Web site of the week

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. It’s late,and if your department’s Christmas party hasn’t yet been organised you could befor the high jump. Fear not, this site could be your seasonal saviour. Head forthe “Find a Party” section, opt for “corporate” and then select other details,such as number of guests, type of venue (pub/bar/nightclub/dancefloor etc) andit will return a list of venues. We asked it to come up with a nightclub formore than 100 guests in the South West and it returned 17 reasonably good hits.It even has an on-line invitation facility to help you complete the task. And,if you want to pick up some party tips, it has 101 of them, beginning with“whatever you wear, wear it inside out”. Web site of the weekOn 12 Dec 2000 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. last_img read more

What is a disability?

first_imgWhat is a disability?On 30 Jan 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Abadeh,a telephone operator, suffered permanent hearing loss and tinnitus in his leftear after receiving a sudden, high-pitched noise through his headset. He alsodeveloped post traumatic stress disorder. Abadeh brought a disabilitydiscrimination claim and the tribunal had to establish whether Abadeh was”disabled” within the meaning of the Disability Discrimination Act. Thetribunal considered four medical reports, two for each of the parties. BT’sreports were prepared by M. The tribunal held that although Abadeh had animpairment which adversely affected his ability to carry out normal day-to-dayactivities the effects of the impairment were not substantial. Accordingly,Abadeh was not disabled. Abadehappealed. The EAT found that the tribunal had been over-influenced by M’sopinion and the matter was remitted to a fresh tribunal. Interestingly, the EATalso held that the effects of medical treatment (Abadeh’s ongoingpsychotherapy) should be taken into account if the medical evidence showed thatcontinuing treatment brought a permanent improvement. Abadehv British Telecommunications, IDS Brief 675, EAT Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Students’ site helps firms make the perfect match

first_imgStudents’ site helps firms make the perfect matchOn 9 May 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Most HR managers have had good and bad experiences of the student placementsystem. When the student fits in, works well and is given a full-time job at the endof it, the system has provided an effective and low-cost method of recruitment.But when the student doesn’t fit in or have the attributes to secure a jobafterwards, it can do more harm than good – the company has wasted time andresources and the student goes back to college telling his or her peers that heor she wouldn’t work for the company if you paid them. Four students from Manchester, however, are set to change the face of theplacement system via an Internet-based matching service, which will enable HRdepartments to target the right kind of students for their company. The ukplacements idea is based on a model they’ve seen in the US, wherebycompanies can potentially save $6,200 (£4,320) by recruiting undergraduatescompared to what it would cost to recruit them as a graduate. “When we were setting up our own placements we found it was difficultto find which companies offered which placements and corporate websites didn’tshow sufficient interest in this area,” says one of the founders, UsmanMalik, 22 who, like co-founders Adeel Quyoum, 21, and Shabir Ahmed, 25, haveyet to graduate from Salford University, having taken a year out after theirown placement to set-up and run the business. The fourth director, Mohsin Siddique, 21, has already graduated from Umistand did his placement at Kimberley Clark. At the end of 1999, they came up with the idea of a network that wouldfeature profiles of the kind of students the companies are looking for andwhich gave them the chance to match their abilities and desires with vacancies.They progressed the business plan and, despite the dotcom doom and gloom inthe second half of last year, impressed Carabiner Capital enough to get thebacking they needed. “We decided that rather than partner student websites, we’d go tocorporates and let them tap into the talent,” explains Malik, who addsthat it enables a company to target a good student two to three years inadvance. Revenue comes from a flat fee charged to the corporate, rather than aper-vacancy charge, and packages range from £3,000 to £10,000. Students sign upfor free. The service has been live since February, and firms including Accenture,Eaton Corporation and Fidelity Investment have already signed up. Accenture recruitment manager Helen Glasgow says she is impressed. “Youcould tell they’d really thought it through. We’ve signed up for a year,because I feel you’ve got to give it that long to analyse the results, butalready we’ve had quite a few CVs that have come via ukplacements.” Corporates can post news and updates on the site, so they can be in directcontact with the student community. Glasgow says, “We’re trying to broadenour reach because a lot of people think we’ll only be interested in students onbusiness or senior management-related courses, but Accenture recruits from anydegree, so it helps us get that message across. It’s also helping us build ourprofile in the IT and technology sector.” Usman believes this service will become increasingly significant in an ageof self-funded higher education. “Many students come out with debts of£4,000 plus, so they are looking to secure a job much earlier to get a returnon their investment. They’re also looking at the companies that they might liketo work for much earlier,” he says. At some point, Malik, Quyoum and Ahmed have to find time to go back touniversity, but they remain committed to the business, which has a natural fitin the age of e-HR and corporate websites. “I could certainly see it working at intranet-level,” says Usman.”Basically, we’ll listen, and do whatever firms want us to do.” Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Think-tank pondering personal traits

first_img Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Think-tank pondering personal traitsOn 1 Jun 2001 in Personnel Today Integratede-learning solutions provider Click2Learn is the latest to join a think-tankset up to drive research into the next generation of personalised interactivelearning.Theproject aims to pave the way for personalised learning experiences that adaptto the skills, knowledge and learning traits of individuals and groups. Aspart of the Customised Learning Experience Online (CLEO) Lab, Click2Learn willbe exploring the best ways of handling content in different learning modelsbased on the Scorm specification. Scorm – sharable content object referencemodel – is one of the learning models established by the e-learning standardsinitiative Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL). “TheCLEO Lab project is probably the most important research the e-learningindustry has ever undertaken,” said Claude Ostyn, Click2Learn’s senior learningsystems strategist. “It will accelerate the growth of a new generation ofe-learning technologies able to deliver increasingly personalised, interactiveand effective learning experiences,” he said.Othersin the group include Cisco, Microsoft, IBM and NETg.www.cleolab.org Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

NTL goes online to train staff in data protection

first_imgNTL goes online to train staff in data protectionOn 12 Jun 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Communications company NTL has cut costs dramatically in training staff ondata protection through an innovative online learning programme. NTL wanted to reduce the number of breaches of the Data Protection Act inthe company, which came into force in March 2000. It cost £25,000 to develop and implement, and took staff one-and-a-halfhours to complete. Instructor-led training would have taken half a day and costan estimated £800,000, claimed training consultant David Perring. All 20,000 staff spread over 1,000 sites have been obliged to take the testand had to attain a pass mark of 59 per cent. It has been a success with a 98per cent reduction in unauthorised rel-eases of personal data, according toPerring. Speaking at the e-learning conference in London last week, Perring said,”This is the simplest solution you could ever have used. If you can hold amouse and click you could do it.” Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Staff suffer stress on high workload

first_img One Response to Staff suffer stress on high workload Long hours and heavy workloads are making staff less productive andincreasing absence rates, claims research. Half of the 500 employees surveyed have suffered stress over the last 12months, and a quarter of staff have had time off as a result. The research, commissioned by the International Stress ManagementAssociation and Royal & SunAlliance, also reveals that over 40 per cent ofstaff who have suffered stress believe it has lowered their productivity. Too much work is the most common cause of stress, with other catalystsincluding deadline pressure, an unsupportive work environment and problems withmaintaining an acceptable work-life balance. Long hours are also a problem with a quarter of staff working more than fivedays a week and almost a third of these clocking up more than a 48-hour week. The research accuses employers of continuing to disregard the Working TimeDirective, with 54 per cent of people who work more than a five-day week doingso because their employer demands it. Professor Cary Cooper, president of ISMA and stress expert, commented,”Now we are going through an economic downturn, UK plc cannot afford poorproductivity. “Managing people effectively is fundamentally more important thanintroducing new technology.” www.isma.org.uk Can you please tell me the present scenario of stresses on Automobile drivers? Previous Article Next Article Gojen Thangjam 10 Feb 2014 at 9:31 am # Staff suffer stress on high workloadOn 6 Nov 2001 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Head to head

first_img Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. Head to headOn 6 Aug 2002 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. This week Vernon Everitt, HR director at the Financial Services Authorityand Norman Mitchinson, director of group HR at Lloyds TSB, compare notes ontheir careers1 What are your main responsibilities? VE In short, leadership. The FSA takes a strategic view of its peopleissues, covering everything from recruitment and retention to organisationaldevelopment and reward. We work very closely with the FSA’s business units tounderstand their needs and ensure our services help them to deliver theirbusiness objectives. NM My main responsibility is getting business value from all ourpeople, and giving personal value back. To do that, I take responsibility forthe direction of the bank’s HR strategies, systems and the delivery of HRservices in most parts of the bank. 2 What’s the pay like? VE While it’s true we can never compete with the higher levels of payin the industry, we offer a powerful package comprising competitive pay, aflexible benefits package and a performance-related bonus scheme. NM Our policy is to aim at market rates at all levels. I’mcomfortable with my pay and benefits package, but I’m keeping it to myself,thank you. 3 How flexible are the hours? VE Generally quite flexible, though much depends on the workload we haveon. We can also be flexible with work patterns and we have a number of staff –male and female – work flexibly. We are really interested in people who getthings done, rather than people who simply spend hours in the office. NM I work for an organisation that is committed to work-life balanceand I strive for it myself. I’m an early starter but I try to get away in goodtime, and I can rearrange my time to suit my work or my private life. My workis split between two main cities, which complicates life. 4 What do you like most about the job? VE The sheer scale of the challenge. There is an enormous amount forthe FSA to do, and the HR division has a pivotal role in helping to ensure thatwe deliver successfully. NM I work for an organisation that I’m proud of – that’s partly whyI’ve stayed. But as someone who only came into HR a few years ago, I’m alsodelighted with the quality of the people I work with and the business impactthat HR can have. 5 What are the challenges? VE We need to develop our staff into experts in identifying andmitigating risk. There is also a big communications exercise to be done topromote what an interesting and exciting place this is to work and how valuablea spell at the FSA is for a CV. NM Matching business needs with human needs is critical, and noteasy. Managing change is also a challenge. So is giving better value for money– and developing and retaining talent. 6 What is your biggest headache? VE Keeping a semblance of control over two young daughters. NM I don’t really have a headache of my own. Most of the things thatconcern me are well known to HR practitioners, and well rehearsed in thesepages! 7 What size is your team? VE Around 60. The management team consists of me plus seven others. NM I have 10 direct reports, but there are some 900 people in the HRgroup. 8 Who do you report to? VE Paul Boyle, the FSA’s chief operating officer. NM I report to Mike Fairey, deputy group chief executive, but I alsohave regular contact with the chairman, the group chief executive and otherboard members. 9 What qualifications do you have? VE I left school at 16 to join the Bank of England. It had a verygood training scheme, including a summer school to gain qualifications ineconomics. NM I have two banking qualifications: an FCIB and the FinancialStudies Diploma. I also have an LLB degree, and an MBA. All were gained duringemployment – I’m a believer in life-long learning, and gained my MBA in my 50s.10 What are your career aspirations? VE To be a success in my role as HR director at the FSA. Inparticular, I want to use my experience in regulation to maximise thecontribution of our HR professionals. NM My retirement date is only two years away, but I won’t be rottingafter that. I’ll be starting my second career, but haven’t yet finalised myplans. 11 What training and development opportunities are there? VE There are excellent management and technical trainingopportunities, and we encourage people to undertake a relevant industryqualification. Every member of staff works with their line manager to determinea personal development plan. NM The bank has the biggest corporate university in the UK and iteven has an accredited CIPD centre. Training and development is an integral partof my role, so there is no shortage of opportunities. 12 What is your holiday entitlement? VE A core minimum of 20 days and the opportunity to purchase afurther 15 through our flexible benefits scheme. NM 30 days a year. And I take it all. 13 What’s your work environment like? VE Friendly and supportive. There is a very commercial andprofessional feel to the FSA, not unlike that you would find in anyprofessional services firm. But there is also a clear appreciation that what wedo has a central public policy element to it. NM My time is spent between London and Bristol. I have a good officein London, and borrow a room in Bristol near to a lot of our HR people. 14 What other benefits do you get? VE The core package comprises a non-contributory pension scheme, lifeassurance, private medical insurance, permanent health insurance, a restaurant,a gym, and an interest-free season ticket loan. NM As a senior executive I get a bonus opportunity and share options,plus a car and medical care. Like most staff with the bank, I’m entitled to ouremployee share saving scheme and pension arrangements. 15 What’s the best part? VE Current and prospective staff tell us that they find the flexiblebenefits package particularly attractive. But I’m ashamed to say that I don’teven know where the entrance to the gym is. NM You are working with the most valuable resource a company has (OK,it has become a cliché, but it’s more true than ever); and as the corporatechampion of people issues you have the chance to influence people’s livespositively as well as the organisation itself. 16 How does your firm treat work-life balance? VE Pretty good – feedback from our staff survey indicates a highlevel of satisfaction with the work-life balance available here. We offer afull range of leave packages, including career breaks, and there is a widerange of sports and social activities available. NM We introduced work-life balance policies and practices into LloydsTSB in 1999, and they have proved very popular. Our chief executive, PeterEllwood, is also the chair of Employers for Work-Life Balance, an alliance of22 like-minded organisations. 17 Who do you envy? VE I don’t envy anyone, but my hero is unquestionably Lemmy of Motorhead.NM I admire people who take on difficult tasks and pioneer valuableoutcomes – Senator George Mitchell, for example. Vernon EverittHR director, Financial Services AuthorityJob at a glanceSize of team: 60Qualifications: Internal Bank of England trainingLeave: 20 days and the opportunity to purchase a further 15Best part: The sheer scale of the challengeCurriculum Vitae2002 HR director, FSA2000 Head of Press Office and Events, FSA1998 Head of Communications Infrastructure, FSA1996 Project manager at the Bank of EnglandNorman MitchinsonDirector of group HR, Lloyds TSBJob at a glanceSize of team: 900Qualifications: FCIB, Financial Studies Diploma, an LLB degree and an MBALeave: 30 daysBest part: Being proud of where I workCurriculum Vitae1998 Director of group HR, Lloyds TSB1996 Retail financial services director, Lloyds TSB HR1993 General manager, systems and support, Lloyds Bank1990 General manager, support and development, Lloyds Bank1988 Assistant general manager, Lloyds Bank branch IT projectlast_img read more

Keen on diversity management job

first_img Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Keen on diversity management jobOn 6 Aug 2002 in Personnel Today I am currently in a two-year traineeship in HR. I am very keen on the areaof diversity management and would like to pursue this as a career. Do you thinkit is a ‘career of tomorrow’? Any ideas as to how I should approach achievingmy goal? Peter Sell, joint managing director, DMS consultancy Your opportunities for working as a specialist in diversity are more limitedthan in other HR specialisms, but don’t let that put you off. Many of thelarger organisations, particularly public sector bodies, have specialistdiversity roles, and some have their own departments. You need to watch for job opportunities in the HR press and research theorganisations that interest you. Other ports of call are the professionalbodies, such as the CBI and CIPD, which undertake research and give advice ondiversity issues. Finally, look out for specialist consultancies that may have consultantroles providing support to organisations on diversity issues. Whether it is a ‘career for tomorrow’ is difficult to answer, but ifdiversity interests you then follow up on the possible opportunities. Victoria Wall, managing director, Victoria Wall Associates You are right; diversity management is a key issue at the moment, and couldpotentially become a fundamental specialist area within HR. I would recommendstudying for your CIPD qualification if you seriously want to pursue a careeras an expert in this area. ‘Diversity’ involves so many legal practices that an up-to-date knowledge ofchanging employment legislation will increase your credibility and credentials whenit comes to achieving your goal. Suzanne Taylor, consultant, Macmillan Davies Hodes l I would certainly agree this is a ‘career of tomorrow’, although notcurrently a specialism in vogue. While many organisations currently have nospecialist roles in this field, it is already an important area. It has beengiven a high profile in the public sector and large blue-chip employers arekeen for their workforce to fully reflect society, and this trend is likely tocontinue. Diversity is a core value of many companies, and they will have relatedtargets which HR or diversity specialists focus on. These will touch on allaspects of HR, from policy setting and development, to resourcing and branding.To fully contribute, you would be best developing a broad generalistbackground with a good understanding of employment law and equality issues. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

The rhetoric and the reality

first_img Comments are closed. HR is frequently chastised for spouting rhetoric. And it’s fair to say thatover the past few years a host of buzz words and key phrases have entered HR’svernacular that seem nothing more than euphemisms for bad practices. But evensome of the worst examples of rhetoric are spoken with the best of intentions.Here, we portray five examples of HR rhetoric and the employees’ take on it,and offer advice on how it could be given new meaning People AS assetsThe five words below were once described by Michael Hammer, whoco-wrote Re-engineering the Corporation, as “the biggest lie incontemporary business”, and by Lynda Gratton as a “truism not aclich‚”. In Ceridian Centrefile’s recent survey, The Demanding Society,Managing Work in 2010, three out of five senior HR people questioned admit thatemployers only pay lip service to the idea. The reality, according to thestudy, is that they are only talking about an elite few – the rest of theiremployees are expendable. If people are truly the only differentiator in acompetitive market though, then the mission for HR is to be appointed to boardpositions to ensure this piece of rhetoric becomes a reality. EmpowermentAll organisations like to think they have empowered theirworkforce and that creativity and initiative is flowing free, with the upshotof improved levels of service and productivity and a happier, motivatedworkforce. But it is not enough to merely tell people they are empowered. AsGuy Browning points out in his latest book Grass Roots Management, all toooften the movement has been driven by consultants and delivered by high-cost,low-impact, top-down initiatives. True empowerment, he believes, is all abouttrust. “If you really want them to take responsibility for growing theirpart of the business, then you need to trust them with something important…It’s about giving them the plans, the tools, the permission”, saysBrowning. But he adds it is also more about money. “When people know theyare being paid more for improving the business and managing their budgetsbetter, you’ll have the best of all possible worlds.”Corporate familiesFamilies trust each other, are nice to each other and lookafter one another. How many companies can claim to have engendered such an environment?The recent survey The Demanding Society, Managing Work in 2010 sadly highlightsthe basic mistrust that still exists between employer and employee. Nearly halfof all employees (45.2 per cent) say they can’t fully trust their employer andalmost the same amount again (44.3 per cent) say they never feel fullyappreciated at work. Yet many employees still say they would be attracted to anemployer that offered a job for life. This is increasingly hard to guaranteethat in today’s climate but there are a raft of benefits that the corporatefamily could extend to employees to earn loyalty and instil a sense of pride.These include giving them control over their working week to facilitate abetter work-life balance and ensure their job is meaningful.Risk takingThe famed Jack Welch once lost GE $1.2bn in a deal (havingbought 80 per cent of Kidder Peabody for $600m). In his leadership classes hebestows the merits of rewarding people for ‘taking a swing’ and says that ifthe chairman can buy Kidder Peabody, mess it up and still survive, you can doanything. If you’re Jack Welch you probably can, but for the rest of us, when abold initiative backfires it can mean a sudden halt on the career ladder (or atleast a few sideways shifts). The entire dotcom revolution was based on takinga risk, but it needed to happen and be experienced in order to lay thefoundations for a stronger e-business economy in the long run. Yes, there aremore casualties than survivors, but those who have hung on in there are muchstronger for their experience, lastminute.com’s Martha Lane Fox and BrentHoberman being the best cases in point.Embracing changeChange is scary because in business it is generally associatedwith activities such as downsizing and streamlining, with their inevitable jobcuts. The progress of technology has made us all more insecure about ’embracingchange’ and the desktop publishing revolution in the mid-1980s, which wiped outan entire industry over-night (typesetting), was technological change at itsmost brutal. But organisational change needn’t always be for the worse and inalmost all cases would benefit simply from better handling. So finds Robert Taylor in Britain’s World of Work – Myths andRealities, a report based on research by the Economic and Social ResearchCouncil, which says that the way employees are supported at work, especiallythrough change processes, needs to improve. Taylor points out the implicationsare clear. “If employees are going to co-operate in a positive and activemanner with the management of workplace change, they are going to need agreater sense of wellbeing, status and control over the work they perform.” The rhetoric and the realityOn 22 Oct 2002 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

… in brief

first_imgThis week’s news in briefPoor literacy skills One in five adults do not have the literacy or numeracy skills of mostchildren starting secondary school, according to a new report by the CBI andthe TUC. The report, Brushing up the basics, claims seven million adults havebasic skills difficulties – costing the UK economy about £10bn each year.  www.cbi.org.uk  www.tuc.org.ukUrgent action needed The Transport & General Workers’ Union says urgent action is needed bythe Government to end manufacturing job losses. T&G general secretary BillMorris said figures show that 10,000 manufacturing jobs a week have been lostover the last three months, and that the Information and Consultation Directiveshould be introduced immediately to help halt the slide.  www.tgwu.org.ukUnemployment falls New figures from the Office for National Statistics show the claimant counthas dropped by 4,500 to 940,500, leaving a jobless rate of 3.1 per cent.However, the Government’s preferred measure – The Labour Force Survey (LFS) –actually measured a rise in unemployment. LFS includes those out of work, butnot claiming benefits.  www.statistics.gov.ukNATS faces action The National Air Traffic Services is facing the threat of industrial actionafter executives received large bonuses despite problems within the service.Staff were unhappy to discover that a former deputy chairman and the CEOreceived payments after the move to new headquarters. NATS said any strikewould be wholly unjustified and the payments were part of a contractualagreement.  www.nats.co.ukDon’t miss out! Don’t miss an opportunity to attend the fifth Employers’ Law briefing inassociation with Allen & Overy. This one-day conference, held on 5 December2002 at the British Library, London, will focus on ‘managing incapacity’,approaching the challenges from legal, HR and occupational health perspectives.The issues for discussion will include disability discrimination, drugs andalcohol and stress. For further information about this event please contactJacqui Winn on 0208 652 3304 Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. … in briefOn 19 Nov 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more