Latest comments

Top engineering graduates leaving sector for higher salaries elsewhere

Jon Ingham, Strategic HCM says:

That's why I moved from chemical engineering into IT consulting with Andersen/Accenture 25 years ago. Half my course did and loads of other people before and even more since. Nothing's changed. That's not great, and we do need to be shouting about it and doing something to change it. But 'news' it ain't!

The 'war on talent' is still a danger to staff retention levels, says Kelly Services HR director

Lee Grant, Youforce says:

In a world where employee engagement is widely recognised as adding value to organisations, it is both interesting and shocking to see that only 50% of employees find the training they are offered by employers is not good enough to help them to progress in their careers. Furthermore, it is disappointing to read that employees are missing opportunities because the training that is offered is not tailored to specific needs and skill sets. This once again highlights the gap between the workforce and HR directors and senior executives. It is crucial that HR and managers have proper insight into their More...

The role businesses can play in offering career support to young people

David Wallace says:

Thank you Ann for bringing this up. Schools are charged with providing impartial, independent careers advice, and companies can be critical of the work-ready qualities in young people. So let's talk. At Stratford upon Avon School we are engaging with employers around the issue of 21st century employability skills. I am delighted by the response so far. If you would like to meet like minded employers here in Stratford upon Avon - see our website

How important are qualifications when it comes to finding top talent?

Philippa Riley says:

Glad you agree, and it's great to hear your thoughts on the topic.

Skills gap hindering growth for UK employers, PwC report finds

Jane Harris says:

For David H. Meagher, At Skills for Birmingham, we have identified the immediate skills gaps in Birmingham and have designed a schools programme to cover these aspects which begins its pilot in September 2013. The work so far is funded entirely through Packt publishing through their CSR activity but we are now looking for other funding opportunities. If you'd like to hear more about our work, or would like a copy of our report (Young, Skilled and Ready) please do get in touch. (

Employment lawyer warns Labour "it may struggle" to enforce the proposed ban on zero hours contracts

Rob Serjeant says:

The consequences of any imposition of guaranteed-hours contracts or payment of the "living wage" in low wage regions/sectors would be mass business closures, unemployment or further inflation for those employers able to pass such costs on. It's all very laudable for Labour leaders to push this agenda in opposition, but without having to deal with the consequences

Zero hours contracts offer flexibility and give employers a competitive edge

Rob Serjeant says:

Many thanks for this article Ann, which provides rare balance on the subject of zero-hours contracts. Whilst it may be desirable for most employees to have more security of hours, many people prefer the flexibility of zero-hours contracts. Indeed, the flexibility is two ways. The trick for employers is to know your people's needs and my experience is that zero-hours contracts work best when there is no obligation on people to be available on-call. Operating a pool of staff on such contracts works well, allowing everyone to benefit from flexibility

Employers must have “open and honest” conversations when sending LGBT staff overseas, says KPMG head of D&I

Lee R J Middlehurst says:

Interesting article but it seems to suggest certain deficiencies in referring to LGBT identities but then only discussing gay identities. Contact me and we should have a productive discussion regarding transgender matters and related areas of EDI issues. :-)

OD problems present "brilliant" talent management opportunities, says Hanover Housing Group L&D manager

Alan Brewer says:

I found the final statement to be especially compelling: "If you want your talent to really thrive you need to put them in a place where the conversation happens." Conversation implies both listening and speaking. Traditional or top-down organizations struggle with this concept as they tend to "tell" more than "ask", leading to a follow-the-orders mentality. In order to drive learning and engagement, these experiences must be crafted carefully so as to maximize their impact to the organization.

Employment lawyer warns Labour "it may struggle" to enforce the proposed ban on zero hours contracts

Peter Copping says:

The assumption is that these '0'hours contacts are contracts of employment. But are they? Can they be construed as contracts for services?

Engagement special: Veronica Hope-Hailey on defining engagement

John Ludike says:

Very true particulary context and culture in emerging markets do matter hugely and presents itself rather differently however academicly versus pragmaticly in real world of work much of research done by majority of armchair academics does not resonate or make difference. That said Fons Trompenaars work has had huge impact on our footprint accross 23 countries in Africa, Middle East and Asia.

How important are qualifications when it comes to finding top talent?

Matt Gascoigne says:

I found this article really interesting because for me, it demonstrates the clash between some very established recruitment “best” practices and the demands on organisations (and their talent pools) in the modern economic climate. There are undoubtedly industries where a specific qualification gained at a “red-brick” university or through a top tier practice is a firm marker for future success – however in my experience these industries are becoming the exception not the norm. To be successful in today’s world potential candidates need to be able to demonstrate a broad suite of capabilities that complement a theoretical understanding of a More...

Top eight HR risks, and how to handle them

Morten Kamp Andersen says:

Hi Nice and concise overview of the major people risks which HR must do something about. Thanks. I am not sure all should be dealt with by HR - such as supply chain and insurance. Really appreciate your article. Best Morten Kamp Andersen

How important are qualifications when it comes to finding top talent?

David H. Meagher says:

A university degree does not teach wisdom, emotional maturity, or even common sense (and remember that Voltaire said that “the problem with common sense is that it is not very common! Apologies for mashing his quote ;) ..... In some instances all a degree will show is that the person had enough self control to study; or even some of the brightest don’t yet cope with the stress of exams and fall over at this hurdle? In my opinion smart employers will list in an employment add “x qualification or (something like) equivalent on the job training.” What about the More...

Skills gap hindering growth for UK employers, PwC report finds

David H. Meagher says:

It would have been helpful, in my opinion, to list some of the skills that are supposedly lacking. As a practising philanthropist, if I knew the gaps I could steer local youth towards study to plug the holes, and at the same time, increase their chances of actually finding a job! Proficient skilled leadership is certainly lacking, especially if this article is read in conjunction with the HR Magazine article “Exclusive: 93% of employees would strongly consider leaving their employer due to a culture of fear”!

Top eight HR risks, and how to handle them

Trisha Proud says:

A really refreshing read….. All the points are excellent. In particular it was good to read about the value of succession planning, and also the importance protecting intellectual property rights. As a trainer and business mentor both of these things are important in my world……..both for the people that I mentor in terms of succession planning and of course in relation to intellectual property rights in respect of the training materials that I use and share with clients. Trisha Proud Partners in Solutions Ltd

Male corporate culture the biggest barrier to women reaching the top

Trisha Proud says:

A really interesting report by Harvey Nash, who I have had dealings with in the past; sadly we still have “limiting assumptions" about women in the workplace. Men often don’t like the fact that many women won’t ‘play the politics’, and are often very outspoken with their views and opinions, which makes their male colleagues feel uncomfortable. They see this female desire to get straight to the point as being “aggressive”; whereas when men adopt this style they are seen as being “assertive”. Put simply in a Boardroom situation Board Members challenge each other; that is their role and duty More...

Monster announces it will not support advertising of unpaid internships

Sophia says:

I just wanted to point out that while your organization's initiative may be well-designed and great experience, it still excludes any young person who can't afford to work for free. Maybe you ought to pursue funding to pay for the position, or partner with a college to create a co-op program (not sure if these exist in the UK).

The need for HR analytics being ignored by many businesses, says KPMG

Peter Marno says:

This article is correct - in my area of corporate health management too few employers have sickness absence data that is useful in making good management decisions. When they do have good decision-making data the subsequent decisions are often left far too long and the ability to minimise the downsides and maximise efficiency and productivity is lost. Typical sickness absence data will show that the highest incidence is in the short term category but the greatest number of days taken comes from a small incidence of longer term absentees and it is this latter group where beneficial savings and efficiencies More...

The need for HR analytics being ignored by many businesses, says KPMG

Jon Ingham, Strategic HCM says:

Collecting the right data of course depends on having a good understanding of the right questions which requires a strategic approach to HR management and measurement. It's why I recommend using a strategy map and scorecard as the basis for HR analytics:

In this issue: April 2014
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Legal aliens: It's law, but not as we know it - would you seek counsel from a big brand?

Fashion forward: SuperGroup's first HRD

Time to celebrate: Flexible working legislation is changing

Health check: Engaging in wellbeing 

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