Employers – What to Know About 2016 Employment Law Changes

A new year has kicked off and with this comes a number of changes to the employment law. Employers should be aware of these changes and put plans into action to deal with these, if required, and if they have not already done so. A number of the changes are HR related and may require action from this department.

Introduction of National Living Wage

Many companies have already implemented the National Living Wage, but if you have not done so, you will need to have it in place by 1st April 2016. The National Living Wage applies to workers who are aged 25 or over and is aimed at protecting workers on low salaries within this age bracket. It does, however, exclude those in the first year of an apprenticeship. The national living wage will exceed the national minimum wage for this age group and is currently being set at a minimum rate of £7.20 per hour. The National Living Wage will become the law, just like the National Minimum Wage, so it is imperative that employers ensure this is in place.

employment

Gender Pay Gap Reports

There has been a lot in the press recently about gender pay gaps and in an attempt to reduce these gaps, employers will need to publish details on their pay rates, both for males and females. This will be introduced in March and will affect businesses who employ 250 or more employees. This particular legislation is still a bit sketchy, with specific details on what is expected from employers still to be released.

Sick Pay and Maternity and Paternity Pay Rates Frozen

There will be no increase in statutory sick pay and the rates for maternity, paternity adoption and shared parental pay will also remain the same as they were in 2015. Employers do not need to make any changes here.

Employing Foreign Workers

There will be more stringent rules in place when it comes to employing foreign workers into the business. Some of these changes include, a requirement for all employees working in face to face customer roles to be able to speak fluent English. There will also be an immigration skills charge introduced for those employers who use foreign workers.

It is important to keep on top of the employment law and how it may affect your staff. If you require HR support on a bespoke/temporary basis, contact me for more information or visit www.recruitwrite.com.

5 Ways to Stop Procrastinating in the Workplace

Whether it’s staring at the screen or day dreaming our way through long, boring meetings, we would probably all agree that we never finish our day with the knowledge that we have been as productive as we could be. With small changes though, you can easily make big differences to your working day and help reduce procrastination levels. If you stick to this, you may find that you can reduce your stress levels and impress those above you!

Close Social Media

It is amazing the hours you can waste just looking at updates of people’s dinner on Facebook and what do you really gain from it in the end? If you can’t stay away from social media, just reduce the number of times you look at it. For instance, wait until the evening to catch up with people on social media and you will probably find that you get a lot more work done.

DeathtoStock_Wired9[1]

Plan Your Day

Take time at the start of your day to plan out your workload and how long it will take you to complete each task. This will enable you to ensure that you get all your tasks for the day done and that you don’t waste time on other unnecessary tasks.

Track Time

If you really look at the time you spend on your tasks, you will probably find that you waste a lot of time which could be spent on more productive activities. There are programs such as Rescue Time, which you can download and look at how long you spent on work versus entertainment. You will be surprised at the results!

Take Breaks

Many people think they are more productive if they keep their head down all day but this is often an unproductive way of working. You should always make sure you take regular breaks, as this will give you time to refresh your head, so you are ready to be as productive as possible.

Reduce Meetings

There are often a lot of unnecessary meetings and you will probably find that you don’t need to turn up to every single one. If you can reduce time spent in meaningless meetings, you will probably be a lot more productive. Meetings can often be a waste of precious time and can take you away from other tasks. The more you can reduce the unnecessary meetings, the better it will be for your productivity levels.

The Benefits of Networking to Develop Your Business

As it is a fresh new year, many business owners will be starting to think about their business and how they can take new steps to grow it in 2016. Whether you like it or loathe it, networking is vital for business growth and any business owner who really wants to grow their business this year, will need to get involved in it. There are many different types of networking and it is good to use a combination of these to open up your business options. You can attend formal networking events, meet up with clients on a one to one basis, use social media or even just going for a coffee and have a chat with acquaintances. If you haven’t started networking yet or are unsure whether there is any point, you will find that there are various benefits to adopting this form of business development.

Make New Connections

If you don’t get involved in networking, how will you make new connections? The main purpose of networking is to speak to people you haven’t formed a relationship with and get to know them and what their business needs are. In this way, you can look at turning your new connections into paying clients.

DeathtoStock_Wired5[1]

Build Relationships

You need to be able to build relationships with other people, if you want to grow your business and networking is a good way to do it. For instance, if you attend the same networking event every week, you will start to get to know people, what they do and over time, you will gain a better understanding of what you have in common. This can allow you to build a rapport and develop a long lasting relationship.

Raise Profile

You may want to just hide out in the comfort of your home and get on with your work, but if you do this, how will anyone know you exist? As a business owner, you need to get yourself out there and networking is one way to do it. People need to know who you are and what you do, if they are ever going to decide to use your services.

Get Support

If you are the only one in your business, it can be difficult someone to speak to, who actually relates to your struggles. As everyone is in the same boat, networking allows you to speak to like-minded people and get support, which can prove to be invaluable for your future business growth.

Improve Confidence

There’s nothing like standing up in front of a bunch of strangers and talking about yourself to get you out your comfort zone! Yes, this is the awkward part of networking events, but you’ll soon find it a walk in the park and your confidence will increase massively as a result. Some people thrive on getting up in front of a crowd and talking about what they do, while others detest the thought of it. Over time though, it is something you will get used to.