About Neil Franklin

Neil Franklin is Insight's news editor

Posts by Neil Franklin:

UK firms may be lagging those of other nations in offering flexible working

UK firms may be lagging those of other nations in offering flexible working

The UK lags behind other nations in the shift to remote and flexible working, putting more emphasis on effective meetings to coordinate scattered teams, a new report, ‘The Modern Workplace 2018: People, Places & Technology’ by software company Condeco has found. The research claims that across the world 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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Edinburgh is best UK location for growing technology businesses but office space is becoming scarce

Scotland’s capital city is the best place for tech companies looking to scale up, access funding, and do business in, according to a new Government backed report examining the UK’s tech landscape. Edinburgh tech companies responded with the highest approval rating in the UK when asked to assess how good their city was for ‘doing business’ – a combination of sub factors including access to finance and talent – as part of The Tech Nation 2018 Report – an annual series that captures the strength, depth and breadth of digital tech activity in the UK which employs over one million people. Although 62 percent of Edinburgh’s tech community are satisfied with local access to affordable office space, commercial property firm JLL, who sponsor the report, said one of the main challenges which now faces a burgeoning tech industry in Edinburgh is the room to accommodate continued growth of the sector.

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New era ahead for corporate real estate strategy, claims CBRE report

New era ahead for corporate real estate strategy, claims CBRE report

The period to 2040 will bring profound and far-reaching changes to corporate real estate portfolios according to CBRE. The new report Portfolio 2040, claims to approach the issue from a portfolio perspective, examining how business, buildings and perhaps even cities themselves, might look in 20 years’ time. One of the key drivers for change is identified as pervasive availability, and creative use of very high-volume data and the growth of AI, enabling companies to adapt almost instantaneously to external change and offer increasingly personalised solutions. Rapid and fluid specialisation, either temporary or permanent, will characterise most businesses and real estate will need to reflect this by being increasingly flexible, multipurpose and rapidly adaptable.

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The self-employed enjoy higher levels of wellbeing and happiness, but work still needed

The self-employed enjoy higher levels of wellbeing and happiness, but work still needed

Policymakers and business leaders must work to improve wellbeing among the self-employed, a new report by the Centre for Research on Self-Employment (CRSE), has said. Instead of exploring self-employed wellbeing through the conventional prism of economic success, the report, The Way to Wellbeing, adopts a new approach. It considers people’s overall life satisfaction, based on their subjective assessments of various aspects of their lives – including jobs, income, health, family life and leisure. The report found that wellbeing was higher among self-employed people by using subjective assessments of different aspects of their lives. This is the first time a major report of its kind has taken a holistic view of wellbeing – looking at jobs, health, family life and leisure – to build an overall picture of life satisfaction, rather than just using a narrow measure of economic success.

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Small flexible workspace operators are biggest winners as trend for coworking continues to grow

Small flexible workspace operators are biggest winners as trend for coworking continues to grow

While the likes of WeWork have dominated the headlines over the past year, the number of smaller, more niche coworking operators, has grown significantly and now makes up 83 percent of the total flexible workspace market. The latest research from The Instant Group, which claims to be the world’s largest flexible workspace provider, suggests that the number of centres in the market run by smaller independent operators has grown to 83 percent of the London market. The increase of 20+ desk enquiries is evidence of growing demand as larger firms have started exploring flexible options rather than taking more conventional leases.

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How limiting non-work related web use affects security and productivity

How limiting non-work related web use affects security and productivity

Spiceworks has announced the results of a new survey examining the use of web filtering in the workplace and the implications of restricting certain online behaviours. The results indicate among organisations that don’t restrict non-work related web use, most employees (58 percent) spend at least four hours per week, the equivalent of 26 workdays per year, on websites unrelated to their job. In other words, based on the median U.S. salary of $45,812, these organisations are paying full-time employees approximately $4,500 per year to spend 10 percent of their time consuming non-work-related web content.

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London seen as most desirable city in the world to work, but the UK falls in country standings

London seen as most desirable city in the world to work, but the UK falls in country standings

A comprehensive study into global talent mobility claims that London is the most desirable city for overseas workers worldwide, beating New York, Berlin and Barcelona. In the four years since the first study conducted by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and totaljobs, the UK has dropped three places in overall attractiveness, from second to fifth in the country rankings. Decoding Global Talent 2018 (registration required), claims to be one of the most expansive studies every undertaken into workforce migration trends. Shining a spotlight on the UK’s attractiveness to global talent, the research reveals the world’s most desirable destinations for work.

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Three quarters of employees now expect to work beyond age of 65

Three quarters of employees now expect to work beyond age of 65

The proportion of UK employees who say they will work beyond the age of 65 has remained at three-quarters (72 percent) for the second year running, significantly higher than in 2016 (67 percent) and 2015 (61 percent), according to research from Canada Life. Nearly half (47 percent) of those who say they expect to work beyond 65 will be older than 70 before they retire, up from 37 percent in 2017, while almost a fifth (17 percent) expect to be older than 75. Workers aged 35-44 are most likely to say they expect to retire after their 75th birthday (27 percent).

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Employees are already drawing up a hit list of tasks to delegate to robots

Employees are already drawing up a hit list of tasks to delegate to robots

Nearly two thirds (63 percent) of UK employees would outsource work tasks to a robot if they could, according to research commissioned by software firm ABBYY. For almost a quarter of Brits (24 percent) attending meetings is their most hated work activity. While one in six (17 percent) dislike reviewing long documents and more than one in eight (13 percent) don’t like speaking to customers, these are not jobs that workers want to delegate to robots. The jobs that employees would most like to hand over to a machine are inputting data (16 percent), taking minutes and notes (14 percent) and electronic filing (12 percent).

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Improving employment of older people could boost UK GDP by £180bn 

Improving employment of older people could boost UK GDP by £180bn 

GDP could be boosted by around £180 billion a year if the UK could match New Zealand’s employment rates for the over-55s. While employment of older workers has improved in the UK in recent years, it still ranks only 21st out of 35 OECD countries according to new analysis from PwC. The consultancy’s Golden Age Index is a weighted average of indicators – including employment, earnings and training – that reflect the labour market impact of workers aged over 55. Iceland tops the rankings followed by New Zealand and Israel. For the OECD as a whole, there is a potential $3.5 trillion economic prize from matching New Zealand’s employment rates for the over-55s.

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Many fathers are unaware of their parental leave rights

Many fathers are unaware of their parental leave rights

Nearly half (46 percent) of working fathers are unaware they are entitled to take shared parental leave on the arrival of a child, according to new research. The survey, conducted by Aviva, also claims that one in 10 dads (11 percent) took no time off whatsoever when their most recent child arrived. Businesses are therefore being urged to do more to make sure their male staff know their rights, to enable them to spend precious time with their newborn or adopted children. Crucially, the survey of UK parents with dependent children found that 86 percent of fathers would have taken more time off at the arrival of their children, but felt restricted by financial factors and employer constraints.

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Employers and government need to work together to address looming Brexit skills gap

Employers and government need to work together to address looming Brexit skills gap

As the UK continues to navigate a period of uncertainty ahead of its exit from the European Union, new research published by the City & Guilds Group and Emsi claims that nine in 10 employers already struggle to recruit the skilled staff they need. With most industries expected to grow between now and 2024, a significant number of skilled workers will be needed to meet demand. However, People Power, a study based on City & Guilds Group interviewing over 1,000 C-Suite employers in the UK and work with Emsi to undertake extensive economic modelling, has found that two thirds of UK employers think that the skills gaps in their businesses are likely to get worse or remain the same in the next three to five years.

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