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UK leads the world in talent, but it needs the right culture in which to thrive

London at nightWe should never take the UK’s talent base for granted. According to a new report from Deloitte, when it comes to employment levels of people in knowledge based jobs in high skill sectors such as digital media, banking, legal services, software development, telecoms and publishing, London is comfortably the world’s leading city. The study found that London employed 1.5 million people in the 22 sectors surveyed, compared with 1.2 million in New York, 784,000 in Los Angeles, 630,000 in Hong Kong and 425,000 in Boston. The report also predicts that London will enjoy rapid growth in employment levels in these sectors over the next seven years, adding around 100,000 more people and that while a decline in employment is foreseen in financial services, this will be more than offset by strong growth in creative and media businesses.

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New report identifies the ten key trends set to transform US commercial property

Navel gazingAccording to a new report from Deloitte, the recent upturn in the US commercial real estate sector is set to continue unabated into next year. Which is great news but according to the property consultancy, the market that emerges from the ashes of the downturn will be very different to the one from which they were formed. Deloitte’s 15th annual Commercial Real Estate Outlook report has identified what it considers the top ten trends that will reshape the emerging market based on a mixture of original research, subjective insights and the firm’s experience with clients. These trends are dominated by structural and financial issues and the only nods towards external socio-economic factors are mentions for the aging workforce within the market (so much for the transformational potential of GenY) and increases in single family households (can’t see the link with commercial property).

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More employers than ever introduce some kind of flexible working pattern

More employers than ever introducing some kind of flexible working patterns

Disenchantment with flexible working appears to be ongoing in the tech sector, with a recent report revealing that computing giant HP is following Yahoo’s lead by quietly discouraging staff from working from home. However, more employers than ever are attaching growing importance to making at least some changes to working patterns as a means of managing rising long-term absence levels. In the annual CIPD / Simplyhealth Absence Management, the number of employers introducing small changes, such as later start times, has increased by 20 per cent in the last year alone. Over 70 per cent of organisations report a positive impact on employee motivation and employee engagement, while a further 46 per cent are using flexible working options to support employees with mental health problems. More →

UK Green Building Council partners with Ecobuild to agree event programme

UK Green Building Council partners with Ecobuild to agree sustainable event programmeThe UK Green Building Council has entered into a new long-term partnership with Ecobuild, the annual event for sustainable design, construction and the built environment. The agreement means the two organisations will work closely on the programme of events for Ecobuild to promote the business case for a greener and more sustainable built environment. UK-GBC Chief Executive Paul King, who already sits on the Ecobuild Advisory Board, said: “This partnership marks the start of a new and exciting chapter in our close relationship with Ecobuild, an event which has firmly placed sustainable construction on the UK and international agenda over the past ten years.” More →

Employee engagement among younger workers is on the increase

Gen-YA staggering 92 per cent of Generation Y workers believe their role directly contributes to their organisation’s success. According to a poll of 1,120 UK office workers by recruitment solutions provider hyphen, younger workers in the UK feel more empowered and positive than ever about their workplace. Nearly two thirds (62.9%) of those aged 25-34 are proud to work for their current organisation and 81.8 per cent believe their colleagues and managers seek their opinion and listen to their views, up 16 per cent from March 2013. While the attitudes among younger workers are positive, the research suggests that older workers are feeling less optimistic – 15.9 per cent said they were not proud to work in their organisation – up nearly 8 per cent from March 2013. More →

Plans for a new high rise office development in City of London unveiled

Plans for a new high rise office development in City of London unveiled

DBOX for Henderson Global Investors and MAKE

Plans for a new high rise office development in the City of London have been unveiled by Henderson Global Investors. Designed by Make architectural practice, the high buildings at 40 Leadenhall Street, EC3 will vary in height between 7 and 34 office storeys, with two additional basement levels, a roof level plant, and café and restaurant uses at ground floor level.  The total size of the building is 910,000 sq ft, split between 890,000 sq ft office and c. 20,000 sq ft retail. A grade II listed building at 19-21 Billiter Street, built in 1865, will be restored and integrated in the proposed scheme, which it is estimated will create 390 construction jobs, with around 7,000 people expected to work in the completed building. More →

Latest issue of Insight newsletter is now available to view online

2.Insight_twitter_logo smIn the latest issue of our weekly newsletter, Insight, available to view online: the news that one of the new tranche of landmark buildings in London has become its own death ray; why open-plan offices need to include places of sanctuary; challenging the common misperception that facilities management is a tactical and responsive profession; poll finds UK workers would rather work for a tyrant than a fool; the CBI argues for a more integrated Government approach to energy efficiency policies, including those relevant for the UK’s commercial buildings; new guidance from the BIFM on legislative and regulatory changes for achieving reasonable access for all; and a major new report warns EU countries urgently need to address the particular issues associated with employing older workers.

New guidance for designers on bridging energy performance gap

Evaluating operational energy performance of buildings at the design stage

So-called “low energy buildings” are increasingly being found to use more energy than their designers thought they would, with the performance of low energy designs often little better, and sometimes worse, than that of an older building they have replaced, or supplemented. This difference between expected and realised energy performance has come to be known as the “performance gap”.  To help address this problem, the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) has just issued new guidance on how to address operational energy use at the design stage. ‘TM54: Evaluating operational energy performance of buildings at the design stage’ is now available from the online CIBSE Knowledge Portal. More →

Forget Gen Y – the future workplace is multigenerational

Old dog new tricksThere is quite possibly more guff talked about the impact of Gen Y on businesses and the workplace than any other management topic. However, it’s not only wrong to characterise the people of Generation Y as some homogeneous blob with stereotyped attitudes that set them apart from the rest of humanity, but also to miss the point that the workplace is and will remain multigenerational. In fact, according to new data from the Department of Work and Pensions, there have never been more over 50s in work in the UK than there are right now.  There are 2 million more over-50s in jobs than there were 15 years ago and they will form a third of the workforce by 2020. And they will want their own say on things just as much as the much talked about millennials.

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Government gets around to tightening energy efficiency standards for buildings

Government to tighten energy efficiency standards for buildings

The Government has confirmed it’s to strengthen energy efficiency standards for new homes and non-domestic buildings. The toughened up measures announced today in Parliament covering Part L of the Building Regulations will mean a six per cent cut in carbon emissions for new build homes, and a nine per cent cut for non-domestic buildings. According to the government, the small increase in construction costs will be “heavily outweighed” by subsequent energy savings. There have been criticisms however, over the length of time it’s taken for the changes to be announced as a consultation on the proposed changes closed over a year ago. More →

Hospitality giant receives second LEED certificate for sustainable HQ

 Wyndham Worldwide HQ wins second LEED silver award

Wyndham Worldwide, one of the world’s largest hospitality companies, which counts the Travelodge and Ramada chains amongst its brands has received a second silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program for its New Jersey-based headquarters. One of the green initiatives was the introduction of a sustainable purchasing policy that encourages the purchase of ongoing items such as lamps, electronic goods and furniture, to be environmentally friendly, conserve natural resources, minimize waste and reduce toxicity. More →

Report: How will the future affect us or can we effect the future?

 How will the future affect us or can we effect the future

Workplace furniture specialist Kinnarps has published its Trend Report 2013, which is the culmination of detailed research across European markets and thought leaders, conducted in partnership with Stockholm based futurologists Kairos Future. The study distilled a broad overview of emerging and established trends, across Kinnarps’ European markets, to focus on eight key themes that will influence the workplace of the future. According to the report, big changes are already apparent in our society, but these will come to have an altogether greater impact on the way we evaluate our working environment. More →

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