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What's been in the news

If you follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook, you will know that we regularly publish news that we think you will find interesting, of use or insightful. Please click on the links to go to our social platforms.

Here are links to news posted in recent months:

November 2022

4 Day Week Global

Article

4 Day Week - Global reports on the success of the 6 month pilot involving over 1,000 employees across 30 companies. With research citing benefits including lower staff turnover, less absenteeism and increased revenue, none of the companies involved in the study are planning to return to a traditional 5-day working week.

Research shows the benefits of a 4 day working week

Employee Benefits

Research by Just Eat for Business suggests 47% of UK businesses are planning to reward employees with year-end bonuses this December.

Employee Benefits also reports that companies are keen to make celebrations inclusive. With more employees working remotely, more thought needs to be given to ensure everyone feels appreciated.

UK businesses build Christmas bonuses into budgets

Sky News

The demand for a skillset which includes Artificial Intelligence and developing technologies is set to grow by 40% over the next 5 years, according to research by Capital Economics, commissioned by Amazon. Sky News reports on this research and the top 10 future jobs - from paramedic drone programmer to metaverse architect.

Demand for skills in AI and developing technologies set to grow by 40%

HR News

HR News reports on suicide rates and report that it's highest amongst men aged between 45 and 64.

The global Movember campaign aims not just to raise awareness of prostate cancer and testicular cancer, but also highlight men's mental health and wellbeing. Employers, people managers and peers could really make a difference and get those struggling with mental health issues the support they need just by asking a few simple questions.

Identify the warning signs that a work colleague may not be coping

October 2022

CIPD

Article

A recent survey by CIPD and HiBob suggests 55% of employers support the use of software monitoring tools to identify concerns about performance, wellbeing and potential burnout in their homeworking employees.

Survey finds a majority of employers support monitoring of homeworkers

Bupa UK

Tuesday 18 October is World Menopause Day. According to The British Menopause Society, menopausal symptoms affect 3 out of 4 women. Of those, 25% report experiencing severe symptoms. How can employers support their team members (a recent CIPD survey reports that 25% of women feel unsupported by their employers)? Bupa UK has a business toolkit to help create a more supportive working environment.

The menopause and its impact on business: Toolkit to help employers

BBC News

BBC News reports on a study in the US concerning shift workers and their health. Pam Rajendran Taub, MD FACC and her colleagues at University of California, San Diego - School of Medicine established that by limiting the 'window' of eating to a set pattern of around 10 hours, there was a positive outcome on blood pressure levels, blood sugar and cholesterol.

Shift workers can gain health benefits by adopting eating patterns within a set 'window'

Gartner

Gartner surveyed over 800 HR professionals and has identified the top 5 trends and priorities for 2023. Leader and manager effectiveness is the number one priority, but many HR leaders will also be focused on change management, the employee experience, recruitment and the future of work.

Gartner identifies the top 5 priorities for HR professionals going into 2023

September 2022

Reuters UK

Article

It's been reported over the last week or so, that long-term sickness rates for UK workers are currently at their highest rate since before the pandemic - in fact, we’re talking since 2005. According to the Office for National Statistics, 2.464 million have reported that they are unfit to work, accounting for 5.9% of the working-age population.

UK worker long-term sickness rates are the highest since 2005

Personnel Checks

The temporary Right To Work checks will be replaced by digital identity verification (IDV) options from October 1st. The government had extended the temporary rules to this date to give businesses a chance to engage with digital identity service providers (IDSPs). In-person Right To Work checks will still be an option. Any business recruiting individuals remotely will need to engage with a digital IDSP and ask their candidates to create a digital ID.

RTW checks will be replaced by digital identity verification (IDV) options from October 1st

People Management

Latest research by Aviva, suggests workers favour a work-life balance over salary. Over 2,000 employees took part in the research conducted in May. 

Around 41% favoured their current role on the basis it gave them more flexibility, compared to 36% of respondents who favoured the financial benefits. Compare these stats with data collected by Aviva in 2019 where just over 41% of employees said salary was the most important factor and work-life balance came second at just under 41%.

Aviva research suggests workers favour a work-life balance over salary

August 2022

Advanced Workplace Associates

Article

Hybrid working patterns - data from Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA) shows how global workplace culture has changed since the pandemic.
 
UK data comes from 21 organisations and 43 offices, equating to a sample size of 49,903 employees.

Over the course of working week, attendance in the office is:
19% on Mondays, 31% on Tuesdays, 32% on Wednesdays, 33% on Thursdays and 13% on Fridays.

Workplace data show attendance patterns in UK, USA and Latin America

BBC News

The increase in UK's over-50s leaving the job market is contributing to rising inflation. That's according to John Lewis & Partners' Chair, Dame Sharon White.

Could flexible retirement plans and reskilling be the answer?

John Lewis' chair, Dame Sharon White says the mass exodus of the 50s is driving inflation

HR News

Data from business performance consultancy Ayming and reported in HR News shows that just 8% of businesses have awarded inflation-matching pay rises to all their employees.

The report also shows that just under half of the businesses polled had not introduced flexible working practices

Ayming UK's report shows businesses are failing to keep pay rises in line with inflation

July 2022

Just Eat for Business

Article

Just Eat for Business has released its Annual Leave Allowance survey with interesting data to unravel. Some 60% of office workers feel they're being actively discouraged from taking their annual leave.

It's clear employers must recognise the benefit of taking annual leave to avoid employee burnout and stress.

Survey finds employers are not doing enough to encourage employees to take annual leave

Forbes

Economist Impact has identified 4 hybrid worker types - Evangelists, Pragmatists, Fair-Minded and Undecided. A Forbes' article looks at these classifications in more detail and discusses what this means for management styles.

How employers can support hybrid workers by adapting different management styles

People Management

New legislation has been brought in by the UK Government to enable additional healthcare professionals to certify fit notes. From 1st July, in addition to GPs, nurses, occupational therapists, pharmacists and physiotherapists may also issue fit notes for workers who have been off sick for 7 days or more.

What is the impact on HR professionals? People Management investigates the pros and cons and what employers need to consider under the new policy.

New fitnote legislation and the impact on employers

Employee Benefits

Reported in Employee Benefits, a survey by Breakroom identified the top UK businesses as rated by parents. From a starting point of 230,000 respondents, the survey asked employees working in organisations with 100 parents or more whether their employer was good for caring and if their job was enjoyable.

Breakroom survey finds Aldi, Amazon and Royal Mail in top 3 as rated by parents

June 2022

ZDNet

Article

Pluralsight's 'State of Upskilling 2022', reported in ZDNet provides us with interesting data. Of the 7,000 technologists surveyed, 40% say the main reason for looking for a new position is a lack of professional development in their current role. And yet almost 90% said they wanted to develop their digital skills.

Since the areas of cybersecurity and cloud computing are where the skills gap is being felt the most, businesses must address the issue in order to keep up with the 'new normal' of remote working where this knowledge is in demand.

Upskilling could be the answer to the global digital skills gap


Bloomberg

Data from Google would suggest City office worker levels are between 60-70% of pre-Omicron levels, writes Bloomberg News. With a survey by the Policy Institute at King's College London reporting that 80% of London workers favoured working from home at least 1 day a week, then these levels are unlikely to change.

City office worker numbers still not at pre-Omicron levels

Health and Safety Executive

The Health and Safety Executive has updated its advice for employers concerning pregnant workers and new mothers and their protection in the workplace. Employers must also carry out an individual risk assessment that covers a worker’s specific needs when they inform you in writing that they are pregnant, have given birth in the last 6 months, or are breastfeeding.

The update has been reported on the TUC website:

The HSE has updated guidance on risk assessments for pregnant workers and new mothers

May 2022

Sky News

Article

Reported by Sky News, data from the Office for National Statistics suggests at least 8 in 10 people who worked from home during the pandemic will adopt a hybrid working routine in the future.

8 in 10 people want to continue working from home


Employee Benefits

Tesco has announced the launch of a menopause guide to provide support to its workforce and signpost other sources of support. The guide also provides assistance to managers and team leaders to enable them to support their team.

Tesco employs over 150,000 female employees. In the UK around 1.6 million of those employed in the retail market are women so it's encouraging to see the retail industry is leading the way in creating positive environments to provide support to those going through the menopause.

Tesco launches new guide for managing menopause in the workplace

Small Business

Regardless of company size, it makes business sense to have an HR policy in place. This guide in SmallBusiness.co.uk runs through what you need to include to ensure you are covering the basics.

Even if you're just thinking of employing 1 or 2 people every business should have a written policy in place.

The fundamental elements to include in an HR policy

People Management

Employers are being urged to do more to support employees suffering with long Covid.

The Office for National Statistics estimates that 2.8% of the population is suffering with symptoms of long Covid and around 1.2 million say it's affecting their ability to carry out daily tasks.

Women are more likely to experience long Covid, as are those in the 39-45 age bracket or who live in deprived areas. Those who work in sectors such as social care, healthcare and education are also more likely to continue to experience symptoms of Covid, such as fatigue and shortness of breath.

1.2 million employees suffering from symptoms of long Covid

Employee Benefits

Employee Benefits reports on the news that PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) will be enabling employees to down tools from lunchtime on Fridays between June and August. That's in response to a successful pilot last year and positive feedback from 90% of their workforce.

PWC to reintroduce summer hours for 2022 following pilot last year

April 2022

People Management

Article

The CIPD has released its report: An update on flexible and hybrid working practices.  

Key findings (reported by People Management magazine) from data collected in October and November last year from 1,196 employers and employees, showed 41% felt productivity had increased due to new working practices. That's up from 33% of respondees last year.

Those reporting a negative impact on productivity as a result of flexible working had dropped from 23% to 18%.

CIPD has released its report: An update on flexible and hybrid working practices


Personnel Today

Reported in Personnel Today, a study by XpertHR indicates that two-thirds of organisations don't collect salient information about recruitment costs, time to fill vacancy data and time to competence. Areas that will clearly impact on business operations.

These areas need just as much focus as staff absence, employee turnover, exit interview info, performance appraisals and employee engagement data. It's also important to benchmark your HR performance against other organisations - especially when competition for top talent is so fierce.

Two-thirds of organisations neglect to collect data on recruitment


Relocate Magazine

In March, the UK government announced changes to immigration rules and between now and August those changes are being phased in.

  • How are the new visa categories designed to stimulate business growth and attract talent?
  • What's the difference between the High Potential Individual and Scale-up visas?
  • Which business sectors will benefit the most?

Changes to the UK's immigration rules aim to promote business growth


The HR Director

A recent Ipsos UK survey finds that 60% of UK adults want to see more restrictions to contact outside their contracted hours.

Reported in The HR Director, a survey by Wellbeing Partners says employers aren't doing enough to support employees. Burnout comes from working outside contracted hours and everyone needs to be regularly encouraged to disconnect in order to protect their mental wellbeing.

According to recent surveys, more needs to be done to discourage contact outside contracted hours

CIPD

The CIPD has released its 22nd Health and Wellbeing at Work report. HR leaders face challenging times; the skills shortage, staff retention, increasing costs, the long term impact of COVID, remote working management. It's no surprise to learn then, that implementing wellbeing practices at work has taken a slight 'hit' in the past year and emphasis on mental health has waned.

CIPD Report - Health and Wellbeing at Work 2022


The Guardian

The push for companies to adopt a shorter working week is gaining momentum. Here, the Guardian reports on 3,000 workers at 60 companies across Britain who will trial a four-day working week.

Workers at 60 British companies to trial a 4 day week


March 2022

CIPD

Article

If you 50 or over, you're classified as an 'older worker'. According to Office for National Statistics data, older workers make up around a third of the UK workforce. This month, CIPD released its report 'Understanding older workers: analysis and recommendations to support longer and more fulfilling working lives' - a must read for employers.

CIPD Report - Understanding older workers


Personnel Today

Personnel Today reports on the launch of Neurodiversity in Business (NiB) - promoting and extolling the benefits of embracing a neurodiverse workforce.
 
Founder members include Accenture, AstraZeneca, Bank of England, Capita, Network Rail, Sky and Unilever.

Neurodiversity in Business forum launched in the UK 


CIPD

As we continue to follow the shocking invasion of Ukraine, there is an increasing sense that we need to offer help on a practical level to aid employees who may be directly affected by the conflict. The CIPD has published advice for employers - concerning immigration protocols and what can be done to help Ukraine based families of employees.

CIPD advice for employers


HR Magazine

Location Pay: With hybrid/flexible working here to stay it certainly raises an interesting debate about whether location allowances continue to be relevant. Certainly less applicable - but at what cost to employers who don't continue to offer it as an incentive and a means to attract talent?

Location allowances - still applicable in a hybrid world?

Article

Covered on the Personnel Today website, the Trades Union Congress (The TUC) has today published a report into the application of AI and surveillance technology for the purpose of monitoring employees.

TUC warns against employee monitoring

Personnel Today

From 6 April 2022, Identification Document Validation Technology (IDVT) will be introduced to support employers carrying out right to work and pre-employment DBS checks.

More importantly, for those companies which have adopted the temporary adjusted pre-employment checks during the pandemic, the date for scrapping temporary measures has been extended to 30 September 2022. Video based checks and scanned rather than original documents will be accepted for validating purposes.

Temporary adjusted pre-employment checks remain in operation until 30 September 2022


The Guardian

Reported in The Guardian, Belgium is following a similar suit to Iceland and giving employees the right to request a four day week, thereby enjoying a 3 day weekend without a loss of income.

Belgium's prime minister Alexander De Croo believes the new regulations will stimulate the Belgian economy, create a more 'dynamic and productive economy' and encourage more people into work.

Belgium to introduce 4 day working week

CIPD's Labour Market Outlook which surveyed 1,000 companies in January has generated some interesting statistics. Reported in  key facts gleaned include: 

  • 70% of employers intend to recruit between January and March
  • The median basic pay award for this year is 3% - the highest rate since 2012/13
  • 40% of companies expect to increase basic pay this year

Labour Market Outlook: Winter 2021-22

The British Chambers of Commerce has joined forces with Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education to highlight the benefits of apprenticeships. It's not just about the opportunities these schemes offer individuals but the benefits to be had by employers too. More employers than ever are offering schemes or expanding on existing programmes - and companies of any size are encouraged to get involved.

National Apprenticeship Week


The Guardian

With the National Insurance hike planned for implementation in April, employers and employees will both feel the pinch. But that's just one side of the story; the combination of rising energy and raw material costs and inflation is causing a great number of UK companies, large and small to reassess their current business plans even without April's looming NI rise.

The impact of the cost of living crisis on 5 business owners


January

Sky News

Article

An article published on the Sky News website, delves into the data to assess which jobs (if any) have seen wage increases from early 2020 i.e. pre-pandemic to November 2021. Which workers have the lowest spending power? Which industries have been the most affected? 

Unsurprisingly, job sectors experiencing high demand right now have seen the largest increases in real wages.

Cost of living crisis: which jobs have been hit hardest by the pandemic?

Influencive

What are the 4 key character traits that successful CEOs must possess?

This article, reported on the Influencive website suggests it's resilience, decisiveness, emotional intelligence and reliability.

4 leadership traits required by successful CEOs

HR News

Great leaders need to adapt to change in a complex world.

This Leading Edge article on HR News discusses the strategies business leaders should put in place to achieve 'connected hybrid working' and looks at how to achieve maximum productivity whilst keeping everyone connected and engaged.

Employ 'connected hybrid working' strategies to sustain business growth

IKEA announces its move to cut sick pay for those employees who are self-isolating and are not vaccinated. The retail giant's statement confirms that Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) only could be paid to unvaccinated staff. This BBC News article also discusses what other companies are doing to try and reduce staff absence due to Covid and self isolation regulations.

IKEA announces move to cut sick pay for unjabbed staff who are required to self-isolate

A survey of 161 independent HR consultancies by HR Independents, covered in HR magazine demonstrates a certain degree of optimism for 2022. 

The profile of Human Resources has never looked stronger; the services and support a great team can provide to a business in these times of uncertainty have shown themselves to be invaluable.

Survey of HR consultancies suggests growth for 2022

December 2021

People Management

Article

Calling on HR experts from the fields of business, law and public policy, this article on the People Management magazine looks at what we've learnt about hybrid working during 2021 and how this knowledge can help us continue to improve in 2022.

Looking ahead to 2022 - what have we learnt about hybrid working?

Financial Times

Reported in the FT, analysis from consultancy Lane Clark & Peacock suggests life expectancy rates have not increased as expected - thereby negating the government's plans to raise state pension age to 67 by 2028 and 68 by 2039.

A proposed move to increase state pension age to 67 should not come into force until 2051

A study by the Centre for Economic Performance and reported on the Sky News business pages, finds that over 50% of the businesses questioned said they expect current labour shortages to last well into 2022 and possibly beyond. Of those, 1 in 5 said the skills gap was the overriding factor.

Businesses are calling on the UK government to invest more in training.

Research finds 50% of businesses say labour shortages are set to stay

Glassdoor UK

What are the key workplace trends for next year? 

With the ongoing low unemployment rates in the UK, the power to negotiate rests with employees. Business leaders will need to make their company culture one that people want to be a part of and promises of inclusion, diversity and equity will be expected to become the reality.

Glassdoor identify four key workplace trends for 2022

Microsoft News

Recent research undertaken by Microsoft in conjunction with YouGov suggests over 50% of UK workers who currently practice hybrid working say they would consider looking for alternative employment should this option be removed.

UK workers say they would look to change jobs if hybrid working wasn't an option

O.C. Tanner

For companies which don't have a budget for employee reward schemes, it's still possible to create a culture of appreciation. Write a letter of thanks for a job well done or send a card expressing gratitude - it's worth an investment of your time.

How to write a letter of appreciation

BBC News

For 900 employees of US firm Better their contracts were terminated over a Zoom call from chief executive Vishal Garg.

Both the CIPD and Chartered Management Institute have criticised the manner in which the announcement was made. 

US firm fires 900 employees over Zoom

People Management

A UK survey conducted by Digits Industries Ltd (glo™ learn LMS & eLearning) has reported that of the 1,031 employees asked, 26% of those who were line managers or supervisors had never received formal training to fulfil that management role.

One in four managers have never had management training

November 2021

Management Today

Article

Ever heard of 'threat brain'? Understanding threat brain can help those of us with workaholic tendencies and help businesses to perform well. 

When does threat brain materialise? How can we manage our teams better to avoid threat brain?What can managers do to help individuals overcome threat brain emotions? 

What is threat brain, its causes and how to fix it

Recruitingdaily.com

Anyone with an interest in social psychology will understand conversation analysis but how can you apply it to business? By taking the view that everyone comes to a conversation or meeting hoping it will be mutually beneficial and approach it as a journey not a means to an end is a great way of changing how you approach those tricky situations.

Workplace Dialogue: Inclusive, Engaging Conversations

Sky News

Atom bank, the online banking service has introduced a four-day work week for its 430 staff without cutting their pay. Working 34 hours per week spread across 4 days, with employees able to take either the Monday or Friday off, their CEO Mark Mullen is positive that the move will improve mental wellbeing and ease staff retention issues caused by the pandemic.

Atom bank offers a 4 day working week to employees

Forbes

We all know the generic skills leaders need to possess in order to be successful and perhaps most importantly, to motivate their team to drive their respective business forward. Regardless of the sector you work in, developing your emotional intelligence and ensuring you practice what you preach is more important than ever before.

Applying leadership skills across industries

Canada Life

Hats off to employers - in research from Canada Life UK, nearly two-thirds of employees still working from home felt supported by their employer and felt their wellbeing and mental health was of 'genuine interest'.

Nearly two thirds of employees feel supported by their employer while working from home

HR Magazine

There are plenty of reasons why organisations should look to recruit from the veteran and reservist community. Rupert Stevens in HR Magazine puts forward the business case for hiring those with leadership and coaching skills, with experience of assessing risks, building teams and strategic thinking.

Why you should hire veterans and encourage reserve service

October 2021

People Management

Article

Here's the latest job vacancies from the Office for National Statistics. Between July and September, vacancies stood at 1,102,000 (up by 68,000 from the previous quarter). Most of the increase can be attributed to a demand in temporary staff.

Job vacancies reach another record high

HR Magazine

In a recent survey only 4 in 10 employees thought they were being paid what they were worth. Unsurprisingly, 64% of these respondents were in non-management positions. With most industries struggling to survive and operate in unstable times, it's also not surprising that 38% reported that they hadn't been awarded a pay rise in the last 12 months.

Proportion of employees who think they are paid what they're worth

Recruiting Daily

Is your recruitment strategy in place for a post-Covid world? This article explains why it's important that your business strategy includes a review of your talent acquisition policy.

5 strategies to prepare for post covid recruitment

Management Today

What behaviours will managers need to adopt to effectively manage their remote colleagues? How do you effectively set goals, motivate and handle any miscommunication? Mediocre managers or worse may have their work cut out.

Why hybrid working will expose bad managers

Hive HR

A useful guide for considering what to include in a survey to gauge your employee's level of engagement. In these times of hybrid working, we're thinking another major metric which will be included in every future employee engagement survey will be the degree to which organisations offer flexible working.

Measuring employee engagement

September 2021

GOV.UK

Article

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) closed on 30 September. 14 October is the deadline for submitting final claims. Click on the link below to find out what support is available for you and your business.

Find coronavirus financial support for your business

The Guardian

The Government's Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has published its consultation document around flexible working. This article in The Guardian looks at the proposals:

UK staff to gain right to request flexible working from day one

Full consultation document here: Making Flexible Working the Default

Employer News

A study by Personio of UK/Ireland HR leaders and employees found that many are struggling with the number of digital tools and apps at their disposal.

Digital tool overload a rising threat to productivity, warns Personio

August 2021

BBC NEWS

Article

Nike has announced that it's giving staff at its corporate HQ in Oregon a week off to recharge their batteries. Employees are expressing feelings of burnout and the firm has recognised that "taking time for rest and recovery is key to performing well and staying sane."

Nike is giving its head office staff a week's break

PwC

What are the real challenges for organisations reacting to the remote working trend? What's the impact in terms of employee engagement strategies, work mobility, technological innovation, diversity and cultural change?

Hybrid working and the more virtual organisation

Reboot
&
Business Leader

Much debate recently about whether UK businesses could adopt a four day week. The Reboot website presents the benefits for work life balance and productivity:

Reboot introduce 4-day working week following 702% increase in results

Whilst Business Leader discusses the pros and cons and seeks views from CEOs with this article:

Iceland successfully introduces four-day week: Should the UK be next?

Express

In a recent survey by DASH Rides and Sapio Research, 2,031 respondents were asked about their views on employee benefits. Respondents value employers who offer progressive and accessible schemes.

Employee benefits and perks most valued by UK workers - extras to ask your employer for

Safety & Health Practitioner

In the Safety and Health Practitioner (SHP) this week, there's an article on the challenges employers and managers face in reviewing their health and wellbeing policies to accommodate hybrid working.

How managers can shape ‘healthy hybrid’ working

Robert Walters

Research by Robert Walters looks at the benefits and challenges of hybrid working and makes for interesting reading. The study generates thought-provoking statistics for employers and hire managers to digest.

Guide to hybrid working - obstacles and solutions

Impreza IT

How many of us are aware of the IT security risks posed with many of us using our own devices to work from home?This article on the Impreza website explains why we need to be vigilant to protect our personal data.

Email phishing and why your organisation should protect itself

 

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