Stephen is a highly regarded practitioner of employment relations and strategic human resources management. He has a strong track record of successful bargaining in challenging and unsettled industrial contexts.
Stephen has built a reputation with peers, executives and unions alike for his strategic and tactical nous, steadying influence, and ability to reach good outcomes in demanding circumstances. He is a highly skilled developer of bargaining strategies and negotiation tactics that achieve good results.
As an Employment Relations Specialist for the District Health Boards’ national workforce services group, Stephen led the strategy development and bargaining for highly sensitive workforce groups, including senior medical officers, allied and technical workers, laboratory workers and radiation therapists. He also successfully led sector-wide negotiations for multi-union, multi-collective settlements on behalf of the District Health Boards.
Stephen has experience leading employers through periods of difficult industrial conflict and supporting employers and unions to rebuild relationships afterwards. He was central to the establishment of an employer–union partnership for laboratory workers after a prolonged period of strike action in 2007/8.
Stephen was previously the Director of Human Resources for the University of Otago for 14 years. In this role he successfully transformed the function from a simple transactional model to a business partnership model.
Stephen was also the Group Manager of Human Resources for the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, and worked for the State Services Commission as a Senior Management Support Officer at the time of the major machinery of government changes under the then Labour Government.