About Neil Franklin

Neil Franklin is Insight's news editor

Posts by Neil Franklin:

Presenteeism hits record high in UK organisations, linked with stress and depression

Presenteeism hits record high in UK organisations, linked with stress and depression

Presenteeism, defined as people coming into work when they are ill, has more than tripled since 2010, according to the latest CIPD / Simplyhealth Health and Wellbeing at Work report.  According to the study, 86 percent of over 1,000 respondents to the 2018 survey said they had observed presenteeism in their organisation over the last 12 months, compared with 72 percent in 2016 and just 26 percent in 2010. The survey also found that ‘leaveism’, such as people using annual leave to work, is also a growing problem. More than two-thirds of respondents (69 percent) reported that leaveism has occurred in their organisation over the last year.

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Majority of US workers still prefer to work from an office

Majority of US workers still prefer to work from an office

According to data from the quarterly Randstad Workmonitor survey,, although 82 percent of U.S. workers surveyed say the ability to work from anywhere at any time allows them to maintain a healthy work-life balance, more than half (62 percent) still prefer to work in the office — and this number is even higher among young workers. Sixty-five percent of those aged 18-24 said they prefer working in a traditional office environment, challenging the widespread perception that millennial and Gen Z workers tend to prefer digital interactions over personal ones.

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Humanscale launches first ever task chair made from recycled fishing nets

Humanscale has launched its Smart Ocean chair; an adaption of the legendary Diffrient Smart chair that incorporates almost 1kg of recycled fishing net material (NetPlus). Sourced from Bureo, an emerging venture developing solutions to prevent ocean plastic pollution, this is the first product available to purchase from the consortium of companies under the NextWave initiative. The nets used in the production of the new task chair are from Bureo’s Net Positiva recycling program, which facilitates the collection of discarded plastic fishing nets and provides incentives to participating coastal communities. The nets are then transformed  into plastic pellets and used to manufacture products such as skateboards, sunglasses, and now an ergonomic task chair.  Humanscale plans to replicate material solutions across their product line, supporting the expansion of Bureo’s recycling program and lowering dependency on new plastics.

 

Commercial property lending surged in the second half of 2017

Commercial property lending surged in the second half of 2017

facilities managementCommercial property lending in the UK surged at the end of last year, according to the latest figures from Cass Business School. New commercial property lending overall reached £44.5bn for the whole year, equalling figures for the previous year. Commercial lending had dropped by 24 per cent in the first half of the year, however, the second half of 2017 was much busier, adding another £26.8bn in new lending. The total value of loan books identified by the CASS research increased by four per cent to £199bn by the end of the year, including both drawn and undrawn amounts. The research from Cass showed that non-bank lenders were actually the most active group, increasing their market share of new loans to 14 per cent from 10 per cent a year earlier. In total, they wrote £6bn of new loans of which 60 per cent was sourced from insurance and pension funds

Faced with era of AI, employers focus on skills and employees crave jobs with purpose

Faced with era of AI, employers focus on skills and employees crave jobs with purpose

According to Mercer’s 2018 Global Talent Trends Study – Unlocking Growth in the Human Age, 96 percent of UK companies have innovation on their core agenda this year and 92 percent are planning organisation design changes. At the same time, employees are seeking control of their personal and professional lives, with more than half asking for more flexible work options. As the ability to change becomes a key differentiator for success in a competitive global climate, the challenge for organisations is to bring their people along on the journey, especially as the top ask from employees is for leaders who set clear direction, claims the report.

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UK companies lag in offering flexible and remote working, claims report

UK companies lag in offering flexible and remote working, claims report

The UK lags behind in the shift to flexible and remote working, putting more emphasis on effective meetings to coordinate scattered teams, according to a new report, The Modern Workplace 2018: People, Places & Technology (registration required) from workplace software company Condeco. Across the world, the study of 500 organisations in six countries claims, workers are in the midst of a shift to flexible and remote working – spending more time working from home, on the move or from multiple locations. However, the UK is significantly behind in embracing these trends, which could negatively affect worker satisfaction as well as holding back firms who are competing for the best international staff.

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Poor mobile connectivity in the workplace is undermining UK productivity

Poor mobile connectivity in the workplace is undermining UK productivity

Mobile connectivity in workplaces all around the UK is inadequate and is holding back the country’s productivity, claims a new report from telecomms provider CommScope.  In the poll of 2,000 British office workers almost half (44 per cent) said they need to step outside to make a phone call, or access 4G services on their mobile devices. The same report claims that 77 per cent of respondents see mobile coverage as ‘important’ for being able to complete tasks, and being productive, in general. There are also differences in connectivity, depending where you are located. London, Yorkshire and West Midlands have a relatively stable 4G connectivity, compared to the likes of North East or Wales.

Remote working may be doing some people more harm than good

Remote working may be doing some people more harm than good

Remote working isn’t necessarily as ideal as we have grown to believe, according to a new survey which claims it may be doing more harm than good in some cases. The new research report from Citrix claims that remote working may actually hurt productivity and often makes employees feel disconnected, lonely, and not having access to all the right and necessary technology to get the work done on time, and in proper fashion. Out of 1,000 workers and 500 managerial-level employees in the UK who were polled for the report, 81 per cent said their companies do have more than one location where they can work. These locations differ in performance regarding technology, culture, resources and collaboration.

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Small changes could save UK businesses millions on wasted energy

Small changes could save UK businesses millions on wasted energy

commercial property innovationThe UK’s 5.7 million businesses are spending £29.1 billion on energy every year, and could be making significant reductions in its cost according to a study by printerland.co.uk. With Earth Day this Sunday, (April 22) the research claims that tiny tweaks to workplace routines could make a positive impact on the environment, whilst slashing companies’ electricity bills.

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Number of skyscrapers under construction in London tops 500 for first time

Number of skyscrapers under construction in London tops 500 for first time

The number of skyscrapers being built in London has exceeded 500 for the first time, raising fears of further damage to the capital’s skyline. There are 510 towers of more than 20 storeys under construction or in the planning process, more than ever before. That is a rise of 12 per cent on a year ago, according to the annual report by GL Hearn, the property consultancy, and think tank New London Architecture. A record 115 towers are already under construction, up from 91 in 2016, but the number of applications is down by 10 per cent, according to the study.

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Getting meeting room management and room booking software right

Getting meeting room management and room booking software right

Meetings and booking of conference rooms and resources are an essential part of any business and unless you have a system to effectively manage and optimise these processes, organising a meeting can be overwhelming and time-consuming. According to a study made by thinkgrowth.org the average employee spends about five hours in meetings per week and four hours preparing for these meetings. The numbers are not decreasing. In fact, meeting frequency is increasing each year and it is clear that business meetings aren’t going away anytime soon.

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Poor company culture is costing the UK economy £23.6 billion per year

Poor company culture is costing the UK economy £23.6 billion per year

A new report claims that a third of people (34 percent) who leave their job, do so because of perceived poor company culture. The report, authored by breatheHR claims the associated cost of bad company culture is around £23.6 billion per year. The survey of 2,500 people analysed in The Culture Economy, also suggests that well over half of SME leaders (60 percent) consider company culture as a ‘nice to have’ in their business.This mindset has a number of knock-on effects. According to the Chartered Management Institute, effective leadership could improve Britain’s productivity by 23 percent. However, with over half (53 percent) of employees surveyed who distrust their senior management, thinking their bosses ‘didn’t appear to know what they were doing’, there is some work to be done.

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