joining our group, please email manchester @ to request an expression of interest form.

The group benefits from several dedicated communication channels, including:

private LinkedIn group, where current members can discuss issues dedicated newsletter four times per year events focused on areas of specific interest to standalone HR professionals


Public policy

The CIPD Manchester Public Policy group focuses on the key issues impacting work, ensuring that your voice shapes the CIPD ’ s views and knowledge as they advocate the policy changes needed to champion better work and working lives. We solicit regional perspectives on a range of critical issues to provide the insights outlined in calls to action for employers and Government. We aim to hold four sessions per year, and we are responsive to hot topics and Government consultations. For this reason, many of our events are arranged at reasonably short notice, although we promote them widely through branch communication channels.

You can expect us to keep a broad remit ; recent events have covered age - diverse workforces, family - friendly provisions, immigration and pay gaps. Public Policy panels are consequently an excellent way to stay ahead of changes in legislation and government policy. Sessions are open to all providing an opportunity to learn, share, develop and network with other practitioners ; we do not require group membership. We welcome new joiners and hold all meetings under the Chatham House Rule, so our members feel able to express their views openly.

If you want to sign up to our dedicated mailing list, please email our branch.


Employment Law

Our flagship Annual Employment Law Masterclass attracts increasing numbers each year, reflecting the ever changing employment law landscape. Fresh challenges arise with new legislation, and case law continually redefines the employment relationship. This year we ' ll adopt a slightly different format for our masterclass which a series of online sessions for professionals from across all sectors and industries. We ' ll deliver dedicated sessions on important topics and examine forthcoming legislative changes along with the practical implications for you and your organisation.

In 2021 we plan to run another ever popular Mock Employment Tribunal and we will continue to deliver relevant webinars in partnership with MIlls & Reeve LLP ( Manchester ) . We look forward to connecting with you and we ' ll keep you updated on our online Annual Employment Law Masterclass towards the latter end of 2020.

Take a look at our curation of the 2019 Annual Employment Law Masterclass


Learning & Development

We focus on developing L & D professionals through a range of activities. All sessions are highly interactive and encourage attendees to ask questions and get involved, together with great networking opportunities. Development Sessions: A series of events with professional experts on a wide range of content to support upskilling and up to date L & D skills. Cake Camps: Regular networking sessions for trainers and L & D professionals providing attendees with an opportunity to meet other L & D professionals in the relaxed and informal environment of coffee shops

( whether face to face or virtually ) to share ideas & experiences ) .

Each Cake Camp is facilitated by a team of contributors, will have a different theme. Events are open to all L & D folks, trainers, coaches and OD professionals in the Manchester area. It is networking, but with a difference, so why not join us for coffee, cake and chat? If you have any ideas for future events, please get in touch with the Group Lead.

Take a look at our curation of a past Cake Camp

Daniel Taylor

Organisational Development

Often misunderstood, Organisational Development ( OD ) is about a systemic approach to realising change in organisations, teams and individuals. This means understanding the varied elements that form an organisation ' s eco - system, how these elements are thinking and behaving and how they might be better aligned or fine - tuned to support organisational performance. It ’ s a rich, complex, amorphous area rooted in behavioural science and is exciting and challenging in equal measures.

Manchester OD networks are less established than other HR areas. My aim is to continue to build this Special Interest Group into ‘ THE space ’ where those who want to make a difference can come together to discuss, share, challenge and grow. If you ’ re in OD, in Manchester, and you want to help us to put OD on the map, please get in touch. Please note that this SIG brings together previous OD and Independent Consultants SIGs into one Group.



Well - being across society and in particular, its impact on individuals and organisational performance is now recognised as a potential differentiator for challenging existing workplace norms. We want to be actively involved in supporting this shift.

Provide practical support and feedback for HR and people professionals looking to introduce / promote employee well - being in the workplace. Use rich sources of up to date data and research currently published or in development. Critique some common tools and techniques in their application and impact. Examine where possible measurable outcomes and positive results on organisations and their people who have introduced or enhanced their provisions in this area. Enable informal networking and expertise sharing within a broader CIPD pool.

We ' ll move away from theoretical underpinning in our approach to

employee well - being and examine and critique practical tools and successful frameworks currently used across different sectors.

We aim to:

Create a forum for discussion and practical implementation of well - being at work programs.

Paul Hamlin


EMAIL manchester @ cipdbranch. manchester - events @ cipdbranch.

WEB cipdmanchester . com

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