About Neil Franklin

Neil Franklin is Insight's news editor

Posts by Neil Franklin:

Majority of freelancers don’t want more employment rights

Majority of freelancers don’t want more employment rights 0

freelancersAlthough British Prime Minister PM Theresa May has recently, announced a Government review into how employment rights can be extended to freelancers, a new survey claims that the vast majority of the self-employed don’t really want them. The admittedly small scale study of 250 freelancers from ContractorCalculator claims that 80 percent aren’t interested in them anyway and a mere 7 percent think they would be of benefit.

Key findings from the survey include:

  • 88 percent of freelancers don’t want maternity/paternity rights
  • 82 percent do not want paid sick leave
  • 85 percent say no to holiday rights and pay
  • 80 percent shun extra rights to help with grievances or disciplinary matters
  • 94 percent don’t want restrictions on the amount of hours they can work
  • 74 percent believe more employment rights would compromise their tax status and complicate their tax affairs.
  • More than half of respondents also raised concern that the provision of such rights would both restrict their flexibility and result in lower earnings.

“These results are not surprising,” claims CEO Dave Chaplin. “The Government needs to understand that the negative reports associated with self-employed couriers and drivers are woefully unrepresentative of all of the self-employed. There are several million self-employed businesspeople working on a business to business basis with their customers who are very happy with the way they work and the last thing they want is further legislative burdens.”

Older job seekers believe age discrimination remains rife in the workplace

Older job seekers believe age discrimination remains rife in the workplace 0

older workersResearch released by recruitment website totaljobs claims that almost two-thirds (63 percent) of 55-64 year olds have said they have felt discriminated against by a prospective employer because of their age and only 6percent of the same age group see their age as an advantage when applying for a job. The research from totaljobs, based on responses from over 4,000 job seekers, also claims that 72 percent of 55-64 year olds spend over an hour preparing for an interview compared with just 62 percent of 16-24 year olds. The study also claims that young people are much less likely to feel discriminated against because of their age. Just 33 percent of 16-24 year had felt age discrimination, with this number falling to 21 percent for 25-34 year olds and 22 percent for 35-44 year olds – a stark contrast to the 63 percent of 55-64 year olds. Whereas 82 percent of 55-64 year olds and 62 percent of 45-54 year olds see their age as a disadvantage when applying for a job, only 31 percent of 16-24 year olds and 16 percent of 25-34 years olds feel the same.


UK marketers suffering from tech-induced anxiety, survey claims 0

More than half (55 percent) of marketers in the UK are struggling to cope with the accelerated pace of digital transformation – up 7 percent since 2015, Adobe’s annual Digital Roadblock study claims. The report – which surveyed 450 marketers in the UK– found that Brits suffer from more tech-induced anxiety than their peers across the region: an average of 44 percent of marketers in Europe worry about their technology-based skill sets, 11 percent lower than the UK. Of the marketers surveyed, three-quarters (74 percent) feel that they need to implement new technologies within their marketing strategies in order to succeed, but just over half (54 percent) feel that they actually have the skills to do so. When it comes to technology skills, there’s an obvious gap between demand and reality: while 41 percent of respondents cited being a ‘tech-savvy’ early adopter of new technologies as the top attribute of being a marketer, only 15 percent actually identify as ‘tech-savvy’ themselves. In fact, more UK marketers identify as ‘tech challenged’ (20 percent) than ‘tech savvy’, and the number of ‘tech-savvy’ marketers has dropped since last year, when nearly one in five (19 percent) identified as so.

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UK large businesses are failing to create a culture of creativity and innovation

UK large businesses are failing to create a culture of creativity and innovation 0

suggestion_boxA new study claims that the UK lags behind other European countries when it comes to fostering a culture of innovation at creativity at work. Whilst 63 percent of French employees and 57 percent of Spanish employees feel empowered to lead innovation and drive change, less than half (47 percent) of employees surveyed across the UK agree. In turn, this appears to be impacting morale; just 54 percent of employees in the UK said they feel inspired in the workplace compared to 74 percent in Spain, 73 percent in France and 66 percent in Germany.  As businesses strive to stay ahead of the competition, making innovative use of technology is a top priority. However, the research commissioned by BMC and conducted by Opinion Life, suggests that businesses across the UK are struggling to foster an innovative culture fast enough and failing to capitalise on the creativity of their staff.

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London needs to adapt to the changing world of work, claims think tank

London needs to adapt to the changing world of work, claims think tank 0

changing-world-of-workThink Tank New London Architecture (NLA) which creates a forum for debate on the built environment, has launched its findings and recommendations from its landmark WRK / LDN Insight study on work and workplaces in London. NLA calls on central government, the Mayor of London and other stakeholders in the capital to act to maintain the capital’s position as a preeminent commercial centre. The report claims that, as the digital economy continues to expand, new suppliers of workspace are rapidly emerging – from co-working providers to ‘fab labs’, makerspaces, incubators and innovation centres. The insight study concludes that the affordable business space that currently supports these industries is at risk. London needs new innovative mixed-use models of city planning to support these changes and adapt to the changing world of work.

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RSA welcomes clients and brokers to new office in the heart of Birmingham

RSA welcomes clients and brokers to new office in the heart of Birmingham 0

ki-birmingham-preedit-19Located a stone’s throw from Snow Hill Station in Birmingham’s min business district, insurer, RSA’s new Trading Site puts its employees at the heart of the customer experience. Rather than separating support functions from front of house, the new space combines client-facing areas and open plan benches to create an open, collaborative and flexible environment. The office features assigned workstations for staff including brokers and underwriters, who will benefit from the enhanced collaboration and communication across the clear, unobstructed workspace. In addition to open plan benching, the office features, meeting rooms, lounge areas and a multifunctional kitchen that can transform into an intimate client event space.

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If you want to improve the workplace, let employees procrastinate

If you want to improve the workplace, let employees procrastinate 0

Facebook_like_thumbAn analysis of workplace habits carried out by office supplies firm Viking claims that the biggest causes of worker procrastination are internal problems within an organisation, and that restricting social media usage could make employees less productive. The survey of over 1,500 office workers claims that almost half of workers (48 percent) procrastinate while waiting for other people’s work to be completed and 40 percent procrastinated in order to take a break from work and reduce their stress levels. The study also claims that people who work in an office experience more stress then those who work from home, which the study concludes is because working from home allows employees to take breaks more frequently. Although the Flexible Working Regulations introduced in the UK in 2014 suggests we’re working towards a more lenient workplace, survey findings suggest that in-office cultures are still struggling to find their footing when balancing work and relaxation.

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Businesses in developed world failing to invest in tech and agile working

Businesses in developed world failing to invest in tech and agile working 0

AgileBusinesses operating in developed national markets risk falling behind businesses in emerging markets that are placing greater importance on leveraging technology to fuel their growth and increase their agility, claims a report from enterprise software provider Epicor. The study of over 1,800 business leaders from 12 countries claims that 54 percent of emerging market business executives cited “technology leadership” as a significant growth factor compared to just 36 percent of those in developed countries. The report claims that by recognising the importance of flexible technology and business systems in fuelling growth, executives in emerging markets are putting themselves in a stronger position when it comes to preparing for international expansion. Businesses that have more agile working practices can respond more quickly to changing market environments, making them more prepared to deal with the demands of growth.

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New report sets out four key challenges for the workforce of the future

New report sets out four key challenges for the workforce of the future 0

Future of WorkA new report from The Future Laboratory and UBS Wealth Management claims to identify the key factors that will drive workplace change in the near future. According to The Future of the Workforce report, the next two decades will see the way we work completely reshaped by forces such as artificial intelligence and an increasingly multigenerational workforce. The report claims that the entry of more Millennials into the workplace, their differing values to older workers, a growing propensity to turn freelance and the dissolution of the old bonds of loyalty could mean that employers struggle to create a strong culture. The report also claims that there will be a growing emphasis on the provision of wellness programmes, driven partly by growing demand from employees as well as a greater focus on improving productivity from employers. It also suggests that employers need to act to remove any biases they may have to appeal to the values of the new generation of workers.

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Nearly half of employees work unpaid extra hours to cope with workloads

Nearly half of employees work unpaid extra hours to cope with workloads 0

Unpaid workNearly half of working parents in the UK put in unpaid extra hours to keep up with workloads and a third believe that overtime is now an ingrained part of workplace culture, according to a study by pressure group Working Families. The results were announced on the day the group announced details of this year’s National Work-Life Week which will encourage organisations to explore agile and flexible working. The report claims that 27 percent of people believe their line manager expects them to work extra hours, 33 percent believe that unpaid overtime is part of their workplace culture and 42 percent work extra hours to deal with workloads. Sarah Jackson, CEO of Working Families, said: “In the UK we have some of the longest working hours in Europe, with more than one in 10 employees putting in more than 50 hours each week. But success is about productivity, not impressive timesheets, so it’s worrying that our survey showed many parents feel a cultural pressure, or direct pressure from their manager, to stay late.”

Brexit leads to ‘softening’ of employment market, claims CIPD survey

Brexit leads to ‘softening’ of employment market, claims CIPD survey 0

BrexitThe UK’s decision to leave the EU has resulted in a softening in hiring intentions and businesses should invest in skills immediately, according to the latest CIPD/Adecco Group UK & Ireland Labour Market Outlook. The report is based on employer sentiment in the two weeks before and after the EU Referendum and claims that employers surveyed ahead of the vote were somewhat more optimistic about hiring intentions than those surveyed afterwards. It suggests that the proportion of employers expecting to increase staffing levels over the next three months dropped from 40 percent pre-Brexit to 36 percent following the vote. The net employment balance, based on the difference between the share of employers expanding their workforce and those reducing it, dropped from +21 pre-Brexit to +17 post-Brexit. However, the fall was significantly sharper among private sector employers, with the post-Brexit employment balance declining to +25 from +39.

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Poor tech and long meetings remain key sources of workplace misery

Poor tech and long meetings remain key sources of workplace misery 0

workplace meetingsBadly run and overrunning meetings remain amongst the main sources of workplace conflict and unhappiness, according to a study of 1,000 US employees from workplace software provider Eventboard. The main sources of this conflict appears to be the number of meetings that overrun and poor technology, claims the report. More than half (56 percent) of frontline employees spend 1-2 hours in meetings daily and three-quarters (75 percent) of senior and mid-management level employees spend 3-4 hours in meetings daily. The report also highlights the inadequate provision of workplace technology even though the tools people use are seen as essential for their happiness and productivity. More than half of respondents claim they have to supplement the technology they are given by their employer with their own devices, even though technology can be twice as important as other perks in terms of making people happy and productive.

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