Hit the road, Jack

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. Hit the road, JackOn 10 Apr 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Gettingrid of senior staff has little to do with fairness. It has more to do withnegotiating a suitable go-away package with the minimum of fuss. And with hugepayoffs on the table, the law is rarely an issue. By Stephen OverellTheboardroom putsch is one of the classic manoeuvres of corporate life, practised,according to employment lawyers, on an almost daily basis by their clients. Butit is also one of the few areas of their trade in which the law seems to bealmost irrelevant. Whereas the law is of prime importance when carrying out anormal dismissal, when sacking a senior director, nine times out of 10, what iswritten in statute books is immaterial; it is what is written in contracts thatis critical.”Thereis an increasing tendency to dismiss directors unlawfully,” says DanielBarnett, an employment barrister at Gray’s Inn Chambers. “They will bedismissed without notice for any reason without regard to whether it is fair ornot and expected to mitigate their losses. It is cynical, but it has becomestandard advice.”Whilesenior executives have the same employment rights as everybody else, with amaximum award of £51,700 potentially available for an unfair dismissal, this isonly rarely at issue. Neither party wants to go to court or tribunal if theycan avoid it; the risk of bad publicity and poor impact on future careers cutstwo ways. Whatis more important is what the contract says about notice periods. For almostall senior executives these are likely to be upwards of a year and couldtheoretically form the basis for a significant breach of contract claim.SueNickson, head of employment at law firm Hammond Suddards Edge, says, “Ifthere is not a situation of gross misconduct, and a company wants someone toleave quickly, the driver for the whole process is what the contract says aboutpayments in lieu of notice.”AndJames Davies, partner in the employment department of law firm Lewis Silkin,says, “There is not really much law in the process. It all comes back tothe terms of the contract. Usually, it is all done diplomatically and amicablyand will normally result in a windfall for the individual. But if the terms ofdeparture have not been properly tied down at the time of recruitment, it canbe very tricky for the employer.”Forany employer hoping to get rid of a senior employee, the ideal scenario is verysimple. They want the person to leave quickly without upsetting colleagues,customers or suppliers and, more important still, without poaching any of them.Rather like a divorce, the best way is to sit down and negotiate a compromise.In return for a go-away payment, the company gets minimum fuss.Negotiationsover the departure of a senior executive are based on assumptions of thepotential damages the individual could receive in a breach of contract claim.When suing for breach of contract, individuals normally have a duty to mitigatetheir losses. In other words, they are under an obligation to find work, withthe amount likely to be earned offset against any damages they receive to covertheir losses. Therefore the ease with which a person is likely to findcomparable work is of great importance to the amount of damages. So too fornegotiations.Typically,says Cliff Weight, principal in the executive compensation practice ofconsultancy William M Mercer, the executive will receive between a third andtwo-thirds the value of the contract.Despitethe Cadbury and Greenbury committees into corporate governance recommendingthat senior executives should not be on contracts lasting more than a year,about a third of directors are on contracts lasting longer. Many have noticeperiods of three or more years. Forindividuals with hefty bargaining power, some are able to negotiate”liquidated damages” for their con- tracts. This gives an employeedismissed with immediate effect – other than for misconduct – not just anentitlement to payment in lieu of notice, but no obligation to mitigate thecost of that to the employer.”Damagesare there to put someone in the position they would have been in if they hadseen out the contract,” says Ben Wood, employment solicitor at law firmLupton Fawcett. “In breach of contract cases, the notice period is likelyto be the basic measure for damages, but there are also benefits such ascompany cars, long-term incentivisation packages, share options and bonuspayments which all have to be taken into consideration.”Contractsof employment for senior staff typically have restrictive covenants writteninto them preventing the individual from entering into direct competition, solicitingbusiness from customers or suppliers, poaching workers and from misusingconfidential information. Butone of the most important things to remember in potential breach of contractcases is that in the event of a breach, such covenants cannot always be reliedon. Most senior executive contracts contain payment in lieu of notice clauses –known as “Pilon” – enabling the employer to terminate the contractimmediately without there being a breach, thus maintaining the enforceabilityof the contract.Incases of doubt about the enforceability of the covenants, however, theexecutive may have to sign a compromise agreement. This is a document in whichthe executive agrees to sign away rights in return for a sum of money. Butcompromise agreements are also a way to repeat restrictive covenants from theservice agreement or put in new restrictions. “Ifan employer is particularly concerned about losing control of an employee aftertermination it is possible to make payments by instalments over time,” saysWood. Any instance of a person losing their job can easily become a highlyemotive one, with senior departures being no different from more lowly ones.Therefore,says James Davies, it is as well for companies not to underestimate theimportance of packaging the departure in a positive light – selling it in a waythat does not harm an individual’s career prospects or self-esteem. After all,terminating an employment relationship that has gone sour can indeed be apositive move for both sides.But,he says, it is also as well for employers not to give grounds for staff tolaunch a discrimination claim which, with uncapped compensation, can beinfinitely more damaging than any breach of contract suit. The famous case inthis area is that of Michael Bourgeois, a former director of Saga Petroleum ofNorway, who won £2m in a race bias claim last year after being sacked on thegrounds that “his management style did not fit in”. Hesuccessfully argued that the company wanted to fill key positions with Norwegiannationals, while forcing him to take a back seat at board meetings held largelyin Norwegian. “Sacking people on such vague, intangible grounds ofmanagement style, has been shown to potentially give rise to discriminationclaims,” says Davies.Inone or two rare cases, it has been known for executives to refuse to go quietlyin a bid to hang on to their jobs. In these situations, when senior employeesrefuse to play the game, employment lawyers say it is standard practice for anemployer to try to trump up charges of gross misconduct and engineer theirdismissal that way. “Fairness does not have much of a role in dismissalsat a senior level,” as one lawyer put it.last_img read more

Women take a quarter of management posts

first_img Previous Article Next Article More women are becoming managers but they are still concerned over equality,according to research by the Institute of Management. A quarter of managers are now women compared with 9 per cent a decade ago,and one in 10 directors are female. This representation at boardroom level is afive- fold increase from the early 1990s. The report called A Woman’s Place? also shows a third of the 1,500 womensurveyed believe their organisation still discriminates against women managersin terms of pay policy. Nearly half think women still suffer discrimination when it comes topromotion. Mary Chapman, director-general of the Institute of Management, said,”It’s good news that women are using their training and skills to graspopportunities in management. “But many still perceive unacceptable levels of discrimination in payand promotion. Organisations need to tackle these issues head on with transparentreward and promotion procedures based on ability and achievement.” The research shows women in senior management positions are becomingimportant role models. The number of women who cite their female manager as supportive of theircareer has risen from 16 per cent in 1992 to 26 per cent. However, 35 per centstill list the “old boys’ network” as a career barrier – a drop ofeight per cent since 1992 – and 16 per cent still say they are hindered bysexual discrimination – down from nearly a quarter. Over a quarter cite family commitments as a career barrier. Today’s female managers are confident in their abilities and their value inthe workplace, with 56 per cent aspiring to a board level position, says thereport. Many are also becoming the main breadwinners in their families. Just over 40per cent of female executives married or living with a partner bring home themain salary and a further 33 per cent are joint breadwinners. www.inst-mgt.org.ukBy Lisa Bratby Related posts:No related photos. Women take a quarter of management postsOn 25 Sep 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. last_img read more

People

first_img Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. PeopleOn 11 Jun 2002 in Personnel Today Duncan Brown, a former partner at management consultancy Towers Perrin andauthor on reward issues, has joined the CIPD as assistant director general. Brown, who started his career as a personnel officer at Vauxhall Motors, haslong-standing ties with the CIPD as chairman of its reward forum. He will lead the institute’s research and policy unit as well as raising itsgeneral profile. “I’ll be part of the CIPD’s management team responsiblefor our professional knowledge and information activities, covering academicresearch and other knowledge development,” he says. Brown, who holds an MA from Cambridge, relishes being more central in theorganisation and helping to push the HR agenda to the forefront: “I enjoythe broad nature and variety of the role, the potential to really make adifference in HR and the opportunity to cycle to work more often,” hesays. He aims to provide CIPD members with knowledge and information to help makea demonstrable impact on people management within organisations: “We needto demonstrate to the wider public the critical nature of people management toindividual, corporate and national wellbeing and success, and thereby also toinfluence the public policy agenda.” Brown also plans to exploit the CIPD’s ‘huge potential’ and loves working inthe HR sphere. He says: “It’s complex and difficult, with no easy,universal solutions, but every day you get the chance in some way to makepeople’s experiences at work more enjoyable and fulfilling.” CV 2002 Assistant director general, CIPD 1985 Various positions with Towers Perrin 1984 Full-time MBA London Business School 1981 Personnel officer, Vauxhall Motors On the moveToby Thompson has joined Praxis – The Centre for Personal Effectiveness – asmanager of business development. Praxis, part of Cranfield School ofManagement, delivers managerial and executive open programmes, as well asdeveloping bespoke in-company management training. Previously, Thompson was amember of the corporate university global strategy team of US IT services firmEDS. Prior to that he was a Zen Buddhist monk. Preston Road New Deal for Communities has recruited Paul Bennett as itsfirst HR manager. Based in Hull, Bennett, who was previously a freelanceconsultant, is responsible for the company’s 150 employees. The group wasformed two years ago after the East Hull estate was awarded £55m in governmentaid over 10 years. The Profectus Group has appointed Jane Bell as director of training. Shejoins from the British Institute of Facilities Management. She is a regularlecturer at the College of Estate Management, and joint co-ordinator of theFacilities Management module on the MSc Intelligent Buildings course at ReadingUniversity. She is responsible for developing the company’s training programme,open to property and support services managers from both the public and privatesector, as well as existing Profectus employees. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Sun sets its new goals

first_img Comments are closed. Sun sets its new goalsOn 1 Feb 2003 in Auto-enrolment, Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. Trainingat the network computing company Sun Microsystems highlighted the importance ofunderstanding customer needs as it moved from a product- to a solutions-basedofferingSPIN¨Selling Designed and delivered by: Huthwaite International, Hoober House, Wentworth,S62 7SA Phone: 01709 710081 Fax: 01709 710065 [email protected] just 20 years ago, Sun Microsystems has grown to become one of theworld’s leading providers of network hardware, software and services. Today, Sun helps companies in virtually every sector to leverage the fullpower of the internet in improving their competitiveness. Yet in an increasingly tough marketplace, Sun recognised it could notmaintain market leadership by standing still. In mid-2001, in the North EuropeRegion – comprising Scandinavia, Benelux and parts of the former Soviet bloc –the vice-president, together with senior managers, recognised the need to takeselling skills ‘to the next level’. This was especially important in such areasas negotiation and account development, if the region’s broader businessstrategy was to be achieved. As the company’s in-house training services provider for the region, SunUniversity’s (SunU’s) EMEA office was approached to source a suitable externaltraining provider who could meet the following objectives: – in replacing a large number of existing third party trainers, to provide afully integrated programme with a common sales language and consistent messages– to ensure a common level of high-quality training across a broadgeographic region – as Sun shifted its focus from a product to an end-to-end solutions-basedoffering, to help the company move from the existing transactional salesapproach to one based on relationship building and understanding customer needs– be recognised as an established and credible provider of sales trainingsolutions Huthwaite was chosen because its SPIN¨Selling programme was identified asoffering the ideal combination of the strongly research-based and customerneeds-focused approach which was required. CoachingAt the outset, the Huthwaite team, led by training consultant Graham Short,held several meetings with senior managers to establish the region’s businessgoals and the sales skills required to deliver them. Rather than follow the more common route of developing separate trainingmodules, what emerged was a business school approach. This took the form of a linked training programme comprising five trainingsessions spread over a year and incorporating a range of selling and accountdevelopment skills. Critically, each three-day training model was followed by a period ofcoaching and project work, to ensure that the skills learned were practised andrefined to become part of each participant’s instinctive selling technique – towhat Huthwaite calls the level of ‘unconscious competence’. The next training modulewould also incorporate these newly-acquired skills acquired as part of thereinforcement and development process. The first of the new business schools, each comprising two groups of 12account managers identified as having ‘high potential’, was launched in August2001 and its success led to the establishment of a second within a short time.The third is already underway and has been extended to other client-facingstaff, including pre-sales and professional services. The importance attached to this comprehensive, and costly, training approachwas underlined in that, throughout the extended training period, eachparticipant had both a coach – typically their line manager – and a mentor,generally from the senior management team. In addition, Huthwaite ran several courses for coaches. Initially, thisfocused on the key issues covered in the business school training. However, for the third business school it has been extended – in response torequests from line management – to incorporate specialist coaching skills. The reaction to this new training approach has been overwhelmingly positivethroughout northern Europe. In particular, as the company moves towards solutions selling, the SPIN¨approach has been generally recognised as offering the ideal skillset foridentifying and agreeing customer needs. Within EMEA, as elsewhere, individual regions operate with a strong degreeof autonomy and, as a result, there have been a number of different reactionsto the visible level of success the programme has achieved. A strong part of the Sun ethos is to extend this autonomy down to anindividual level – ‘to seek permission is to ask for denial’, as the companyputs it. As a result, employees are ’empowered to… escape their own career’ and, inparticular in the UK over the past year, the response to SPIN¨Selling’savailability as an open enrolment option for any salesperson has met with avery good response. Simply by accessing the SunU website¼ under the relevant region, all coursesscheduled for the next six months are listed and may be booked with agreementfrom line management. As a result of the UK experience in particular,SPIN¨Selling is now a standard part of the sales curriculum, as part of SunU’slist of available training options in EMEA. Within a culture in which training traditionally has not been mandatory, theresponse throughout Sun’s global sales operation has been very positive. In summary, both SPIN¨ and the business schools concept have beenwell-received. Furthermore, there is general acceptance that the introduction of moreprecise evaluation tools in future will only serve to prove the strong returnsdelivered by such training investment. The Spin¨ Approach – Identifying the needWithin the business school, the firstof the five three-day course focuses on SPIN¨Selling, the principles of whichunderpin much of the remaining training.Huthwaite’s approach to the IT sector, as with any other, isbased on nearly 30 years’ experience researching what sales people dodifferently to make them successful. From an analysis of this unrivalleddatabase – now numbering more than 40,000 sales interviews in 27 countries andstudying 116 possible influencing factors – the company developed itsSPIN¨Selling model.Put simply, this encourages a more consultative approach,making full use of what is often limited time spent face-to-face by asking theright questions to explore – and get agreement on – the client’s needs. Assuch, it has equal relevance to any employee involved in the sale of goods orservices, which are seen as high-value, important decisions by the buyer.Programme contentBased on a repetitive cycle of input-practice feedback, theobjective is to teach skills and match trainees’ behaviour ever closer to thesuccess model and so improve effectiveness. The programme includes:– persuasive needs analysis – planning in advance key arguments(and therefore questions) likely to influence the buyer– structuring the call – establishing the purpose of the callat the outset, investigating needs through a strict questioning framework,demonstrating how the product/service can meet such needs and obtaining theright commitmentThe right questionsKey to this are the four types of questions which effective salespeopleask as part of a consultative approach:– situation questions ask about the customer’s operatingcontext and business solution– problem questions ask about the customer’s difficulties,dissatisfactions or problems with the existing situation– implication questions ask about the consequences, effects orimplications of the customer’s problems– need-payoff questions probe for explicit needs, eitherdirectly or by exploring the payoff or importance to the customer of solving aproblemResultsAt the end of the programme, the participants:– had analysed the strengths and weaknesses of their presentselling style– were able to describe the psychology of customer needs– were able to describe the key behaviours or skills used byeffective sales people in their interactions with customers– had a framework for planning sales calls in terms of thosebehaviours– had frequently practised using the skills to develop customerneeds in a way that greatly reduces the likelihood of objections– had a strategy for dealing with difficult customers who raiseobjections or have low reaction levels– had measured objectively their performance compared to theskill model and created an action plan for continued development of the skillsafter the programmeBusiness school Approach pays offWorking with Huthwaite, Sun developeda phased year-long training programme comprising five three-day salesdevelopment courses with intensive follow-up coaching and reinforcement in thefield. Each course, tailored to meet Sun’s specific requirements, was builtaround simple models based on extensive research and geared to achieve thecompany’s broader business development goals:– SPIN¨Selling – provided a better understanding of customerneeds as a firm foundation for consultative, partnering customer relationships– account strategy for major sales – addressed the strategiesand tactics required for success in complex, competitive, multi-tiered andmulti-influencer long-cycle sales– negotiation – enabled the achievement of ideal ‘win-win’outcomes, through a combination of preparing a negotiating position, planningtactics – including evaluation of the power balance and creative ‘trade-offs’ –and face-to-face skills– persuasive sales presentations – provided the tools necessaryto ensure maximum impact and memorability for the presentation to ‘stand outfrom the crowd’– effective sales proposals – took the form of a hands-onworkshop addressing the often-neglected area of effective proposal writingVerdictYou cannot ignore the customerFollowing each training session,assessments by the participants have been uniformly positive, writes ClaudiaKing, SunU Northern Europe education manager. In particular, they have praised:– the quality of the trainers and their willingness to sharerelevant experience– the importance of being able to share their own experiencewith other attendees – the relevance – and value – of the role-plays in mirroringtheir everyday experience– the importance of SPIN¨ ‘s research-based methodology inturning the traditional approach to selling on its headIn short, the key to its success has been in forcingparticipants to take a step back and ask the questions needed to get to whatthe customer really wants.This has resulted in a real attitude change and a willingnessto accept that ‘the old way of doing things’ just won’t work anymore. With suchan extended programme, line managers have been encouraged to work withHuthwaite in providing regular assessments on improved skills and those whichneed further work.Word has also spread well beyond the boundaries of the northernregion. In addition to the strong take-up of SPIN¨ in particular in northernEurope and elsewhere, Germany has plans for introducing its own businessschool, in conjunction with Huthwaite Germany. Sun’s operations as far afieldas the US and the Far East have also expressed interest in the business schoolconcept.Effectivness * * * *Ability to meet business needs * * * *Value for money * * * *Quality of experience * * * *Overall rating * * * *Key: * = Disappointing  * * * **  = Excellent Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more

On the move

first_imgThe Savoy Group has appointed Sara Edwards as group HR director. She will beresponsible for developing an HR strategy for the firm, which runs restaurantsand hotels. Edwards joined the company, which is owned by the Blackstone Group,from Claridge’s, where she was HR director for four years. Peter Whittall is the new HR director at rental business, the LavendonGroup. He will focus on recruitment, retention and the development of thegroup’s 1,000 employees. Prior to his appointment, Whittall worked in HR atIMI, BP, GSK and Taylor Hobson. He also has experience of HR in Europe, Japanand the US. Canterbury-based law firm Furley Page has appointed Hugh Horsford as HRconsultant. He was previously head of personnel at the Kent Institute of Artand Design, where he restructured the management and introduced a range oftraining and development. He has also worked for the Universities of Surrey andHertfordshire and spent four years with the Government of Bermuda. Moez Jamani has joined BAX Global Logistics as regional HR executive for theEMEA region. He moves from IT service provider NCR, where he spent three yearsas an HR consultant. In his new role, he will be responsible for implementingHR strategy, reporting to the regional HR director. On the moveOn 13 May 2003 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Companies restrict travel to SARS-affected countries

first_img Comments are closed. Related posts: Previous Article Next Article Features list 2021 – submitting content to Personnel TodayOn this page you will find details of how to submit content to Personnel Today. We do not publish a…center_img SomeUK employers are quarantining staff in a bid to stop infection spreadingFirmsaround the world are erring on the side of caution when it comes to respondingto the threat of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), a study hasconcluded.UKemployers, such as UBS Warburg, Barclays and Asda, have been haltinginternational travel and quarantining staff as a precaution against passing oninfection.Astudy of 400 firms by New York-based consultancy Organization ResourcesCounselors (ORC) found most firms had restricted travel to affected areas or,at the very least, required high-level approval for such trips.Almosthalf had limited travel within affected regions by staff, and more than a fifthwere permitting early homecomings for employees on expatriate assignments.However, whether the quarantine period – usually 10 days – was treated as paidleave, or whether firms expected people to work from home, varied.Firmswere also trying to limit exposure for people working in affected areas byincreasing the use of telecommuting, teleconferencing, and flexible workinghours. Companiesfound getting information out to staff was one of the most effective means ofcombatting the spread of the disease. A total of 82 per cent of those polledsaid they had activated SARS education programmes for staff.Inaddition, 43 per cent were conducting active surveillance of staff withSARS-like symptoms, with some managers required to report suspected SARS. Somecompanies were even screening visitors and asking those who exhibited symptoms,such as coughing, to leave. Occupationalsafety and health managers polled by ORC were concerned that companies did notoverreact. Companies restrict travel to SARS-affected countriesOn 1 Jun 2003 in Coronavirus, Personnel Todaylast_img read more

Letters

first_img Comments are closed. This week’s lettersA tipping point for reward?The decision of the CIPD to create a certificate in reward management (News,17 February) marks a watershed in the development of the UK personnel function.It recognises that reward has established itself as a discrete specialism andacknowledges a responsibility to populate the marketplace with competentprofessionals. Unlike the US, with separate professional institutes serving trainers, generalists(SHRM) and compensation practitioners (World at Work, formerly the AmericanCompensation Association), UK reward practitioners have felt bereft ofcontinuing professional development. For organisations, the exponential growth in demand for capable rewardpractitioners has merely exhausted the talent pool and created significant paydifferentials. By extension, this talent pool is increasingly replenished bythose without a background in personnel, such as accountants and actuaries. I am passionate about re-stocking the reward talent pool with seasonedpersonnel practitioners – those with the breadth and insight to be the‘guardians of motivation’. Effective reward managers of the future will not be ‘back office’compensation and benefits specialists. They will be those who understand thecircumstances in which employees deliver discretionary effort and who are ableto deploy a body of knowledge to create and sustain employee engagement. Thisis a much higher calling than the mediocre ambition to deliver compensation andbenefits solutions designed to ‘recruit and retain’. Recent developments withinthe CIPD invite generalists into this arena. They also create a chance forreward practitioners to develop a depth of insight and capability sufficient tomake a seismic difference in the places they work. Mark Childs Vice-president, Reward, CIPD Employee is the final arbiter for pensions I bristled at the quote from David Yeandle of the Engineering Employers’Federation (News, 17 February). If HR is to be encouraged to lead, it must question received wisdom aboutpensions, which have failed a large swathe of the working population. I question the quote from the EEF: “As members are the ultimatebeneficiaries of these insurance arrangements, it is only reasonable thatemployers should be able to share the cost of financing the PPF by recoveringat least part of the levy from members”. Broadly true, except for thephrase “ultimate beneficiary”, as though employees were the solebeneficiaries of the operation of a pension scheme. Take time to consider howemployers have benefited from pension schemes. – In recent years, companies have been taken over for the value of theirpension surpluses – Some employers have reduced their own pension costs by running offsurpluses over many years and/or taken pension holidays – Employers running contracted out pension schemes have paid lower NI costsfor many years – Are there not tax exemptions on corporation tax for contributions intopension schemes? – For schemes that close for insolvency, the company has to make up the fundto the minimum funding requirement level if it can, not to the accrued benefitlevel – The winding up of a final salary scheme in insolvent companies can fall onthe members for administration costs, often running into millions of pounds – The shortfall in the fund is met by the active members – The debt to maintain retired members is met by the active members – Pension funds are now taxed more heavily by the exchequer. Approaching this business as though it is garnished in favour of theemployee is a false start. Many employees are going to fall outside thecompensation scheme and may have lost much of their life’s pension with noredress. Rancour on this issue will be deep and long lasting. It is good to have a compensation scheme but it has unfairly divided theworking population. How many still in final salary plans appreciate they are nolonger the gold standard in pensions and can still pose great risks to members?It was confirmed by the Goode Commission that the surplus belonged to theemployer because it was the final arbiter in making the fund good. Experiencein many schemes has demonstrated that the employee has been the final arbiterfor pension schemes and that he or she had no pension holiday or contributionreduction in most cases. Christopher Hore Personnel manager, Crest Packaging Key is understanding membership’s role I have been reading the ongoing debate in Personnel Today about thenecessity of being fully CIPD qualified to enter the tough HR market. I havebeen in a role for five years with a wealth of experience and am partly CIPDqualified. Studying via flexi-learning, and funding myself, has been enormouslychallenging along with the busy hours of an HR role. I recently started looking for a new role commensurate to my abilities andexperience, which would also offer me greater room to continue with my CIPDstudies. I have been shocked by the ineptitude and arrogance of the HRrecruitment agencies I have tried to use. I have not dealt with a single agencythat has offered anything resembling a service. If anyone is responsible for the impossibility of finding a role withoutbeing fully CIPD qualified, it is not the CIPD but the HR agencies and theirdaft sculpting of an employment market that insists on all candidates beingfully CIPD qualified. Are our colleagues in the HR departments that we seek to enter so deluded ormyopic that they will only accept chartered members of the CIPD for their positions,often offering salaries that ought to be considered for entry level roles letalone positions demanding three to five years experience and full CIPD? I have worked long enough in the field to know that many of the HR openingscould ably be filled by new entrants to the CIPD field, albeit with sometraining and mentoring. The solution to this problem is not to berate the CIPD or its standards, butto encourage our colleagues to talk to their recruitment consultants abouttheir vacancies and to explain to them what CIPD qualifications mean alongside,and in relation to, experience. Details supplied No qualification can prepare you for HR In my experience, many employers ask for a CIPD qualification without reallyknowing what it means. They think it will guarantee they get someone capable.In my 22 years in HR, I have found no qualification that can prepare you forthe real world of HR. Michelle Bailey Interim HR manager, The Rubicon Corporation Ltd CIPD of little benefit to the experienced… I empathise with Gina Patterson’s criticism of the CIPD qualification(Letters, 17 February). I graduated with a business and law degree six years ago and I am now anexperienced HR adviser, looking to take the next step in my career – into HRmanagement. I have already stumbled at the first hurdle, as I do not have theCIPD qualification. I too found the course commitments difficult while workingfull-time, and the fees are expensive. In my experience, the CIPD qualification is often the only ‘essential’criteria in job ads, even for positions requiring minimal experience. The onething that really annoys me is that, on the occasions I have challenged arecruiter’s specific requirement of the CIPD qualification for a role, they areoften unable to even tell me what the content of the course is, let alone whatits benefit would be to a particular position. I have no doubt that to someone starting out on the career ladder, with noexperience, the CIPD course would be beneficial, but to a seasoned professionalwith references backing up a solid work career, I can find little benefit. Tamasine Hickey Details supplied … But you won’t get far in HR without it I am very surprised by Gina Patterson’s comments (Letters, 17 February). Itmust be frustrating to find you have studied the wrong degree and will have tostudy some more. But don’t blame the CIPD or undermine its reputation andvalue. If you knew that you wanted a career in HR, you should have done yourresearch and chosen a post-graduate course that was CIPD accredited in HRmanagement. It is tough holding down a full-time job and studying at the sametime, but many of us chartered members have done it. The benefits of being part of the CIPD are too many to mention here. Take alook at the CIPD website and the recruitment pages of Personnel Today. Youwon’t get far in your HR career without CIPD membership. Lorren Price Details supplied LettersOn 2 Mar 2004 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more

Remember the Who !! #SHRM16

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. I’m catching up on rest after an exhilarating SHRM Annual Conference. It was truly wonderful the entire time. This year I experienced a new view of the conference as a member of the SHRM Board of Directors.Read full article Remember the Who !! #SHRM16Shared from missc on 27 Jun 2016 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img

Does Andrew Yang’s housing plan make sense?

first_img Message* Share via Shortlink Full Name* Email Address* Andrew Yang (Getty)New Yorkers no longer have a choice: We have to take Andrew Yang seriously.The Democratic primary for mayor is less than two months away and he’s leading the polls as the eight identifiable candidates begin to invade our lives with TV ads.Yang is winning mostly because of name recognition. He’s famous for being famous. Voters have no idea what he does for a living or what his skills are, but he has a following and he might win. It’s time to consider whether this smooth talker actually knows what he’s talking about.Yesterday he unveiled his affordable housing plan in a 12-minute speech. I’m going to grade it on three criteria: Is it good policy? Is it innovative? Is it achievable?The first thing to consider when candidates talk housing is whether they even understand it. Based on his speech, Yang does.Read moreDevelopers oppose Scott Stringer’s housing planWhere NYC mayoral candidates stand on real estate issuesMayoral contenders debate on housing policy Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink He began by properly framing the issue, noting that the housing problem limits social mobility, hampers education, increases homelessness and spreads Covid. His comment that 2,600 New Yorkers left the city weekly from 2010 to 2019 was rhetoric — he failed to say how many moved in — but it’s fair to say that some moved for better housing elsewhere.Then he cited the main problem with New York City’s housing: We don’t build enough.Anyone who says our problem is “too much luxury housing” or “not enough affordable housing” is shilling for votes and not getting to the crux of the problem. Yang seems to understand that supply and demand largely determine housing prices. Reducing demand (as Covid did) is not a good way to lower them. That leaves one option: increasing supply. Yang gets that.Is that innovative? No. Most of the candidates agree, including Kathryn Garcia, Ray McGuire, Eric Adams and, of course, Sean Donovan, the only housing expert in the race.Is it achievable? Yes. New York is not uniquely resistant to housing development. Whether Yang has the necessary leadership skills is another matter, but at least he passes the economics test and is not running around blaming developers and gentrification. Grade: B+Yang also adeptly described the struggle to allow more housing: “A rezoning of a neighborhood to build denser, new types of housing runs into a bureaucratic gauntlet that favors the loudest voices in a room, not necessarily the most sensible,” he said. “The needs of the country’s largest city have been drowned out by narrow interests most concerned with maintaining the status quo — and their own status.”That surely made city planners cheer and Nimby groups curse. So, points for Yang. Grade: A.His next policy idea is to spend $4 billion a year to build or preserve 30,000 affordable units annually. That’s more than Mayor Bill de Blasio’s record-high spending and not at all innovative. It’s not terrible, but it’s really a fallback for governments that cannot foster a functional housing market.Affordable units are allocated by lottery, compelling many “winners” to move away from their families, support networks and jobs. The below-market rents are a blessing but essentially trap tenants in the units. A market that supplies affordable housing organically allows people to move when their household gets bigger or smaller or when they get a better job far away. That should be the goal. Most of the country has achieved it. Grade: B-.Yang then attacked the political system known as “member deference” by which neighborhoods or project sites are rezoned: The decision falls to the local City Council member.“If elected, I plan on working with the council to eliminate member deference,” he said.That’s like saying, “If I come across lions with a fresh piece of meat, I will work with the pride to snatch it away.”Yang did not say how he would end the policy or how he would replace it. He gets an A for his diagnosis, an F for his realism and an incomplete for his solution.He did vow to speed up the seven-month political approval process for 100 percent affordable projects. “It’s counterproductive to waste months in one hearing after another, waiting for advisory votes, when we often know what the right thing to do is,” he said. Nicely put. He did not, however, say how he would speed it up, such as by sparing such projects from the process entirely. And what about mixed-income projects? Grade: B.Yang attacked parking minimums — rules that force developers to create private parking spaces proportional to the project size, regardless of necessity. This is not a new idea but it’s a good one because it allows for cheaper housing and reduces driving. It is cheered in areas well served by subways and booed in transit deserts, an obstacle Yang did not address. And he did not say if developers would be compelled to pour the savings from not having to build parking into affordable housing. Grade: A-.He called for bus rapid transit to allow for upzoning. Good idea, but upzoning has to come first. Bus service is expensive in low-density areas that lack riders, and a state agency controls buses. Grade: B+.Yang said he would bring back single-room occupancy, which was banned for being unfair to the poor — a decision that made housing more expensive. “We should embrace ideas like co-living,” he said. Innovative? Not exactly. But wise and feasible, although he failed to note that a new state law would be needed or say what he would do when SRO tenants have kids. Grade: A-.Accessory dwelling units, sometimes called granny flats or basement apartments, should be legalized, Yang said. The city has a pilot program for this but progress has been slow. Yang did not mention fire-safety rules and other impediments to making this work, and exaggerated how many units it would create. Grade: B.The candidate also failed to mention the city’s infamous property tax system and highest-in-the-nation construction costs.Yang called his speech “just a start” — indeed, his website has more details and other ideas. So do the other candidates, and voters must consider them as well. The tougher question is which contenders have the political skills to make these changes. Only Adams and Scott Stringer have held public office, although Donovan, Garcia and Maya Wiley all have government experience.But it is at least comforting to know that Yang has a solid grasp of housing issues. Either that or a very good speechwriter.Contact Erik Engquist Tags Affordable HousingDevelopmentmayoral racenew york city councilPoliticsRezoningslast_img read more

A flexible computer-based technique for the analysis of data from a sea-going nutrient autoanalyser

first_imgModern instruments and techniques used to collect nutrient data at sea may amass huge data sets from discrete samples and continuously monitored sample streams. The volume and format of data produced by some sampling techniques preclude data analysis by manual methods. However, the analysis of a wide variety of sample types also makes the use of fully automatic data analysis inappropriate, so that a flexible approach to data analysis is required. Although at sea autoanalyser chemistry methods are thoroughly described in the literature, little information is available on data handling procedures. A suite of computer programmes has been developed to cope with a wide variety of autoanalyser nutrient data. Here we describe the basic design of data acquisition and sub-sampling programmes and methods of operation.last_img read more