About Neil Franklin

Neil Franklin is Insight's news editor

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ESG reporting is mainly a box ticking exercise, say half of employees

ESG reporting is mainly a box ticking exercise, say half of employees

ESGHalf of employees see ESG reporting as a box-ticking exercise according to a new poll from EcoOnline. The firm’s ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) survey was conducted in June 2022 and included 124 businesses and their employees. The study found a significant minority of businesses polled are not actively reporting on ESG measures and performance, with 42 percent of survey participants disclosing that their organisation currently has no reporting system in place. More →

Downing Street is no longer fit for purpose as an office

Downing Street is no longer fit for purpose as an office

10 downing streetThe next Prime Minister needs to move his or her office out of 10 Downing Street and into a modern, efficient office for Government to be effective, says consultancy Advanced Workplace Associates (AWA). Presently up to 400 people work in a suit of cramped buildings across 10, 11 and 12 Downing Street, a complex first built in the 17th century as residences and not significantly updated since the 1980s. Floorplans show over 100 different rooms, including flats occupied by the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the Exchequer and their families. The layout of the buildings has been described by Whitehall insiders as a “rabbit warren”. More →

Working from home has more than doubled in the UK since 2019

Working from home has more than doubled in the UK since 2019

working from homeThe number of people working from home in the UK from October to December 2019 and January to March 2022 has increased by 108.8 percent, according to the latest employment data from the Office for National Statistics. Between the two periods, the number of home workers increased from 4.7 million to 9.9 million. The number of homeworkers increased by more than 50 percent in all UK regions. More →

The UK is entering a new unstable period of employment relations

The UK is entering a new unstable period of employment relations

employment relationsA new study from the CIPD shows that a tight labour market, combined with a cost-of-living crisis and falling wages, could fuel further industrial action in the coming months. The CIPD is urging employers to engage with their recognised employee representatives and trade unions to avoid issues escalating to strike action. The data, gathered in January 2022, offered  what the CIPD says is a stark warning for what has now become a reality – that a lack of engagement with employee representatives will lead to worse employment relations and possible strike action. More →

Calls for tax measures to speed up decarbonisation of commercial property

Calls for tax measures to speed up decarbonisation of commercial property

decarbonising commercial propertyIn its response to a consultation on the reform of capital allowances, the British Property Federation urges the Government to increase tax relief for capital expenditure on building projects that support the Government’s net zero and levelling-up ambitions and introduce a new tax credit system similar to that which applies to Research & Development spending. Buildings are responsible for around 30 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the UK and reaching net zero by 2050 will require significant capital investment in new types of building, building techniques and new technologies to improve the energy efficiency of domestic and commercial property. More →

Flex office space market in UK set to increase by half over next four years

Flex office space market in UK set to increase by half over next four years

Instant Group flex officeHybrid working policies are driving demand in the flexible workspace market as companies are using coworking and serviced offices at record levels. In its annual UK Market Update Report, The Instant Group’s data claims that demand for flex office space across the country is up 22 percent in the last 12 months. Cities – such as Leeds and Manchester are leading the way in this increase although there are also signs of a recovery in central London. The size of the space being taken with flex operators has also increased by 44 percent since the pandemic as larger companies incorporate more flexible workspace in their real estate portfolios. More →

Four day week rejected by majority of SME leaders

Four day week rejected by majority of SME leaders

four day weekAround three quarters (76 percent) of UK business leaders are either unlikely or very unlikely to introduce the four day work week to their business, according to the latest quarterly UK SME CEO Confidence Index for Q2 2022 from Vistage. The study reports that the SME business confidence index hit 77 points, a 22 percent decrease since the last quarter. The index suggests that small and medium sized businesses overall feel pessimistic about the current economic landscape. 69 percent of SME leaders think that economic conditions have significantly worsened over the last 12 months. Only 5 percent predict that the economic landscape will improve over the next year, while 72 percent strongly believe that the economy will further deteriorate. More →

Two thirds of those working from home suspect their employer thinks they are less productive

Two thirds of those working from home suspect their employer thinks they are less productive

working from homeEmployers appear to lack trust in their workers to decide where they are the most productive, with more people now returning to the office full-time. Whilst 76 percent of UK respondents said they are more productive working remotely or are just as productive as they are in the office, 65 percent also believe their employer is concerned they are actually less productive when working from home. According to the fifth quarterly Talent Index from Beamery, almost half of workers (44 percent) in the UK say they have been asked to return to the office full-time with almost nine out of ten (88 percent) saying their employer sees staff returning to the office as essential and important.  More →

Hybrid working now part of life at majority of organisations, but will it last?

Hybrid working now part of life at majority of organisations, but will it last?

hybrid workingA new poll from the CIPD suggests that more than three-quarters of organisations have  now embraced hybrid working through a mix of formal and informal arrangements. However, employers are split over whether the move to new ways of working will last or if organisations will go back to pre-pandemic ways of working. In response, the CIPD is urging employers to seize the moment to develop and embed new ways of working that will ultimately benefit organisations and their people. More →

Physical activity could boost UK economy by up to £17 billion

Physical activity could boost UK economy by up to £17 billion

physical activityThe fitness and leisure sector holds the key to encouraging physical activity which could save the UK economy up to £17bn a year, according to a new report from ukactive. The report’s authors have called on the Government and its partners to work with the fitness and leisure sector to get the nation’s workforce physically active, as new research from Deloitte shows it could benefit the UK economy by up to £17bn a year.  The landmark report was commissioned by IHRSA (International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association) on behalf of the Global Health and Fitness Alliance. More →

Poor mental health twice as likely to affect underappreciated workers

Poor mental health twice as likely to affect underappreciated workers

mental healthUnappreciated employees are  ‘twice as likely’ to experience poor mental health, a study into workplace recognition claims.  The Employee Recognition Survey conducted by Wildgoose, surveyed employees from 133 different UK companies. It asked them whether they receive enough praise and appreciation, how they would react to a lack of recognition and how companies could better meet their ‘recognition needs’. More →

People try to claim shared desks by leaving personal stuff on them

People try to claim shared desks by leaving personal stuff on them

shared desksWorkers place personal items such as photographs on their desks in order to resist a change to a shared workstations or hot desking, according to new research from emlyon business school. The research found that employees believed is the most effective approach to show their dissatisfaction and halt the change to a new way of working involving shared desks is by passively utilising their personal items to claim space. These are the findings of research by David Courpasson, Professor of Sociology at emlyon business school, alongside colleagues from Universite Catholique de Louvain and published in Human Relations Journal. More →

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