Don’t let Summer impact productivity…

Well the holiday season is well and truly underway and workers across the country are looking forward to a bit of well-deserved time away from their desks, or maybe they have just returned from holiday and their heads are still on a sandy beach somewhere sipping margaritas!

However, whilst many people will be worrying about how much they can squeeze into their luggage allowance and whether last year’s swimwear still fits, many business owners will have more pressing concerns;  how to ensure that the summer season doesn’t have a negative impact on productivity?

As always, we’re here to help with some practical suggestions. Read on to find out more about what you can do to ensure that you’re doing all you can to avoid any problems.

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Organise the holiday rota in advance

If you find yourself in a situation whereby 50% of your employees are off at the same time, it’s quite likely that you’re going to run into difficulties and those employees who are in the office will be struggling to cover their teammates’ absences and keep up with demand.  We have just the software to help with this, breathhr, simplify and automate your people management, to find out more click here.

Obviously, it might be a bit late to get this sorted out for this year, but it’s definitely worth taking the time to think about how you’ll approach the working calendar next summer. As well, it won’t be long before you’ll have to start thinking about how you’ll manage your employees over the Christmas period, so you can probably take away some very important lessons.

Bring the summer feeling to your office

When the weather’s warmer and there are – let’s face it – many other things that your employees would rather be doing than sitting in the office, it could be worthwhile to think about how you can raise spirits and inject a bit of oomph back into proceedings. If some members of staff are away on holiday, you can ensure that those who are left behind aren’t feeling deflated and demotivated.

Your approach here needn’t cost you a fortune, and there are many options for you to choose from. Could you get in touch with a local ice cream seller and have them come round your workplace with some cool treats, paid for by you? Could you contact a nearby personal trainer and ask them to lead an outdoor workout for your employees? Small gestures can make a big difference difference.

Give your HR processes an overhaul

It’s natural that there will be certain times of the year when you notice a change in productivity. Sometimes, slight fluctuations are unavoidable, and you need to simply do all you can to minimise the impact. If reduced productivity has become a longstanding problem though, it’s time to address the reasons why, and do something about it.

Your people processes and procedures will often provide you with clues, and they can also be the remedy. Is your business suffering as a result of poor management practices? Are you using outdated systems? Are your employees dissatisfied with certain aspects of their roles, or the way in which the business is being operated?

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An overall HR health-check/Audit could be exactly what you need to start making some positive changes. We’d be delighted to have an initial chat with you about how we could help, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

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Why you should consider an outsourced HR consultancy for your recruitment needs

Our expert HR team here at HR Revolution knows what makes your business tick, we take time to understand your company culture and what it takes to succeed in your business, so when we begin to work on your talent solution – including recruitment and talent attraction advice, we will deliver the talent you need.

Our Talent Solutions work seamlessly alongside our HR solutions – so it’s a smooth process for all.

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Unlike other recruitment agents, HR Revolution offer bespoke talent solutions, which are flexible and can comprise of whichever parts of the solution you need. This can include writing your job description, designing your advert, helping to evaluate how you look online and advice on how you communicate with passive talent. We can then source and interview your next hire, and carry out all of the necessary checks and assessments so we know they are the right person for the role, saving you time and money.

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The HR Revolution talent team work alongside our HR team (literally, we are all in the same office!) so we are in constant communication and can therefore seamlessly gather information on team structures, company benefits and working hours so that we know what to include on the job description.

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Once the talent team find your new employee we loop the HR team in so they have all the necessary details to send them across an offer letter, contract of employment and to on-board them. It’s that simple, we cover all of your recruitment and HR needs within one expert, tight-knit team.

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We offer our talent solutions as one off projects to clients who aren’t already a retained HR client, so if you would like to discuss how we can help get in touch, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

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The worst excuses for absence…

Did any of your employees call in sick yesterday?

It was Monday after all, meaning a few employees may have overindulged on the sunny weekend, then perhaps feigned a summer cough or cold!! This is not unheard of, but there are some excuses which are so excessive and exaggerated that you can’t help but laugh at the absurdity of it.

Here are five of the worst excuses for absences that we have heard!!

1. My only pair of work trousers are in the wash.

2. I stayed out too late partying last night and haven’t had any sleep

3. I got arrested.

4. I’m too drunk to drive.

5. I have no way to get to work.

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According to research Desk.co.uk, who asked 2,088 employees before the last Bank Holiday weekend if they would consider telling a few “white lies” to avoid a day at work.  Of those questioned 27% said they were hoping to sneak an extra day off!

As an employer you are perfectly entitled to challenge the authenticity of an absence; if an excuse seems too far fetched then ask for evidence if appropriate.  If you notice a pattern emerging then you should speak to the employee about their poor attendance and take proactive steps to action it.

The view of HR professionals, prevention is nearly always better than cure when dealing with sickness and absence.

Here are our tops tips to consider if you have a “sickie” culture in your business.

Offer working from home options – Maybe an employee has used a sick day to care for a child during the school holidays? If you offered the chance to work from home, employees could still get on with their job while keeping an eye on child, this also allows employees to avoid a hot, sweaty commute which might be putting them off coming in.

Offer ‘duvet days’ as a work benefit – This is a day an employee can take holiday without giving notice in advance.  This can help boost productivity, as employees feel respected and it helps to build trust as employees don’t have to pretend to be sick when they really just need a day off.  These are of course built into a company’s holiday allowance.

Reduce work stresses – Find out why people might want to take a day off from the office.  Are they overwhelmed with work? Is the office a comfortable place to get things done? If you can reduce the stress of working then chances are your employees won’t feel the need to escape once in a while.

If you would like any practical help or guidance on anything outlined above, please get in touch: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

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Why good body language is important in an interview

The whole idea during an interview is to put your best self forward so the person sitting opposite you, can’t wait to employ you and your body language plays a significant role in the way you are perceived. Poor body language can derail an interview regardless of how confident and well-spoken you are, body language is as much a part of your communication style as what you say.

Impressions are made within seconds of reviewing body language.

Don’t worry though we have put together a list of do’s and don’ts when it comes to how you use your body language to make that great first impression!

  1. Shake Hands – Shaking hands at the beginning of the interview breaks down boundaries, shows confidence and implies that you are open.
  2. Good Eye Contact – This is the best way to show you are paying attention and engaging with the situation, don’t stare at them like it’s a contest as this can be intimidating, but do meet eyes with the person you are conversing with.
  3. Don’t Slouch – Sitting hunched forward or lounging has the effect of looking a little too relaxed.  You want to show that you are taking the interview seriously, looking confident and professional rather than you were wishing you were somewhere else (even though you probably may be!).
  4. Lean towards the interviewer – This implies that you are taking an interest in the conversation and that you are engaged by what they are saying.body language - outsourced hr - hr revolution
  5. Mirror your interviewer – You can quickly get on good terms with your interviewer by matching their positive body language.  If you are unsure on how you should sit or act, watching how your interviewer does can give you a good indication of how they think it is appropriate to act.
  6. SMILE – If all else fails and you completely forget to remember where you should have your hands or where you should look, just smile. A genuine smile creates a favourable image and shows you have personality and you are paying attention to what is being said and will ensure your interviewer remembers you in a positive light.

Lastly it goes without saying you should always listen attentively and try not to interrupt, focus on keeping your tone of voice even and polite, too soft and you’ll seem timid, too loud you’ll seem domineering.

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If you need any help or guidance about creating a good first impression, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

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Why small businesses need HR

Interestingly small businesses make up more than 99% of private sector business and account for 60% of private sector employment: there are a lot of small businesses out there! Unfortunately another statistic is that the basic lack of correct management skills is responsible for the failure of over half of them.

Budgets are tight when small businesses start out, therefore a lot of managers are expected to multitask which means dealing with employee issues as well as growing the business. With focus on rapid growth, this results in the need for investment in an HR function being overlooked, which can actually have the opposite effect and halt growth in its tracks. Without the training required or the skills that HR brings, decision makers are not often able to identify and use the talent within their business to be able to push it forward in the right way.

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In most cases, and we see this a lot, small businesses only approach us once the problems have already started or when a major change happens in employment legislation. It seems that the mindset of small businesses is that the HR function is a reactive one, when in reality it should be part of the strategic planning they need from the outset.

Our Managing Director, Wendy Read comments:  “People are the key to a successful business, without them the wheels just do not turn. The problem is that most businesses don’t focus on their people and only concentrate on the bottom line. Our philosophy is simple; focus on your people, hire, on-board, train, manage and develop them and the bottom line will look after itself”.

If you would like to see how an outsourced HR consultancy can help why not give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

HR Blogger

 

 

Ideas to help with your HR costs..

In any business there always has to be conversations about where you can cut down on spending and get a better handle on your finances. I think most business owners often recognise that whilst their people are their greatest asset, changes must sometimes be made to make sure that the company can weather any storms that might be coming its way.

However, HR is not just important within a business, it’s vital. Cutting corners, or cutting spending without thinking about the bigger picture, could leave you facing problems that will have a tangible and long-lasting impact on your business.

Sometimes it’s essential to be realistic, if you need to make savings to keep your operations afloat, you may need to examine where you’re perhaps spending money unnecessarily, or make choices that don’t result in the best possible return on investment.

If you are thinking about reigning in your HR budget and want to do it the right way, then you’ve come to the best place. Here, we are going to talk you through some key considerations to help you to understand where you can make those necessary cost savings.

Harness the power of technology

How much time are you currently spending on HR activities? From making sure that everyone gets paid on time, through to creating and filing end-of-year review documentation, seemingly small tasks can eat up a huge chunk of your day.

If you think that you could better use this time for more strategic activities, then the answer could be technology. There are plenty of options when it comes to affordable software solutions that improve your levels of compliance and ensure that you always know what needs to be done, and when.  HR Revolution offer a great HR admin solution designed to do this to find out more details breatheHR.

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Get creative with reward

You need to be offering employees a competitive benefits package if you want them to stick around – and we are sure you are fully aware of the implications that can arise if your best people start to look elsewhere because they don’t feel valued within your business.

The answer isn’t always about pay though. It comes down to getting to grips with what really makes your workforce tick – and often, it’s not what you think. How can you offer more flexibility? How can you empower your employers to lead fulfilled lives outside of the office? How can you create a better sense of community and joint purpose? Remember just throwing money at a problem rarely creates any kind of meaningful change.

Take communication online

How do your employees access important policy documents, employee handbooks? If you are providing hard copies, then make a change and get everything up on your internal intranet system. The cost savings may be very small, but this is about creating more productive ways to operate for the future.

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How HR Revolution can help

Ok you may feel that hiring a HR professional is going to involve a massive spend? Well, not necessarily. It’s wise to think about the bigger picture here. Do you have issues within your workforce that are bubbling away under the surface? well ignoring them won’t help and could prove to be hugely expensive in the longer term.

Think of it like this. A modest investment right now could pay dividends in terms of the hassle and fuss that you could avoid in the future. Can you really afford to find yourself facing an employment tribunal, and the consequences that this could have on your reputation as an employer? This might sound extreme, but it’s a very real possibility if you’re just hoping for the best when it comes to complying with relevant legislation.

This isn’t about making cuts for the sake of it. It’s about establishing what’s really adding value and what isn’t, and then implementing changes accordingly.

If you would like to find out how we can help, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

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The benefits of hanging out with your colleagues…

For many employees these days their job is no longer seen as separate from their social life. Millennials are set to constitute 50 per cent of the global workforce by 2020 and they are changing the way our jobs function in the process. Socialising with team mates outside of the office has become a desirable part of the job, with work being seen to this generation as a key part of who they are and no longer separate from their personal lives. This shift away from traditional attitudes towards professional environments being a place for all work and no play has meant hanging out with your colleagues is now an ordinary occurrence. Companies need to embrace this cultural shift and ensure they are open to their employees socialising, whilst ensuring they have HR processes in
place to manage the effects this can have upon your business.

So what are the benefits of colleagues socialising with one another? Put simply team socialising helps to boost company morale. Employees want to feel motivated by their work and at ease with their colleagues and so a team that feels happy at work leads to a more productive business. Being part of a friendly, collaborative and supportive company is also going to make it hard for an employee to have their head turned by a competitor, particularly as having an open working culture – not just with regards to their team relationships but towards communication around the goals of the business – helps to give employees a highly-valued sense of purpose.

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Let’s not forget though that a team that decides to spend time socialising with each other might strike a feeling of fear in many employers and HR departments. There is always the potential for colleagues to become too relaxed around one another leading to a lack of focus and possibly a dip in business output. However it’s important for companies to remember that people are at the core of their business and if employees feel comfortable enough with each other to hang out outside of work then this is likely to improve retention levels for the business. Ultimately, if your company is equipped with robust business processes and a comprehensive HR support system for the team, then the benefits of friendly working relationships will always outweigh the negatives.

On a professional level socialising within the team can be confidence boosting for junior members. Mentoring is a fantastic way to bring out the potential in a person and the informal mentorship that can come from having an informal, friendly conversation with a more senior team member shouldn’t be overlooked. Similarly, whilst it’s a delicate balance to strike, managers shouldn’t be too wary of socialising with their teams. The change from a work dynamic can serve to create comradeship and demonstrate their support for an open and supportive company culture.

If you would like to find out how we can help, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

This article was published in the Recruiting Times on Thursday 26th April https://recruitingtimes.org/opinions/23160/benefits-hanging-colleagues/.

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6 reasons why employees quit their jobs

When you think about why employees leave jobs, you may be quick to assume that it is money that is the main driver, but in reality money is much less of an issue than personal factors and as an employer surely the number one priority for the continued success of your business is finding out why your employees are leaving.

When one of your employees hands in their notice, finding out why could be the key to discovering whether something is remiss within your business, i.e. a manager that people aren’t happy with, or heavy and demanding workloads.

On the other hand, they could be leaving for a job at a different company. Why is that? You need to ask yourself, what are they doing better? and why is working for them more appealing than working for you?

If you know why an employee is leaving you can then start to gather valuable information that could boost your recruitment and retention practices.

Below we list 6 reasons why employees quit their jobs:

1. Feeling undervalued

All employees want to feel that they are making a positive contribution in the job they do and more importantly that they are appreciated.

It might be interesting to know that this doesn’t necessarily mean giving rewards or salary raises, although I’m sure nobody would complain!! Often, a simple ‘thank you’ is a powerful way of changing someone’s perspective.

2. Insufficient management

If employees don’t feel that they’re being managed effectively, they may look for jobs elsewhere. People won’t always get along, but if an employee is struggling to connect with their manager then there will be difficulties in the workplace.

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However, if many people are finding one manager particularly difficult to work with, then this could indicate a rather bigger issue.  Sometimes, the opposite is true, a manager could be a good friend to everyone on their team, but might struggle with delegating, communicating and keeping projects on track.

3. No progression prospects

Most employees will want to feel that they can progress in their role, inspiring them to work hard so they can be rewarded with promotions and pay rises.

New challenges are valued. It can be demotivating for workers to feel that they’re trapped at their current level, with no room to grow and improve. They might be tempted to leave if they feel they aren’t progressing, especially if they have opportunities being offered to them from another business who offer great career development.

Be aware though that some employees will be happy in their current positions and not want to be continually pushed to progress.  For them, promising promotion opportunities could be just as likely to make them feel pressured and inclined to leave. Your main aim is to know what each employee wants, so it is a good idea to make sure you discuss these in performance reviews.

Always bear in mind that a lack of progression ambition does not indicate a lazy or unmotivated employee, some people are simply happy with their current level of responsibility.

4. No work/life balance

A good work/life balance is now more important than ever, especially as we are connected to our smartphones and laptops 24/7, sometimes, no amount of money is worth certain sacrifices, early mornings, long days at work, hours travelling to and from work, people need and value their free time.

Many employers are finding solutions that benefit everyone, such as offering on-site facilities: gyms, coffee shops, childcare facilities and customised office spaces, to help bring the work/life balance into the workplace.

5. Colleague clashes

Being in an workplace environment where employees feel they are among friends can make all the difference to job satisfaction.

If an employee spends every day clashing with a colleague, either because they don’t get on, feel they are not pulling their weight or have very different opinions about how the work should be done, then there’s a disaster waiting to happen.

You might want to step in and mediate. If you can’t identify the problem and help resolve it, then there’s a good chance that someone will be leaving.

6. Lack of work enjoyment

Of course personal tastes and preferences change, at every stage of life, what you may have aspired too at 23 maybe very different at 40.

Some people decide after years in the workplace that they are ready for something new, while others spend a couple of months in a role and realise that they’ve made a mistake.

There are very few things that you can do to retain an employee with a different path in mind, but it might be worth seeing what alternative jobs you can offer if you would really like to keep them within your business.

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At HR Revolution we understand what it takes to create a great team, and as experts in HR we are well placed to support you with the first steps towards achieving a competitive business through your people.

So if you are looking for recruitment solutions that go beyond simply hiring your newest team member get please get in touch +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

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Tips for less workplace stress

Following on our theme of Stress Awareness Month, it probably comes as no surprise that research often finds that work is the most stressful factor in peoples lives and this can be caused by a number of things, such as poor management, an excessive workload or being set unrealistic targets.

Stress-related absences are one of the biggest costs to businesses every year, so most could really benefit from taking a closer look at the way they manage their people, especially how they cope in stressful situations.

Below we have put together a few tips that business owners/managers can do to improve the way they manage their employees ensuring they are not the cause of any unnecessary stress and frustration.

Listen

Taking time to listen to your employees is imperative as it not only makes them feel valued, it can have a massive impact on their performance and productivity. An employee might be trying to tell you how a different approach to a task could be more efficient or cost effective or they may have a creative idea that could help you solve a long-standing problem. It can also alert you to an employee who may be struggling with a personal issue or heavy workload and who needs more support.  Taking the time to listen is invaluable and ensures you really take in what your employees may (or may not!) be telling you.

Young business team during a brainstorming

Be available

As as a business owner/manager, supporting your employees is part of the day job – and this can only be done effectively if you are available and approachable. Make sure your employees know it’s alright for them to ask questions or seek advice if they’re unsure about something. Also if you are often out or in meetings, let them know your movements so they can plan the best time to catch you. A couple of minutes spent answering a quick question not only gives them reassurance that they are doing the right thing, but will save trouble further down the line if they were headed in the wrong direction.

Be trustworthy

Make sure that your team knows they can trust you and have your support even if things don’t go to plan. If people are afraid they will be unfairly blamed for anything that goes wrong, they will be constantly operating in a state of anxiety and won’t do a good job. Equally, make sure credit is given where it’s due and that you acknowledge the work of your team when things go right. Don’t make promises to people if you’re not sure you will be able to deliver, if you operate with honesty and integrity your employees will do the same.

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Be open and direct

Uncertainty is the cause of much of the stress and anxiety in many businesses and if you don’t let your employees know what is happening they will speculate, gossip and often wind themselves up into a frenzy over a rumour which is completely unfounded.  If there are changes on the horizon, tell employees what you know – or if you don’t know, let them know when you expect to know more. Open and honest feedback on performance is also vital, employees will want to know how they are doing and if they need to be doing anything differently. Don’t just wait for the performance review to come around, if you give people feedback on an ongoing basis they will be clear about what their priorities are, secure in the knowledge they are approaching tasks in the right way and that you will support them in any areas where they may need further development.

Show empathy

Even though you are in charge of a team and you need to make sure they get the right results that doesn’t mean you can’t show kindness and sympathy where appropriate – show your human side! Many business owners/managers are uncomfortable displaying any kind of ‘emotion’ in the workplace and shy away from difficult or personal conversations with employees. However, stepping outside of your professional role and communicating with people on a personal level will help you build a much more motivated and engaged team. Remember be as flexible as possible when people are dealing with difficult personal issues – and if someone’s performance is not up to scratch, make sure you look a bit more deeply into what may be behind the issue.

If you need any further help or guidance about how to deal with stress in the workplace, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

HR Blogger

 

 

Tips for creating a positive workplace

We all know that the environment you work in has a big impact on how you feel, so it’s probably no surprise that as adults we spend over two thirds of our life at work!! a very sobering thought indeed…

So it is really important for employers to create a positive, healthy workplace, where employees have mutual respect, feel valued and appreciated as these things all strongly contribute to creating happy employees.

Listed below are ways to help achieve this:

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Acknowledge accomplishments

It is a proven fact that employees respond to praise and appreciation expressed through recognition of their good work, because it reinforces their work is valued.  When employees feel like this, their satisfaction and productivity rises and they are motivated to keep up or improve their good work.  Doesn’t everyone appreciate a ‘pat on the back’ to make them feel good, I know I definitely do!

Positive Communication

Make sure you communicate, as we know feedback whether good or bad is fundamental in the workplace.  You need to discuss regularly with employees what they have accomplished and what is going well in their job, helping them to feel connected and part of a team. Delivering feedback ensures your team strengths are being highlighted and made good use of, and of course gives employees direction on what they can improve on.

Celebrate employees

Look for ways to celebrate with your team whether it’s an employee birthday or recognising a milestone or achieving a goal. Honoring wins and milestones improves morale by encouraging the person recognised and showing team members that important events are noticed and praised.

Happy Successful Business People Celebrating and Jumping in New

Reward good work

As an employer you may not always be able to reward by means of a pay-rise, but there are alternative ways to reward your employees, implementing exciting incentives that give the employee something tangible to work towards, such as a competition to win a gift card – which are low cost and give the employee the choice of what they want.

If you need any help or guidance about creating a positive workplace, give HR Revolution a call: +44 203 538 5311 or email: hello@hrrevolution.co.uk or visit www.hrrevolution.co.uk  where our expert CIPD HR professionals are waiting to help you with any questions you may have.

HR Revolution; supporting you, your employees AND your business.

HR Blogger