Search Results for: employment

Embracing the inevitable rise of the robots in the workplace

Embracing the inevitable rise of the robots in the workplace 0

387773-computers-circuit-board-hdWe often have reason these days to speculate on the truth of an idea known as Amara’s Law. First coined by the researcher Roy Amara it states that “we tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run”. But defining what we mean by short and long term can be very difficult when technology is changing so quickly. Nothing better illustrates this than the issue of how automation will transform society and workplaces. For the past few years, the effects have mainly been the subject of academic and scientific research alongside some lurid headlines in the mainstream media. So, a fairly typical 2013 paper from researchers at Oxford University assessed the risk faced by over 700 professions and discovered that nearly half of all jobs in the US could be categorised as at high risk of automation. Less academic studies such as a report published last year by Deloitte draw similar conclusions.

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Rise in skills shortage vacancies as training in UK firms falls short

Rise in skills shortage vacancies as training in UK firms falls short 0

Lack of skills training is hampering growth say business leadersNew figures, published by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES), show that despite a surge in job openings, the number of positions left vacant because employers cannot find people with the skills or knowledge to fill them has risen by 130 percent since 2011. These so-called “skills shortage vacancies” now make up nearly a quarter of all job openings, leaping from 91,000 in 2011 to 209,000 in 2015. Over a third of vacancies in electricity, gas and water and construction are now subject to some form of skills shortage, with transport and manufacturing not far behind. Only in public administration are skills shortages below 10 percent. And of particular concern, said the Chartered Management Institute was the revelation that almost half (48 percent) of UK managers have not received any form of training at all during the last 12 months, down from 50 percent in 2013.

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Could a sexy office help you seduce clients back to your place?

Could a sexy office help you seduce clients back to your place? 0

1573_24-04-2015_8503I am not suggesting that a cool or sexy office is all you need to drive business outcomes. Nor am I going to suggest that all you need to do to grow a successful business is to invest in a fully loaded, bells and whistles, technology laden, productivity enabling office environment. Not that all of those things won’t help, they very well could be the things that prove to be difference makers. What I will suggest however, is that in most instances a business’s success relies almost exclusively upon the satisfaction of their customer base. Any deliberations associated with office space should, therefore, in some way consider their needs and desires. No doubt these considerations will be highly dependent on the type of business you are in and whether the model it embraces is business-to-business or business-to-consumer, but when contemplating the needs of your clients, you should at least ask yourself the following 4 simple questions.

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Digital media is having ‘largely positive’ effects on professional lives

Digital media is having ‘largely positive’ effects on professional lives 0

Digital workplaceThe digitization of content and data, along with new digital communication technologies, has fundamentally changed the way work gets done, and affected the nature of the employment relationship. While it has a largely positive impact on peoples’ lives, including individuals’ ability to find work, learn and develop skills, and balance work and life, it can, in some cases, lower worker productivity and increase inequality. These are among the key findings from Shaping the Future Implications of Digital Media for Society  – a report by the World Economic Forum conducted in collaboration with Willis Towers Watson and presented at the WEF 2016 annual meeting in Davos. In the study, which included a survey of more than 5,000 digital users from five of the world’s most important markets; Brazil, China, Germany, South Africa and the US, over half (56 percent) reported digital media has transformed the way they work, and two-thirds said digital media has improved their ability to do work.

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Fourth industrial revolution will result in five million job losses by 2020

Fourth industrial revolution will result in five million job losses by 2020 0

Worktech 2015

Disruptive global employment trends, including flexible working, the rise of robots, other forms of automation and Big Data analytics will see over five million jobs disappear worldwide over the next four years, a new report claims. The World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs report has calculated that current disruptive labour market trends, including improvements in artificial intelligence, cloud technology, the Internet of Things and flexible working arrangements, could lead to a net employment loss of more than 5.1m jobs in the 15 countries surveyed. The report estimated that new trends would result in a total loss of 7.1m jobs – two thirds of which are concentrated in the office and administrative functions – and a total gain of 2m jobs. The WEF surveyed those who it felt were best placed to observe the dynamics of workforces including heads of HR departments and CEOs in 15 developed and emerging economies.

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UK workforce is on the brink of a mass exodus of senior staff

UK workforce is on the brink of a mass exodus of senior staff 0

RetireDespite government warnings of a looming skills shortage there remains a strong societal pressure for older workers to leave the workforce at state pension age. In a poll of 2,001 British adults by Randstad, three quarters of respondents report feeling this pressure, with 32 percent of respondents saying the pressure is ‘significant’. Only one in six workers (17 percent) feel there is no pressure. More than a third of workers (35 percent) plan to retire early as they feel “like they won’t be wanted in the workforce when older” – and a small but significant proportion of workers (7 percent) plan to retire early because they are worried about age discrimination. Keeping older workers says the report, requires initiatives like increasing the availability of flexible working and rolling-out phased retirement programmes, as well as a wider effort to publicise these efforts and change the attitudes of older workers.

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‘Barrier Bosses’ preventing progress in gender equality despite wide support

‘Barrier Bosses’ preventing progress in gender equality despite wide support 0

Female equalityMore men than women believe that equality between the sexes would be better for the UK economy and themselves. Yet despite finding a clear desire for equality, the forthcoming ‘Sex Equality – State of the Nation’ report by the Fawcett Society reveals that there are still significant barriers to progress that need to be overcome. Overall men are more likely to support equality of opportunity for women than women, with 86 percent of men wanting this for women in their lives, compared to 81 percent of women wanting it for themselves. But the survey identified two major barriers to progress – firstly a small but powerful group of ‘barrier bosses’ responsible for recruitment decisions, and secondly the fact that most people believe that men at the top won’t voluntarily move over for women. This year the Government plans to implement Section 78 of the 2010 Equality Act which will require all employers of over 250 people to publish their gender pay gap.

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Workplace bullying, pay, and productivity key workplace trends in 2016

Workplace bullying, pay, and productivity key workplace trends in 2016 0

Future ProductivityAcas has published its Workplace Trends 2016 report, which identifies workplace bullying, pay, the new trade union bill and productivity as key trends that will have an impact on employment relations in 2016. In this report, thought-leaders discuss leadership, improving productivity, the art of communication, giving voice to a better way of working, encouraging positive behaviours in tackling bullying at work and the psychology of productivity. Writing in the report, Acas Chair Sir Brendan Barber says that productivity is a real concern for the UK economy. He warns if we were able to match the productivity of the US then this would equate to around £21,000 per annum for every household in the UK, making it an issue that will remain high on the agenda in 2016. The report also features commentary from Steve Elliott, Chief Executive of the Chemical Industries Association, Dr Makani Purva, Anti-Bullying Tsar at Hull NHS Trust and Frances O’Grady, General Secretary of the TUC.

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Jobs growth predicted for next year, along with skills shortages

Jobs growth predicted for next year, along with skills shortages 0

New job in 2015More than two fifths (43 percent) of firms will grow their workforce next year, with permanent jobs outstripping temporary roles according to the latest CBI/Accenture Employment Trends Survey. Firms identify skills shortages as the top threat, with over half (52 percent) of respondents citing the development and maintenance of digital skills as having a new urgency. More than half intend giving staff a pay award at or above the RPI rate of inflation, but nervousness remains about the impact of the National Living Wage (NLW). Half (51 percent) of service sector respondents indicate they will raise their prices, 27 percent will employ fewer people and 18 percent will make changes to their reward packages as a result. Multi-skilling employees to improve productivity and the capacity to adapt is now the leading form of flexibility, operated by nearly four in five respondents (79 percent), followed by flexibility over location for work (73 percent).

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Global salaries will rise to highest levels for three years in 2016

Global salaries will rise to highest levels for three years in 2016 0

Global payWorkers around the world will see real wage increases of 2.5 percent, the highest in three years in 2016, as pay increases combined with historically low inflation leave employees better off. The forecast issued by Korn Ferry Hay Group found that workers across Europe are set to see an average salary increase of 2.8 percent in 2016 and, with inflation at 0.5 percent, will see real wages rise by 2.3 percent. While salary rises will stay at 2.5 percent in the UK (the same as the last two years), low inflation means that real wages are to increase by 2.3 percent in 2016 – above the Western European average. In Asia, salaries are forecast to increase by 6.4 percent – with real wages expected to rise by 4.2 percent – the highest globally. In the United States, with low inflation (0.3 percent), employees will experience real income growth of 2.7 percent.

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Australia needs to do more to tackle the problems of mental health at work

Australia needs to do more to tackle the problems of mental health at work 0

Mental health and workOne in five Australians suffer from a mental health  disorder and employers need to do more to tackle the related issues. That is the central claim made in a new OECD report called Mental Health and Work: Australia. The study claims that mental health issues cost the Australian economy AUD 28.6 billion per year, equivalent to 2.2 percent of GDP. Adding indirect costs, such as productivity loss or sickness absence, nearly doubles that amount. The report is the ninth in a series of reports looking at how education, health, social and labour market policy challenges identified in a 2012 report called Sick on the Job? Myths and Realities about Mental Health and Work are being tackled in OECD countries. The report suggest that while Australia’s recent mental health reform is an important and helpful development, the country ‘needs to do more to help people with mild to moderate mental health issues at and into work’.

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Zero-hours contract employees happy as permanent, full-time staff

Zero-hours contract employees happy as permanent, full-time staff 0

Zero hours contractsPeople working on zero-hours contracts have less pressure and a better work-life balance than full time employees, a survey published by the CIPD claims. Zero-hours employees experience similar levels of job satisfaction and personal wellbeing to employees on permanent, full-time contracts and also report comparable satisfaction levels in their relationships with managers and colleagues. However, the report also shows that, while the majority of zero-hours employees choose to work part-time, they are more likely than part-time employees to say they would like to work additional hours. The research also updates the CIPD estimate of the number of employees on zero-hours contracts, which has increased from 1 million in 2013 to 1.3 million in 2015. The proportion of zero-hours contract employees who are either very satisfied or satisfied with their jobs is 65 percent, compared to 63 percent for all employees.

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