Australia is leading the world in the adoption of activity based working

Australia is leading the world in the adoption of activity based working

Over half of those employed in the banking sector in Australia now find themselves in agile and dynamic activity based workplaces. The banks have set the pace. The overall growth of the phenomenon has been exponential in the last 5 years, with sources suggesting two thirds of Australian organisations will have adopted Activity Based Working […]

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We need to stop talking about self-employment as a monocultural phenomenon

We need to stop talking about self-employment as a monocultural phenomenon

Self-employment has grown considerably in the UK over the past 15 years, now totalling around 4.8 million workers, or 15 per cent of the workforce. There is a debate about the extent to which this growth in self-employment is a positive development: some believe that it is a positive feature of an entrepreneurial and flexible […]

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Five employment law milestones from the past year we need to remember in 2018

Five employment law milestones from the past year we need to remember in 2018

The past twelve months have been an eventful period for employment law; from the uncertainty surrounding Brexit and the rights of EU Nationals working in the UK, to the mounting attention on employee data protection as the GDPR edges ever closer. Issues of Employment Tribunal fees, holiday pay and the gig economy have similarly captivated […]

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Commercial property is undergoing tech disruption, but not as some believe

Commercial property is undergoing tech disruption, but not as some believe

According to a recent report, executives in the commercial property sector have significant reservations about emerging disruptive technologies such as Big Data and predictive analytics, augmented and virtual reality, Blockchain and driverless vehicles, but see huge potential for process automation. Disruption is a strong word.  It conjures up apocalyptic images and radical interventions leaving unrecognisable […]

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Is work important to us because we need it to be important?

Is work important to us because we need it to be important?

The ethical, practical and philosophical implications of how we live alongside robots is something we will have to address very soon. It is a point well made in this conversation between Kate Darling of MIT and the neuroscientist Sam Harris. But we’ve had parts of this conversation before. For example, while most people will not […]

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We need to have an honest conversation about presenteeism

We need to have an honest conversation about presenteeism

We have talked before about the risks of over thinking problems. It is not just something that consultants, designers and the workplace intelligentsia are guilty of – everyone does it.  It is why we do not switch off when we are ill and still insist on going to work. We over think the consequences of […]

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How designers copy nature to create new and extraordinary forms

How designers copy nature to create new and extraordinary forms

Humans have a long track record of turning to Nature for inspiration. When Leonardo da Vinci turned his mind to the challenge of acquiring the power of flight for mankind, his sketches show he believed the solution lay in mimicking the form and function of bat wings. We’ve learned a lot about aerodynamics since the […]

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The ups and downs of wearables for workplace health and wellbeing

The ups and downs of wearables for workplace health and wellbeing

Businesses in the 21st century have tried just about everything to improve productivity. For a long time, Google and its ilk were seen as model workplaces, with their open offices and abundance of ball pits and bean bags. Then the consensus shifted, and the cubicle or workstation was seen as the paradigm for employee concentration. […]

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A 300 year old idea explains some of the enduring appeal of the open plan

A 300 year old idea explains some of the enduring appeal of the open plan

In the 18th Century the utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham came up with his idea of the Panopticon, a prison building with a central tower encircled by cells so that each person in the cells knew they could be watched at all times. Whether they were observed or not was actually immaterial. Bentham called it ‘a new […]

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The global problem of overwork and the right to disconnect

The global problem of overwork and the right to disconnect

Anybody who doubts the importance of work and working culture to people’s lives should look at the resistance to President Macron’s mooted changes to labour laws. His attempts to modernise and liberalise French workplace legislation marked the first cracks in his reputation and brought millions of French workers to the streets as part of a […]

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What P T Barnum can teach us about the facilities management circus

What P T Barnum can teach us about the facilities management circus

Does any of this describe you? “You have a need for other people to like and admire you, yet you tend to be critical of yourself. While you have weaknesses you are generally able to compensate for them. You have considerable yet hidden strengths that you have yet to turn to your advantage. Self-controlled on the […]

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Gig economy workers should not be criticised for defending their rights

Gig economy workers should not be criticised for defending their rights

The gig economy and workers’ rights are among the most prominent themes of our age. In the future of employment – in particular, what it means to be employed or self-employed – they are critical. Catapulted to the heart of this debate is Uber, which has deployed its ride-hailing platform app in nearly 500 cities […]

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