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LinkedIn’s vision is to create a skills-first approach to hiring and learning

LinkedIn announced that it acquired EduBrite, a Fremont, California-based SaaS learning platform focused on creating, hosting and deploying professional certificates.

Several members of the EduBrite team, including CEO Ajay Upadhyaya and co-founder Manish Gupta, will join LinkedIn when the transaction closes.

According to LinkedIn, the acquisition will enable it to integrate EduBrite’s certification assessment engine into its learning platform, making it simpler for the company to test and verify the skills people claim to possess.

The deal aims to help LinkedIn further deliver on its vision to create a skills-first approach to hiring and learning.

EduBrite was founded in 2009.

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Employers will need to follow local, state and federal laws and regulations regarding abortion

Emily Dickens, Chief of Staff and Head of Government Affairs at Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has stated that the US Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade will have an effect on the world of work. The organization said it will also provide up-to-date resources for employers without weighing in on whether abortion is right or wrong.

Dickens said employers will need to follow local, state and federal laws and regulations regarding abortion. However, she noted self-insured companies are subject to the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act rather than state law, and that will provide broader flexibility in structuring health benefits.

She continued: “Some companies are announcing preemptive action to ensure workers have access to abortion services by increasing travel benefits to cover healthcare procedures. For example, new SHRM research shows that nearly a quarter of organizations agree that offering a health savings account to cover travel for reproductive care in another state will enhance their ability to compete for talent. But how these policies interact with state laws is unclear, and employers should be aware of the legal risks involved.”

SHRM also reported key findings from its research related to the topic:

  • 35% of organizations would not be more likely to provide travel expense benefits outside of a health savings account for employees to access reproductive services if it was tax deductible.
  • Knowing that employees can use HSA funds for travel-related expenses to receive reproductive care in another state, 87% of organizations still would not make any changes to the contributions they make to employees’ HSAs.
  • Paid time off was named the top resource currently provided to employees to better support reproductive care, cited by 32% of firms.
  • 29% of organizations said they would increase support within an employee assistance program for reproductive care in a post-Roe and Casey world.
  • 14% of organizations said they would include the topic of reproductive rights in their diversity, equity and inclusion programs.
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Over 36 graduates vie for every job in the UK this summer

Despite economic upheaval all over the country, there is good news for the Class of 2022 as job opportunities and pay rates for graduates soar, so says new research from job search engine Adzuna.

According to the research, 14,690 graduate job vacancies were advertised across the UK in May 2022, compared to 9,265 this time last year (+59%). This is due to employers relying on new graduates to plug gaps in their workforces.

For grads concerned about the current cost of living crisis, many employers have been increasing their pay rates on offer, with advertised salaries for graduates climbing to £26,076 in May 2022. This number is up 7% year-on-year from £24,389 and marks a six-year high in advertised salaries for graduates. In the most competitive sectors, pay rates have soared to new heights, with salaries of up to £70,000 advertised.

Even though there is a massive increase in job vacancies, the competition for grad jobs is fierce, with more than 36 graduates vying for each available job opportunity.

The research showed, however, that European law and banking firms are struggling to match their American counterparts in terms of salary offerings:

US legal firm Davis Polk & Wardwell increased salaries for newly qualified solicitors (NQs) by 8.5%, from £147,500 to £160,000, while its graduates earn £60,000. In comparison, Magic Circle firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is offering grads £50,000 in their first year, with NQs earning £125,000. Similarly, in the banking sector, Barclays is offering their grads £50k, RBS £31,850, compared to JP Morgan offering up to £70,000.

The research also looked into which university graduates receive the highest compensation five years after graduation. The Top five institutions all see grads earn over £40k after five years. The research showed that:

  • Oxford and Imperial are beating Cambridge University in terms of leavers’ earnings, with University of Oxford grads bringing in an average salary of £47,618 five years after graduation, compared to £45,741 for Imperial College grads and £44,190 for University of Cambridge grads.
  • Oxford is second only to Bayes Business School leavers, formerly known as Cass Business School.
  • The lowest-earning grads studied at Aberystwyth University (£25,129), Bath Spa (£25,196), and Edge Hill (£25,334).

Paul Lewis, Chief Customer Officer at Adzuna, comments: “This is the strongest jobs market we’ve seen for graduates post-pandemic. Despite the negative headlines, plenty of sectors remain desperate for talent and looking to grads to fill those gaps. They’re well paid positions, too – with advertised salaries for graduate roles hitting a six year high and some sectors offering pay cheques up to £70k. It’s a welcome piece of good news for the Class of 2022, who battled remote learning and pandemic pressures over the last two years.

“The choice of university can massively impact earning potential, with students from the most prestigious institutions raking in over £20k more a year on average five years post graduation, compared to grads from lesser-known places of learning. For those wanting to earn big, London universities are good bets with grads from Imperial College, UCL, and King’s all top earners five years into their careers. Russell Group institutions also dominate the list, showing when it comes to earnings, the stamp of approval from a prestigious academic institution can still make all the difference.”

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Asia is leading the way in gender diversity

In recent months, hiring in the financial services industry has hit record numbers globally, with eight major hubs showing increases of 64% in advertised roles. This makes the financial services sector one of the fastest hiring industries post-pandemic, only surpassed by the technology sector.

These findings were revealed in a new report from recruitment consultancy Robert Walters. The report, ‘Hiring Trends in the World’s Leading Financial Services Cities’  looks at the labour market across London, New York, Tokyo, Sydney, Paris, Singapore, Frankfurt, and Hong Kong.

London continues to power ahead as home to the most financial services professionals working in any one city (293,700). However, the AsiaPac region has increased in the last 12 months, with Singapore (250,000), Sydney (167,364), and Tokyo (166,000+) being the most notable cities with high levels of financial services talent.

Job Growth in the Past Year by City

  • London: +101%
  • New York: +78%
  • Tokyo: +77%
  • Singapore: +76%

Job Growth by Region

  • Europe: +62%
  • North America: +60%
  • AsiaPac: +61%

In terms of the greatest numbers of advertised job roles, New York (48,595), London (38,945), and Paris (24,165) are in the lead.

AsiaPac, however, shows the best hiring conditions. Professionals in Sydney (81%), Singapore (76%), Hong Kong (67%), and Tokyo (60%) expressed a high willingness to move roles even with this very tight candidate market.

Asia is also leading the way with gender diversity in the financial services sector. For example, Singapore (46%) has almost 50/50 gender diversity; meanwhile, in Hong Kong, women make up 44% of the banking workforce.

New York (36%) and London (36%) lag with gender diversity. However, they have made strides in cultural, racial, and socio-economic diversity. Many firms in these areas have advanced recruitment programmes to ensure their workforce represents the diversity of the city in which they are based.

Senior hires typically represent around 8-10% of all new hires. Most of the hiring is at junior and mid-management levels. However, the figures for senior hires rose dramatically over the last 12-18 months, with 1 in 3 new hires in banking has been at a senior level in some cities.

  • London: 20% of new hires are for senior roles, an increase of 5%
  • New York: Team/Department Heads were the only area to experience growth in the pandemic (+26%)
  • Tokyo: 19% of new hires are at a senior level
  • Sydney: 28% of new hires are for senior positions, an increase of 5%
  • Paris: 63% growth at Manager-level and above
  • Singapore: 31% of new hires are for a senior role

Toby Fowlston, CEO at Robert Walters comments: “The global financial services system is as solid as it was before the pandemic – and much healthier than after the last crisis in 2008 (GFC).

“Whilst the pandemic did not have the expected harmful financial effects on the global banking industry, it has certainly accelerated change in a multitude of other areas. Digital banking boomed whilst cash use fell, savings expanded and credit card debts were paid-off in record time, remote became a way of working, data-capture and usage is a central business function, and environment and sustainability are now front of mind for customers and regulators.”

“All of this change has led to exponential hiring in the sector – with each hub trying to fight for the same talent at the same time, the results being a fiercely competitive recruitment market like we’ve never seen before, with execs being offered over +30-40% pay increases with the option to work from anywhere in the world.”

“As a whole the global financial services sector has made solid strides in gender diversity – with near half of the entry-level workforce in financial services being women.”

“The task now is to equal representation at the top, where in banking less than a quarter of high-level senior positions are held by women. We are seeing some worthy gains been made in this area, and I think the increasing diversity in senior positions will only help to speed up the rapid rate of innovation and change within the sector.”

“Employers will continue to experience challenges in attracting junior analysts and associates as the traditional appeal of working for a large Financial Services organisation now finds itself in a battle with the lure of a career in a start-up or major tech firm.”

“Reputational issues suffered since the GFC and workplace-related perceptions – around hours, flexibility, and culture – will all need to be addressed head on by financial services firms if they want to build out their future talent pipeline.”

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Leaders share insights on how to make a better working world

In partnership with Yahoo Finance Australia, Talent has released ‘Leaders Building a Better World of Work’. This is a list of leaders providing insights on what they are doing to make a better working world.

The list includes leaders such as Jennie Rogerson from Canva, Mary Haddock-Staniland from Timely, Vanessa Sorenson from Microsoft NZ, and Paul Sigaloff from Yahoo!.

The list looks at the thought-provoking side of leadership and provides an overview of what businesses are experiencing in this post-pandemic.  Their insights and actions should provide leaders with strategies to take into the new world of work.

Mark Nielsen, Global CEO, Talent, commented: “True leadership is forged through times of crisis and if there is one thing we have all experienced in the past two years is that the way we thought we did business has been turned on its head. The responsibility and demands from leaders have also changed dramatically, and a one-size-fits-all approach to work just doesn’t cut it. Work-life balance, clarity of purpose, a supportive manager, and inclusion are core focuses to team members. To remain competitive, leaders and businesses need to adapt to this new norm.”

Some of the insights from leaders included:

Stuart Hughes, Chief Information & Digital Officer, Rolls-Royce advised: “People are looking for companies that will engage with them on a personal level, with greater flexibility and work-life balance. Some call this ‘hybrid working’, but I like to refer to it as a ‘borderless office’. If you have a framework that’s very rigid i.e., you have to be in the office two days a week, specifically Tuesdays and Wednesdays, you’re just restricting your teams’ behaviour. Is that really the best way?”

Fiona Thompson, Group Executive, People, Culture & Advocacy, Suncorp said:  “A challenge and opportunity for companies is evolving leadership styles, rituals, and behaviours to enable businesses to transform into their future selves. Leaders will play a pivotal role in creating and reinforcing organisational culture, developing our people, and ensuring talent pools are identified and available.”

Nicole Reid, People Experience, Xero suggested: “For over two years, we’ve been dealing with the impact that living through a pandemic, social justice turning points and other factors have on how employees approach work each day. Companies that are proactive – inviting discussion, initiating events and programs, and providing other support – will enable their teams to not only feel safe to talk about things that in the past were not common practice in the workplace but to feel encouraged and welcomed to speak up.”

Deborah Choi, Managing Director, Founderland commented: “A better world of work acknowledges that there is no ‘one size fits all’ that truly fits all. To be inclusive at work, is to be fundamentally flexible and dynamic, because that is also at the essence what we all are.”

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Is this perk the answer to stress and burnout?

Investment bank Goldman Sachs announced in April that they were moving their senior employees onto a ‘flexible vacation’ policy, allowing for time off when needed instead of fixed maximum days per annum. Junior staff will still receive the statutory leave requirements.

The new policy requires all employees to take at least 15 days off, this in an attempt to change a culture that has previously left bankers depleted and exhausted.

This move can be a powerful recruiting tool. A recent Fortune and Harris Poll survey showed that half of employees preferred the idea of having unlimited paid time off to a higher salary.

For the most part, this move is applauded by employees and observers, especially in light of an increasingly burnt-out workforce.

The question is whether this is the great benefit everyone expects it to be and whether it will change the culture in a competitive environment such as Goldman Sachs?

Kiki Stannard, Managing Director at ZEDRA, commented: “It’s well known that employers are determined to keep their best and brightest employees, particularly those who work the hardest and contribute the most. With 24/7 connectivity nearly everywhere globally, finding time away from the demands of a stressful job are becoming more and more difficult. It is often a challenge for those in the highest demand to get a decent amount of time off to rest and recuperate properly –  both physically and mentally –  never more so than in the world of financial services.

It may have come as a surprise to many to read that internationally renowned investment bank, Goldman Sachs, announced that senior staff are being moved to a ‘flexible vacation’ policy which will permit time off when needed and not adhering to fixed maximum days per annum.

Having been hailed as progressive for the industry and designed to encourage a decent amount of time off to support health and wellbeing (there will be a minimum level of time off for junior staff which aligns with the statutory requirement in any event), will there really be any change in culture or attitude at Goldman Sachs – often viewed as fiercely competitive?

In the US, the tech sector has actually been offering unlimited vacation for many years which might sound like a significant benefit where vacation is around ten days plus public holidays.

The reality however can be quite different.

  • The unlimited vacation is only on the basis that the employee’s work is done, or the break will not disrupt the business, often leading to employees logging on regularly whilst they are away
  • Confusion can arise around the use of the policy and different interpretations as to exactly what amount is acceptable as ‘unlimited’ according to who your line manager happens to be
  • There can be an inclination to cancel a day’s leave when something urgent comes up at work
  • Blurring of the lines can be seen where there is a performance issue requiring careful management or additional employee support
  • Does unlimited vacation just mask real sick days?
  • Does unlimited vacation result in a duvet day for anyone who is just not that motivated?
  • How can you shake that Monday morning feeling when you know that not turning up today is ok?

Unlimited holidays can work for some businesses and sectors, but this type of policy won’t work for every company. In today’s environment it might act as a great benefit to entice new, often younger, starters to join a company. It’s always important to engage with staff and key stakeholders to get a better idea of the appetite for such a policy before committing and if there is desire, prepare thoroughly to avoid any negative ramifications to individual staff and company morale.”

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The programme provides a full-time curriculum to train participants in a bid to stave off skills gaps 

SAP SE announced the launch of its Partner Talent Initiative. The initiative aims to identify and train new and existing talent in the SAP Partner Ecosystem in order to support increasing demand within the IT channel for skilled certified professionals.

Participants who complete the programme will graduate with three SAP certifications before re-entering the partner ecosystem as graduates who are ready for employment. The programme provides full-time curriculum designed to certify IT professionals in crucial and high demand areas including  RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud as well as an introduction to SAP S/4HANA Financial Accounting.

Two cohorts have already started the programme and following successful completion, graduates will begin a three-month intensive training program that will equip them with the professional and personal skills needed to become an SAP consultant.

SAP’s partners are in demand as the SAP EMEA North cloud services market is growing at CAGR of 16% which has resulted in a digital skills gap. The new programme is open to both recent graduates and those working in complimentary industries and will help address existing gaps in talent by equipping graduates with the skills and qualifications that they need to find employment in the partner community.

Participants will receive ongoing support and continuous feedback from delegates, instructors and the wider partner team throughout the training period and will also have an executive welcome and kick-off event upon joining. Participants will be given the option of attending a physical graduation ceremony upon completion.

SAP also announced that a business development fund (BDF) incentive to partners who recruit, train and certify new consultants under the Drive2Deliver partner capacity initiative.

The Partner Talent Initiative also includes:

  • Access to enablement content for members of SAP partner ecosystem
  • First-hand practice on live SAP software training systems
  • Expert-led and peer-to-peer learning environments
  • Opportunities to obtain SAP Global Certification digital badges and stay current with ongoing technology advances

Celine Cazali, chief partner officer, SAP UK & Ireland, made comment: “By launching the Partner Talent Initiative, graduates of the program will learn invaluable skills, helping customers and partners successfully become Intelligent Enterprises and provide high-quality services. Through a rigorous curriculum, combined with continuous feedback and support, our programme will equip the next generation of consultants with the mindset, skills and ambition needed to succeed in the channel and beyond.”

Paul Cooper, chairman, UK & Ireland SAP User Group (UKISUG), also commented: “We welcome the creation of the Partner Talent Initiative as it will help address a potential skills gap in the future. Our most recent member research highlighted that many organisations are concerned a lack of available skills will impact the speed their organisation moves to SAP S/4HANA. A thriving partner ecosystem with more certified talent will be essential in supporting customers’ SAP S/4HANA journeys and developing the next-generation workforce.”

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How HR teams can manage difficult staffing decisions effectively

Fashion retailer Missguided has come under fire for the way it recently announced a number of redundancies.

Following its collapse into administration due to increased supply chain costs, inflation, and weakened consumer confidence, the Manchester-based retailer announced that 80 staff members were being made redundant.

Although redundancies are not good news for most employees, in the case of Missguided, it was how the announcement was handled that sparked controversy.

The i newspaper reported that staff were advised via two separate phone calls – one for staff whose jobs were safe and another for those who would be losing their jobs.

Ex-employees have claimed that:

  • Staff who were not working at the time as they were on holiday or maternity leave found out via colleagues and social media posts that they had been made redundant
  • Staff were only given 20 minutes’ notice ahead of the phone call
  • Staff did not know that two separate phone calls had been arranged
  • Staff were muted during the call and given no opportunity to speak
  • Employees who had lost their jobs were told not to return to the office and that their belongings would be returned to them
  • Security guards stopped sacked staff from entering the Manchester offices.

With remote and hybrid working, it is no surprise that companies use Zoom and other online mediums to announce major company decisions.

Missguided are not the only company to have taken this route. Earlier this year, P&O Ferries told hundreds of employees via a video recording that they were losing their jobs with immediate effect and were being replaced with cheaper agency staff.

Similarly, online US mortgage firm Better.com made 900 employees redundant via a Zoom call. Later, CEO Vishal Garg apologised for failing to show adequate “respect and appreciation” for the employees involved.

In 2020, workers at the ride-hailing firm Uber were told that they would lose their jobs via a three-minute video Zoom conference call.

Even though digital communications make sense in large organisations, hearing that one has lost a job via broadcast communication is less than ideal. Hearing the news from a line manager is a much better option.

Redundancy processes are stressful for employees and HR teams, so the process should always be handled sensitively and professionally. Honesty and clarity are key components of successful support.

Adele Edwin-Lamerton, Senior Associate, Employment at Kingsley Napley, said: “Due to the increase in hybrid working, meetings which previously would have only taken place in person now frequently occur remotely. Although this can feel impersonal, what is key is that the appropriate process is followed. It’s not so much the medium which is used, but the message it conveys which is important.”

“However pressed they are for time, employers should remember that they need to adopt a fair process and consult with their employees.”

Professor Jonathan Passmore, Senior Vice President at CoachHub, commented: “… as part of the C-Suite’s wider communication remit there is also a role to be played by a broadcast communication during the process of letting an employee go. This communication should explain more about the background to the decision, taking responsibility and sharing in the pain which such decisions cause for the individual, their family and the wider community, if the firm is a large local employer.”

“Technology is a facilitator of communications, but just because we can, does not mean we should. Leaders need to leverage technology while not losing sight of the humans who are receiving such messages. A broadcast message ensures everyone receives the same message, at the same time, but its strength is its weakness, as not every individual is the same. For some a redundancy may be welcome news, for others a mild disappointment, while for many it provokes both a financial and personal crisis.”

“At present, leaders have little training on digital communications and few organisations have protocols. As we move forward in 2022, business schools need to look again at what a leader in a hybrid world looks like and adjust what they teach. Meanwhile, organisations must look critically at their processes to ensure they still concentrate on the people which make up their organisation, putting into place support mechanisms such as workplace and career transition coaching, to help their employees navigate recent years’ life changes.”

Paul Holcroft, Associate Director at Croner, suggests: “Being made redundant can be an incredibly distressing time, so it is essential that employers maintain regular dialogue with affected staff.”

“Given the complexity of a redundancy procedure, employers should provide individuals with a clear explanation of their rights and a timeframe for when decisions will be made. This reduces any unnecessary stress and ill feeling among the workforce. Employees with a minimum of two years’ service are eligible for a reasonable amount of time off to look for new work or to arrange training for future employment.”

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The pandemic has stifled their career

According to a recent by Indeed, findings are on par with what HR experts know about Gen Z leading the Great Reshuffle. Likewise, the report builds on previous data wherein Gen Z feels disconnected and disadvantaged due to working remotely. In February 2022, Washington State University’s Carson College of Business reported that most of their Gen Z survey-takers felt that the COVID-19 pandemic stifled their career.

Indeed’s May 2022 report contextualizes these concerns with a fresh spin. Simply put, just because Gen Z feels as if they’re missing out on office work does not mean they want to start working in the office full time, if at all.

Flexibilty, as well as other perks, remains one of the ways employers can help attract and retain their young talent. Indeed’s research highlights that explicitly with the report finding that 95% of Gen Zers are considering a job with more work-from-home flexibility and 78% are actively looking for one.

Just less than half (47%) of Gen Z responders told Indeed they’re very likely to change jobs within the next 12 months, more than the slightly older cohort, millennials. Of those Gen Zers making moves to jump ship, 61% were driven by employers’ implementation of a return-to-office plan conflicting with their work from home desires.

Despite their concern, for example, more than half of Gen Zers interviewed by talent acquisition firm Lee Hecht Harrison reported career anxiety, young professionals don’t appear to be compromising on their values anytime soon. In fact, they want employers whose moral code matches theirs.

In summary, employers have two sure fire ways of attracting and retaining talent: Offer work flexibility and find define the employer brand so that candidates are attracted to who you are, not just what you do.

 

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Work flexibility widens the talent pool

According to president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Virginia, hybrid work arrangements are here to stay; but adds that organisations shouldn’t forget that we had offices for a reason.

Thomas Barkin made the comments in a speech this week with the key takeaway being that companies need to reinvent the office for hybrid working and that while it will look different organizations must focus on making the most of the time workers still while working in person in order to maintain connectivity.

While remote work has positive aspects ­– employees value flexibility, it pulls more people into the workforce and it improves hiring pools – there are certain trade-offs.

“Offices evolved into the dominant model for good reasons, and companies are rightfully hesitant to lose those benefits,” Barkin said.

Efficiency and productivity rank among those benefits; however, offices provide much more, he said.

Companies need to be more “intentional” when it comes to connectivity among workers.

“Enabling more connectivity may require rethinking spending,” Barkin said. “Some companies are reconsidering their physical footprint and lowering real estate costs as a consequence. They should be thinking about redeploying some of those savings into connectivity spend, including meals and social events in the office and occasions to bring people together outside the workplace.”

He went on to say that if we are honest with ourselves, we aren’t optimizing the hybrid environment today.

“To make it meet its full potential, we need to leverage the power of technology while innovating to recreate the benefits which the office once provided.”

Take Google for instance. The company is opening its newest campus in Mountain View, California, and executives say they aim to make it a place where employees in the company’s advertising division feel more comfortable returning to the office for decades to come.

It’s also the company’s first ground-up developed campus. Google’s other campuses are pre-existing buildings that had been modified by the company, a spokesperson told CNBC.

Google’s VP of Workplace and Real Estate David Radcliffe commented: “As we started with a blank canvas, we had to ask ourselves another set of questions, and that was simply ‘what will work look like in 20 years, 30 years, 50 years, 100 years? And I’ll be honest, the conclusion we came to was ‘we have no idea.’ But what we did know was it meant we had to be extra, extra focused on flexibility. This building had to be able to transform itself over its lifetime in order to respond to the demands being put on by the business.”

 

 

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Talent Solutions

Search engines combine forces to accelerate Adzuna’s growth in the US

On Tuesday, 14 June, Adzuna announced their acquisition of the US job search engine Getwork.

The Getwork team, under the leadership of Brad Squibb, will be working alongside the Adzuna team, intending to accelerate Adzuna’s growth in North America.

Getwork links job seekers with vacant roles at North American companies by indexing millions of verified jobs daily directly from tens of thousands of employer career sites.

Adzuna, with headquarters in London, UK, Indianapolis, IN, and Sydney, AU, uses AI-powered technology to match people to jobs. The company has recently launched in Switzerland, Belgium, Spain, and Mexico. Their operations now cover 20 markets globally.

The two companies will operate as independent brands with their own established communities.

Doug Monro, CEO, and Co-founder of Adzuna, comments: “Adzuna acquiring Getwork will help us supercharge our growth in North America. The Getwork team’s stellar reputation for great service and delivery has led them to be trusted by an impressive roster of household name companies in the US. It’s also a great fit as their team and mission are so aligned with ours. The US enterprise market is crying out for strong alternatives to existing offerings and we’re looking forward to combining Adzuna’s marketing expertise, global footprint and programmatic job matching technology with Getwork’s deep industry knowledge and reputation to deliver even better for our customers. The US is the fastest-growing part of our business and this acquisition will accelerate our profitable growth trajectory.”

Brad Squibb, President of Getwork, comments: “Adzuna is a truly global business, operating across 20 countries, which creates an exciting opportunity for us to scale into new markets with the help of a brand that has already paved the way for international expansion. We can’t wait to join Doug and the team on this journey.”

 

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Despite efforts there is still massive room for improvement in UK management and reporting

In research released today, findings reveal a lack of focus on progressing diversity in the workplace. In the study conducted by SD Worx, it was found that while 68% of UK companies are committed to removing unconscious bias in the recruitment process, many have failed to implement a reporting system to track progress on meeting ED&I objectives.

The survey revealed that only 26% of UK companies evaluate managerial commitment to achieving ED&I-related objectives. A further 32% admitted having no systems allowing employees to report discrimination.

The UK ranked third in its commitment to removing unconscious bias at 68% when it comes to ranking. Ireland ranked first at 74%, with Belgium coming in second, at 69%.

As far as rankings for equal access to training, the UK is slightly lower than other countries, with 64% of companies investing in equal access to training and development. Ireland (72%), Belgium (71%), and Poland (69%) topped the list.

While 64% of UK companies include transparency about ED&I goals and actions to attract a diverse workforce in their mission statement and corporate values, only 60% of the UK companies surveyed said that they promote ED&I in job advertisements, social media, and their websites.

The survey also revealed that countries vary in their level of focus concerning educating and involving managers in their ED&I policies. For example, in the UK, 60% of companies stated that they actively involve their managers in ED&I policies, and 60% provide internal training on the topic.

Colette Philp, UK HR Country Lead at SD Worx commented: “It’s no longer enough for businesses to say they prioritise diversity and inclusion. Instead, they must prove their commitment to achieving a more diverse workforce, both internally within their business and externally to attract talent.”

“There is more awareness than ever before regarding diversity in the workplace and it’s a deciding factor for many when it comes to searching for a role or staying with a business. A diverse workforce brings new experiences and perspectives and an inclusive environment allows individuals to thrive. If businesses aren’t already putting ED&I as a top priority, it’s essential they act now to do so.”

Jurgen Dejonghe, Portfolio Manager SD Worx Insights, added: “It’s important that companies start investing in an active reporting system about their actions concerning diversity, equality and inclusion. On the one hand, that data offers a strong basis for optimising the diversity policy with concrete and consciously controlled actions. On the other hand, such a system also provides clear evidence whether companies are effectively putting their money where their mouth is and not making false promises to (future) employees.”

For ED&I initiatives to be successful, change needs to come from the top, with proper rollouts and reporting system to track their progress.

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TALiNT Partners has announced the finalists for the 2022 TIARA Talent Solutions Awards with 22 of the United States’ best Talent Solutions, MSP & RPO firms shortlisted across eight award categories.

The finalists for the 2022 Talent Solutions Awards US, which spotlight MSP, RPO and Talent Solutions providers delivering excellence in recruitment and talent acquisition across the US, are the top of the crop and represent the very best in providers in the industry.

Ken Brotherston, Chief Executive of TALiNT Partners made comment: “Following the inaugural TIARA Talent Solutions Awards US last year, I am delighted to see many of our 2021 finalists return to celebrate their achievements, as well as a number of new entrants this year. The 2022 Awards are a true celebration across the market, from the large global players to newer entrants and niche RPO organizations, all demonstrating excellence in their impact for employers and their own employees.”

“The TIARAs are distinguished by the rigor of its judging process and the quality of its judging panel,” he added. “Entries will be assessed by our esteemed judges through six key metrics: excellence in delivery; innovation; DE&I impact; sustainable value; business growth; and purpose.”

What sets the TIARAs apart from other awards programs is their independent panel of expert judges and individual feedback given back to each finalist.

The judges for this year’s TIARA Talent Solutions Awards are drawn from the HR and Talent Acquisition community are:

  • Sachin Jain, Senior Director – Global Talent Management, PepsiCo
  • Andrew Brown, Director RPO and Recruiting, Cornerstone
  • Russell Griffiths, General Manager, Coleman Research
  • Rich Genovese, Global Head – Talent Identification & Discovery, Jazz Pharmaceuticals
  • Gregg Schneider, Senior Manager – Procurement Plus, Global Talent Marketplace and Innovation Lead, Accenture
  • Justin Brown, Talent Acquisition Project Manager, Gallagher
  • Chris Farmer, Global Program Owner, Salesforce
  • Kerri Arman, Former VP Global Head of Talent, American Express Global Business Travel
  • Saleem Khaja, COO and Co-Founder, WorkLLama
  • Fitzgerald Ventura, CEO, 1099Policy
  • Mike Wilczak, Chief Product Officer, iCIMS

Judges will convene in May to debate and decide the winner of each category Award as well as an overall Talent Solutions Provider of the Year. All winners will be announced at an exclusive virtual awards ceremony on Thursday June 9th, 18:00 EDT.

Winners will also be profiled in a special TIARA Awards supplement published with TALiNT International.

The TIARA 2022 campaign is supported by our headline partner Cornerstone, and sponsored by WorkLLama, 1099Policy, and iCIMS.

The full list of TIARA 2022 Talent Solutions Finalists can be viewed here.

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Trials indicate increased productivity and employee wellbeing
Approximately 30 British companies will be taking part in a four-day work week trial has been launched in the UK as part of a global pilot organised by governments, think tanks, and the organisation ‘4 Day Week Global’. During the pilot, it’s said that employees will be offered 100% of their usual pay, for 80% of their time, yet maintaining 100% productivity. Studies have shown that the four-day week can boost productivity and employee wellbeing.
Harriet Calver, Senior Associate at Winckworth Sherwood, says that the four-day work week is not a new phenomenon. Many employees in the UK already work a four-day week, however, this is typically agreed on a case-by-case basis between employee and employer following a flexible working request. It tends to be accompanied by a corresponding reduction in pay, except in the case of “compressed hours” in which case the employee is simply squeezing the same number of hours into a shorter week.

BENEFITS FOR BUSINESS 

Gill Tanner, Senior Behavioural Scientist at CoachHub, believes that one of the key advantages is that employees would benefit from a better work/life balance and an extra day on the weekend would mean staff would have the opportunity to realise other ambitions outside of work and spend more meaningful time with family and friends, engage in more exercise or find a new hobby – all of which result in improved mental and physical health and higher levels of happiness. And this will result in less burnout and reduced levels of stress.

But in what ways could the reduced working week benefit employers? Improving employee happiness and well-being has many potential commercial benefits for employers such as increased performance and productivity, reduced absenteeism, recruitment and retention; and it could have a positive effect DE&I.

POTENTIAL DRAWBACKS

Gill Tanner believes that completing five days’ worth of work in just four days could be more stressful for some. Employees will need more focus and have much less time for lower productivity activities.  Additionally, some employers and businesses may find the four-day week detrimental to operations. For example, a decline in levels of customer support on days staff aren’t in the office. So, careful thought needs to be given to how this might be executed.

According to Harriet Calver, if an organisation is asking for 100% productivity from employees in consideration for a reduction in working hours, it is going to be critical to have the right support, technology and workplace culture in place to enable this.

Although the success of the four-day working week model relies on employees doing fewer hours, there is a danger that there may not be enough hours in those four days to complete the work. Therefore, working hours could creep up to previous levels if the workload is the same, resulting in longer and more stressful days for these employees.

In customer facing businesses, a potential pitfall of the four-day working week is not being able to properly service customers leading to poor customer satisfaction. For example, if an organisation shuts its office on the fifth day, when it was previously open, customers may complain they cannot access services when they want to, or previously could. Whilst this could be a potential issue for some organisations, it should be overcome fairly easily by most simply by keeping the business open for five days a week but staggering the days which employees do their four days so the entire week is still covered.

According to Gill Tanner, employers should consider the following before implementing a four-day week:

  1. What are your reasons for implementing a four-day week?
  2. Consult with employees and other stakeholders regarding a four-day week. What are their thoughts? How might it work?
  3. Provide clarity regarding what is expected in terms working hours, performance levels, days off, remuneration, ways of working etc.
  4. Ensure there is sufficient coverage to run the business as is required and to have continuity.
  5. Think about the situation from the customer/client perspective (and other stakeholders) and how they might be affected
  6. Consider the communication plan: who needs to be communicated to and by when?
  7. Reflect on your current company culture.  Is it one of trust and ownership, values that are key to this kind of working? If not, is it the right time to implement such a big transition?  Are there other steps you need to take first?
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