Strategic Objective 2
Questions: To what extent do you agree with Strategic Objective 2 as a priority for our work over the next three years?
Strategic Objective 2 - Develop our people and culture to improve performance and resilience, building a dynamic, flexible and modern workforce which serves the forestry sector and wider Scotland well.
Most (36) of the respondents who answered the tick box question said they agreed with Outcome 2, with 22 saying they strongly agreed; while a fifth (9) said they disagreed.
|To what extent do you agree with the priorities associated with this Objective|
|To what extent do you agree with the activities associated with this Objective|
General Comments, Priorities and Activities.
A number of common themes came out of comments made in general and in relation to the priorities and activities, and these are summarised together below.
- Engagement: Engagement was a key theme in relation to this Strategic Objective. This included rural communities, and building the relationship between Scottish Forestry and remote mountain and island communities where forestry can play an important role in the local economy.
- Staffing: There was recognition of the challenges of recruitment and retention across the industry, and a feeling that Scottish Forestry is well placed to lead and co-ordinate action. It was felt that staffing has to be adequately resourced, with fair wages and contracts which reflect living expenses, as well as their expertise. It was felt the industry as a whole needs to ensure that there are staff available to work in policy, regulation and support and Scottish Forestry should invest in staff and corporate culture to attract talent, retain current staff and develop future staff. Respondents said that partnership work will be essential, such as working with Scottish Environment LINK, the Institute of Chartered Foresters, and Royal Scottish Forestry Society, to develop initiatives in training and apprenticeships. There were a range of views expressed on whether practical forestry experience was necessary; or whether a diversity of skills/disciplines should be recognised and forestry teaching and professional techniques and skills development must keep pace with developments in sustainable forest management, and advancements in the sector as a whole.
- Diversity and Inclusion: Some of the comments made as part of this consultation makes it clear that equalities and diversity awareness must be raised within the forestry sector. The social forestry programme not only enables inclusivity, but hits other government outcomes such as improved mental health and recovery time. This includes not only making biking and walking trails available, but enabling wider access to the outdoors for health and wellbeing.
- External Approach: In dealing with businesses and stakeholders, staff must be transparent, consistent, proportionate and accountable. Develop community based management of woodlands, encouraging Woodland Officers to engage with local communities and encourage tree planting and grant applications. Improved integration and engagement with include others involved in land use including farmers, deer stalkers and gamekeepers.