Search Results for: financial

Change of ways needed to tackle ailing UK workforce

Staff ill health

The best way of tackling ill health is to stop workers from getting ill in the first place, suggests new guidance from the TUC. It may seem as if the union is stating the obvious, until you reflect on the news, reported exclusively by HR magazine earlier this week that the UK was among the 10 worst performing countries for employee wellbeing last year, according to the Workforce Quality of Life Index (WQLI) report  by Kenex, which measures wellbeing from the employee’s perspective. Now the TUC report, Work and well-being, provides evidence that employers who create healthy workplaces can reduce employee absence and boost productivity. More →

Flexible working seen as of more benefit to employers than staff

Flexible working

Nine in ten UK professionals think that flexible working will become the dominant employment model – but half think it will be adopted for business reasons rather than to benefit the workforce. According to research from specialist HR recruiter Ortus, just one in ten professionals (12 per cent) actually deem flexible working to be a vital benefit – lower than the proportion who said a free company mobile phone is vital to them. And just 1 in 10 said they thought it was being implemented to help with gender equality. In the survey conducted among 450 professionals across a variety of sectors, 51 one per cent felt the reason behind the growth of flexible working is efficiency and productivity – not to help people manage the number of hours they work. More →

Net-Zero buildings top measure of sustainability success

the Crystal

Net-zero commercial buildings, i.e. those that produce at least as much energy as they consume should be the long-term aim of corporate energy strategies, says a CoreNet Global statement. “Smart and responsible energy policies and practices reduce corporate carbon footprints and greenhouse gas emissions, (and) we encourage our members’ companies to drive energy efficiency to optimal levels with net-zero buildings as a top measure of long-term success.” The global real estate association calls on governments around the world to incentivise building owners, investors and occupiers who proactively reduce their carbon footprints. More →

Tech and media companies continue to reshape the world’s cities

google-doodleTech and media companies continue to shape the world’s cities and local property markets according to a recent report from BNP Paribas. While this is a global phenomenon, some of the most dramatic developments will take place in London, not least a shift of tech firms in the city away from their heartland towards Kings Cross following Google’s $1bn purchase of 2.4 acres of land within a major new development in the area. The new development may become a hothouse for technology companies in spite of the UK Government’s focus on promoting Tech City and surrounding areas in East London.  More →

Whatever the office of the future is, it should be there to serve people

Whatever the office of the future is, it should be there to serve people

Larkin BuildingFuturology is notoriously a mug’s game. Especially when it comes to making predictions about technology. Just ask Ken Olson, the founder of DEC who in 1977 pronounced that ‘there is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home’. Or Bill Gates himself who once claimed that Microsoft ‘will never make a 32 bit operating system’. But that shouldn’t make us blind to those predictions that we know will largely come true, not least those based on what we know is happening in the present. This is typified by research carried out by Cass Business School and Henley Business School and presented in a book called Future Work: How Businesses Can Adapt and Thrive in the New World of Work. It found that two-thirds of the 360 managers it surveyed believe that there would be a revolution in working practices over the coming decade. Ninety per cent said that staff were more productive when empowered to decide when and where and how to work.

More →

British investors still see Dubai as an attractive proposition

DubaiBritish investors continue to see the property market in Dubai as a good bet, according to new statistics from the Emirate’s Land Department. Of the $16 billion invested in Dubai properties last year, over $12 billion came from overseas investors. Indians led the field with total investments of $2.5 billion followed by Britons ($1.36 billion) Pakistanis ($1.09 billion) and Russians only $545 million – roughly the amount Roman Abramovich hides in his sock drawer for emergencies.  The department’s director-general, Sultan Butti Bin Mejrin, said this showed how Dubai had recovered from global financial crisis with the help of support from local government.

What Ronald McDonald can teach us about office design

McDonalds1As the UK continues to agonise over the potentially equine provenance of many of its beef products, one firm that has managed to stay above it all is McDonald’s. While rivals Burger King quickly became embroiled in the scandal after traces of horsemeat were found in its Burgers, McDonalds ramped up its claims in the national media that it only uses 100 per cent beef. McDonald’s has had a pretty good couple of years, and not all of it is down to the food. During 2012, the company spent $1.45bn this year on giving 2,400 stores a makeover. It claims that it has now revamped 90 per cent of its UK stores. More →

Crowdfunding could open doors for architects and their clients

Crowdfunding, the practice of investing in projects through the use of a crowd-supported web based fundraising campaign, could be of equal benefit to architects as it is to new business ventures and web-based innovations. According to a white paper by the American Institute of Architects, “Crowdfunding Architecture,” this increasingly popular tool is being used to leverage dedicated internet fundraising websites to provide investment and communications tools to encourage financing for a broad array of projects.

More →

MIT survey shows link between sustainability and profitability

money-grows-on-treesA report published today by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan Management Review and The Boston Consulting Group has found that more than half of companies see a rise in profits when they embrace a more sustainable business model. In addition to the link between sustainability and profitability, the number of companies reporting a profit from their sustainability efforts rose 23 percent last year, to 37 percent of the total, according to the report entitled The Innovation Bottom Line. The survey of 2,600 managers and executives around the world, also found that nearly half of respondents said their companies had changed their business model as a result of sustainability opportunities.  More →

A Field Guide to Workplace Terminology

As the ecosystem around the workplace industry grows ever more complex, so too does the language we use to describe it. In an attempt to bring order to chaos, guest writer Simon Heath presents here a glossary of terms, acronyms and abbreviations to help you navigate these linguistic waters. (For example Business Intelligence – A commonly used oxymoron.) For more of Simon’s worldly, wise and witty writing on all things work and workplace related, visit his blog at https://workmusing.wordpress.com.

More →

New York state of mind to increase building energy efficiency by 20percent

Build NY

In one of the most ambitious green initiatives in the United States, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has issued an Executive Order directing state agencies to increase energy efficiency in state buildings by 20 percent in seven years. He also announced Build Smart NY, a plan to  strategically implement the Executive Order by accelerating priority improvements in energy performance. The largest and most inefficient buildings will be addressed first and undergo comprehensive whole-building improvements, including new lighting fixtures and controls, heating, ventilating and air-conditioning systems and automated energy management systems. More →

Survey reveals world’s speediest and highest lifts

Taipei 101Building information database provider Emporis has unveiled what it believes to be the world’s speediest lifts in a new survey. The company found that the fastest in the world were those in the Taipei 101 tower (above) manufactured by Toshiba. A Mitsubishi lift in Japan’s Yokahama Landmark Tower was named as the second-fastest, while the Otis manufactured lifts in Dubai’s 828m-high Burj Khalifa share third place with three other buildings. The results are inevitably clustered given the limitations of the human body to withstand rapid ascents and descents. More →