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Is the four-day working week the way forward?

It started with working from home, now the four-day work week, what other unfathomable changes will the Covid-19 pandemic enforce onto the business world?

The four-day work week has been discussed in a bid to measure whether or not it will boost productivity giving employees a longer weekend. Workers would still be paid the same as their five-day work...

Worse things happen at sea…

In recent articles P&O Ferries have come under fire after letting go of 800 workers, replacing them with Indian agency workers and paying them less than £2 an hour. According to a union, they have claimed that the P&O Ferries crews in Dover are being paid a shocking sum of £1.81 an hour. Imagine trying to live off those wages, it would be practically impossible.

The Rail, Maritime...

Why is the Chief Happiness Officer role becoming more popular?

In this blog I will be discussing what a Chief Happiness Officer is and why the role is becoming more popular amongst workplaces. It may seem like a made-up title or perhaps not much of an important job but in recent times happiness officers have been helping companies bloom.

In essence the chief happiness officer is a HR Manager with a certain qualification and certain beliefs in that ha...

Companies are slashing sick pay for unvaccinated workers

IKEA has recently announced that it is slashing sick pay for unvaccinated staff who are forced to self-isolate due to being in close contact with someone with Covid-19. They will only be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay of £96.35 a week unless there are mitigating circumstances. This is a massive decrease compared to the average gross wage of £400 for shop floor workers.

A spokesperson for ...

CEO fires 900 workers on a Zoom call

Until a week ago few people would have heard the name Vishal Garg unless they were unfortunate enough to work for him. As the CEO of, an online mortgage company based in New York, he recently made headlines around the world for his ruthless approach to staff redundancies.

The bearer of bad news

Garg gathered together 900 staff for a Zoom call and fired th...

More businesses are switching to a four-day working week

There is no doubt that the world of business and the working environment have changed considerably since the pre-Covid-19 pandemic days. First there was the mass migration to homeworking, then a fragmented return to office based work and now many companies have adopted the hybrid model which offers workers the best of both.

Reducing hours but not salaries

The l...

Portugal introduces legislation to protect homeworkers

Portugal has made it illegal for employers to contact staff by phone, text message, or email outside of their normal working hours. The ground breaking legislation titled ‘right to rest’ is aimed at improving work-life balance following an increase in the number of remote workers.

Attracting entrepreneurs to Portugal

Portugal's Minister of Labour and Social Security...

Big Boss may be watching you

Ever since the mass migration to homeworking there has been one big concern facing business owners and managers. Will the staff be as productive working from home (WFH) as they are in the office?

Trust is crucial

The word trust is often banded about as being a key component in developing long-term relationships between a business and its customers. Trust, however, i...

Amazon is paying staff a bonus to be on time

Amazon is a company that divides opinion and is often in the news regarding staff welfare issues. This time though the news appears to be positive from the world’s leading online retailer. 

The American giant has started paying staff a £50 weekly bonus at some of its UK warehouses, which is very generous of them, but this isn’t performance related, it’s just for being punctual. Now c...

Google is considering reducing pay for homeworkers

With the world of business gradually returning to normal as lockdown restrictions are eased, the much anticipated mass migration back to work hasn’t materialised as expected. Tens of thousands of employees are happy working from home (WFH) and are reluctant to return to the office – and who can blame them? Remote working means you no longer face the dreaded commute to work, there is greater fle...

It’s time to return to the office…

Following the announcement that people in England no longer have to work from home (WFH) from 19 July – and the rest of the UK will follow suit shortly - there will be tens of thousands of workers preparing to return to their offices for the first time in 18 months.

This is great news for business and the economy, although there is still some confusion about what this actually means, so h...

Employment law changes and priorities for 2021

A Guest Blog by Caryl Thomas, HR Expert.

We’re almost a week into 2021. What has made your list of to-do’s or resolutions for this year? In stark contrast to Januarys gone by, the BBC reports that many people are looking to quit the gym. They’re not throwing in the towel as such, but have found new ways to exercise since life in lockdown.

Hobbies and passion project...

Six reasons why a virtual company Christmas is a good idea

A Guest Blog by Caryl Thomas, HR Expert.

This time of year is usually filled with festivities. From Christmas parties to the legendary Secret Santa gift exchange, there is normally no shortage of reasons to get together with friends, family and co-workers during December.

But after a difficult year curtailing coronavirus, and with continued efforts to keep the risk ...

Job Retention Scheme (aka Furlough) extended to March 31st 2021

A Guest Blog by Deb Barrow, HR Expert.

Although the scheme was scheduled to end on November 30th 2020, it has now been extended to March 31st 2021, whilst the start of the Job Support Scheme has been delayed.

So, what are the details and are they different from the original scheme?

  • Any employee on the payroll by October 30th 2020 can be pl...

Personality preferences in decision-making (Part 1)

A Guest Blog by Manjula Bray, Business Psychologist and Leadership Expert.

In my last blog, I wrote about the relevance of measuring personality in a recruitment context…I’m shifting the focus to leaders in this piece. Looking inward at making good decisions – pretty significant to those at the ships’ helm.

I will cover this topic in 2 parts – and you may like ...

WHY Business psychology?

A Guest Blog by Manjula Bray, Business Psychologist and Leadership Expert.

A better first question might be: ‘what is business psychology?’ – something I am often asked to explain at networking events. Siri defines psychology it as:

‘the scientific study of the human mind and its functions, especially t...

Employee Engagement – why is it so difficult?

A guest blog by Rob Baker, HR expert.

It is now 10 years since the pioneering work of David MacLeod and Nita Clarke highlighted the gains to be achieved by securing the positive engagement of your workforce. In the intervening period, everyone from the CIPD to ACAS – and dozens more – have extolled the benefits of engagement as a means of gaining commitment and extra...

Stage Two of Job Retention Scheme (aka Furlough) ended on July 31st, 2020

A Guest Blog by Deb Barrow, HR Expert.

August 1st marked the last stage of the Scheme which ends on October 31st, 2020. For the month of August the Employer is required to start paying its National Insurance and Pension contributions and in addition a proportion of any furlough/flexi-furlough pay from September (10%) and October (20%). As a consequence of this, and w...

Stage One of the Job Retention Scheme (aka Furlough) ended on June 30th, 2020

July 1st marks the start of the second stage of the Job Retention Scheme, kicking off with the introduction of ‘flexible furloughing’. What this means is that employees can be invited back to work for a determined number of hours being payed at 100% for hours worked whilst staying on furlough leave for the remainder of their contracted hours paid at 80%.

Sounds straight forward?

Applying Maslow’s theory on motivation to businesses today

The most important asset any company has is its staff. Successful managers realise that if they keep their workers happy then it will have a positive effect throughout the whole business.

So, the key question is how do managers keep staff happy? Is it by paying them lots of money? Rewarding them with bonuses and promotion? Or praising them when they do well? The answer is yes to all of th...

McClelland’s Human Motivation Theory

Trying to motivate a team is challenging enough but even more so in the current economic climate. So, when businesses do start functioning again and the millions of workers return to work after months of working from home (WFH), leaders and managers will need as much help as possible to inspire staff and propel businesses forward to profitability and growth. Following on from last week’s blog a...

So, you’ve been furloughed, but what does it mean?

Until recently the term furlough was an unfamiliar one outside of the USA and now you can’t stop hearing about it, seeing people discussing it on television, or reading online about the new buzzword. But what exactly does it mean?

Furlough is a temporary leave of absence for employees from the company they work for and in its current context is being used in relation to the Coronavirus Jo...

Is Big Brother watching you?

One of the biggest banks in the UK recently hit the headlines for the wrong reason. Barclays had piloted a software system that monitored the amount of time that employees spent at their desks. Although Barclays has stopped using the pro...