Labour

  • Permalink Gallery

    Working from home: idea that workers who aren’t visible are slacking off is outdated

Working from home: idea that workers who aren’t visible are slacking off is outdated

Pexels, under a CC0 licence
Long commutes are a bleak fact of working life – but do they have to be? The laptop in your bag and phone in your pocket are sufficient for most kinds of office work. Even so, we insist on carting our devices with us, through rain and traffic, just to sit at a desk that’s […]

What gets measured gets distorted

Real Leadership

Something strange is happening to leadership at work. The old truths don’t seem to work anymore. Today’s leaders are not really sure which way to go. It used to be seen that every ‘leader’ needed ‘followers’, a hierarchy where people saw their future in the organisation and compliance was the order of the day. When insecurity crept in, […]

Self-employment is precarious work

Coming from a trade union and mental health background, I’m familiar with the drill of being wheeled out to deliver bad news. Last week I was invited to join a discussion about the sharing economy for the BBC’s Talking Business. Is the ‘new’ sharing economy of Uber, Airbnb and TaskRabbit – the love children of social enterprise and digital […]

How can you maintain your sanity in a toxic workplace?

There is no question that workplaces have taken a perverse turn, and I mean that in its brutal Freudian sense. We live in a society where receiving chemotherapy means you are fit for work and ‘toxic leadership’ has become a mainstream topic on business school curricula. A lot of working life is just unfair.

As precarious work grows, most of […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    The HR literature won’t give you a complete picture of employee voice

The HR literature won’t give you a complete picture of employee voice

For many years, Employment Relations scholars (with whom we identify) adopted the view articulated by Freeman and Medoff (1984) that collective mechanisms of employee voice could channel worker discontent so as to reduce the desire of dissatisfied workers to exit. They saw trade unions as the best agents to provide such voice, as they were formally independent of the […]

When it’s not your job to be friendly with clients

Customer service outrage. The phrase instantly conjures up stories of customers being ripped off, mistreated and rudely dismissed by sales staff. Yet we rarely stop to consider a different side to the story and examine the experiences of the thousands of workers in retail and hospitality, who deal with offensive, intimidating and humiliating treatment from customers on a daily […]

Some workers win, others lose from currency depreciation

“When the exchange rate rises, it gets more difficult for firms to export. The loss in international competitiveness forces firms to shed local jobs and move their activities abroad.” This line of argument is probably a good summary of how the public (and policymakers) would assess the effects of exchange rates on the economy. Recent economic research, including our […]

The UK suffers a shortage of nurses

A year ago, the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) reviewed part of the country’s ‘shortage occupation list’ (SOL). The SOL features job titles and occupations with priority for Tier 2 work visas for skilled migrants from outside the European Economic Area (EEA). Migrants in such jobs do not have to earn the minimum £35,000 pay threshold that is now required […]

Personality influences individual productivity and wages

Why do some people earn more than others? Do they deserve it? We already know that workers with higher educational levels and more experience have higher salaries. Traditionally, economists have linked higher education levels to higher cognitive abilities and deeper human capital; these in turn make individuals more productive in the workplace. However, there is still a piece of […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    What does migration have to do with England’s chances in Euro 2016?

What does migration have to do with England’s chances in Euro 2016?

Although England have performed well in Euro 2016 so far, the betting markets still put them some distance behind the favourites for the tournament, Spain, France and Germany. Why is there such a low probability of England winning Euro 2016? Of course there are many reasons but an important one has been downplayed so far: migration. Freedom of movement […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    In sports, as in business, limited attention affects risk-taking behaviour

In sports, as in business, limited attention affects risk-taking behaviour

People typically focus on the left-most digit of a number and pay only partial attention to other digits. This is why most prices in supermarkets are just below unit values (such as 99 cent or 3.99 pounds). In World Cup alpine ski events, this human tendency to pay only limited attention to certain digits makes athletes liable to take […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    Online job auctions are more successful when bids are open for all to see

Online job auctions are more successful when bids are open for all to see

The “gig” economy is here. Companies like Freelancer.com and Upwork connect millions of freelancers with employers for on-demand work. According to a national survey conducted by research firm Edelman Berland in partnership with Upwork, 34 million people in the U.S. — approximately one in three workers — now work as freelancers. Those freelancers work as software developers, graphical designers, […]

Working in the cloud means working all the time

Technological advancements, such as Artificial Intelligence, Robotic Process Automation or Big Data are often considered major drivers for the future of work. Current debate on this topic mostly focuses on which tasks and jobs will be delegated to machines and how employees can deal with the uncertainty of career choice. In a recent report, the World Economic Forum provides […]

Our 10 most popular articles on workplace issues

 
10. The workplace bully is not always a lone wolf
By Patricia A. Meglich and Andra Gumbus

 

 

 
9. Too much to do, too little time? Mental contrasting can help you choose what’s really important
By Heather Kappes

 

 
8. What neuroscience can(not) bring to the world of business
By Dirk Lindebaum

 

 

 
7. Workplaces are moving from facilities management to hospitality design
By Jonathan Openshaw

 

 

 
6. Men are targets of sexual harassment at work […]

May 30th, 2016|Labour|0 Comments|

When employees lack ‘soft skills’, whose fault is it?

Skills gaps and the ‘blame game’

Skills deficits have been reported as a problem across a number of developed economies including the UK and US. Employers report problems filling vacancies because applicants lack the required skills (shortages) and/or that current workers lack proficiency (gaps). The 2013 UK Employers Skills Survey revealed that almost four times as many establishments were affected […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    Without uniform indicators, firms are unable to deal with work health issues

Without uniform indicators, firms are unable to deal with work health issues

Globally, over 2.3 million people die from work-related accidents or disease each year. This is according to the International Labour Organization (ILO), which further estimates the costs of workplace injury at four per cent of world GDP. Our research shows that consumers would preferentially select, and even pay more for, goods made under healthy working conditions. However, access to […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    Managers’ behaviour in job interviews impacts the firm’s image

Managers’ behaviour in job interviews impacts the firm’s image

If you have ever conducted a job interview, you likely understand that the process is not a one-way street but a multi-lane road with two-way traffic. As an interviewer, you want to assess the applicant’s skills and abilities. Similarly, the candidate also assesses you and your company. What can you do to create impressions that enhance your company’s recruiting […]

To retain Asian professionals in the UK, childcare is key

Balancing work and family commitments is challenging for everyone. But what happens when you are an expatriate, cut off from your family support network, and adjusting to a culture with potentially very different expectations around gender roles and the appropriateness of non-family-based childcare? Some of my recent research has explored how expatriate Asian minority women in the UK experience […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    Microtask crowdsourcing can both empower and marginalise workers

Microtask crowdsourcing can both empower and marginalise workers

As a society we have reached a point of social consciousness where the debate regarding the impacts of the Internet-based ‘gig’ or on-demand economy, commonly known as crowdsourcing (CS), is taking centre stage. One such debate concerns the need for new regulations and policies relating to the growing crowd worker population who engage in work on or through Internet-based […]

Adult education can substantially improve careers

Precarious employment is a core concern in modern societies and an increasing trend worldwide. It is increasing among all occupational levels, including the traditionally protected, skilled and often highly unionised workforces of large firms. Is this a path of no return? Previous analyses have focused on the social structure to answer this question, and researchers have been devoted to […]