Reducing red tape or increasing distrust – simplification of employment law

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From April this year, key changes will be made to employment law which on the surface are designed to make matters easier for employers and to reduce costs. Are we witnessing over simplification and building up issues for ourselves?  Let us examines some of the issues. Reduced Use of Lay Members In Unfair Dismissal Cases Employment Judges already sit alone in some cases – primarily in claims of unlawful pay deductions, disputes on redundancy payments and unpaid holiday pay. From […]

Employee Engagement or Re-engagement

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The need to engage with work forces to help drive the economy forward is receiving much attention. Many attempts have been made to define engagement (1) but put simply it is about connecting with employees and others associated with the organisation to produce an effective and customer focused firm that adapts successfully. Academic studies have concluded that there are certain characteristics present in engaged firms. However, the studies are not conclusive about whether those are the key causes or simply […]

Employing a Cost Effective Mix of Temporary Workers/Staff *

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Deciding by Fact or Fiction Do you have the right mix of temporary workers to meet your seasonal or fluctuating needs? Have you experienced a pressing need for temporary workers but none with the right skills/knowledge are to hand immediately? Over 54% of employers rely upon agency workers (1) for more than 12 week periods and that figure is much higher for temporary workers as a whole. However, senior managers have not considered a cost effective mix to respond to […]

Asking Interviewees about their Health/Disability

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Can managers ask job applicants about their health/disabilities to determine if an individual could carry out the job with reasonable adaptions? The Equality Act 2010 aims to prevent situations in which job applicants are ruled out purely on a cursory view that they may or may not have health issues. However, some managers have gone to the other extreme and said that such questions are not allowed until an individual is offered a job. Questions about health and disability may […]

Retirement Age Lives On

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How will you handle staff retirement planning in your workplace? From April 2011, the Government will remove the idea of a normal retirement age at which an employer can require staff to leave. Will that be a major problem for most employers? That is unlikely in view of the following points Sharing/discussing retirement plans is not discriminatory managers can still ask staff to share their retirement intentions with them to help the organisation plan for the future. many staff will […]

Harnessing the Living Entity in your Organisation *

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In companies and public service organisations, senior managers face similar challenges to raise performance and provide added value.  Their technology, markets, resources and context will differ but they will assert that their people are their most important asset but still struggle to optimize innovation and performance of their people.  In the turbulent months ahead, it is even more important to harness the living entities in your organisation not just to survive but to discover new ways of growing and adapting […]

Entitlement to request time off for training – motivating staff

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Employee surveys and other sources have shown that staff feel more committed to their organisation if they believe that opportunities for training are available to them. That is so even if individuals do not take up such training. One may think therefore that that the new right to request time off for training would have been more welcome but, due to its nature, it has attracted criticism as just being more red tape. Many employers do provide training that is […]

Reducing costs and maintaining key skills

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Managers have faced the need to contain or reduce costs for many years although the current economic climate has accentuated that for many.  The growing interest in innovative ways to reduce costs will be reviewed in this and subsequent articles over the next few months.  Many articles describe the ‘new’ approaches but omit to explain crucial building blocks for those to be successful. Perhaps the most common approach is to seek a pay freeze or even a pay cut.  That […]