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US Federal government confirms green-building requirements

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A new study prepared for the United States Department of Defense (DoD) by the National Research Council has given the seal of approval on the importance of green-building certification programs as tools to reduce energy use and other operational costs. “This reaffirmed what we’ve been saying all along – that LEED makes good economic sense,” said Fleming Roberts, Associate, Policy & Advocacy at the US Building Council. “The report recommended that the Department of Defense should require its new buildings or major renovations to be designed to achieve at least LEED Silver certification.” More →

Model new site announced for BIM aficionados

BIM

The UK’s BIM (Building Information Modelling) Task Group is launching a Digital Plans of Work site on February 28. The latest phase in the government’s plans to make the UK the world leader in BIM, the site will enable users to keep an online version of their work. BIM is also attracting support worldwide. Today, US construction giant ZMG Construction threw its weight behind the technology saying: “New technological developments continue to revolutionize the construction and design industries — and building information modelling, or BIM, is foremost on the list of these major technological advances.” More →

Flexible working seen as of more benefit to employers than staff

Flexible working

Nine in ten UK professionals think that flexible working will become the dominant employment model – but half think it will be adopted for business reasons rather than to benefit the workforce. According to research from specialist HR recruiter Ortus, just one in ten professionals (12 per cent) actually deem flexible working to be a vital benefit – lower than the proportion who said a free company mobile phone is vital to them. And just 1 in 10 said they thought it was being implemented to help with gender equality. In the survey conducted among 450 professionals across a variety of sectors, 51 one per cent felt the reason behind the growth of flexible working is efficiency and productivity – not to help people manage the number of hours they work. More →

Global corporates boosting social media engagement

social media

The massive rise in prominence of social media has led many major global organisations to increase their so far limited investment into social channels such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook in order to attract and engage talent. Senior Resourcing and HR directors at a recent roundtable event facilitated by hyphen, the recruitment process outsourcer agreed that social media is fast becoming a critical part of the recruitment and employee engagement tool kit as major organisations adapt to the new digital age – and this investment is starting to drive internal change towards a focus on digital within organisations. More →

Tech and media companies continue to reshape the world’s cities

google-doodleTech and media companies continue to shape the world’s cities and local property markets according to a recent report from BNP Paribas. While this is a global phenomenon, some of the most dramatic developments will take place in London, not least a shift of tech firms in the city away from their heartland towards Kings Cross following Google’s $1bn purchase of 2.4 acres of land within a major new development in the area. The new development may become a hothouse for technology companies in spite of the UK Government’s focus on promoting Tech City and surrounding areas in East London.  More →

Whatever the office of the future is, it should be there to serve people

Whatever the office of the future is, it should be there to serve people

Larkin BuildingFuturology is notoriously a mug’s game. Especially when it comes to making predictions about technology. Just ask Ken Olson, the founder of DEC who in 1977 pronounced that ‘there is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home’. Or Bill Gates himself who once claimed that Microsoft ‘will never make a 32 bit operating system’. But that shouldn’t make us blind to those predictions that we know will largely come true, not least those based on what we know is happening in the present. This is typified by research carried out by Cass Business School and Henley Business School and presented in a book called Future Work: How Businesses Can Adapt and Thrive in the New World of Work. It found that two-thirds of the 360 managers it surveyed believe that there would be a revolution in working practices over the coming decade. Ninety per cent said that staff were more productive when empowered to decide when and where and how to work.

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Cost cutting measures are on the agenda, but may prove risky

SawingTreeLimbHeisSittingOnThe latest Office for National Statistics figures released today which show that the UK economy has shrunk might suggest that firms need to cut costs as they try to weather the economic storm. This idea is given credence by a major study into the procurement strategies of organisations which found three quarters doing exactly that. However another study suggests that we may be approaching the point at which further cost-cutting measures will destabilise supply chains, making price reductions counter productive and exposing buyers to a greater degree of risk.   More →

The latest issue of Insight is now available to view online

If you don’t already subscribe to our weekly newsletter – Insight – please join the thousands of workplace professionals, facilities managers, real estate experts, suppliers, service providers, architects, designers and specifiers from a wide range of business sectors and around the world who do by filling out your name and email on the right. Or see the latest issue here.

Changes to Construction and Design Regs delayed

Proposed changes to the Construction and Design Management Regulations (CDM) 2007 have been delayed. The draft changes will now only be presented to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Board for consideration in March 2013 at the very earliest. The CDM regulations, apply to all construction work in the UK, comprising construction, alteration, fitting-out, commissioning, renovation, repair, upkeep, redecoration or other maintenance, decommissioning, demolition or dismantling, underwent a review last year, with industry practice found to have a significant influence on how the regulations are implemented. More →

The latest issue of Insight is now available to view online

If you don’t already subscribe to our weekly newsletter – Insight – please join the thousands of workplace professionals, facilities managers, real estate experts, suppliers, service providers, architects, designers and specifiers from around the world who do by filling out your name and email on the right. Or see the latest issue here.

Job fulfilment, not pay, motivates Generation Y talent

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Today’s 20-to-30-something workforce, representing the management class of the future, values job fulfilment over financial reward, according to research by the iOpener Institute, which analysed responses from over 18,000 professionals. The study shows that Generation Y, the digital cohort born after the early 1980s, are motivated to stay with their employer, and to actively recommend their organisation to friends, by the level to which they are fulfilled in their job, rather than their levels of pay. More →

The ABC of Architects – a short film

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What’s not to like about this cute and smart short animation from Andrea Stinga and Federico Gonzalez? Doubtless they’ll get earache from some people about who has been left out or included, but architects should think themselves lucky their work is recognised in the way it is. Most professionals only hear their name mentioned with any sort of passion when they screw up. The only problem with an ABC, of course, is that while Iannis Xenakis is a shoe-in, the compiler has to make choices between Gaudi and Gehry.

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