Search Results for: employment

CIPD claims 2015 should be a ‘rollover year’ for workplace productivity

workplace productivityThe UK labour market will continue to expand at a strong rate in 2015 but there are unresolved issues relating to levels of pay and how best to increase workplace productivity to drive further growth, according to Mark Beatson, chief economist for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) in a new report. While the report argues that the ongoing economic recovery and improvements in the labour market are good news for jobseekers and good news for businesses, it also considers it unlikely that we’ll see any real increase in wage growth until 2016. The author also warns that the UK’s steady growth remains vulnerable to developments in Europe and that the UK’s ‘workplace productivity puzzle’ is an urgent issue for policy makers and businesses to address in order to sustain growth.

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Digital infrastructure boost will lead to urban brain drain, claims report

Country_MouseThe tap roots of the digital economy will not spread beneath the concrete of Tech City and other urban enclaves, but in the fertile soil of the UK countryside. That is the finding of a new briefing document from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), which claims that rural areas are set to overtake towns and cities as the main driver of Britain’s digital economy. As a result of improvements in the country’s digital infrastructure and transport links as well as a changing relationship between firms, employees and contractors, there are now more people moving to the countryside from towns and cities than those moving in the opposite direction. The briefing suggests that by 2025, the rural economy will be worth an additional £35 billion and the productivity of rural areas could outstrip urban areas for the first time since the industrial revolution.

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Revised plans approved for development of iconic BBC Television Centre

Revised plans for former BBC television centre buildings approvedNew office space aimed at occupiers in the creative sector is included in Stanhope and Mitsui Fudosan’s planned redevelopment of the former BBC Television Centre in west London. The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham have granted planning permission for the revised plans for the mixed use development of the iconic building; to include the demolition of the existing Stage 4 and 5 office buildings and their replacement with a more sustainable and efficient new ten storey office building with improved facades, designed by architects AHMM. A change in use from residential to commercial has also been approved for a new nine storey office building fronting Hammersmith Park on the site of the old BBC restaurant block, with an overall increase in office accommodation across the site from 350,000 sq ft to 519,000 sq ft.

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‘Empty desks’ costing UK business 18bn a year, as job vacancies go unfilled

job vacanciesThe economic impact of unfilled job vacancies on the UK economy may be leading to a staggering annual cost of over £18bn. Research by job site Indeed, claims that falling unemployment and robust job creation is resulting in many businesses finding it a challenge to locate and secure the right employees. This inability to find and recruit the right hire for a role is impacting on both the business itself and the wider economy in two major ways. For the employer, failing to effectively resource a business slows both production and profits, while in the wider economy unearned wages reduce consumer spending power and contribution to economic growth. ‘Empty desks’ in the real estate sector are having the greatest impact on the UK economy, due to high levels of contributed economic value (the goods and services that could be produced if the position were filled).

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Flexible working could boost economy by £90 billion, claims report

Laptop on Kitchen Table with Cup of CoffeeThe widespread adoption of flexible working in the UK could boost the economy by as much as £90 billion each year according to a new report from mobile tech firm Citrix and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr). The study of 1,272 British knowledge workers claims that their ‘best case scenario’  calculation is based on saving UK workers £7.1 billion in commuting costs and over half a billion hours spent travelling. This would add around £11.5 biliion annually to the economy. The report also suggests that an even greater boost to GDP could come from the introduction of a large number of currently unemployed and underemployed individuals such as the retired, disabled and  stay-at-home parents. By tapping this pool of talent the report claims that the economy would benefit by up to £78.5 billion annually, equivalent to nearly 5 percent of GDP.

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Whatever you might hear, the death of the office is still some way off

I was recently asked to join a roundtable about the future of office working at the offices of The Guardian newspaper. Being a simple soul I was quite confused to be asked about the ‘death of the office’ whilst sitting in an office. It seemed not only alive, but also very present. But maybe the sun is starting to set on that way of working. You can find the overview here and I’d draw your attention to the fact that according to The Guardian I had, after 2 hours, reached a point where I was ‘speaking for the whole meeting’. I’m sure I only spoke for part but it may have seemed more to others present. More →

Unions and employers call for greater uptake of flexible working

Flexible WorkingThe release of two new sets of employment data has prompted the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and the Trades Union Congress (TUC) to issue separate rallying calls for the greater uptake of flexible working. Responding to a YouGov survey, which found that over two-fifths (42 percent) of UK workers would not feel comfortable asking their employer for more flexible working practices, the CBI called on firms to encourage and respond positively to such requests in both their own interests and those of employees. Meanwhile, the TUC used the publication of new figures from the Office for National Statistics, which showed that under-employment remains at pre-recession levels and there remains a shortfall in the number of full-time job opportunities, to suggest that part of the solution to both problems lies in the promotion of flexible working rights.

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Gender pay gap at lowest point in history, reports ONS

800px-Mind_the_gap_2 (1)The gender pay gap is now at its lowest point in history, with more women in work than ever before. According to new statistics by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) the pay gap has reduced by 0.7 percentage points over the past year to 19.1 per cent, and for those in full-time work the gender pay gap has reduced to almost zero for those under 40. Action is being taken to tackle one of the reasons for the pay gap – career breaks, often to raise a family by extending flexible working to all employees, and from next year, tax-free childcare and shared parental leave will come into effect. However, one of the main causes of the gender pay gap is that men tend to work in better paid sectors to women so a range of measures are being introduced to help women move from low-paid, low-skilled work into higher paid, higher skilled work. This includes a new £2 million training and mentoring programme of events for women, including those working part-time and older workers, to be carried out by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills. This will target women working in the science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), retail and hospitality management and agricultural sectors.

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More than three-quarters of workers are reluctant to switch employer, finds CIPD

Little appetite among workers to switch employer finds CIPD There is little appetite among workers to switch employer, despite the growth in employment prospects in the UK. This is according to the CIPD quarterly Labour Market Outlook report which suggests that employment will again grow strongly in the final quarter of 2014 but wage growth is likely to remain subdued. The latest report shows that near-term employment expectations have risen to a seven year high, which can be partially attributed to fewer employers looking to make redundancies, as well as an expected continuation of the trend for many employers to be hiring new staff. The proportion of employers reporting hard-to-fill vacancies is broadly unchanged (44%) and two fifths of these are reported as ‘skill shortage’ vacancies. With over three-quarters (77%) of employees saying that they aren’t currently looking to change employers, there is a resultant reduction in churn amongst the existing workforce. This, combined with a growing number of EU immigrants and older people seeking work and an ongoing skills shortage, goes some way to explaining weak pay growth. More →

Employers warned that landmark legal decision could cost them dearly

Employment Law changes ahead in 2014A ruling  by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) is significant and could be potentially financially crippling, employers have been warned, following yesterday’s ground-breaking decision by the EAT to uphold an earlier Employment Tribunal’s decision that both compulsory and voluntary overtime must be included in addition to basic salary for the purposes of calculating a worker’s holiday pay. According to Shivali Chaudhry, an Employment solicitor at law firm Hamlins LLP: “Not only will employers have to increase the amount of holiday pay they pay workers to take into account all overtime, they may also face historic underpayment liabilities going back up to 16 years in respect of some workers.” However, Mike Emmott, Employee Relations Adviser at the CIPD says the ruling still leaves much to be resolved – particularly on the issue of backdating. He said: “The ruling means that employers will have to change how they calculate holiday pay in future to take account of voluntary overtime. However it does seem to have limited the scope for substantive retrospective claims, which was the biggest concern in terms of possible costs for employers.” More →

Half of women would consider remaining childless rather than risk career

half of women would consider remaining childless for their careersThe expansion of flexible working rights was not only intended to improve workplace wellbeing and productivity, but encourage mothers to remain in the workforce. But it seems there is much work to be done to convince women that work and motherhood can mix. New research from the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) has found that half of women believe that having a baby poses such a risk to their career that they would consider remaining childless. The survey among women of childbearing age also found that two-thirds of women (67%) are concerned about the impact that having children might have on their career and half of the women who don’t currently have children (49%) feel their current career doesn’t offer them the flexibility they would need to care for a family. Over half of mothers (55%) admitted that balancing childcare and work has been a barrier to staying in work, with one in five (20%) stating that a lack of support from their employer has made life as a working mum more difficult. More →

Google and Deloitte set out blueprint for collaborative work in Australia

collaborative workDeloitte Digital has launched the final version of its report into the collaborative economy carried out on behalf of Google Australia. An interim report, published in July, estimated that the benefits of collaboration to the Australian economy is already $46 billion and could rise to $56 billion. The report also claims that collaboration could help to address specific structural problems including falling productivity and a comparative lack of innovation. The study claims that the average Australian worker spends just under half of a typical working day interacting with other people but that there remains considerable room for improvement in the way those interactions take place. The final version of the report also includes a toolkit to help individuals and organisations to gauge their level and success of their collaborative work. Tellingly, the test is weighted one-third to workplace design, one-third to technology and one-third to culture and governance.

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