Welcome to our showcase page. I am delighted to take up the role of Chair of CIPD Manchester and to work alongside a great group of fellow CIPD members, volunteering as committee members and ambassadors for the branch. We are here to serve our profession and the community of Manchester. 

I bring to the role 30 years of HR experience, 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 involved with CIPD Manchester for many years – initially as the Public Policy Lead and then more recently as the L&D Lead. I have also initiated work around flexible working, hosted a fringe event at CIPD’s ACE Conference 2019 on Modern Slavery and led last year’s social media campaign raising awareness of neurodiversity at work.

This is a hugely challenging time for all as HR professionals and individuals – with COVID-19, the most significant economic challenges of our lifetime, Brexit and the need to create a much fairer and more inclusive society.

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
Branch Chair

We look forward to hearing from you.

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Read our blog and access event resources

We are a sixteen-person volunteer committee of varying ages, areas and levels of expertise who work hard to develop and produce a programme of activities to meet the needs of people professionals in and around Manchester.

Our volunteers give their free time to bringing members together and help make our collective voice heard within our communities.

We also provide regular opportunities to share ideas and feedback to inform and guide the CIPD in delivering better, more relevant services to its membership. Your involvement as frontline professionals also helps to shape and influence government policy.

Special Interest Groups

Our special interest groups exist to meet the diverse needs of our area membership and wider business community. New this year, Flexible Working & Well-being. 

  • Employment Law
  • The Fellows Forum
  • Flexible Working
  • Learning & Development
  • Organisational Development
  • Public Policy Panel
  • Solo HR Practitioners
  • Student & Centres Engagement
  • Membership & Upgrading

Boost your CPD, discover new areas of specialisation, contribute your frontline expertise and experience to regular policy consultation roundtables, keep abreast of the latest research, engage with thought leaders and grow your professional network.

We update our digital programme regularly. You’ll find all our events at a glance, local and regional conferences, detailed and summary event descriptions together with speaker/facilitator profiles. Handy hyperlinks take you directly to our bookings platform.

Browse and bookmark our digital programme of activities

Annual Employment Law Masterclass 2021
Spring 2021 - online

The employment law landscape is in constant motion. New legislation raises fresh challenges, and case law continually redefines the employment relationship. Our flagship Annual Employment Law Masterclass attracts professionals from across all sectors and industries. As well as dedicated sessions, we'll examine forthcoming legislative changes and the practical implications for you and your organisation. We're delighted to be collaborating with Mills & Reeve LLP (Manchester). 

Group Lead: Rebecca Westaway

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.

Group Lead: Carol Atkinson

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.

Group Lead: Adele Thorley

We offer two types of event for trainers and L&D professionals.
Building L&D Skills
A series of events designed to refresh and develop key skills for modern trainers and L&D professionals.
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 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?
Group Lead: Daniel Taylor

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 organisations 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.  I’d love to continue to build this SIG into ‘THE space’  OD practitioners who want to make a difference in Manchester 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.

Group Lead: Liz Needham 

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.

Emma Brookes - Public Policy Engagement Lead
Sara Das - Group Facilitator

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.

The group benefits from several dedicated communication channels, including:

  • private LinkedIn group, where current members can discuss issues
  • dedicated quarterly newsletter 
  • events focused on areas of specific interest to standalone HR professionals

If you would like to join our Solo HR Practitioners Group please contact the branch via: manchester@cipdbranch.co.uk to request an expression of interest form. 

Group Lead: Sarah Chadbourne

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.  

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. 

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. 

If you want to find out more about what the CIPD has to offer, keep a lookout on our Eventbrite page as we will be hosting a range of webinars aimed at providing insight on what the benefits of being a member has for you during your studies, and beyond. 

Group Lead: Emma Smart

Our Well-being group exits to facilitate discussion and practical debate around organisational well-being programmes, enabling participants to share experiences and discuss current working practices, measures of success and learnings from some of the issues created. 

We also provide guidance and support to CIPD members, signposting resources and support to maximise membership benefit.   We will examine and critique practical tools and successful frameworks currently utilised across different sectors.

We are keen to involve trade bodies, local universities and business schools involved in research in this area to contribute knowledge and learnings for all.

Group Lead: Paul Hamlin

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.

Jennifer Hulme
Membership Adviser

Branch Ambassadors are CIPD members interested in local affairs, who volunteer on a regular basis to support our elected committee members in the successful design, development and delivery of our annual programme of activities, projects and online event facilitation.

Like our committee members, ambassadors represent people professionals at various stages of their career journey and from all sectors and across a broad range of industries. We also welcome applications from CIPD students interested in contributing to our branch purpose and activities.

Becoming an ambassador is a great way to develop new and transferable skills, form important links within the Manchester region, promote good work and practice, give back to the people profession and raise your professional profile. If you are highly motivated and hold CIPD membership we’d love to hear from you. We have a limited number of ambassador places available. Please contact our Ambassador Lead Rebecca Westaway to enquire about vacancies and request an expression of interest form.

Group Lead: Rebecca Westaway

Upcoming events

20 Mar

Online CIPD Student Conference 2021


Join us alongside hundreds of students and early-career professionals from across the UK and Ireland to hear our expert line-up address some of the big and emerging workplace themes, including L&D, inclusion and diversity, and responsible practice
Book now
06 May

CIPD North Annual Conference


Our annual conference will provide an expert-led programme offering thought-provoking and practical insights on how to create healthier, more inclusive and innovative organisations.
Find out more

Contact us

Contact the team with your enquiries about local events or feedback on the future shape of branches

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CIPD North and Northern Area Partnership

CIPD North are building a network of members, volunteers and stakeholders to develop the profession, build our policy relevance and reach, and establish the voice of CIPD North. We are also a part of a longstanding voluntary partnership of the ten northern England branches covering between them an area from the Scottish border down to Cheshire in the West and South Yorkshire in the East and providing services to around 24,000 members.

Find out more