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).

More →

Germany slides down rankings as one of world’s top employment talent hotspots

Germany slides down rankings as one of world’s top employment talent hotspots 0

Germany falls down world rankings for talentGermany has slipped down the rankings as one of the world’s top employment talent hotspots, with other established economic powers such as the UK and France playing only minor roles in sustaining Europe’s pre-eminence. According to the World Talent Report by IMD Switzerland, Denmark, Belgium, Sweden and the Netherlands occupy the top five places in the rankings – the first two retaining their standings from last year. Finland, Norway, Austria, Luxembourg and Hong Kong complete the top 10, with Germany 11th, Iceland 16th, Ireland 18th, the UK 20th and France down in 28th. The objective of the World Talent Report is to assess how countries sustain the talent pool necessary for businesses to maximize their performances. Austria was one of the biggest movers over the past 12 months, climbing 11 places to break into the top 10, while Belgium rose by six positions to take third spot. By contrast, Germany slipped out of the elite, dropping from 7th to 11th, after being impacted especially heavily by the economic crisis affecting much of Europe.

More →

Vast majority of UK employers are against a ‘hard Brexit’ finds CIPD

Vast majority of UK employers are against a ‘hard Brexit’ finds CIPD 0

Vast majority of UK employers are against a 'hard' Brexit' finds CIPD

The implications of Brexit are raising concerns over a reduction in employers’ intentions to invest in their staff and its effects on access to migrant labour. As a result, according to the latest quarterly CIPD/Adecco Group Labour Market Outlook, while employment growth looks set to continue in the UK, there are signs that this is beginning to slow and that real wages are likely to fall during 2017 for many employees. The data shows that the net employment balance, while remaining in positive territory at +22, based on the difference between the share of employers expanding their workforce and the share of employers reducing their workforce, has shown a slight negative decline from the previous quarter’s figure of +27. Although 42 percent of employers believe that future restrictions on EU labour could damage their UK operations, just 15 percent have started to prepare for this eventuality; which is probably why the vast majority are against a ‘hard Brexit’.

More →

The dramatic rise of the online gig economy revealed in new study

The dramatic rise of the online gig economy revealed in new study 0

jobbureauThere has been a rapid increase in the online gig economy worldwide, according to new research from the University of Oxford. The study is based on the results of the University’s Online Labour Index which measures vacancies and activity on websites and apps related to the gig economy. It found that employers in the US are the biggest users of the online gig economy, defined as the use of workers procured over the internet for short term, piecemeal and project based work. Between May and September, US firms posted 52 percent of vacancies on the platforms followed by the UK at 6.3 percent, India at 5.9 percent, and Australia at 5.7 percent. The market grew by 9 percent over the tested period with growth fastest in the UK which saw a 14 percent increase in activity. The data also showed that software development and technology are currently the most sought-after skills. Creative and multimedia work is the second largest category, followed by clerical and data entry work.

More →

Study shows how a green city in the desert still has much to teach the world

Study shows how a green city in the desert still has much to teach the world 0

masdar-green-cityA much publicised but occasionally troubled green city in the United Arab Emirates without light switches or water taps has much to teach people around the world about saving energy and precious resources, claims a new study from researchers at Birmingham University. With its low-rise and energy efficient buildings, smart metering, excellent public transport and extensive use of renewable energy, the 2,000 citizens of Masdar City in Abu Dhabi, are living in a place which is a ‘green’ example to city planners around the globe, claims the report. There are no light switches or water taps in Masdar City. Movement sensors control lighting and water in order to cut electricity and water consumption by 51 percent and 55 percent respectively. Masdar is a mixed use development that is the world’s first city designed to be ‘zero carbon’ and ‘zero waste’. Masdar City is a large-scale mixed use development which lies 17 kilometres south-east of the city of Abu Dhabi.

More →

Sensory response to workplace environment influences performance

Sensory response to workplace environment influences performance 0

Sensory experiences in the officeImproving employees’ physical and emotional response to their working environment – from the look and feel of a workplace to non-visual sensory inputs such as smell, noise and temperature – can significantly improve productivity and cognitive performance, a new report suggests. According to Decoding the workplace experience: how the working environment shapes views, behaviours and performanceexperience is not just about how well the workplace satisfies functional needs, it is about the overall impression it leaves on the user and the way an employee experiences an environment is emotional and occurs potentially at a subconscious level. Sensory influences such as the smell, noise and temperature of the working environment are among the main factors that influence employees’ experiences of the workplace and impact thier performance. Expectations of the workplace also change depending on personality, background and numerous other factors; which is why understanding your workforce is the key to creating an effective workplace experience.

More →

How climate change may be affecting us in more ways than we suppose

How climate change may be affecting us in more ways than we suppose 0

commercial propertyJust how affected we all are by what is going on in our surroundings is confirmed by a new academic studies which links the environment to to our moods, physical wellbeing and performance. Although we are increasingly aware of the impact the working environment has on our productivity and wellbeing, the new study from researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Joint Global Change Research Institute suggests we are more influenced by the global environment and climate than we might suppose. The meta-analysis of over 200 papers published in Science magazine concludes that while climate change concerns are largely focussed on its long term and worldwide effects, we should also pay attention to the effects over the short term and at local level because of the impact on individuals, businesses, society and the national economy. As well as slowing the global economy by 0.25 percent each year, it also has a profound additional effect at local levels.

More →

Working from home just as unproductive and frustrating as working in an office

Working from home just as unproductive and frustrating as working in an office 0

working from homeIt’s always good to see academic research supporting ideas that would appear pretty obvious but go against a widely accepted narrative. So we should all welcome the results of a new study from researchers at the London School of Economics and Political Science, which found that the perceived benefits of working from home disappear over time for both employees and organisations when homeworking is a full-time arrangement. The report concludes that while previous studies have demonstrated how home workers are more productive than office-based workers, the LSE study of more than 500 employees shows that on a long term basis, there are no differences between home and office workers. The reason, according to Dr Esther Canonico from LSE’s Department of Management, the lead author of the report, is that employees no longer see home working as a discretionary benefit or a privilege when it becomes the norm in an organisation.

More →

Institute for Employment Studies launches new Brexit Observatory

Institute for Employment Studies launches new Brexit Observatory 0

BrexitThe Institute for Employment Studies, a human resources and employment think tank, has launched what it calls a Brexit Observatory, which will aim to track the effects of the UK’s vote to leave the EU on employment levels and issues. According to the IES, the Observatory will ‘provide a space to collate evidence, share relevant research and commentary, track datasets, and link to sources of independent information as the debate continues and the terms of the UK’s departure are revealed. It will build over the following weeks, months and years as events unfold and data surfaces. In addition to content originating from IES, the pages will feature guest blogs and links to external sources.’ The IES says that it hopes the Observatory will stimulate and facilitate debates on key topics, such as the labour market; education and skills; migration (including the impact on the UK’s nursing workforce); the impact on HR; workforce planning and recruitment; employment law; and employee engagement.

Learning with a stranger as effective as learning with a close friend or relation

Learning with a stranger as effective as learning with a close friend or relation 0

working togetherA partner helps you learn – even if you don’t know them. That is the conclusion of research being presented today by Catherine Crompton from the University of Edinburgh to the annual conference of the British Psychological Society’s Cognitive Psychology Section in Barcelona. In the research for her PhD, Catherine carried out two studies that each paired 48 people and asked them to learn an unfamiliar task. In both studies, half the pairs knew each other and half did not. Both older and younger participants were tested, each paired with a partner of similar age. In the first study, the pairs were asked to arrange abstract tangram shapes in a specific order on a grid. In the second, the pairs were asked to learn a route on a map and then recall it one hour and one week later. The first study showed that the pairs got better at the task with practice, whether or not the pairs had known each other before the study. The effects were the same, regardless of age.

More →

BSRIA publishes new downloadable guide to indoor air quality

BSRIA publishes new downloadable guide to indoor air quality 0

indoor air qualityThe Building Services Research and Information Association (BSRIA) has released a new topic guide on indoor air quality (IAQ), which is now available to download free from the association’s website. The guide is written for those seeking some introductory information about indoor air quality including prevalence, history and definition, along with information on types of contaminants and their exposure limits, while readers are also provided with a useful site map. BSRIA’s asset performance team leader, Blanca Beato-Arribas, said: “People spend approximately 80 per cent of their time indoors. There is enough evidence that links poor air quality with permanent damages to health or even death. Therefore, we should be aware of the quality of the air that we breathe both at home and at work, and ensuring good indoor air quality at work should be a priority for employers.” The guide will provide insight into the most common contaminants, both from indoor sources and external sources as well as a summary of the current legislation and a guide map of what contaminants to investigate.

Android users perceived to be nicer people than iPhone users, research suggests

Android users perceived to be nicer people than iPhone users, research suggests 0

androidf6oOur choice of smartphone may provide valuable information about our personalities. That is one of the findings of a doctoral study conducted by Heather Shaw from University of Lincoln’s School of Psychology. She is presenting her work today to the British Psychological Society Social Psychology Section annual conference in Cardiff. Heather and her fellow researchers conducted two studies of personality differences between iPhone and Android smartphone users. In the first study the researchers asked 240 participants to complete a questionnaire about characteristics they associate with users of each smartphone brand. In the second study they tested these stereotypes against actual personality traits of 530 Android and iPhone smartphone users. The results from the first study showed that Android users are perceived to have greater levels of honesty and humility, agreeableness and openness personality traits but are seen as less extroverted than iPhone users.

More →

Translate >>