Glaxo training saves time for managers

first_img Comments are closed. A programme to develop the leadership skills of team leaders atGlaxoSmithKline has helped save line managers’ time. The development programme, introduced in October 2000 at the firm’sMaidenhead site, has given team leaders increased responsibility for staff. Asif Khan, people development adviser at GSK, explained that team leaderscan now carry out risk assessments, appraisals, holiday and absence managementand disciplinary procedures, which were previously the responsibility offirst-line managers. The four- or five-week programme has been staggered over a 12-month periodand gives participants the chance to do work-based assignments. Khan said, “The terms are gapped so that staff can practise the skillsthey have learnt in the classroom.” So far, 30 team leaders and seven first-line managers have entered theprogramme. The programme has also helped save the company more than £500,000 by cuttingthe number of temporary workers at the site and redeploying permanent staff,depending on the demands of various production lines. Previous Article Next Article Glaxo training saves time for managersOn 11 Sep 2001 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Council’s tough measures cut employees’ sick leave

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Council’s tough measures cut employees’ sick leaveOn 18 Dec 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. A tough approach to sickness absence at the Royal Borough of Kensington andChelsea is saving the council half a million pounds a year. Figures released last week show that the council has cut the average dayslost to sickness from nearly 10 per person per year to eight in 2001. The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, which has an annual wage billof £100m, will not pay staff for days that they take off if they do not informtheir line manager that they will not be in by 10am. If a member of the council’s 2,800 staff takes 10 days off in 12 months theywill be called to an absence review meeting and will then be monitored for thenext three months. If the absence rate does not improve, a warning will be issued andultimately the employee can be sacked, although in its first year of operationno staff member has been. The council has also implemented preventative measures including healthscreening, fast-track access to a back pain clinic and a free flu jab. George Bishop, personnel director at the Royal Borough of Kensington andChelsea, said, “The balance of the hard and soft- edge policies has beenimportant. Trade unions agree with the procedure and the line managers havestuck to it. “This has meant no member of staff has pushed it, been stupid andforced us to take action.” last_img read more

Shell pumps e-learning to entire workforce

first_imgShell pumps e-learning to entire workforceOn 1 Mar 2002 in Auto-enrolment, Personnel Today Comments are closed. The entire workforce at Royal Dutch/Shell Group is to be given access to arange of IT, desktop computing and business and leadership courses. E-learning has already been used in a number of different divisions of Shell,such as the Exploration and Production division (training, October 2001) butthis will be the first time it has been made available to the global workforceof 81,000 employees. E-learning is being delivered by Shell People Services, which provides HRservices to Shell via an agreement through e-learning provider NETg and CardeanUniversity. Aberdeen-based Atlas Interactive has also been contracted toconvert a proportion of Shell’s existing training courses into Web-deliveredcontent. The e-learning can be accessed through the Internet and via the Shell OpenUniversity internal training portal. “Global training programmes of consistently high quality had beenalmost impossible to implement before e-learning,” says Paul Ratcliffe,e-learning consultant for Shell People Services. “Knowing that 81,000people now have access to this method of development is fantastic and we expectusage to be high, with more than 100 course enrolments already received. “We are promoting usage by creating close links between NETg andCardean material and development initiatives and competency frameworks in placeat Shell,” says Ratcliffe. NETg is providing the professional IT and desktop computing courses,including Microsoft Word and Excel software and professional certificationcourses in Cisco and Oracle. Cardean will offer business management andleadership courses and has developed programmes with leading business schoolsincluding the London School of Economics and Political Science and theUniversity of Chicago Graduate School of Business. www.netg.comwww.cardean.eduwww.atlasinteractive.com Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Making the grade

first_imgAsthe practice of forced ranking comes under the spotlight, Keith Rodgers findsthat it needs to be used with other measurement tools to be truly effectiveIf you’re in the bottom 5 per cent of performers at Siebel Systems, theSilicon Valley-based computer software company, you’d do well to start refreshingyour resumé. Every six months, using data aggregated from an ongoingperformance appraisal process, the company culls its lowest-ranking employees.Taking its lead from a process evangelised by Jack Welch, the former head ofGE, Siebel effectively forces its managers to face up to tough questions: whichemployees really add value to the organisation, and which are a drain? This process of ‘forced ranking’, adopted by a number of US companies, hascome under the spotlight over the last year as the economic downturn forcedcompanies to pay closer attention to their bottom-line costs. Criticised insome quarters for taking a mathematical approach to a complex human issue, inmany companies ranking is evolving into a highly sophisticated measurement activity,supported by a growing array of software tools and business processes. Moreimportantly, however, it’s now being viewed not as a standalone activity thatcan make or break individual careers, but as one part of an extensive HRportfolio that incorporates techniques such as competency profiling ande-learning. Carried out as an isolated management activity, forced ranking isonly as good as the metrics and management disciplines that underpin it: usedin association with other business measurement and workforce improvement tools,however, it offers organisations the chance to really leverage their humancapital assets. At a basic level, the processes behind forced ranking are deceptivelysimple. Each employee is set objectives against a specific timeframe: at theend of the period, they’re judged on a scale of one to five (or ‘a’ to ‘e’) asto how effectively they hit their targets. That ranking is used in both formalappraisal processes and to determine performance-related compensation. Inorganisations like GE, the data is also aggregated to provide a checklist ofwhich employees are failing to make the grade. In theory, by culling the bottomperformers, the company improves the average level of performance, raising thestakes for the rest of the workforce when the next review period comes round. In practice, however, the process is far from simple. To begin with, judgingemployees collectively assumes a level playing field that rarely exists.Managers in different departments may set objectives that vary widely in termsof how difficult they are to achieve, and measurement is rarely standardised.If two employees are told to improve their sales presentation skills, forexample, one may be judged merely on how they were ranked in a training session,another on whether they delivered a predetermined number of live presentationsand how the clients responded. Those are two different goals, and moreimportantly, two very different sets of measurement – one a formalised trainingprocess, the other a live sales scenario. The playing field is further distorted by market and geographic conditions.In customer-facing functions such as sales and marketing, the relativeperformance of individuals operating within the same division can be affectedby numerous regional factors: expand that on a multinational scale and thedifferences are greater still. Those variables have to be taken into account bymanagers as they set objectives, bringing a degree of individual autonomy to aprocess that theoretically should be standardised. Finally, the scientific framework that underlies forced ranking takes littleaccount of the realities of people management, a point stressed by Mark Geary,managing director of Hong Kong-based AsiaNet Consultants and a former senior HRexecutive at companies such as ICI, Ladbroke and Inchcape. He believes that thesystem can often be undermined because of the implications of poor ranking.”Most managers are loathe to rank people lower than ‘c’ because they don’twant to demotivate them,” he says. “Also, if the manager’s doing their job, they shouldn’t have to waitfor an appraisal system to see someone’s a ‘c’. And if they end up ratingsomeone as an ‘e’, what are they doing as a manager? That’s the weakness. Soyou end up tolerating under-performance. The whole area is a real can ofworms.” Proponents of forced ranking, however, argue that if the rightinfrastructure is put in place, many of these anomalies can be ironed out.Anthony Deighton, director of Siebel’s Employee Relationship Management (ERM)division in the US, argues that successful employee performance measurementrests on a combination of business processes and software tools, driven bywell-understood business objectives driven from the top down. Siebel, whichmarkets an ERM software suite built on the back of its own internal employeerelationship management applications, has established a top-to-bottom rankingprocess internally that includes a series of management checks and balances.Company-wide consistency in terms of the metrics deployed by managers isenforced through three processes – training and support from the HR department,executive review and load-balancing analytics that spotlight variances (seebelow). The fact that an employee is ranked low doesn’t necessarily reflect onthe manager, he argues – it may simply mean that an individual is in the wrongjob. More importantly, ranking also has to be seen in a wider context. Leavingaside negative attitudes, personality clashes and other “character”issues, the most common explanations for poor performance are that individualshave either been badly trained or that their skillsets don’t match therequirements of their role. By linking the appraisal procedure to learning,competency assessment and career development processes, organisations cantackle both the causes and effects of underachievement. Learning Management Systems, for example, provide the IT infrastructure forself-paced training and Internet-based virtual classrooms, and alloworganisations to monitor which individuals have taken which courses. Used inconjunction with other management tools, they can provide the basis for moreextensive performance analysis. Managers can link improvements in individualranking, for example, to the training courses undertaken by those employees,establish patterns and use that data to determine whether to extend thetraining programmes to other members of their team. There are caveats to thiskind of cause and effect analysis, of course. While there may be a correlationbetween sales staff who’ve gone on a particular training course and an increasein closed deals, the number of variables is high – on the one hand, the salesmay have closed anyway, on the other, failure to close a deal may reflect moreon the customer’s budgetary constraints than the quality of the sales pitch.That said, early adopters of this kind of HR analytics in the US argue that thecorrelations thrown forward have value simply in the fact that they raisequestions: finding the answers may require trial and error, but in many casesthose answers wouldn’t have been sought without the software application. AsDeighton argues, real value comes when analytics are translated into action: ifa specific training course appears to be achieving results, roll it outelsewhere and validate the proposition. “You need an organisationalculture which allows people the flexibility to make changes, where they cantest different things – you can’t create a culture where people are so scaredto act that they can’t do anything.” The training data that’s gleaned from Learning Management Systems also formpart of the information set needed to build competency profiles, which againlink back to the appraisal process. Typically, organisations define at a broadlevel the skillsets or profiles required for particular generic roles – theseare then customised by local managers for the specific requirements of thepositions in their department. The skillsets of the employees that fill eachpost are then matched against the checklist of requirements, highlightingdisparities in competency levels and providing guidelines for future trainingprogrammes, recruitment needs and career development. Populating the initialprofile database can be a daunting task – one US mobile telephone operatorestimates that it would take two people six months to build the templatesrequired for a 34,000-strong workforce. But the implementation timescales canbe radically reduced if employees are encouraged to build their own skillsprofiles, monitored by their line of business manager – that typically requiresan internet-based IT infrastructure that gives controlled access to relevantparts of the central competency database. Organisations like Hewlett-Packard,the Silicon Valley-based IT systems and services company, have already rolledout this kind of competency profiling system to its most senior employees,covering some 10 per cent of its total workforce (see web feature). While profiling has clear value at an individual level, the aggregate data isalso critical for gap analysis and workforce planning, providing seniormanagement with an understanding of organisational weaknesses and an insightinto the company’s capacity to expand its business or move into new markets.Again, if the competency management process is linked to a forced rankingsystem, the data will reflects not only skillsets, but also how effectivelyemployees’ deploy those skills in their day-to-day roles. As each element ofthe HR function is integrated in this way, the combined value of the analyticaloutput increases exponentially. Ultimately, this integrated approach to employee management extends beyondthe HR function and reaches right to the heart of business performancemeasurement. “The appraisal isn’t something that takes place on an annualbasis – it should be continuous,” argues Geary. “Do it the simple way– you don’t need to do a full, big review which takes an hour or two perindividual – but you should be doing a 15 minute review of the objectives thatforms part of the quarterly business review. It’s people that deliver on thecompany goals. Business performance consists of financial and peopleperformance, and the two need to go hand-in-hand.” Case studySiebel: forcing the issuesSiebel Systems, the US-based developerof customer and employee management software, has built its forced rankingsystem on the back of corporate objectives that cascade down from the top ofthe company. On the first day of each quarter, chairman and CEO Tom Siebelpublishes his corporate objectives, generated from an off-site executivemeeting. By day three, senior managers will have reviewed the objectives andcreated their own targets for their specific divisions. By day 15, all 8,000employees of the company will have created their own sets of objectives inconjunction with their managers. According to Anthony Deighton, director ofSiebel Employee Relationship Management (ERM), these objectives are reviewed ona frequent basis through the quarter at both an individual and team level.At the end of the quarter, employees write a self-assessment,and discuss how effectively they hit target with their line manager – theirperformance is measured against each objective, culminating in a one to fiveoverall ranking. Managers have the ability to override the automated rankingcalculation to take into account specific factors that may have influencedperformance, such as extended sickness.In addition to the formal ranking, the review also covers arange of other factors, including soft measures that are not objective-based.Siebel employs three techniques to ensure the ranking processis carried out as consistently as possible across the company. The HR department supplies relevant  documentation, web-based training and an employee helpdesk in aneffort to standardise objectives and measurement techniques. Additionally, allobjectives are reviewed by the next layer of management. Finally, the company’sERM software generates a ratings and distribution report, which highlightsbands and trends.”If someone has given everybody five, you make themjustify it,” says Deighton. “If the manager sees something is skewed,they can drill down, see details and reject a review.”This ranking system forms the basis of Siebel’s six-monthly‘cull’ of the bottom 5 per cent of employees.”We do the analytics, get the names, and then go andinterview them to find out if this is the right 5 per cent, or if there is adifferent set,” says Deighton. “This is not maths, it is people’slives – that 5 per cent is a blurred boundary.”Although the process may seem ruthless, Deighton argues that itis ultimately constructive. Few people who fail to make the grade are ‘bad’employees – maybe one-quarter or half a per cent of an organisation, hebelieves. Most of them, however, are simply in the wrong job for theirskillsets – and it may be there is no suitable alternative opening within theorganisation.”There has always got to be a bottom performer. You areforcing managers to think about their people – who is more of a drain than aplus? It is certainly seen as positive by the people who remain. If you do notdo it, the star performers will get frustrated and leave.” Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Making the gradeOn 2 Apr 2002 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more

Football used as model of best practice in training sessions

first_imgcommentsource of inspiration or an own goal?Where do you turn for fresh ideas to either pep-up a training session or dissect as a model of best practice? A trend which seems to be accelerating this summer is sport.World Cup fever will have waned as you read this, but attention will no doubt be focus-sed on Wimbledon or the impending Common-wealth Games, and sporting metaphors will continue to resonate throughout our working lives.On page 37, we attempt to kick-off (all puns intended) a debate on the extent to which these analogies are useful. We felt prompted to do this because an element of danger lies ahead – with the current upsurge of interest in coaching, there is a strong temptation to blur the boundaries between business and sports coaches. But they do need to be kept separate, particularly if the traditional view of a coach who yells from the touchline rears its head.Coaching in a business setting is more likely to succeed if the coach is metaphorically jogging alongside, issuing words of encouragement. But what do you think? I am interested to know your thoughts. Ian Lawson, training director of Lyreco, tells me that he favours rowing imagery drawn from the Oxford/Cambridge boat race because those races imply “not just passion and energy but also planning and co-ordination”.As this is the last issue until September, we are indulging in a light-hearted competition and inviting you to e-mail your top five motivational phrases or images, or those five sporting phrases which you think are a definite turn-off in the workplace. Send them by 2 August to the e-mail address below. We will publish the best and award the most champion effort with a bottle of bubbly.Stephanie Sparrow, [email protected] Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Football used as model of best practice in training sessionsOn 1 Jul 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

Five phases of good redundancy mangement

first_imgAlthough redundancy will always be an uncomfortable experience for everyoneinvolved, effective management can smooth the process and, in some instances,can remove the need for redundancies altogether. Sylvia Crossley reportsRedundancy is never an event that anyone wishes to manage. However, as soonas it appears on the horizon, it’s time to take action and start working ondamage limitation for those who may be affected, the company, and the remainingstaff. Good redundancy management should begin when the initial warning signs ofpotential redundancies come to light. Early attention can sometimes fend offthreatened redundancies altogether. Phase 1: Change management The reasons for threatened redundancies are many and varied. It may be dueto a market downturn, a company merger, falling profits, a cash flow crisis,outsourcing or the loss of a major contract. What these situations have in common is that each requires swift attentionand will lead to some form of change management before the redundancies aredecided. All the procedures and principals of good change management willapply. Strategies will need to be revisited, trends must be carefullymonitored, new plans need to be drawn up, and above all, people will need to bekept informed. Where a collective redundancy situation (20 or more staff to be maderedundant) is feared, staff representatives must be consulted within thestatutory time frame. However, explaining the situation early on to employeesis good practice, regardless of the numbers affected, and has a variety ofbenefits. It: – Gives you control over what, when and, most importantly, how informationis put across – Avoids damaging rumours and innuendo – Rallies support for change and unites staff and senior management in acommon fight for survival – Provides an opportunity for ‘grass-roots’ staff to offer cost-cutting andefficiency suggestions – Makes any subsequent efficiency and/or cost-cutting measures morepalatable – Lessens the shock and reaction if and when redundancies do have to be made– Fosters an environment of honesty, trust and respect Clearly, communicating this information to staff must be carefully managedand controlled to avoid any additional damage to the company, or panic amongthe workers. However, there are many success stories from companies who haveinvolved their staff members, including voluntary pay cuts initiated by staffmembers. Peer pressure is far more compelling and effective than managementultimatums, however couched. Phase 2: Minimising redundancies Having developed an outline plan in consultation with all the pertinentmanagers and operatives, if redundancies are required, the next phase involvescarefully examining all avenues for minimising redundancies and their damagingeffects. Of all the changes that can occur in the workplace, redundancy createsthe most negative response. Minimising the job cuts and being seen to be makingevery effort to avoid them altogether is crucial. The avenues open to you willvary according to the size, situation, and nature of the business, of course,but the following have all been used successfully by a variety of companies: – Re-evaluating working hours – leading to greater flexibility on a weekly,monthly or annual basis – Retraining – leading to redeployment in other areas of the business – Job sharing schemes – Moves to part-time working (temporary or permanent). Cost savings herereceived a boost in the recent budget – Temporary sabbaticals or agreed leave of absence (paid or unpaid) – Early retirement, natural wastage and voluntary redundancies – Recruitment freezes (this needs careful management to ensure key positionsare covered) – Voluntary pay cuts Once again, an honest and open approach not only reduces the sometimesdevastating effect on the staff, but also pays dividends to the management andsuccess of the plans for recovery, streamlining or downsizing. Key staffmembers are far more likely to stay and weather the storm if an environment oftrust and openness is nurtured. Those in positions that are critical to thebusiness should be reassured that their positions are not, and will not be, injeopardy, as early as possible in the process. Phase 3: Selecting the jobs to be cut and notifying the individuals Having ascertained that some redundancies are inevitable, informing theworkforce first is paramount. The worst thing that can happen is for youremployees to discover they may face redundancy from rumours, outsiders or themedia, even when all the redundancies are expected to be voluntary. Having worked through phases one and two, care and attention must be givento selecting the positions and people to be made redundant. Check the currentlegislation on your consultation and notification obligations. Regardless oflegal obligations, each position deserves to be given individual consideration.Consider whether the position will be needed again in the near future, how thework will be dispersed, and what the impact will be on others in a similarposition. If you are reducing the number of people in the same or similarroles, draw up a checklist with set criteria to determine equitably whichpositions should be selected. Care and empathy is essential when notifying the individuals at risk. Evenwhen generous redundancy packages are involved, this can still be a devastatingblow and poses a real threat to the recipient’s livelihood. Look into eachindividual’s personal situation beforehand so that you have some understandingof the problems they may face. Try to get a good feel for all the pertinentproblems and issues so you can aim to provide appropriate support, eitherthrough an outplacement service or directly. Explain the process and procedurecarefully to them in person, and follow this up in a letter. It is advisable to have a short consultation period to allow the individualsat risk to put their case. However, this should not be included for cosmeticpurposes only. Consultation periods can and do work. At visual displaymanufacturer SEOS the company found itself in a position where it had to make15 people redundant. By consulting with the staff, that number was reduced to13. Personnel manager Fanny Bradbury also invited all the non-affected membersof staff to comment, and this wider consultation, while not a legal obligationas less than 20 employees were affected, paid dividends all round. “Thisproves that the consultation period does work,” says Bradbury.”Communication is the key.” Phase 4: Managing the people out Redundancy can be one of the most stressful life experiences. Those affectedare likely to be ill-equipped for positioning themselves in the job market andoften feel confused, isolated, angry and afraid. Finding another position is afull-time occupation, the complexity of which is rarely fully appreciated. Agood company will endeavour to provide support and assistance to cushion theblow and help their people to make the transition. An appropriate outplacement service is a big advantage. Studies show that anexternal outplacement service is better received and far more effective thanany in-house measures. In addition, it provides the ‘spoonful of sugar’ to helptake away the ‘bad taste’, and makes the task of imparting bad news less odiousfor the managers. A good outplacement consultant will work with the companythrough all the phases detailed above if required, providing suggestions,alternatives and pulling together a programme appropriate to the needs of theindividuals. When selecting an outplacement service, consider the following: – Location – some companies require the delegates to attend their premises,others will bring the service to you. The latter can also be housed at a nearbyconference centre if desired. – Price – an outplacement service is generally most needed when the companyfeels it can least afford it. However, price need not be prohibitive; there arewide variations and many companies have a flexible approach and will suggestviable solutions to fit your budget – but watch out for hidden costs. – Timing – the service needs to be provided at the right time for you andyour people. If you have left it a little late, don’t be fobbed off with bogusreasons as to why it would be in your interests to delay to a time which suitsthem. Try elsewhere. – Quality – the service needs to be ‘fit for purpose’. When contacting aprospective company, ask to speak with one of the consultants, not just thesales staff. They should try to understand your situation and needs rather thanpush to sell you the service. If possible, ask to see the manual. This is avaluable tool for the delegates, and a good indicator of the content andquality of the programme. Support normally continues for some time after yourcontact has ceased, so check whether this service is also provided. – People – most outplacement consultants are empathetic and experienced, butof course, there are good ones and bad. Try to speak with the consultants whowill be assigned to your organisation, by telephone or in person. Prepare a fewquestions and informally ‘interview’ them. If you cannot provide anoutplacement service, you may be able to provide some local support throughappropriate agencies and companies such as the local job centre, careersadvisers, the Citizens Advice Bureau, financial consultants, and so on. It isalso worth contacting local companies in the same business to see whether theyhave any unadvertised opportunities. Phase 5: Managing the people who remain Having provided support and assistance to those directly affected, you mustturn your attentions to those indirectly affected. In varying degrees, thisincludes all the members of the workforce. By implementing redundancies, youwill have inadvertently sown the seeds of doubt about the security of their ownpositions. Once again, good communication is essential. You need to ensure thatyour rising stars and major players do not lose face and change their focus ofattention to the job market, rather than the task in hand. Those who remain needto feel confident that the crisis is over and the company is doing all it canto avoid any further redundancies. As redundant staff leave, they often leave gaping holes. Where a friendlycolleague sat, there is now an empty desk and chair; tasks will be leftownerless; the old manager may be replaced by an unknown and more distant one.The empty void and confusion is exacerbated when senior management are hiddenaway in meetings at a time when their visibility is most critical. In your initial planning, make absolutely sure that you have includedmeasures to cover this period. Managers should spend time at the ‘coal-face’ toensure that: – Remaining staff are not overloaded with work – They understand the need for the staff cuts that have been made and feelthe situation has been managed fairly – The implementation of any time and cost-saving measures is going smoothly – The most talented staff do not feel insecure and leave – Any grievances or concerns can be aired and dealt with – Remaining staff feel visible and valued Once your head is above the water again, think about how you can show yourappreciation to the loyal staff who helped to carry the company through. Thereare a number of ways this can be achieved, but one that provides benefits allround is executive or career coaching. Offered to nominated staff, or the top10 performers, it also provides a useful incentive scheme. Managing redundancy is never easy. Managing to avoid redundancy can be evenharder. However, the adverse effects can be substantially reduced through: goodcommunication; timely intervention; careful analysis and planning; effectiveconsultation with your people; sensitivity in approach; appropriate support andassistance, and good aftercare. More than a third of the companies voted intothis year’s Sunday Times 100 Best Companies To Work For needed to makeredundancies during the past 12 months. For both companies and individuals,good redundancy management can turn a crisis into an opportunity. Sylvia Crossley is principal consultant, RMS International www.rms-international.com Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Five phases of good redundancy mangementOn 18 Mar 2003 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Skills shortages hinders call centre growth in UK

first_imgTheeffectiveness and future growth of the UK’s call centre workforce is beingundermined by severe skills shortages and ongoing recruitment problems.Theskills issue has become so problematic that around 32 per cent of call centre stafflack the level of competence required to meet business objectives.Datagathered from more than 800 UK centres shows competitiveness is also sufferingbecause of a lack of staff, with 35 per cent reporting unfilled vacancies.Thedifficulties could be compounded further as the sector is expected to grow,with 43 per cent of call centre operations anticipating a need for more staffand 11 per cent complaining of recruitment difficulties.Theresearch, conducted by the e-skills UK Sector Skills Council for IT, telecomsand contact centres, shows the industry now employs more than 867,000 people,which equates to 3.1 per cent of the UK workforce.AndrewPalmer, sector lead for contact centres at e-skills UK, said employers shouldincrease training and development to make call centres more attractive toemployees.”Wemust focus on ensuring the workforce has the right skills, drive and motivationto deliver exceptional levels of customer service and to be competitive,”he added.Thestudy reveals that many HR departments in the sector are already committed tofurther training with 24 per cent planning to increase spending on staffdevelopment.E-SkillsUK has developed the Contact Centre and Career and Skill Framework to enablecontact centres to manage and develop their workforce’s skills.ByRoss Wighamwww.e-skills.comHRfactfileCallcentre workforce facts–51 per cent of staff are under 34 years of age, compared to the UK average of34 per cent–72 per cent work full-time–56 per cent are female–35 per cent of staff are based in the North of EnglandSource:e-skills UK Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Skills shortages hinders call centre growth in UKOn 3 Jun 2003 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

Warning against complacency as work deaths dip

first_imgThenumber of workers killed in accidents at work has dropped by 10 per cent overthe past 12 months, according to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).Newfigures show the number of people fatally injured while at work has fallen from251 in 2001-02 to 226 in 2002-03. The actual rate of fatal injuries also fell,by around 10 per cent to 0.79 per hundred thousand, compared to 0.88 in2001-02. However,figures still remain at similar levels to those three years ago, after amassive 30 per cent increase in deaths at work in 2000-01 and a steady declinein the following three years.Fallsfrom height, being struck by a moving vehicle and getting hit by fallingobjects continue to be the most common kinds of accidents, accounting for 53per cent of fatal injuries at work.BillCallaghan, chair of the Health and Safety Commission, welcomed the figures butwarned against complacency. “The statistics give us some grounds foroptimism. It is encouraging but 226 deaths also represents continuing failure.Worker fatalities are a blemish on a civilised society,” he said.Mostsectors managed to reduce the number of deaths, with the exception of theservice industry where 75 workers were killed, compared to 70 in the last setof figures.Theservice industry has the worst statistical record followed by construction with71 deaths, manufacturing with 41 and agriculture with 36 fatalities.www.hse.gov.uk Warning against complacency as work deaths dipOn 5 Aug 2003 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Aussie cities offer easier way of life for expatriates

first_imgAussie cities offer easier way of life for expatriatesOn 17 Feb 2004 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Melbourne, Vancouver and Vienna are the easiest cities in the world forexpatriates to live in, according to the latest hardship survey by theEconomist Intelligence Unit. Port Moresby, capital of Papua New Guinea, has again been branded the worstplace to live. The biggest climber in the chart was Hong Kong, rising 11 places in theranking, thanks to a 2 per cent rise in living standards. The war in Iraq saw neighbouring Kuwait fall furthest in the rankings – down10 places – although Harare suffered the greatest actual drop in livingstandards as a result of ongoing political unrest. The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Hardship Rating, which is part of theWorldwide Cost of Living Survey, assesses conditions for expatriates in 130cities around the world by looking at 12 factors grouped into three categories:health and safety; culture and environment; and infrastructure. Australian and Canadian cities feature prominently at the top of therankings, with five of the Australian cities surveyed appearing in the top 10. http://wcol.eiu.com Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more

PersonnelToday.com is revamped, revved up and ready to roll today

first_img Comments are closed. PersonnelToday.com relaunches today. With the help of the latest technology, the website is now faster and easier to use.Look out for these great changes:– A faster, more powerful search engine – find exactly what you’re looking for from more than 20,000 pages of information– A new networking service– Case round-up section – keep up-to-date with the latest developments in employment law– More careers information– All of Personnel Today’s popular ‘How to…’ guides together for the first time– Add your own comments to stories and features– Online FAQs to help you make the best of the site– Guru online!For jobseekers, PersonnelTodayJobs.com has been given a complete overhaul. Now you can:– Access more specific job locations, making it much easier to find local jobs– Specify salaries– Save personal searches– Enjoy a more user-friendly online CV function.You can also enter our two online competitions. See the boxes below and above for more details.For a demonstration of the new site, visit our stand, B96, at the CIPD Annual Conference & Exhibition in Harrogate on the 27-29 October.Our online servicespersonneltoday.com: Check out the latest features exclusive to PersonnelToday.com –Are references really worth the paper they are written on? www.personneltoday.com/26163.articleWhere is the dividing line between legitimate business expenses and unjustifiable excess?www.personneltoday.com/26165.articleThroughout November, XpertHR will publish a series of practical articles on the subject of violence in the workplace, covering the issue from prevention through to dealing with the aftermath of an attack. This follows a set of articles giving guidance on the employment of foreign workers published during October.Beverly Shears, HR director at South West Trains, is among the senior HR professionals sharing their knowledge and networking through the site’s notice board.PersonnelTodayJobs.com is about to launch its new job module. The improved site will allow candidates to search for jobs more effectively. Advertisers will be able to load their own jobs and make their own edits, and they will also be able to monitor the amount of times a job has been viewed.For a demonstration, please visit our stand B40 at the CIPD Annual Conference in Harrogate, or for more information, call Louise Rees on 020 8652 8103.Check out all the latest jobs in HR at www.personneltodayjobs.comWeblinksHR Directors Club: For more information on how to become a member of the HR Directors Club and a chance to network online with other senior HR leaders, go to www.hrdirectorsclub.com/about/PersonnelToday.com DIRECT: Sign up for our free weekly e-mail newsletter at www.personneltoday.com/directPublications round-upEarlier this year, the readers of Training Magazine joined with HR professionals from the US to participate in an in-depth survey of the use of blended learning. You can read a full analysis of the results and their implications in the next edition of Training Magazine, out on 16 November.Also in this issue, we find out which motor manufacturer spends the most on training and why, and kickstart our new series on maximising the benefits of coaching at work.The One Stop Guide to Managing Reward is now available, written by Mark Childs, director of the consultancy Outset and vice-president of reward for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). Childs also developed the CIPD’s Advanced Certificate in Rewards Management.This Personnel Today Management Resources guide looks at how to develop pay programmes that support and reinforce business objectives.For a copy, e-mail [email protected], or call 01371 810 433. Price 75.A growing number of employers are offering staff complementary therapy treatments. In the November issue of Occupational Health, we take a look at the leading therapies, and ask whether they do any good.The November issue also includes a report from the Mid Downs OH conference, and we assess the likely impact of NHS plans to claim back the costs of injuries and ill health caused by work from employers.What effects are progressive working-time laws having on the UK’s health services? Find out in a special industry focus in next month’s Employers’ Law. We will also be looking at what you need to know about monitoring your employees’ internet use, and what the UK can learn from age discrimination cases in Ireland.Our eventsVisit Personnel Today at stand B96CIPD Annual Conference & Exhibition27-29 October, Harrogate020 8263 3323www.cipd.co.uk/cande/anconf.htmBreakfast briefingsHR Directors ClubGuest speaker Brendan Barber.16 November, The Orangery, Kensington Palacewww.hrdirectors club.com/events ConferencesHR Strategy Conference,18-19 November, LondonIRS in association with Personnel TodayCall 0207 347 3500 PersonnelToday.com is revamped, revved up and ready to roll todayOn 26 Oct 2004 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more