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Extensive new research launched into leadership in FM

FM Leadership survey launched for Think FM

A new research initiative, focusing on leadership has been launched by Workplace Law, the key findings of which will be presented at ThinkFM 2013, taking place on Monday 10 June at the Royal College of Physicians in London. The theme of the conference this year is ‘The Leadership Challenge: Raising our game, making our case, realising our value’, and Workplace Law’s survey aims to draw the opinions of facilities management clients and service providers across the UK. It covers a range of issues, including talent in FM, sustainability, leadership in health and safety, plus looking at how leadership and performance management in FM can really add value to an organisation. More →

CIBSE creates diversity panel to reflect varied workforce

Diversity in the workplace

Efforts to encourage a more inclusive culture within the built environment appear to have moved up a gear. RIBA President Angela Brady has voiced concerns on the “gender inequality that continues to pervade the profession,” and now the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineering (CIBSE) has launched a Diversity Panel. Formed to encourage diversity in all its forms, whether race, gender, age, sexual orientation or disability, it is made up of CIBSE members who are keen to increase the routes to the profession through educational paths and by promoting a diverse workplace. Commented CIBSE: “The employment and retention of a varied workforce is integral to meet the building services engineering skills gap and to therefore improve building performance.” More →

Flexible working arrangements could help law firms attract talent

Legal journalsA new report from recruitment consultants Douglas Scott claims that a greater use of flexible working in the UK’s law firms would help them attract and retain the best employees. The survey of staff from firms across the UK  found that while only 19 per cent of employees currently enjoy flexible working, nearly half (43%) of respondents claimed flex-time is at the top of their wish list of employment benefits. The survey note a deal of variation across law firms with 73 per cent of public sector employees already on some form of flexible arrangement, compared to just 16 per cent across the board and only 13.6 per cent in the top 100 firms. Flexible working is enjoyed by more senior people with 20 per cent  of qualified candidates enjoying flexible working compared to 7 per cent of support staff.

Survey exposes social media and non work-related activities of staff

Non work related activies of online staff

One in three British employees spends time on social media or prints private files on company printers instead of working; one in four searches for other employment from the work computer and 12 per cent take company files home. This is according to research carried out for Safetica, a provider of employee monitoring and data protection software, to ascertain whether British employees use their computers for non-work-related activities while they should be working, even when knowing it’s against company policy.

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Private sector recruitment to increase, despite fragile economy

Private sector employment

Employers from the private sector intend to hire new staff in the coming months, despite UK businesses not anticipating economic growth in the next two quarters. According to the latest Business Trends report by accountants and business advisers BDO LLP UK businesses’ hiring intentions over the next two quarters, reached 96.0 in March, the highest since August 2011. Peter Hemington, Partner, BDO LLP, commented: “It is encouraging to see improvement in UK businesses’ hiring intentions, particularly in light of the imminent public sector payroll cuts which will add pressure to the unemployment rate.” More →

Winners announced for 2013 real estate thought leadership

CoreNet Global 2013 Awards for Industry Excellence, Economic Development and Sustainable Leadership:

An organisation that helps businesses set up or expand their offices in the San Francisco Bay Area and Google’s campaign to source more sustainable building materials are amongst the initiatives which have been recognized in CoreNet’s awards for Industry Excellence, Economic Development and Sustainable Leadership. Fidelity, Panasonic, Google, the Brick City Development Corporation and the San Francisco Center for Economic Development are all named as winners for three annual best practices awards by the corporate real estate (CRE) and workplace association. The awards are presented each year to industry leaders who demonstrate best-in-class practices in advancing corporate real estate thought leadership. More →

Dutch Embassy to move to South Bank development

Embassy Gardens

The Dutch Embassy in London is to move from its current location at Hyde Park Gate to a 50,000 sq ft site as part of the Embassy Gardens development on the South Bank of the Thames. The Embassy, which will move in 2017, will sit adjacent to the new US Embassy, already under construction and due for completion during the same year. Embassy Gardens is part of the Nine Elms development on the South Bank and is masterplanned by architect Sir Terry Farrell to encompass a kilometre-long Linear Park – starting in Vauxhall and moving through Embassy Gardens on the way to Battersea Power Station. More →

Employers want default retirement age back finds survey

DRA

Nearly half (47 per cent) of employers surveyed by global law firm Eversheds would like the Default Retirement Age (DRA) reinstated. Two years ago, on 6 April 2011, the Government changed the law to start phasing out the DRA. While the overwhelming majority (97 per cent) say their organisation no longer operates a mandatory retirement age, many report that the change in the law has had negative effects for their organisation: two-thirds cited difficulties in succession planning whilst just under half reported that opportunities were being blocked for younger workers. More →

UK construction activity slips again, but at a slower rate

-- with crane and scaffoldingAccording to the latest Markit/CIPS monthly survey of purchasing managers in the construction industry, output in the sector decreased once more in March but at the slowest rate since October of last year.  The seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS UK Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) which measures overall output in the sector,  was calculated at  47.2 during March, up from 46.8 in February. Scores below 50 are deemed to indicate a contraction in the market. The reduced output was put down to a combination of subdued underlying demand and unusually bad weather.

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UK commercial property investors shift focus to the regions

Leeds skylineInvestors in the commercial office market are increasingly being drawn towards the UK regions, according to a new report by Deloitte Real Estate. The UK Key Cities publication explores the trend that regional offices are emerging as a focus for savvy investors seeking higher returns. At the same time, individual cities are recognising the need to stand apart from competing locations and bridge the gap between themselves and London. These cities are being bolstered by factors such as improved connectivity through large planned infrastructure projects, devolution of power, and investment into the retail and leisure markets.

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Majority of employers intend to hire permanent staff

Jobs

More positive signs on the jobs front today with the news that despite continuing to face a challenging economic climate, the majority of employers are still planning to increase or maintain their permanent staff over the next three months. This is according to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s (REC) latest JobsOutlook survey. REC director of policy Tom Hadley said: “Our latest data shows the majority of employers are planning to increase or maintain their permanent headcount over the next quarter which suggests that the jobs market will continue to outperform the rest of the economy in the short term. Although the ONS reported a rise in unemployment last week, it is important to emphasise that the employment figures were also up.” More →

Survey: Raised levels of staff empowerment and engagement

Engagement

There has been a positive change in employees’ levels of engagement according to new research from recruiter hyphen. Nearly three fifths (58.6 per cent) of UK workers are proud to work for their current organisation, and over three quarters (76.1 per cent) believe their manager gives them the support and autonomy needed to aide their performance. Zain Wadee, managing director at hyphen, said: “Engaging workers is now becoming an integral part of employment and retention strategies; not least to ensure workers are happy but also to help them perform to the best of their ability.”

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