Information is harder to access while working remotely

Information is harder to access while working remotely

InformationNew research from Sinequa claims that finding information when working remotely remains a challenge for UK enterprise workers. Alongside these challenges, Sinequa’s research claims that knowledge workers in large enterprises now search for information 8 times a day, spending over 5 minutes each time carrying out the search – an average of 44 minutes a day spent searching for information, per employee. More →

Have your say on the coronavirus pandemic

Have your say on the coronavirus pandemic

Coronavirus pandemicOne of the first research projects aimed at gauging the UK public’s attitude and responses to the coronavirus pandemic is being launched. Experts at Cardiff University and Cardiff Metropolitan University are urging people from across the UK to take part in a survey to assess how people feel about – and how they are responding to – one of the biggest health crises facing the country in recent history. More →

UK squandering workers’ potential through lack of training

UK squandering workers’ potential through lack of training

workplace trainingThe UK is ignoring the value of millions of workers by overlooking workplace training and opportunities to upskill, a new survey has suggested. According to the Missing Millions report from City & Guilds Group, a third of employees have either not received workplace training in the last five years or have never had any such training – equating to 17.8 million people in the UK with outdated skills. The result, the report claims, is declining productivity and problems remaining competitive. More →

Employees use only fraction of their knowledge at work

Employees use only fraction of their knowledge at work

knowledgeEmployees use just 38 percent of their knowledge and expertise at work, meaning organisations are failing to unlock even half of the brainpower of their people, research has claimed. According to the survey of more than 1,000 UK and US “knowledge workers” by Starmind, 90 percent of employees want more opportunities to share knowledge and expertise and three quarters believe their organisation would benefit from accessing more of their expertise. More than 6 in 10 respondents feel they could contribute more but don’t know how, while nearly two-thirds say they have knowledge their organisation isn’t aware of or doesn’t capitalise on. More →

Office design alone cannot motivate us or make us happy at work

Office design alone cannot motivate us or make us happy at work

Office design and happinessThere’s a good reason why we find it hard to establish the causal links between our working lives, office design and our personal happiness. It’s because it’s all very complicated. So complicated in fact that you can sidetrack any discussion on the subject by asking elementary questions such as: ‘what do you mean by happy?’ or ‘should it be the role of work to make us happy?’ More →

Friday, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with staring out of the window

Friday, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with staring out of the window

There is or was a running joke within IBM that their buildings don’t have windows, they have outside awareness ports. It’s an idea that not only reflects the culture of long hours spent staring at computer screens – something you don’t have to work for Big Blue to be aware of – but also one that acknowledges our need to be aware of the wider world when we are at work. Our gut instinct tells us that we are better off either outdoors or looking at it. More →

Neuroscience: the next great source of competitive advantage

Neuroscience: the next great source of competitive advantage 0

The average worker is interrupted or distracted every three minutes and it takes them fully twenty-three minutes to return to a task after being interrupted. Office workers are overwhelmed by distractions, due mainly to a lack of understanding of how to manage attention. Distractions and the inability to focus negatively affects productivity, engagement, wellbeing and overall performance in organisations. We long to be more effective, but the harder we try, the more tired our brains become. Attention meltdowns are epidemic because workers do not understand what attention is, how to manage it or have access to the best places to support their tasks. In workplaces throughout the world scenarios of near constant distraction have become the norm, to such an extent that often people do not even feel compelled to comment on them and their consequences.

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Job polarisation is being driven by lack of access to technological skills, warns OECD

Job polarisation is being driven by lack of access to technological skills, warns OECD 0

productivityThe employment rate throughout OECD areas is finally returning to pre-crisis levels, but people on low and middle incomes have seen their wages stagnate and share of middle-skilled jobs fall. This is according to the latest OECD Employment Outlook 2017 which finds that the employed share of the population aged 15 to 74 years rose for the third consecutive year, and is expected to reach 61.5 percent by the end of 2018, above its peak of 60.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2007. Its projections for the UK’s economy for 2017-18 anticipate that growth will ease as rising inflation weighs on real incomes and consumption, but business investment will weaken amidst uncertainty about the United Kingdom’s future trading relations with its partners.

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Study confirms effect of workplace autonomy on wellbeing and job satisfaction

Study confirms effect of workplace autonomy on wellbeing and job satisfaction 0

New research into workplace culture has found that employees with higher levels of autonomy in their work reported positive effects on their overall wellbeing and higher levels of job satisfaction. Researchers at the University of Birmingham Business School examined changes in reported well-being relative to levels of autonomy using two separate years of data for 20,000 employees from the Understanding Society survey. The research, published in the journal Work and Occupations, found that levels of autonomy differed considerably between occupations and by gender. Those working in management reported the highest levels of autonomy in their work, with 90 percent reporting ‘some’ or ‘a lot’ of autonomy in the workplace. The finding backs up research from Cass Business School, the German Institute for Economic Research, Abraham Maslow and elsewhere.

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Brexit impact on UK’s future workforce size could undermine productivity

Brexit impact on UK’s future workforce size could undermine productivity 0

With the UK facing at best, very slow growth, or even shrinkage, of the working population, future changes to migration levels into the UK due to Brexit could exacerbate the financial stresses and strains caused by the UK’s aging workforce. This is according to the Mercer Workforce Monitor™ which claims that companies will need to invest heavily in automation, sectors of society historically under-represented in the workforce and look at ways of increasing productivity. According to the analysis, since 2013, the levels of EU and non-EU born immigration into the UK workforce has filled a gap left by the aging of the nation’s UK-born workforce which sees more in this group leave the workforce – through retirement, emigration or death – than enter it. National growth is closely linked to workforce growth; so reducing its future size would create major headwinds for the UK economy and since another 3.4 million people will reach the age of 65 in 2030; unless the UK decides to make drastic changes to the funding of pensions, health and social care, this smaller working population will be required to proportionally spend more of their income to care for their older citizens.

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The facts about sit stand work are already lost in the stream of narrative

The facts about sit stand work are already lost in the stream of narrative 0

Toss a sliver of information into the great stream of accepted public narrative and see what happens to it. There it goes, briefly visible on the surface then consumed; part of the stream but no longer to be seen. A perfect example of this is provided by a recent piece of research carried out by the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health into the effects of standing at work on a small sample of call centre workers. While the results of the study are impressive, notably a 46 percent increase in productivity, by the time the story was reported on Inc.com, the 167 call centre workers had suddenly morphed into ‘everybody’. It should go without saying that the headline ‘Your Productivity Will Increase by 46 percent if You Stand at Your Desk’ does not reflect the conclusions of the original research. The statements by the researchers suggesting that the study is significant with regard to call centre staff but merely indicative of a wider issue go ignored.

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UK employers predict workforce growth in 2017 along with more inclusive hiring

UK employers predict workforce growth in 2017 along with more inclusive hiring 0

Four in ten (41 percent) of firms across the UK will grow their workforce in 2017 but uncertainty about the UK’s future relationship with the EU has shaken overall business confidence in the labour market claims a new report. According to respondents to the 19th CBI/Pertemps Network Group Employment Trends Survey, for the fourth year running, growth in permanent job opportunities will outstrip temporary recruitment. But the balance of those expecting the UK to be a more attractive place to employ people in the next five years has flipped from +16 percent in the 2015 survey to -21 percent in this year’s results. In terms of engagement, over three quarters (76 percent) of respondents reported that a diverse and inclusive workforce is vital or important to the future success of their organisation. They report a range of benefits of inclusive workplace practices including increased skills (73 percent), attraction and retention of staff (60 percent) and engagement levels (46 percent).

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