Search Results for: training

HR has the most ‘can’t do’ attitude in the workplace finds poll

HR least helpfulHuman resources people are obstructive and most likely to reject reasonable requests in the workplace, finds a new poll. Almost 18 per cent of individuals polled by conference call provider Powwownow voted the HR department as the most difficult to work with; almost double that of Finance/Accounting, the next most maligned department.Why some members of staff are so uncooperative was interpreted by respondents as due to illusions of grandeur (68%), attempts to retain power and hold others back (67%) and confusion/lack of training/lack of confidence (40%). Unhelpfulness does not go unpunished it seems as the majority of respondents (53%) thought that unproductive or obstructive employees are more prone to bullying in the workplace. Those who encounter such unhelpfulness admitted to being driven to consider screaming out of sheer frustration (40%) or even seek new employment (36%) rather than speaking with their superior (30%) about an obstructive colleague. More →

Consultation opens on changes to construction project safety

Safety on construction sitesA consultation on changes to the way safety on building projects is managed has opened today. The ten week consultation is being carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) on proposals to replace the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 (CDM 2007). These currently apply to all construction work in the UK, and cover construction, alteration, fitting-out, commissioning, renovation, repair, upkeep, redecoration or other maintenance, decommissioning, demolition or dismantling. Key changes being proposed include the replacement of the CDM co-ordinator role with a principal designer role within the project team; introducing a duty on information, instruction, training and supervision to replace the duty to assess competence; removal of the domestic client exemption and transfer of these limited duties to the contractor/designer; and the replacement of the ACoP with tailored guidance. More →

Design of the Year shortlist contrasts what is practical with what is possible


A great many of us pay architecture and design very little attention until it’s too late and we’re confronted with the workings of a mind that doesn’t consider whether just because we could really means we should. The kind of mind that designs a building that melts cars on the street or one with wind turbines that are so noisy they can’t be turned on. And so this week sees the announcement of nominees for the Design Museum Designs of The Year awards. It’s a studiedly eclectic list. In amongst the Lego calendars and texting fire alarms we also find a mobile gaming app designed to be used over many centuries (it is impossible to finish it in your lifetime, natch) that, it says here, “questions the inevitability of death, the meaning of legacy and the nature of progress”. I’ve searched for signs that this might be satire without success. However, we’ll focus our consideration on the nominations for designs for the built environment. More →

CIBSE’s new website inspired by iconic new City of London building

5 Broadgate

5 Broadgate in the City of London

The look and feel of the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers’ (CIBSE) new website, which was unveiled this week, has been inspired by a building. According to CIBSE the modular, precise design of 5 Broadgate, designed by Make Architects is echoed in the modern new design, improved user navigation and optimisation for mobile and smart devices of its new website. 5 Broadgate, the new City headquarters for financial services firm UBS, is a 700,000 sq ft, 12 storey building based on a single block form, featuring deep reveals to windows and openings that are designed to add to its overall feeling of substance. The new building will include up to four trading floors, each able to accommodate approximately 750 traders, allowing UBS to consolidate its London trading operations into one building, when fully occupied in 2016. More →

Might a lack of joined-up thinking undermine UK high-tech ambitions?

Old Street: the UK's tech epicentre

Old Street: the UK’s tech epicentre

Over the past week both Prime Minister David Cameron and London Mayor Boris Johnson have offered up visions of economic success founded on new technology. Yet, as the CBI points out in a new report pinpointing the dearth of talent needed to  make such dreams a reality, politicians often appear to ignore the realities of a situation. In its new report, Engineering our Future,  the CBI calls for significant action to make a career in the key disciplines of science, technology, engineering and maths more attractive and easier to pursue. The report points out that these are the skills needed to underpin the Government’s stated focus on the tech, environmental, engineering and manufacturing industries that will shape the country’s future and is calling for a cut in tuition fees, new courses and inter-disciplinary qualifications to allow those skills to flourish.

More →

A field guide to workplace terminology (part 2)

devils-dictionaryA year ago we published the first part of Simon Heath’s acid lexicon of the terms people use to obscure the reality of what it is they actually mean. Part One can still be read here. While much has changed over the past year, we are fortunate that Simon’s corrosive, witty and informed take on corporate bullshit, and especially that applied to the parochial field of workplace design and management remains constant. He’s part of a long tradition of those who apply satire to skewer logorrhea, doublethink and obfuscation, the best example of which remains Ambrose Bierce’s Devil’s Dictionary which is quite remarkably caustic and spares no one. First published in 1881 it maintains much of it power and topicality, for example in its definition of Conservative as:  “a statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as distinguished from the Liberal, who wishes to replace them with others.

More →

International Women’s Day: odds still stacked against women in the workforce

Odds stacked against women in workforceThe 110th International Woman’s Day took place this weekend, and, aside from highlighting the continuing struggles of women across the world, comes research that reveals how in this country, the odds are still stacked against women at work. More than four in 10 (42%) women aged between 18-34 said they have personally faced a gender barrier, followed by 34 per cent of those aged between 35-54 and 26 per cent of women aged 55 and over. Of those women who have experienced inequality at work, over a third (35%) say they believe male colleagues at the same level earn more than they do.  Thirty one per cent indicate they are assigned work that is below their level and are therefore unable to demonstrate their abilities, while almost one in five (19%) say that junior colleagues don’t take instructions from them, but will do from male colleagues of equal seniority. More →

Could personality profiling help create a more productive office environment?

Could personality profiling you create the ideal office environment


Creating the most productive working space to help get the best from your people is an ongoing battle. What suits some doesn’t suit others. So if there was some way of assessing up front how people like to work and the environment that would make them their most productive, engaged and committed – before you rearrange the furniture, fittings and layout – would you leap at the chance of finding out? One approach could be personality profiling. If you could climb inside the minds of your current and future employees and assess how they best like to work, their personality and how this then drives them to be more productive in certain working environments than others – who wouldn’t want to have a delve around? Or are we in danger of pandering to personality stereotypes? More →

Employment is on the rise but pay not matching the rate of inflation

employmentThe latest labour market statistics shows employment has continued to rise, but at a slower rate than seen last month. However, at 67.2 per cent, record-breaking numbers of women are now in work, the highest since records began. The figures published today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show the employment rate in the three months to December 2013 rose to 72.1 per cent, lower than the previous three months and with just a small rise in total pay of 1.1 per cent. This slower pace of growth in employment and pay is reflected in the latest CIPD/ SuccessFactors quarterly Labour Market Outlook survey, which reveals that, although recruitment intentions remain positive, the rate of increase has slowed significantly and the vast majority of organisations expect to give pay awards below the current rate of inflation. More →

New BIFM professional standards give FMs yet more career choices

FM career choices

Unlike HR, which is wholly represented by the CIPD, FM continues to offer a choice of professional bodies. RICS boasts it is the only one that gives FMs the opportunity to achieve Chartered Status, something which the British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) is yet to offer. The BIFM has now announced the launch of a set of standards to “form a global competence model for the profession”. The Facilities Management Professional Standards its says, can be used to benchmark skills, knowledge and competence for those working at all levels in the FM profession. While RICS positions itself as the preferred route for a strategic facilities management career, the BIFM competences are intended to define each level in an FM’s career, from a support role through to a strategic role. FMs then, are still faced with the choice, to follow one or both organisations. More →

No pay rise for a while? Get used to it, says the CIPD

Ivor Lott and Tony Broke_96The Chartered Institiute of Personnel and Development has today released a report analysing the most sustained and severe fall in real wages since at least the Second World War, and warns that the decline will not be reversed until there is a substantial improvement in the UK’s productivity.  The report is accompanied by new survey data showing many employees expect pay rises in 2014 to be below inflation – a repeat of their experience in 2013. Have we seen the end of the pay rise?‘, which is the third in a series of four Megatrends surveys exploring the future of work and the economic challenges which lie ahead, examines the effects of average weekly earnings that are now between 7.8 percent and 10.2 percent lower in real terms than they were five years ago, in January 2009, leading to a sustained squeeze on household finances.

More →

Mental illness costs the UK economy £70 billion each year, claims OECD

DepressionAccording to a new report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), issues related to mental health cost the UK around £70bn every year in lost productivity, benefit payments and spending on healthcare. The OECD’s Mental Health and Work report is an international initiative which has already produced reports over the last year exploring related issues in Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and now the UK. Forthcoming reports are due later this year for Australia, Austria and the Netherlands. The new UK report calls for employers to adopt better policies and practices to help people cope with mental health issues.

More →

Translate >>