10 inappropriate questions interviewers need to stop asking!

According to new research, the vast majority of organisations have asked candidates inappropriate and potentially illegal questions during a job interview.

Researchers of the study found that 85% of interviewers have asked questions such as ‘Are you physically fit and healthy’, ‘Have you any plans to start a family’ or ‘Did you grow up outside of the UK’.

All of the above questions are potentially breaching the law, which requires all potential employers to treat candidates fairly.

It’s true though however that many interviewers could be completely unaware that what they think is innocent questioning could be a legal grey area, with 47% saying they have never had official training on what questions to ask in an interview.

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Below are the top 10 inappropriate interview questions that hiring managers have asked:

  • What year did you graduate? (59%)
  • What year were you born? (55%)
  • Do you have any children? (56%)
  • Are you physically fit and healthy? (53%
  • Are you in a relationship or married? (51%)
  • Have you got any plans to start a family? (42%)
  • Where is your accent from? (46%)
  • Will you need flexible time for family life? (46%)
  • Did you grow up outside of the UK? (45%)
  • Will you need time off during half term? (43%)

This highlights the need for training for any person involved in the process of interviewing prospective candidates, so they know what is and isn’t acceptable in the recruitment process.  Ensuring all prospective employees are given a fair and honest opportunity to secure a job based on their skills and ability not their gender, personal choices or maternity/paternity choices.

If you need any HR help, advice or tips on interviewing, get in touch:+44 203 538 5311 or email: talent@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 your business needs HR Revolution

As a small business owner, you might be tempted to cut costs and eliminate your HR function. After all; your managers can probably hire, terminate and discipline their employees without assistance from HR – especially if you only have a small team. Right?

Wrong. There’s a lot more to human resources than hiring and firing; there’s payroll, benefits, performance reviews and much, much more and you have to make sure you’re doing all of that in compliance and following employment law.

So – does your small business really need HR? Absolutely. Here are a few reasons why:

Hiring an on-boarding

Hiring and on-boarding a new employee can take a lot of time; time that as a small business owner, you don’t have. If you have positions that need to be filled (and growing companies often do), you need someone who can dedicate their time to hiring and everything that it involves. That means recruiting, sifting through cvs, screening applications, setting up interviews, selecting candidates and more. Hiring new employees is incredibly important for your business – you want to find the best talent and the best fit the first time around, so you don’t end up wasting time or money. And to do that, you need HR.

Employment Law

Another reason you need a HR professional; they know the ins and outs of employment law, all it takes is one mistake when hiring or terminating an employee, and you could end up in a tribunal. If you don’t know employment law, you could be putting yourself, your business and your reputation at risk.

Employee documents

All businesses collect data relating to their employees – their HR records – including personal information such as pay, sickness absence, or hours worked. HR records should be stored hard copy or electronically, but it’s important for businesses to keep information well organised and in an appropriate system, so that it complies with relevant legislation and can be easily accessed, especially in light of the General Data Protection Regulation coming into effect in May.

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Employee handbooks

Do you have an employee handbook? If not, it’s definitely advisable, take a look at our ready to use handbook template. Even if you only have a few employees, you still need a manual or handbook to lay out the rules, regulations and expectations you have for your employees. Handbooks make it easier for employees to know exactly what’s expected of them, but they can also be used to cover your back in case of employee disputes.

HR on a small business budget

The bottom line? Every business, however small needs some kind of HR presence, there are a number of things that HR professionals can do for a business that other employees just can’t. It will save time – and likely money – in the long run by using HR from the start and outsourcing could be the solution you have been looking for.

If you would like to discuss how Outsourced HR can help your business 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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Landmark employment law cases: Uber/Deliveroo – The decision on drivers and riders rights; what could this mean for your business?

This has been a very hot topic recently and we have been overloaded with articles about what the “workers” versus “self-employed” issues/rights means, so now the ruling has been made HR Revolution discuss what this means for businesses going forward.

The Employment Appeals Tribunal ruled on Friday that Uber’s drivers qualify as workers, giving drivers rights such as the minimum wage and holiday pay, resulting in potentially damaging the way the company operates.  Currently the average hourly rate minus fees, petrol and expenses may mean an Uber driver is not earning the minimum wage.

Although Uber argued that their drivers have the freedom to choose when and where they work, the EAT ruled that drivers were effectively working for Uber while the app was switched on, and were not able to make themselves available to other operators as Uber had claimed.  In addition, the way Uber limits driver contact with customers, the language it uses when recruiting drivers and the way it treats those drivers who refuse a fare, resulted in the EAT concluding that Uber exerts control over the drivers, meaning they are to be deemed as workers as opposed to being self-employed and are therefore entitled to worker rights.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2017/11/10/uber-loses-key-appeal-drivers-rights/

Conversely in the case brought by the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain, Deliveroo riders have been ruled “self-employed” by the labour law body the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC).  This further highlights the complexity of determining the employment status and why it is imperative care is taken when considering whether the individual has worker rights including holiday pay and minimum wage.

The key to this case was that in the contract between Deliveroo and the riders; riders had the freedom to substitute the services to a “mate” both before and after they had accepted a particular job if they wished – allowing other riders to take their place on a job. The CAC found that the right to substitution was genuine in day to day practice and therefore found the riders be self-employed. To further support Deliveroo’s case, the new terms also stated that riders did not have to wear branded clothing.

Both of these decisions have been based on whether there is “control” from the employer to the employee and in the case of Deliveroo the lack of control meant the balance was tipped as the riders having self-employed status.

Riders enjoy being their own boss – having the freedom to choose when and where they work, and riding with other delivery companies at the same time.  In practical terms, this implies they are genuinely self-employed.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-41983343

What could these rulings mean for your business?

Both of these rulings although contradictory, have significant implications for the gig economy in particular.  It also clearly demonstrates that there is still a lot of ambiguity and confusion around employment status, which is expected to be given clarity by the government by the end of the year.

The outcomes of both these cases emphasises the importance of ensuring you are giving those entitled to employment rights, just that and also ensuring any contractors are complying with any IR35 rules.  It means care and consideration should be exercised by both the employer and employee when entering into an independent contractor agreement on a self-employed basis.

Any business should take guidance from both of these cases as they demonstrate how important it is that your employee status is. Make sure the use of self-employed contractors are being used correctly within your business and not just as a label to get around the rules.  With the number of self-employed contractors increasing significantly, both of these rulings are likely to be significant for employment law in the UK.

The lesson from both of these cases lies around the control identified in the terms and conditions of an independent contractor agreement.  Although this doesn’t set a new precedent as all cases will be judged on their own merits, the control you exert over anyone self-employed within your business should be carefully considered to avoid any similar claims.

Deciding on the appropriate employment status can be difficult for many companies. If you have concerns regarding this, HR Revolution are here to help, get in touch with one of our consultants who can offer you a free consultation to ensure that you are compliant.

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.

 

 

Do you need to recruit new talent?

Are you looking to recruit some of the fabulous new talent that will be entering the job market in the form of University graduates and college leavers?  If the answer is yes, then make sure you have got your basics in order, or here’s how it could all go wrong!

Hiring a new employee is pretty straight forward; but only if it is handled correctly. Many employers however can get it so wrong, which as we know is unproductive for any working environment.

A recent survey has shown that the No.1 reason for it all going so wrong is “not managing the candidate experience”.  This may sound a little fluffy if you do not work in HR or Recruitment, but it basically comes down to communication.  It is important to keep in constant contact with the candidate, providing them with quality information and feedback and remembering that honesty is the best policy. Providing a poor candidate experience can have many negative consequences including damaging comments about your company and lack of faith in the overall brand.

Other reasons the recruitment process can fail are:

  1. Expecting dull job descriptions to attract the right people – This is your chance to sell the position and entice the highest calibre of staff, if you waste this opportunity they will be looking to work for your competitors.
  2. Not taking advantage of employee referrals – a referral means they are pre-screened.  The best companies place nearly 50% of staff through referrals.
  3. Not fully understanding the actual job – If you don’t understand about the job you want them to do, how can you sell it to them or even know if they are capable of performing it?
  4. Using the same recruiting process for different level jobs – High level jobs require a different level of service, knowledge and relationship building. If you want the best out there, they definitely want to be treated that way too.
  5. Making slow hiring decisions – The best candidates are gone quickly, and will probably have more than one offer on the table, you simply can’t afford to hang around.
  6. Assuming interviews are accurate – Interviews are traditionally weak predictors, so poorly executed or generic interviews that do not challenge the candidate, will result in poor hires and put off the right people.
  7. Just using job boards – Only posting jobs on an advertising site means that 75% of the workforce that are not ‘actively’ looking will NOT see them. Make sure that your jobs can be found on various sites.
  8. Not prioritising jobs – Make sure if you are looking for more than one employee that you get the right person first, there is no point getting an assistant if you don’t have the manager.
  9. Not identifying job acceptance criteria – Do you know what the perfect candidates needs to accept the job? If you don’t, they won’t join you.

One last thought… With so many people getting it wrong, why don’t you let HR Revolution get it right for you.  First time.

 

If you would like to discuss any HR issues, please give HR Revolution a call we’d love to help, call us on +44 203 538 5311 or email: info@hrrevolution.co.uk

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How long should you stay in a job?

Ok so we know that a job is not for life anymore, gone are the days where you joined a company from leaving school or university and stayed there until you collected you golden carriage clock!!

So what is the norm now? research shows that in fact, a UK worker will change employer on average every five years but is there a magic number that will make sure that you don’t stop progressing or doesn’t make you look flighty?

Ok so moving jobs every 3 months without extenuating circumstances wouldn’t look good, but most employers would probably look favourably on a prospective employee who had changed roles every three to five years.  What’s important to see, is that candidate has an open attitude and continuous learning approach, driving him/her to embrace new challenges.

Also the size of a company can often be a factor in determining how long a person stays, with a smaller company often offering less opportunity for people to progress than a larger rival.

However, the most influential element driving how often you change jobs is age.   Millennials, those born between 1980 – 1999 have a drastically different outlooks from previous generations who were used to working in large corporate firms and work a set number of years in a particular role before progressing.  Millennials aren’t motivated by the same factors, such as a job for life, but instead good work-life balance and a sense of purpose beyond financial success.

With this in mind, it poses a challenge to companies, as losing employees and their knowledge and having to recruit and retain replacements is costly.  Companies need to be more creative in their ways to retain employees and holding regular chats on career progression is a good place to start.

It’s also important for companies to stay on good terms with departing staff, who may decided to return at a later stage in a different role adding wider experience to their already existing knowledge.

Do you have any issues surrounding recruiting and retaining good employees, HR Revolution can help, give us a call on+44 203 538 5311 or email: info@hrrevolution.co.uk

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Workplace predictions for 2017

Ok, so it may have been the first day back in the office for many today and believe me I so wanted to turn off the alarm at 7am and just turn over and go back  to sleep!!!  But getting back into the work routine isn’t so bad and I find I’m excited by what is in store for HR Revolution in 2017 and my part in it’s journey.

Looking ahead, I came across this interesting article on 5 predictions of how our working lives may change in 2017.  Food for thought for the coming year…

1. New talent will be harder to come by than ever

UK unemployment has hit its lowest level in 11 years, at 4.8% and there’s a shortage of people for many significant roles. Companies are finding it difficult to attract talented new people and will find 2017 harder to keep their employees.

Garnering staff feedback will be crucial in ensuring that employees are happy, and that changes can be made.

2. Everyone will be more vocal

The race to find the best and most talented employees, mean companies will have to showcase their employer brand and with an increasing number of employees speaking up about both the strengths and weaknesses of the business, it will be imperative that employers need to take constructive criticism on board. 

Employees feel the have got something to say and they want to be taken seriously.

3. Employees will insist on greater flexibility

Technology allows many workers to have the ability of getting things done from anywhere, and with the constant delays and strikes, commuting has become a stressful and miserable experience for many of us. Over the course of 2017, it is inevitable that more and more people will be requesting to work from home some of the time, and that companies must listen and take this on board to keep their employees happy.

4. Millennials will drive companies to success

Recent research highlighted that 83% of millennials, Generation Y or Generation Me as they are also know, disagree that people should spend years in a role before expecting a promotion regardless of status and performance. They are driven and don’t’ want to wait for what they’re working towards, so employers will need to ensure that their employees have a clear career path and feel valued if they want to hold on to them.

5. A comeback for the work/life balance

Since technology has evolved, it has become increasingly common for people to check their work emails late at night and run work errands over the weekend. While this is not likely to change, there will be more of a balance when it comes to leaving work at work in 2017.

Some years ago companies experimented with a ‘no email day’. That didn’t really work because emails are such an integral part of our working lives that it wasn’t really practical.  However, responsible employers are now becoming concerned that we haven’t got the balance right and that it’s a contributing factor to staff sickness and stress in the workplace.  Could the UK follow France, who’s government has introduced legislation giving workers the right to disconnect from work emails outside office hours…  I’m sure many UK employees would welcome this change…

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A version of this article was first published on HR Grapevine

Easy ways to improve your HR practices by the end of the year…

As we quickly roll into the final quarter of 2016, most business owners will be focusing on a couple of things. If you still have some big goals that you haven’t quite smashed, now’s the time to pull your socks up and make that final push. There should also be plenty of time for reflection though, so you can work out your wins, your losses, and what you need to do differently next year.

Make sure that you don’t neglect your people practices and how they’ve performed over the course of the past 12 months. It’s true that many HR changes can’t be achieved overnight, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take action. In fact, there are certain things that you can do over the following weeks that will help you to make positive and tangible changes.

Are you ready to take on the challenge? This is what we suggest:

Assess how compliant you are with recent legislative changes

There have been several changes to employment law this year, and many business owners would like to say that they know they’re fully compliant. When it comes down to it though, are you absolutely positive that you’re doing everything you should be?

We understand that the day-to-day complexities of running your business can sometimes get in the way, but if you haven’t done everything that’s required of you, you could be leaving yourself very vulnerable to future problems.

Start planning for 2017

At the moment, you might be caught up with the practicalities of recruiting temporary staff for the Christmas period, or ensuring that your existing employees are ready to deliver exceptional service during the festivities.

That’s great, but make sure that you’re looking a little further ahead. What key challenges will you face next year? What opportunities could you harness to help you to meet your wider strategic goals? Heading into the new year with a plan will put your mind at ease, and ensure that you don’t find yourself faced with any nasty surprises.

Take advantage of an HR audit

As a business grows, there’ll be a wider range of HR tasks and responsibilities that need to be taken care of. Keeping on top everything can be a massive job, and savvy leaders realise that they can’t do everything themselves.

It’s very likely that your business could take many benefits away from an end-of-year HR audit. Having an experienced HR professional come into your company and assess what’s working, and what needs to be improved, could be just what you need to make sure that you end the year on a high note and put practical steps in place to raise your game.

You have a few choices right now. You can carry on doing what you’re doing, and seeing the same results. Or you can recognise that there’s room for improvement, and do something about it.

Take the right route…  Contact us today for your free no obligation HR Audit +203 538 5311

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How to handle the summer productivity slump…

Well summer 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 have just returned and their head is still on a sandy beach somewhere sipping margaritas!

But 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 a more pressing concern;  how do you 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.

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.

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 staff 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 staff? Small gestures can make all the 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?

An overall HR health-check 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. Pick up the phone today and give us a call!

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Guide to managing your SME talent…

In a small to medium sized business, the management of your talent can make or break your business and its growth. Managing an SME comes with its challenges, but your people don’t need to be one of them. We at HR Revolution have developed, through our experience and expertise as a team, a few helpful tips that may just come in handy.

  1. Sourcing your talent: No one wants to have the added expenditure of instructing an agency to do your recruitment, but sometimes, just sometimes, you do get what you pay for and after all your people are your business engine. Agencies have the expertise, skill, resources and most importantly, time that you as a business owner don’t necessarily have.
  2. The talent: You want team members that share your vision for the company and who want to take ownership of their role and the part they will play in the success of the company. Yes, this does need to be coupled with the skills and experience required to do the role, but in a SME it’s about more than that. Yes you want a reliable member of the team who turns up on time and can do the job, but every team member needs to have the mind-set of we are one, we are a team in every sense of the word.
  3. The Law! Scary!? There are some basic legal requirements that you need to be sure to comply with, but they don’t need to be scary. They range from putting in recruitment policies which include checking new employees have the right to work in the UK, to giving them a written statement of terms and conditions, in other words an employment contract, within 3 months of joining.
  4. Keeping your talent: There are several tips we can offer for keeping your talent and they don’t all involve remuneration:-
  • Communicate – effective communication doesn’t cost anything but time, and in the long run it can actually help you save time. 10 – 15 minute catch ups with your team on a regular basis can avoid issues festering and can avoid mistakes being made.
  • Open ideas forum – welcome suggestions from your all your team members, after all they are on the front line.
  • Motivation – this can come from inspiration.  It is your role to inspire your team to greater things, get them to buy into the company mission and let them see the part they play in it and keep them informed of any new developments within the business.
  1. Managing your talent: Deal with performance issues promptly. No matter how good your management skills are, you will most likely still encounter issues with poor employee performance. The key here is speaking to the individual as soon as the issue becomes apparent.  The longer you leave it, the harder it will be to resolve, and you will start to become frustrated yourself which can make things worse.  Additionally, find out the cause of the problem rather than just focusing on the symptoms – is it due to personal problems?, lack of knowledge or training?, or not feeling recognised?  A good employee does not start under-performing or making mistakes for no reason, so find out why and agree a joint action plan to address it.
  1. I need help! Knowing when to seek help is key after all we aren’t all experts in every field. Being an effective manager requires skills that not everyone has naturally. Some tasks require different or more unique knowledge and skills, such as managing internal restructures, changing employment contracts or undertaking criminal record checks.

These are just a snapshot of things to consider when running an SME and HR Revolution can help you tick them off your to do list.

www.hrrevolution.co.uk | www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk | www.hrrevonline.co.uk

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Looking to recruit some fresh new talent…

Are you looking to recruit some of the fabulous new talent that has recently entered the market?  If the answer is yes, then make sure you have got your basics in order, or here’s how it could all go wrong!

Hiring a new member of staff is pretty straight forward; but only if it is handled correctly. Many employers however can get it so wrong, which as we know is unproductive for any working environment.

A recent survey has shown that the No.1 reason for it all going so wrong is “not managing the candidate experience”.  This may sound a little fluffy if you do not work in HR or Recruitment, but it basically comes down to communication.  It is important to keep in constant contact with the candidate, providing them with quality information and feedback and remembering that honesty is the best policy. Providing a poor candidate experience can have many negative consequences including damaging comments about your company and lack of faith in the overall brand.

Other reasons the recruitment process can fail are:

  1. Expecting dull job descriptions to attract the right people – This is your chance to sell the position and entice the highest calibre of staff, if you waste this opportunity they will be looking to work for your competitors.
  2. Not taking advantage of employee referrals – a referral means they are pre-screened.  The best companies place nearly 50% of staff through referrals.
  3. Not fully understanding the actual job – If you don’t understand about the job you want them to do, how can you sell it to them or even know if they are capable of performing it?
  4. Using the same recruiting process for different level jobs – High level jobs require a different level of service, knowledge and relationship building. If you want the best out there, they definitely want to be treated that way too.
  5. Making slow hiring decisions – The best candidates are gone quickly, and will probably have more than one offer on the table, you simply can’t afford to hang around.
  6. Assuming interviews are accurate – Interviews are traditionally weak predictors, so poorly executed or generic interviews that do not challenge the candidate, will result in poor hires and put off the right people.
  7. Using Job boards alone – Only posting jobs on an advertising site means that 75% of the workforce that are not ‘actively’ looking will NOT see them. Make sure that your jobs can be found on various sites.
  8. Not prioritising jobs – Make sure if you are looking for more than one employee that you get the right person first, there is no point getting an assistant if you don’t have the manager.
  9. Not identifying job acceptance criteria – Do you know what the perfect candidates needs to accept the job? If you don’t, they won’t join you.

A final thought… With so many people getting it wrong, why don’t you let HR Revolution get it right for you the first time, download our free guide to recruiting talent below….

www.hrrevolution.co.uk | www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk | www.hrrevonline.co.uk

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