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Opinion Pieces

Opinion Pieces

Helping Students Prepare for the World of Work

Churchfields Academy, Swindon, will be helping its year 11 students improve their job application skills. Using volunteers from local businesses, students will practice writing application letters, preparing CVs and taking part in interviews. They will be given guidance on how to present themselves and make a strong first impression. We are looking for volunteers to help us on 8th March 2017. So, if you live or work near Swindon, Wiltshire, UK and can give us a day of your time we would like to hear from you. If you are interested you will find more information about our plans and who to contact by following the link below.

Download this article as a PDF» Job Interview Practice

Making change happen

A CIPD research report, entitled “Landing Transformational Change”, brings together ideas and practices based on current organisational experience. It avoids the “toolkit” or “tick box” approach but provides a useful framework from which any organisation could build its own route to transformation. It gives a wide range of resources and further reading for those who need or wish to explore specific aspects of change management in more detail. One of its strengths is the range of short examples it provides that illustrate these ideas and practices. Many of these examples provide platforms for further exploration and development in other organisations.

This will be useful for …..
    Providing a robust framework for managing large scale change Helping the senior leadership team understand change Student understanding of key aspects of Human Resources or Organisational Development

Download this article as a PDF» transformational change

Getting best value from apprenticeships

This brief introduces the CIPD guide to recruiting apprentices It will be useful if you are one of the 28% of UK employers with more than 9 employees and …..

    you are thinking about offering apprenticeships you want to improve your current employment offer to apprentices you want to better align apprentice recruitment to your business strategy .

Download this article as a PDF» recruiting apprentices

Absence Management - UK trends 2014

This brief provides and overview of the most recent report from the CIPD on trends within the UK on the management of absence. The CIPD has been following absence management trends since the last century, producing an annual report each year. This report focuses on comparisons between 2013 and 2014 with some analysis for the period 2010 – 14, but no insight into longer term trends. The causal analysis has been conducted at the organisation level, not through employee research, therefore there is no information about variance between reported and actual experience at the individual level. Although the report is based on findings in the UK HR professionals around the world may find it useful of they are

    Considering absence management policy options Benchmarking against sector, region or employment comparators

Download this article as a PDF» Absence Management 2014


Extracted from a larger publication about linking Talent Management and the strategic business agenda, Nigel Cox Consulting has written a brief paper on a business focused approach to developing and using competency frameworks. The paper identifies and guides the reader through a number of simple steps:

    1. Identify, and establish a framework for working with, stakeholders
    2. Gather data to test or define the competency framework
    3. Design the Competency Framework, whether starting from scratch or building on a pre-existing template
    4. Write competency based job descriptions
    5. Build competency based business tools

    Download this article as a PDF» Competencies and Business Strategy

    Standards in Human Resources

    The implications for HR professionals are that there remains significant work to be done to establish a shared view about the role of the function, even within a single organisation. The first step to establishing a quality standard has to be agreeing on service requirements with the client. The evidence suggests that few HR practitioners have taken this on board. While they pursue functional excellence and a strategic positioning they have still to establish a clear understanding of what their business partners actually want. The survey from Nigel Cox Consulting looked beyond the standard assessment of business impact and went on to explore issues such as how to measure the performance of Human Resources and the role of Human Resources in establishing organisation values.

    Download this article as a PDF» Standards in Human Resources

    Organisations, People and Skills for Exporting Businesses

    The standard checklists given to businesses investigating the opportunities that growing business overseas bring often seem focused on tax and law, on filling in this form and complying with that regulation. Yet, for businesses that want long term success it will pay to think about how people issues are addressed as well. As with so much in business, thinking ahead about the challenges will give opportunities to prevent problems before they arise or exploit opportunities when they present themselves. Whether you are a manager responsible for business growth sending team members abroad, or are the owner of an SME and doing the traveling yourself, there are many common issues to address.

    Here are our top five tips

      1. Make sure the bills can be paid
      2. Make sure you have the right person
      3. Make sure the overseas visits are the right duration
      4. Make sure you have the right communications
      5. Make sure you get the best value from the experience

      Download this article as a PDF» 5 Tips - Organisation, People and Skills for Exporting Businesses

      Performance Related Pay


      "The evidence is overwhelming: It doesn’t work.

      Unlink pay from performance. The evidence keeps growing that pay for performance is ineffective. It also may induce executives to take company-killing risks. There are other ways to motivate employees that yield better results at lower cost."

      These are the words of Bruno S. Frey and Margit Osterloh in their article "Stop Tying Pay to Performance" published in The Harvard Business Review, January 2012. To read more about this perspective on Performance Related Pay down load a copy of their article.

      Download this article as a PDF» Stop Paying for Performance

      Adapting to a Competitive World

      There is a link between organization performance, the world of work and the development of employee potential and creativity. Harness this capability and you will ensure that your staff engage with their work regardless of how hostile the work environment becomes . However, do not think of “employee engagement” as an end in itself, nor as just the outcome of some Human Resources intervention. You need to address all aspects of your business, technology, systems, and people, as well as your relationship with the external environment. What brings this all together is a clear set of values. Constructing a great organization will help ensure it remains relevant and fit for its constituents.

      An engaged workforce in an adaptable organisation, sharing a positive view of change, will provide you with the most robust platform for continuing success and sustained, profitable, growth.

      Download this article as a PDF» Adapting to a Competitive World

      Transferring Employees

      Implementing a transfer of employees from another organization is a great opportunity to create an environment where people want to work, feel valued and good about their contribution. When dealing with take-overs or transfers (TUPE/Acquired Rights Regulations) a key focus should be on effective integration, whether that is the integration of a workforce already employed or of a completely new workforce.

      All the evidence shows that enabling employees to achieve their potential is a great platform for the long term profitable success in any business.

      Download this article as a PDF» Executing Employee Transfers

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