Search Results for: business

Employers urged to plan ahead as recruitment prospects rise

The nine enduring workplace tensions to keep an eye on in the year aheadFresh evidence that the recession is over as the CIPD reports employment intentions are at the highest level for six and half years. However, pay continues to perform well below pre-recession levels, and the HR body warns that with the economy picking up, now is the time for employers to consider both the levels of pay and employment conditions they have to offer; and the reputation and branding of their organisation. Although CIPD’s quarterly Labour Market Outlook finds little evidence that the buoyant jobs market is feeding through into recruitment difficulties for the majority of employers in the short term, in some areas; such as engineering and management/executive there is already a struggle to fill high-skilled vacancies. The CIPD is therefore urging employers in all sectors to start planning ahead to mitigate the risk of widespread skills shortages in the longer term. More →

New NHS purchasing framework announces list of appointed firms

NHS procurementDetails have been announced of the firms appointed to a new NHS purchasing framework designed to provide best value and improved service levels across a range of procured services including architecture, quantity surveying, health and safety, environmental management, project management, mechanical & electrical and building consultancy. The procurement division of NHS Shared Business Services (NHS SBS), claims to have redesigned the existing construction consultancy framework which was originally only open to architects and quantity surveyors, to cover a total of 11 different disciplines and covering 12 different regions. The new framework, which was first announced last month, will apply to all 600 NHS Trusts and their commissioning organisations as they procure consultancy services for new build and refurbishment works for buildings.

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London large commercial property pipeline leads rest of Europe

London Commercial Property London will be home to 35 new large office buildings before the end of this year making it one of Europe’s most important destinations for major corporates wishing to occupy over 5,000 sq. m. of commercial property, according to a new report from Colliers International. The survey of 23 major European cities found that together they will offer just over 800 readily-available and high quality large scale offices to choose from by the end of 2014. The 2014 EMEA Office Report claims that this year will see London become the city with the joint third highest availability of large offices in Europe, up dramatically from 11th place.  London matches Amsterdam in having 60, trailing Paris with 62 and Moscow with 98. London, however, stands out as having a strong pipeline of new large office developments.

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Employers fail to monitor wellbeing and mental health alongside staff engagement

Mental ill health still not being addressedMonitoring of employee engagement and wellbeing by FTSE 100 companies improved over the past year, but organisations are failing to measure or address the psychological health of employees. The latest Business in the Community (BITC) Workwell FTSE 100 benchmark showed an increase in the average company scores from 21 per cent to 25 per cent while reporting across the five identified areas of BITC’s Workwell Model; Better Work, Better Relationships, Better Specialist Support, Better Physical and Psychological Health and Working Well increased from 53 to 63. 86 per cent of companies now report on four or five of these themes. But despite this, there was almost no evidence that psychological health is being measured or addressed, and the provision of mental health support continues to be a low scoring area (11%). More →

Green buildings may not enhance job satisfaction and performance, claims study

UK Green Building Council sets out future plans for sustainable futureIn March a report from the British Council for Offices appeared to show that people are happier and more productive when working in green buildings. But the idea that staff find greater job satisfaction when they work in environmentally friendly surroundings is challenged by a new study from researchers at the University of Nottingham and the Centre for the Built Environment at the University of California, Berkeley. It found that, contrary to other research, people working in LEED certified buildings appear no more satisfied with the quality of their interior design and fit-out and may enjoy no more overall level of job satisfaction than those working in less green buildings. The research was carried out by Stefano Schiavon at Berkeley and Sergio Altomonte of the University of Nottingham and published in the April edition of Building and Environment.

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Walkie talkie lands two more tenants as demand for City space grows

Walkie-Talkie solutionThe ‘Walkie Talkie’ skyscraper, 20 Fenchurch EC3 – dubbed the ‘Walkie Scorchie’, after its unusual design was found to reflect and magnify the sun’s rays onto nearby parked cars – is now 87 per cent let, after securing a further two tenants. Insurance firm CNA and UK law firm DWF LLP are taking 35,000 sq ft and 43,000 sq ft respectively at the 38-storey building. The latest two lettings come after joint developers Canary Wharf and Land Securities achieved the building’s first completion milestone on 17 March, when they handed over possession of the first completed office floors to tenants. The rest of the office floors were completed as planned in April. The remaining space, the Sky Garden – a landscaped garden, dining and viewing area on the top three floors, which will be operated by rhubarb – remains on schedule for completion before the end of the year. More →

New report aims to guide future direction of facilities management

loxley-building-image01The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has published a new report authored by Dr Matthew Tucker of Liverpool John Moores University which aims to help shape the future direction and policy of the facilities management sector in the UK. Balancing the performance scorecard: how to maximise customer feedback in Facilities Management develops a customer performance measurement framework for facilities management based on a range of critical themes which emerged from the vast amounts of qualitative data collected across 23 in-depth interviews with a diverse range of FM professionals. The interview subjects came from both an in-house and outsourced background and across a range of business sectors. The report claims to offer a key set of recommendations to enable facilities managers  to maximise their ability to capture customer feedback to improve the provision of space and facilities.

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Hierarchical organisations ‘stifle’ employee productivity, claims CIPD

I know my placeRigid organisational hierarchies hamper the development of management, employee productivity and leadership skills within the workplace, warns the CIPD. Their report, ‘Leadership – easier said than done,’ finds a growing trend in developing the capability of individual leaders and managers, an approach known as ‘distributed leadership’. However, faced with outdated organisational structures and cultures – these managers are unable to apply what they’ve learnt in the training room. The report recommends that leadership development should give greater consideration to the organisation-wide factors that can help or hinder the practical application of great leadership skills by employees at all levels. It urges HR managers to take the next step from training individual leaders, to improving the leadership capacity of the organisation as a whole; focusing on understanding what kind of leadership it requires and what changes are needed. More →

Wearable technology will improve productivity and job satisfaction, claims report

Google_Glass_Explorer_EditionIt’s remains a cause of a great deal of rancour in workplaces and public spaces around the world but new research from Goldsmiths, University of London claims that wearable technology can boost employee productivity by over 8 percent and job satisfaction by around 3.5 percent. The study was carried out as part of the University’s Human Cloud at Work (HCAW) programme and was designed to explore the effects of wearable technologies such as Google Glass in the workplace and on employee wellbeing, productivity and job satisfaction. HCAW is a two-year collaborative project between the Institute of Management Studies and cloud specialist Rackspace to investigate how cloud-enabled wearable devices will impact on individuals and businesses.

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CoreNet issues phase one of road-map to zero energy buildings

Road map to net-energy buildingsCoreNet Global and the Rocky Mountain Institute have issued new guidance that lays out a framework for corporations to better manage their energy usage. According to Next Generation Energy Management, corporations have made progress in energy management and performance since 2007 when CoreNet Global and RMI first collaborated on this topic. Over two-thirds of corporations now have a sustainability agenda and staff as well as energy management plans, and nearly half have dedicated energy managers, a position that was only just emerging in 2007. However, research indicates that in many cases, these efforts have plateaued, so the new report is designed as Phase One of a road map toward the goal of net-zero buildings, in which buildings use the same or less energy than they generate through the use of renewables such as solar and wind power. More →

Managing stress is employers’ number one health and wellbeing priority

Managing stress is employers' number 1 wellbeing priorityBeing ‘stressed’ can describe a whole range of conditions; from having a particularly demanding working day to feeling cripplingly anxious and depressed. Although there are still an awful lot of managers out there who dismiss the term as a shirker’s excuse, it’s a condition that must be taken seriously. Stress accounts for a massive 40 per cent of all workplace absences, but it is also the underlying cause of many other conditions that lead to staff staying off work. This is why the 40 per cent of employers that now routinely record the secondary cause of absence alongside the primary stated reason for long-term sick leave are realising the huge impact mental health plays from the outset. It’s behind the growing recognition on the need for early intervention strategies to help support people to manage these conditions and encourage them to maintain a work/life balance. More →

Employers that fail to act on engagement findings ‘demotivate staff’

Employers that fail to act on engagement findings may demotivate staffWhen carrying out employee engagement surveys, employers are not asking the right questions that pinpoint exactly what actions need to be taken. This often results in a failure to act on their findings, which can then lead to higher levels of dissatisfaction amongst staff who have shared their thoughts without seeing any outcome. This is according to a review by software specialist Head Light, which has identified 12 factors which fundamentally impact on how people feel about their work and their employer. These are: wellbeing; motivation; reward and recognition; involvement; autonomy; teamwork and collaboration; purpose and meaning; relationships; trust; career/personal development; communication and performance management. It claims that engagement can be improved at each level of an organisation by asking employees about these 12 factors and then providing senior executives, line managers and individuals with a personalised list of manageable actions. More →