Staffing Task Force Update

on .

As we begin the new church year and think about our future, the Trustees and the Executive Team are evaluating staffing Color Chalice Letterheadplans and organizational models that meet our community’s needs as

Together, We Transform Lives through Love, Service, and Our Welcoming Faith

Background

During the 2015-2016 Church year, Main Line Unitarian Church experienced vacancies in three senior staff positions: the head of Child and Youth Religious Education, the Director of Administration, and the Associate Minister. In response, MLUC’s Board of Trustees raised a Staffing Task Force to evaluate the Church’s needs, consider various staffing options, and prepare a recommendation for how to respond to these vacancies.

The Task Force – along with consultants suggested by the Central East Region of the Unitarian Universalist Association – conducted its work from May 2016 through late August 2016. Although this occurred before MLUC’s strategic planning work happened in late September, the Task Force decided that the proper staffing roles and organizational model for MLUC’s size, needs, and values will allow it to execute on any strategic plan.

Process

The Task Force’s strategic work took place from May through August. During that time, the Task Force:

  • Compiled information about MLUC’s current paid staff roles, their job descriptions, their salaries and benefits, and related information.
  • Conducted research on the organizational models of other UU churches of similar size.
  • Performed brainstorming exercises to analyze all of MLUC’s requirements that support its functions. This exercise uncovered a number of important findings, including identifying gaps where MLUC has no current programming or focus in the areas of volunteer management and leadership development. As well as revealing opportunities for improvement in providing more paid staff leadership in financial stewardship and fundraising.
  • Composed a budgeting template to support various staffing scenarios.

And Now

There is still work to be done, yet the Trustees feel that it is important to communicate where we are in the process at this time:

  • A search committee for a Director of Religious Education has been formed. It is clear to the Task Force, the Trustees, and the Senior Minister that our RE program is a priority and that finding a DRE to help us with visionary leadership is paramount.
  • There is a need to hire an executive director to handle the Church’s administrative duties. Although there are still details to consider about this position, the intent is to begin the search process this fall.
  • The Task Force recommends redefining the associate minister’s role into a minister of congregational life. The Church’s finances, however, do not support this hiring now. In the short term, our needs for additional ministerial support will be met with a part-time, contracted minister and additional guest ministers or lay leadership support as needed.
  • Maria McCabe, who also serves the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Restoration as Director of Social Justice and Community Ministries, has agreed to be our contracted minister. We look forward to welcoming her warmly to our community.

The Trustees, Rev. Neal, and the Task Force are working together to imagine staffing solutions that meet not only our current needs, but that also serve us well as we continue to grow in our commitment to our mission.