The 12 months of 2017: November

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For our 12 Days of Christmas countdown we look at the most interesting HR happenings over the last year

National retraining scheme announced

Chancellor Philip Hammond confirmed the launch of a national retraining scheme to help workers build the skills they need for the future economy in his 2017 Autumn Budget.

“We need to help people to retrain during their working lives,” he told the House of Commons in his Budget speech. “Ensuring that our workforce is equipped with the skills they will need for the workplace of the future.”

The plans include a partnership between the government, the CBI and the TUC to set a strategic direction for a national retraining scheme. "Its first priority will be to boost digital skills and to support expansion of the construction sector," said Hammond.

Review urges gender boardroom target extension

The latest Hampton-Alexander report, released in November, recommended the voluntary 33% gender boardroom target be extended beyond the FTSE 100 to the FTSE 350. The government-backed review found that the percentage of women on FTSE 100 boards has increased to nearly 28%, a rise from just 12.5% in 2011.

However, Philip Hampton, chair of the report and chairman of GlaxoSmithKline, said more must be done. “It is clear that gender balance on FTSE boards has undergone a dramatic shift in recent years,” he said.

The best bits of HR magazine in November:

Breaking the class ceiling

Class is Britain's forgotten strand of D&I, says editor Jenny Roper. But we must ensure someone's background doesn't hinder their success. Workplaces must play their part in remaining ever vigilant if they’re to reap the diversity and business-enhancing rewards.

Protecting your business from rogue employees

The deactivation of Donald Trump’s Twitter account for 11 minutes by one of Twitter’s customer service contractors on their last day of work understandably generated a lot of headlines, given the president’s love of tweeting. How can you protect your business from such actions from rogue employees?

Half face ethical dilemmas at work

Over half (55%) have witnessed or been asked to do things at work which caused them unease, according to research from A Blueprint for Better Business. The poll of 1,000 UK workers found that while many have been made to feel uncomfortable by unethical or disrespectful behaviour or instructions, few were able to articulate their unease or find ways to change the situation.

Whistleblowers deterred by company culture

Workplace cultures are still deterring large numbers of employees from whistleblowing, according to research from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Freshfields).

However, whistleblowing is becoming a more standardised practice in workplaces around the world, with less employees deterred than in previous years, the research found.

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