How to nail your 2018 HR planning…

Any business owner knows the importance of using the end of the year as a chance to return to their people policies, consider the achievements and challenges of the past 12 months, and do some careful planning for the future. Keeping on top of your HR can be tricky, but it’s also essential to running a successful business.

However, before getting stuck into finer details, it is wise to take a step back and think about the big issues that need your attention. Here, we’re going to provide you with the inspiration you need to make your planning as effective as possible.

Anticipate any key legislative changes

Not a year goes by without a new piece of legislation coming in that will have an impact on your business. Of course, these are often for the greater good, and will help you to build a stronger workforce. But if you’re not prepared, they can catch you off-guard and cause you significant problems.

Make sure this doesn’t happen by taking the time to anticipate any legislation that will be coming into force, and working out what you need to do to ensure that you’re compliant. In 2018, necessary considerations are likely to include gender pay reporting, taxation of termination payments, General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and restricting employment allowance for hiring illegal workers.

Consider external forces that are out of your control

Often, a lot of thought is given to planning for internal factors, such as sales that you might be running, employee holidays, and so on. You need to make sure though that you’re also thinking about external forces that may have a significant impact on your business.

Are there any big events coming up in your area, and what will they mean for your operations? Are there any other businesses that are likely to be setting up shop, and what are the implications? Could your top talent be tempted to look elsewhere? You can rarely stop these things from happening, but you can make sure that you’re as prepared as possible.

Ask yourself whether you’re really considering strategic goals

We’re past the days of HR being all about tea and sympathy. Savvy business owners know that HR needs a seat at the table and that it can play a significant role in meeting strategic goals. Despite this though, many business owners still aren’t using policies and practices to truly drive their business forward, to say that this is a wasted opportunity would be a huge understatement.

So how are you nurturing your teams so they can fulfill their potential? Are your performance management processes encouraging employees to excel? Is everyone up to date and on-board with the future direction of your business and do they understand the part that they will play? It’s easy to get caught up with all the everyday, operational concerns. And these are of course important. But if you want to move forward, you need to ensure that you’re taking the time to think strategically.

Finding enough hours in the day to plan your 2018 can be a challenge in itself, but it’s non-negotiable though if you’re serious about smashing your goals.

The good news is that you don’t have to do all of this on your own. HR Revolution have many years of experience and can help. Get in touch today for an initial chat about how we may be able to work together, call +44 203 538 5311 or ask us a question below…

 

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

Be prepared – 5 killer interview questions and why you should ask them…

Here at HR Revolution we are no strangers to conducting a few interviews, some on behalf of our clients for various different roles and some internally for us, but whoever it is, one thing I’m sure of is that the person sitting across the table in an interview is more nervous than we are!!

So, we want to help you, the interviewee to calm your nerves and be confident, and the biggest part of that is being prepared. Your potential employer, will pick up very quickly whether you have come prepared by asking lots of questions about the company like, “so tell me what you know about us?” or “what did you think of our website?” or maybe, “who do you think our biggest competitors are?” and of course they would, they want to know that you are genuinely interested in working for them. This leads me nicely on to one of the most important question they will ask you… “Have you got any questions for me?”…

This one question will really show whether or not you really want to be part of their team, so please do not answer like this… “no I think you’ve already answered all my questions” or even worse just sit there like a bowl of jelly spluttering out the odd “err” and “um” followed by “nope, all good”!! What are you thinking!!! The interviewer has just seen how unprepared you are, and no matter how good your experience, you just don’t cut the mustard! So, let us help you.

Stand out from the crowd and ask questions that show you’ve prepared. To get you started, HR Revolution have compiled 5 questions that we would liked to be asked:

  1. How would a member of your team describe working here?
    How the interviewer answers gives a good insight into the company culture and working practices, it should fill you with enthusiasm, if not you have to question if this really is the right role for you.
  2. If I’m successful what will my first month look like?
    Shows that you are keen to get off to a great start in reaching your objectives and helps you determine how the good the onboarding process is.
  3. What makes someone successful in your team?
    This will give you a good idea of what your new employer is expecting of you in your new roll and it should be a good indicator of how they would like to see you perform and what you should be concentrating on.
  4. Can you explain how performance will be measured for this role?
    Shows that you understand and accept that you will have responsibilities that you will be accountable for and that you want to succeed.
  5. What do you like most about working for this company?
    Helps you get a better insight into what it’s like to work at the company. If the interviewer can’t answer this straight away, then maybe warning bells should sound.  They should love a question like this, as it will give them a chance to talk about themselves on a personal level and why they love their employer! After all you don’t you want to work with people that love what they do!!

Good luck, this is your chance to demonstrate you have given the company and role real thought and hopefully leave the interview with a great impression of yourself as the right candidate for the job.

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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….

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Are you the Employer they WANT to work for…

Now I’m not an employer branding specialist and I don’t have training in how employer brands should be put together or any methodologies that are used.  What I do know is though that having started a couple of businesses myself in the past that it is so important to get your branding right, it says everything about you and the business you are promoting… and has a huge impact on the people that REALLY want to work for you and the products and services you are promoting.

As business owners we all have a mission… to make a success of our business! For each of us though that success will be different; revenue, size, growth, reputation, global domination but we all have the same mission… to be successful.

To achieve this there are many key objectives to focus on; ensuring your products and services are right for the market, driving profits, hiring the right team, finding the best suppliers for quality, cost and delivery.   To get this all right you must focus on your brand message… the message that people (people being, potential customers, suppliers or employees!!) see you are giving off to the business world!

Think of a business that you would love to emulate, a business that if you were a potential employee, you would love to work for.  What attracts you to them? In the beginning it will be the brand that got you interested in the first place. Think Apple, Nike, IBM, Google, Adidas, Victoria Secret, Ralph Lauren, Porsche, VW… their brands are all very well defined and have an air of trend about them that makes you want to belong to their club!  Just like being back at school!  As human beings we naturally want to belong, to be part of a tribe, and that’s how the branding process works… learn how to build your own club/tribe and you’re half way there.

How do you know what your ‘club’ or ‘tribe’ should be?

Well that depends on what your culture is… at the centre of your brand, is the beating heart of your culture… once you have worked out exactly what that is and can put that down on paper – hey presto! your employer brand begins…

  • What are the things that make your best employees tick?
  • What is the ethos of the business?
  • What is important to you as a business owner, your morals, your ethics in business?
  • What do you expect from your teams?
  • Every brand has a promise… what is your promise to potential employees?

These are just some of the starting questions to ask yourself.

Now all you need to do is build your employee offering around that… create your job expectations, training manuals and induction and orientation programmes.  Design and tailor your appraisal and review processes and your employee handbooks to mirror and echo this brand promise and expectation and your people processes are and ready to roll.

And before you know it, you ARE an Employer of choice!

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Finished full time education, now what…

So your time of learning has come to an end, whether that’s school, college or university you now have some big decisions to make.

Trying to work out what to do with your life can be a daunting prospect, but it doesn’t have to be.  There are a fantastic amount of choices available to young people now, so jump on board and don’t miss out on the many opportunities you have.

The thing to also remember is if you didn’t get the grades you wanted or go to university, there is still so much, for example did you know that to be an air traffic controller you don’t need a degree and that’s quite a cool job!

Apprenticeships are a brilliant way to get into the industry you want and better still, you get paid while you learn, which for many may be a much better alternative to an expensive university education to gain a qualification that you don’t use.

Then there are plans for ground-breaking reforms to technical and professional education (TPE), which will set England’s system on a par with the best in the world.  The reforms will focus on simplifying the currently over-complex system, working in direct partnership with employers to ensure the new system provides the skills most needed for the 21st-century economy. Vocational routes into work are no longer seen as second best.

http://www.notgoingtouni.co.uk is a great website for help and guidance on apprenticeships and other routes available if you are unsure which path to take.

Whatever you decide on, you will be up against some fierce competition, so you need to make sure you stand out from the crowd. Your online presence needs to be top notch, so take a look at all of your social media accounts and get them looking less “free, single and ready to mingle” and more “career path ready!”.

Remember LinkedIn, is the Facebook of the corporate world, so this should be your first port of call, as it will be for potential employers.  Your profile needs to be so much more than your name and schooling information, it needs to be “all star”.

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Top tips to support the older generation in the workplace

New data from the Office for National Statistics has revealed that over 10 million over-50s are now in employment. The potential reasons could include the fact that the state pension age has increased, and we’re also living longer than we were just a couple of decades ago. The fact of the matter is that we have more older people in the workplace, and as employers, we have a duty to make sure that we’re supporting our staff and ensuring that diverse needs are being met.

So what exactly do you need to know about your responsibilities? And how can you tap into the opportunity that exists when it comes to harnessing the skills of the older generation? Here, we share some of our top tips for making sure that your business is riding the silver wave.

  1. Don’t write off older staff when it comes to learning and development

There’s often the assumption that older people have one eye firmly on retirement, so there can be a tendency to neglect learning and development provisions, and keep the bigger opportunities for younger employees. This is potentially discriminative, and it’s also extremely short sighted.

Invest in your older workers, and you could see many benefits. Be aware of the skills that they may be lacking, and focus on what you can do to ensure that they’re brought up to speed, and can continue to contribute to the bigger picture.

2. Consider reverse mentoring initiatives

Technology is often a stumbling block for older employees, and they can sometimes lack confidence when it comes to getting to grips with new systems and processes. This is obviously a generalisation, though it’s well worth considering whether this could be the case within your business.

A fantastic option here is to create a reverse mentoring programme. Younger staff, who tend to have less overall experience but more confidence with technology, could share their knowledge with their older colleagues. It’s easy to jump to the assumption that you need to fork out for formal training, and it’s true that this is sometimes necessary, but there are many other options that can be just as effective.

3. Be aware of the needs of older workers

At every different life stage, there are things that employers need to be aware of when it comes to making sure that they’re supporting their staff and giving them a degree of flexibility to help them to meet their needs. One thing that you might want to consider for older staff is how you can support them when it comes to their caring responsibilities.

Many older workers will want to spend time with grandchildren, and taking this into account could keep them motivated and engaged. As a rule of thumb, offering flexibility, as long as you keep operational requirements in mind, can be great for morale and motivation.

Our workforces are becoming more diverse, and this can be a wonderful thing for your business. But you do need to take the time to make sure that you’re fulfilling your responsibilities, and doing all you can to keep your policies and practices fit for purpose.

If you want to ensure that you’re getting things right, get in touch with HR Revolution and we can carry out a review of where you are, and what changes may need to be made to keep your business thriving.

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5 reasons your CV gets ‘filed’ (in the bin)!

This is not rocket science folks the fact is, it’s all pretty simple. Your CV is your passport to the future you want and as such it is so important to get it right. We’re giving you the 5 most common CV sins that we have come across so you know what NOT to do with yours!

They are in no particular order, as to be honest, they are all pretty bad…

Not proof reading or checking spelling, grammar etc.  

This is one of my biggest bug bears. When it comes to spelling and grammar there really is no excuse. Ok so we are not all gifted at being the best spellers, myself included and I am often told I can’t spell for toffee, which is fair enough, but it’s not a problem that can’t be fixed it just means that I ask for help! Technology is a wonderful thing and it hands us tools like spell check on a plate, or try an online grammar checker like ginger software, it reads out loud what you’ve written so you can hear any mistakes; genius! Failing that, why not ask a friend to proof read it for you, four eyes are better than two! The point is there are ways to make sure your CV is perfect before submitting it, in applying for your dream job or any job for that matter. In the 21st century there is no reason that any CV should be covered in spelling mistakes, have skewed format or grammatical errors. Despite how a person speaks or whether they use a PC or a Mac there is an expected level of acceptance and if your CV falls short you know where your CV will be filed.

Inappropriate email address.

‘smackmybi*chup@me.com‘, ‘lusciouslouise@hothot.com‘ or allnight@long.com. Do I need to  say anything more? First impressions count and more than that, they can stick. When looking through CVs I am always so surprised to see so many inappropriate email addresses. I know what you’re thinking, “get a grip, it’s just an email address!” Right? Wrong! Yes, it might just be an email address, but your CV is a snapshot of you and a potentially offensive email address won’t do you any favours. Your CV is a precursor to you, the real person and what a poorly chosen email address says to the “professional” world is, I don’t care enough to make an effort. Which I imagine is not the impression that you want to make. After all, they are free and take 2 minutes to set up – now who needs to get a grip?!

There is nothing more frustrasting that Waffle and Repetition, not to mention its boring!!

It is all too common to see CVs that are complied of 40% useful information and 60% cut and paste from other areas of their CV. I appreciate that some roles can be very similar, but it’s not the employers job to have to sift through the sea of “articulate, team-player but can also work on own initiative. Meticulous, hardworking, excellent communication skills…” to find some real personality. Please don’t get me wrong these skills and values are important, but if your CV simply reels off a list, chances are an employer is not going to dig any deeper to find out who you really are. With regards to repetition and cutting and pasting areas of your CV, my advice, just don’t do it. Talk about transferable skills from role to role and better to keep it  short and to the point rather than waffle on and on and on and on…

OTT (other peoples property)/Plagarism is 100% a no no. Please note this is different from using a template to help construct your CV, what I am talking about is lifting huge chunks of copy from someone else’s CV. There are a few problems with this one, but one I have come across is that someone actually applied for a job with her sister’s CV! I know I didn’t get it either. However, this is one of the pitfalls of having everything online. Just because it may appear to have the same job title doesn’t automatically mean that the tasks were the same, and this coupled with sin #1 is a recipe for disaster.

And that leads us nicely to our final CV sin. Telling porky pies, aka Lies.

A word to the wise. We have discussed that your CV is your passport and should be a paper version of you; bursting with personality, but leaving a good impression with the reader. Fabricating the truth in your CV is not going to help you achieve that. Now I’ll be real with you and I’ll close by telling you a story of how much hot water lying on your CV can get you into. A friend of a friend of a friend used to know a guy who’s CV was a complete work of fiction, however, this man was great with people and very charismatic. He wasn’t a complete fool, he would do his research into the role and company that he wanted to join, but would apply for roles that he was completely unqualified for.  Head of departments and senior management in large, very well known firms were the types of jobs he would go for and you know what, he got the jobs. His thought process was that he would take the six figure salary for a few months, then leave before he was found out. What a great idea you’re thinking? Not so much when one of the firms does some proper checks and  that same firm has a team of very expensive and experienced lawyers backing them and wanting to sue you for fraud. The moral of the story, the truth has a way of coming out and even if it’s not as extreme as this example, I should think that the humiliation of being found out and exposed as a liar should be enough to deter you from telling a porkie or two. Don’t risk it!

Something else to be mindful of is that potential employers will look you up everywhere. They have your CV in their hand and now it’s time to see if you are who you say and they do that by going online. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are just some of the places your name will throw up in a google search, so make sure you are looking good everywhere.

If you’re struggling to put together the perfect CV, don’t panic head over to the career development section of our web HERE and see where we can help. Or let us do it for you by downloading your CV pack today! And to make sure you’re covered, we’ve included our guide to LinkedIn Do’s and Don’ts, it’s Free to download so what are you waiting for…

 

 

 

 

 

The Young get Technical with a £5m boost from Boris!

The Mayor of London has announced a £5m investment programme in teaching young Londoners the essential digital skills required to keep the capital at the forefront of technological innovation.

Boris Johnson said it was “absolutely vital” to nurture London’s tech stars of the future and helping them gain employment within the digital technology industry.

The initiative, in partnership with the London Enterprise Panel (LEP), aims to establish a London Digital Talent Pipeline to help schools and colleges to rework their curriculums to meet the requirements of tech employers. Students aged between 14 and 24 will be taught skill sets as defined by these employers.

London’s technological workforce is predicted to grow by 30pc between 2012 and 2022, equating to some 274,000 workers. The capital is expected to play host to around 51,500 digital technology companies by 2025 – up from the current figure of around 40,000 businesses.

The programme will also oversee the creation of five digital learning hubs designed to train participants, an increase in the number of places for those aged 16 and over in colleges to encourage learning through industry-designed courses, and will be accompanied by an awareness campaign.

Mr Johnson, who is also chairman of the LEP, said: “London is a hotbed of top technological innovation, brimming with creative minds who are helping to boost the capital’s economy and that of the whole country.

“However, it is absolutely vital that we nurture our tech stars of the future and make sure that our deep reserves of talent do not run dry. This new scheme will help London to remain ahead of the game when it comes to tech and give thousands of young Londoners the chance to share in the city’s economic success.”

The Mayor said he also wanted to encourage more women to take up jobs within the tech industry, as women account for only one third of the workforce currently.

A fund to finance budding tech start-ups with an initial investment of £25m was launched last December.

This article is from the Telegraph.co.uk thank you, hope you don’t mind us sharing! HRREV Blog Team

 

Childish Behaviour in the Office is Out of Control!

Doesn’t it sometimes feel like all the drama that goes on at work is more like being in a playground!?!

All too often going into the office is like being back at school, there is always that “he said she said” mentality floating about, raised voices in meetings, sulking at desks or even crying in the coffee room (and I have had my fair share of all of them) and this is happening in workplaces all over the place, and it can really impact on your business.

Working in HR you really get to see a lot of this from all different angles and there are some little rules we could all try to adopt to stop even a little of this happening, and turn our offices back in to “grownup land”!

So here is our friendly advice…

It’s not all about you! – ok a bit blunt I know, but it’s not. You are part of something bigger, a business… and one that needs to be profitable. It takes more than one person to do that, and everyone’s needs must be considered.

Don’t take part in Chinese whispers – Ok so you’ve heard something about someone it doesn’t mean you have to share it with them or anyone else for that matter. Remember it may not be true and you will always be the one that looks bad so just keep clear

It’s not personal if someone disagrees with you – I am hugely guilty of this and take everything personally, but what we have to remember is we don’t always see the bigger picture and what affects others, besides it is OK to have an opinion

You don’t have to be friends to have a good relationship – you can get on with your work colleague even take an active interest in their life, you don’t have socialise with them outside, so if your personalities are different that’s ok!

Learn to listen as well as talk – Other people have valuable things to say too and you never know their ideas might just be better than yours

Take it on the chin when things go wrong – DON’T bring the whole team down with you. How many times do you hear “well such and such did it too etc”. The boss probably already knows anyway so don’t make others look bad, just learn from the mistake

You don’t have to scream to be heard – Shouting in meetings to be heard just shuts everyone down and there is no positive progress to be made

And Lastly Celebrate others successes – don’t sulk because you’re not the one in the spotlight; remember you are all working towards the same goal business success.

I hope this helps us all take a step back before we react a certain way and the working day will go a lot smoother, after all we are all adults aren’t we?

Download your FREE guide to Anti-Harrassment and Bullying in the Workplace by Clicking HERE now or visit our online document shop for heaps more guides and policies to get your office working the way they should. Or drop us an email at info@hrrevolution.co.uk if you need help with any employee issues, we have a solution to help!

Thanks Ros Asquith for the pic, it’s fab!