Can flexible benefits help SMEs improve their “employee proposition” in a war for talent?

The recent article on People Management website (08/08/12) stipulated that flexible benefits are becoming a norm. Although a norm in larger organisations smaller businesses have also begun to recognise the merits of so called “flex”. I remember trying to source a suitable online flex portal and a flex administrator about 4 years ago when I was implementing a new benefits scheme at a successful small business. When speaking to suppliers I was told time after time: our solutions do not fit SMEs. We were a bit ahead of the time on that occasion but a year later we managed to find a provider who...

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Global job market: the old new thing

The global job market is not a new idea. Globalisation brought with it a new category of employee: a highly skilled professional, with an excellent command of English (possibly other languages as well) and a willingness to work in any location needed. Bigger cities all over the world have thriving expat communities (actually a great portion of them being British nationals). People move around the world freely for business or leisure purposes and it is not a problem nowadays to easily transit the globe. But, have you ever thought of a global job market, which does not involve any travel at...

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Let’s help the economy recover: six alternatives to compulsory job losses

The past few years have seen unprecedented job losses. News about job cuts has become a regular feature in the media. Nearly everyone has been affected by redundancies in one way or another. Born of the recession, job losses have the unfortunate propensity of making the recession worse. Less disposable income of the unemployed means less money in the system for business – a self-perpetuating circle of a slagging recovery. Despite the first signs of spring, the economic climate remains uncertain and some businesses may still be considering redundancies. The purpose of this blog post is...

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Traditional management is costly and time consuming. Is self-management an alternative?

Middle management executes the company’s business plan. Its main function is to ensure: • the Key Performance Indicators for the department are met; • company’s expectations in terms of people skills and behaviours are met; • people in the team feel they are being treated well and given opportunities to learn and progress. This is not in the interest of increasing manager’s popularity amongst staff but in order to prevent talent from getting a job with a competitor or disengaging. However, it has been increasingly difficult for middle managers to fulfil all of these expectations. They have...

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Are the days of office based 9:00 to 5:00 over?

In the YouGov survey of almost 1200 working adults, 27 per cent of those aged between 45 and 54 complained that their employers gave staff with family responsibilities preferential treatment when it comes to flexible working requests. Goes to show that quite a few of us would appreciate a few less hours in the office in exchange for less pay or an option to work remotely. Why don’t employers offer flexible working to all staff then? My experience shows that a great deal of employers are afraid they would not be able to meet customer demands and work as efficiently should work patterns differ...

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Are share schemes ineffective?

Using shares in reward aims at taking a more holistic view of an organisation’s “value” rather than using a one- dimensional criterion of profit increase or a specific performance metric. However, basing rewards on shares has its drawbacks. With the share prices volatile in the current economic climate, any future pay out looks rather unpredictable. That may explain why the study of 1,100 executives by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the London School of Economics found that the majority would rather have money in cash than up to 3 times that cash, paid into a deferred bonus scheme using shares!...

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