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HR Blog

HR Blog: Can you spot workplace sexual harassment?

HR Blog: Can you spot workplace sexual harassment?

Harassment of any kind is wrong. Employers have a duty of care to protect staff from harassment, and soon will have a new duty to prevent violence and harassment in the workplace. This means that, at a tribunal, you would need to show the steps that you took to...

HR Blog: Understanding hidden disabilities in the workplace

HR Blog: Understanding hidden disabilities in the workplace

If you bank with HSBC, you may have noticed the roll-out of “Quiet Hour” in branches at the end of last year. For those who bank elsewhere or haven’t seen the posters, Quiet Hour is a dedicated time for customers with invisible or hidden disabilities to receive...

HR Blog: Employee grievances and how to manage them in your business

HR Blog: Employee grievances and how to manage them in your business

Although every employer hopes that their staff are all extremely contented and that no one will ever have a complaint, the reality is that all employers need a grievance procedure that meets the Acas code of practice. Once it is written, the first step is to ensure...

HR Blog: Supporting employees through uncertain times

HR Blog: Supporting employees through uncertain times

Russia’s devastating invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing humanitarian crisis have sent shockwaves worldwide. Employees with links to Eastern Europe will need support, whilst those who are not directly affected may also be feeling anxious or helpless during these...

HR Blog: Are your employees living with Long COVID?

HR Blog: Are your employees living with Long COVID?

The UK government has announced its plan for living with COVID, detailing how and when remaining COVID restrictions and laws are to be lifted. This plan is relevant for businesses in England, whilst the devolved administrations are working at their own pace. Although...

HR Blog: Recruiting and retaining disabled employees

HR Blog: Recruiting and retaining disabled employees

The disability employment rate, which shows the number of disabled people in employment, has sat somewhere around 52% for the last three years. Whilst it’s slowly increasing, it still shows that almost half of people with disabilities are unemployed. Many disabled...

HR Blog: Does your business need a culture reset?

HR Blog: Does your business need a culture reset?

Questionable leadership, drinking in the workplace and an alleged disregard for the rules. Such staff issues aren’t usually heard coming from Downing Street, but a very public ongoing investigation has put the culture at No.10 firmly under a spotlight. It goes to show...

HR Blog: What does it mean to be an employer of choice?

HR Blog: What does it mean to be an employer of choice?

Employee satisfaction What contributes to employee satisfaction? Do the goal posts move or are they fixed? Whilst it may be achievable for some, 100% employee satisfaction is a tough target for employers to reach, and even then, may not be an easy metric to maintain....

HR Blog: Financial well-being: Supporting employees and your business

HR Blog: Financial well-being: Supporting employees and your business

January is synonymous with goal setting. The pandemic is, hopefully, finally subsiding and employers are no doubt keen to kick off the year with a positive start. For others though, and perhaps a few employees, January can be a slow start. There is Dry January...

HR Blog: Where to find your next hires after the Great Resignation

HR Blog: Where to find your next hires after the Great Resignation

The events of 2020 saw a drastic shift in working practices, with many companies facing remote work for the very first time. Since then, a further shake up to employment has taken place. Dubbed the “Great Resignation”, 2021 was the year that millions decided it was...

HR Blog: Aligning your people strategy with your company values

HR Blog: Aligning your people strategy with your company values

Whether you have them or not, you’ll probably know what company values are: carefully chosen words or crafted sentences which capture the ethos of your business. They are part of the foundations of your company culture which help guide all staff in their decision...

HR Blog: Managing sickness this Christmas

HR Blog: Managing sickness this Christmas

News of the Omicron variant has made everyone much more edgy about COVID-19 again this festive season. Daily cases of coronavirus are on the rise, and the government has asked people to work from home where possible. Even before this you may have faced a difficult...

HR BLOG: Gift giving in the workplace with a reimagined Secret Santa

HR BLOG: Gift giving in the workplace with a reimagined Secret Santa

You know that the festive season has well and truly arrived when temperatures are going down and lights are going up! Plus, of course, the return of Mariah Carey, Michael Bublé and co to the airwaves. The pandemic is still making headlines, but virtual or otherwise,...

HR Blog: Are staff entitled to the extra bank holiday in 2022?

HR Blog: Are staff entitled to the extra bank holiday in 2022?

Have the darker days and winter weather got staff thinking about their next summer holiday? It’s not unusual for some employees to want to get their leave requests in early, especially to tail end the bank holidays for an extended break if they can. In fact, some may...

HR Blog: What has and hasn’t changed for the work Christmas party?

HR Blog: What has and hasn’t changed for the work Christmas party?

Are you hosting a staff Christmas party this year? After a compulsory virtual affair in 2020, and almost two years of pandemic related ifs and buts for events, a Christmas get-together could be just what’s needed to reunite your team. If your workforce has been...

HR Blog: What to do when an employee keeps forgetting things

HR Blog: What to do when an employee keeps forgetting things

Forgetfulness. It happens to all of us at one point or another. From forgetting to call someone back to defrosting the food you had planned for dinner or even missing an important anniversary. Causes of forgetfulness are varied, and there are different ways in which...

HR Blog: Can I ask an employee to come to work on their day off?

HR Blog: Can I ask an employee to come to work on their day off?

Ensuring that you have adequate staffing for your business to operate day-to-day takes some planning. However, if the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that things don’t always go to plan. Finding yourself short-staffed, whether due to sickness absences or an...

HR Blog: Beware the banter in your business

HR Blog: Beware the banter in your business

Banter is defined as an exchange of light, playful teasing, and is also often accompanied by a declaration of “only joking”. However, as harmless as it sounds, it runs the risk of causing actual damage to a business and the people within it. Banter is often used as a...

HR Blog: What can employers learn from Strictly Come Dancing?

HR Blog: What can employers learn from Strictly Come Dancing?

Glitz, glamour, dancing, and a side of drama can only mean one thing, Strictly Come Dancing is back. Grabbing front page storylines since it started last month, this season is sure to provide some entertaining viewing as autumn and winter draw in. Even those not...

HR Blog: Could term-time working benefit your business and staff?

HR Blog: Could term-time working benefit your business and staff?

Did you know that term-time only working isn’t just for educational establishments? Term-time only working is a type of flexible working that, if suitable for a business, can widen its prospective pool of talent. As the name suggests, an employee on a term-time only...

HR Blog: Is the four-day working week closer than we think?

HR Blog: Is the four-day working week closer than we think?

At a time when many business owners are focused on bringing employees back to work, and with some also dealing with a severe shortage of staff, proposals for a four-day working week have once again hit the headlines. Except this time, it’s a little closer to home....

HR BLOG: Do’s and don’ts when interviewing for your business

HR BLOG: Do’s and don’ts when interviewing for your business

Hiring can be both an exciting and trying time. You’re likely to be busy, hence the need for a new person, but you also want to make sure that you take the time to attract and select the right people for your business. Similarly, job candidates are also going through...

HR BLOG: Shaping support for disabled employees

HR BLOG: Shaping support for disabled employees

Too often people shy away from disability, but it’s important to understand that many disabled people feel proud of their uniqueness and that disability should be celebrated rather than avoided. This is evident from the rapid growth of Disability Pride: a month-long...

HR BLOG: Tips for businesses that are recruiting

HR BLOG: Tips for businesses that are recruiting

June 21st, the date designated for the final lifting of lockdown restrictions, is fast approaching. You may however have seen in the news some uncertainty as to whether everything will go ahead as planned. Despite the ambiguity surrounding this date, we are pleased to...

HR BLOG: HR troubleshooting for businesses that are reopening

HR BLOG: HR troubleshooting for businesses that are reopening

Last month we witnessed the welcome return of outdoor hospitality, non-essential retail, and other businesses such as gyms and hairdressers. And next week we are preparing for further restrictions to be lifted, which will allow indoor dining and more relaxed mixing...

HR BLOG: Managing holiday requests as lockdown eases

HR BLOG: Managing holiday requests as lockdown eases

After more than a year of ups and downs, cancellations and lockdowns, holidays have been in short supply. So as lockdown restrictions begin to gradually lift, many people will be eager to find out when they can book their next break. Simultaneously, the easing of...

HR BLOG: Are you thinking about bringing employees back from furlough?

HR BLOG: Are you thinking about bringing employees back from furlough?

After a winter like no other, the government’s recent announcement of a cautious and phased route out of lockdown will have provided some relief to business owners. Many will be eager to make plans for the year ahead. An integral part of the plan laid out a timeline...

HR BLOG: Managing requests from employees to work from abroad

HR BLOG: Managing requests from employees to work from abroad

Pre-coronavirus, some employers may have thought that remote working couldn’t work for their business. In which case, a request from an employee who wanted to work from abroad could have possibly been rejected for this reason. A lot has changed in the past year. Many...

HR BLOG: Are you hoping for success? Or planning for it?

HR BLOG: Are you hoping for success? Or planning for it?

2020 is drawing to a close and what an eventful year it has been. New year celebrations are on the horizon, and while they will be very different this year due to the continuation of lockdown restrictions, plenty of people will be eager to acknowledge the end of this...

HR BLOG: Are you retaining staff after making redundancies?

HR BLOG: Are you retaining staff after making redundancies?

We know that sadly many employers are finding they have no choice but to reduce costs and make redundancies in their business. This is just one of the economic consequences of the pandemic, and has meant that unemployment is at an all-time high. Because of this, some...

HR BLOG: Five tips from HR for successful remote inductions

HR BLOG: Five tips from HR for successful remote inductions

Sometimes change can lead to good things. If your business is in the position to be hiring at the moment, chances are you and your team are fairly busy, and business is going well. After finalising your recruitment process, which may have been arduous with...

HR BLOG: How should businesses manage flexible working requests

HR BLOG: How should businesses manage flexible working requests

One of the significant cultural changes forced by coronavirus is the rise of home working. Is the genie now out of the bottle to make this a permanent shift? Here Alison looks at how this issue is affecting local businesses. Alison begins: “Some companies already...

HR BLOG: What can Durham businesses do to avoid COVID-19 redundancies?

HR BLOG: What can Durham businesses do to avoid COVID-19 redundancies?

In her latest blog for the Peterlee and Seaham business park groups, HR expert Alison Schreiber asks: What can Durham businesses do to avoid COVID-19 redundancies? The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme remains open until October. It is reported 8.9 million employees...

HR BLOG: How are your employees getting to work?

HR BLOG: How are your employees getting to work?

Pre-coronavirus, commuter woes typically included delays because of rush-hour, strikes or storms. But ever since the UK’s recovery strategy asked people to stay at home in response to coronavirus, most people have not had to think about their commute for some time....

HR BLOG: What will life look like after lockdown ends?

HR BLOG: What will life look like after lockdown ends?

What will life after the lockdown look like for Durham businesses? • A lockdown lasting weeks (at the very least) has transformed the way many businesses are operating. • For those which survive, the workplace could look very different after the pandemic. • But where...

HR BLOG: Managing workplace mental health during coronavirus

HR BLOG: Managing workplace mental health during coronavirus

By now you will hopefully be well informed on the extreme measures put in place by the government to protect the public and slow the spread of COVID-19. The latest official guidance goes beyond frequent hand washing and coughing into a tissue, with most people now...