Business Blog

Employment

The Uber Case: The Background, The Ruling,  The Implications and The Reaction

The Uber Case: The Background, The Ruling, The Implications and The Reaction

Last Friday October 30, the Employment Tribunal made the landmark decision that the drivers of taxi giant Uber are to be classed as workers and not self-employed. The test case, brought forward by James Farrar and Yaseen Aslam, forms one of the first proper legal reviews of job status in this part of the gig economy, and has the potential to form a new paradigm. Background Two drivers brought a claim against the renowned company, insisting that the terms and conditions of the arrangement they had with Uber meant that they should be classified as workers rather than self-employed and, as such, were entitled to national minimum wage, holiday pay, rest breaks and the protection of the whistleblowing legislation. Kevin Gibson, specialist HR consultant at Croner, states: “This is a seminal case... »

7 ways to give your business a health kick this year

7 ways to give your business a health kick this year

A new year is a fresh opportunity to fix what needs fixing; does your business need a detox? For all you business owners on “dryathlons” or health kicks, here are seven ways to trim the fat from your firm and drive out toxic practices. 1. Mend broken relationships Going back to work offers us the chance to confront things that went wrong last year, rectify words that never should’ve been said and to help others to do the same. If one of your team is critical of another why not get them both in a room together to discuss the matter? This will either quieten the critic or give you an opportunity to manage your way through the issue. People should know that you don’t allow people to talk behind others’ backs but that you will deal with valid claims. 2. Ask yourself honestly if you... »

5 Reasons an Apprentice Can Benefit Your Business

5 Reasons an Apprentice Can Benefit Your Business

With the government planning for 3 million apprenticeships by 2020, I wanted to identify the key ways – from bring innovation to a company to helping your business find new talent – an apprentice can be a big benefit to your business’ progress and success. Here are just five reasons why start-ups and fledgling businesses should get on-board with apprenticeships. Apprentices deliver for employers of all sizes Nine in 10 employers enjoyed tangible commercial benefits as a result of hiring an apprentice, with employers reporting improved skills levels, service, morale and productivity as a direct result of taking on an apprentice. For instance, the average apprenticeship completer is estimated to increase business productivity by £214 per week and with gains also including increased profitabi... »

The Business of Mindfulness: How it Can Benefit You and Your Workplace

The Business of Mindfulness: How it Can Benefit You and Your Workplace

The subject of employee wellbeing is one that is becoming high on the agenda for businesses and employers across the UK as they consider the impact a focus on wellbeing can have on productivity. With US companies such as Google and Apple setting the standard by placing great emphasis on ‘mindfulness in the workplace’, many organisations have started to follow suit and introduce sessions in an effort to achieve a greater work-life balance. Although it is unlikely that we are going to see lunchtime yoga sessions and mid-afternoon meditation coming to an office near you anytime soon, a lot can be said for this level of employee wellbeing. After all, it is said that a happy workforce is a productive one. There are various benefits to supporting mindfulness and relaxation in your business, here... »

Does Working from Home Kill Company Culture?

Does Working from Home Kill Company Culture?

Recently introduced laws that gave all employees in the UK the right to request flexible working has brought the subject of remote working to the fore for all businesses – including small businesses. While many entrepreneurs have welcomed the news as the key to a happy and efficient workforce, others see the change as potentially damaging to the company culture that they have worked so hard to establish. The fact that remote workers still make up the minority of the workforce in the UK shows that many businesses are still wary of remote working. However, news that any employee who has been with a company for at least 26 weeks can now request flexible working means it is more important than ever for businesses to have company-wide policies in place. By preparing properly for remote working,... »

Bring your own Device: How to Make the Growing Trend Work for your Small Business

Ask any IT team, and one of the biggest challenges they currently face is the smart administration of their business’ mobile devices. With a culture of mobility and remote working firmly established, the associated proliferation of Bring your own Device (BYOD) smartphones and tablets has turned classic client administration on its head. The competitive nature of today’s business environment demands that employees have the ability to work sequentially on the same project from multiple devices and with consistent access to apps, files and rights. It also means an increased complexity in managing coherent roll-outs across entire networks. And this is only the beginning of the complications. »

Why Great Businesses Start with Great Culture

It’s a cliché that a business’ greatest asset is its people and it’s only half true. A business’ greatest asset is its people when they are aligned, motivated and passionately committed to our collective success – otherwise they’re just a cost. I have the good fortune to meet hundreds of entrepreneurs and see what makes their businesses tick. All of the most successful businesses have one thing in common – a clearly defined, aligned and powerful culture. Great business starts with great culture. »

Avoid tribunal, try Early Conciliation

From 6 April 2014, it may become easier to avoid taking workplace disputes to tribunal, thanks to a new service called Early Conciliation. Workplace issues and disputes are stressful and can have a real impact on small businesses. At Acas, we know it’s always better to resolve issues at the earliest possible stage, ideally in the workplace itself. But there are times when a dispute can’t be resolved in-house, which potentially can lead to a tribunal claim being made. Saving time is saving money From 6 April, anyone wanting to make a tribunal claim will first need to send a simple free online form to Acas and we’ll get in touch to offer Early Conciliation. Our aim is try to resolve a dispute quickly without the need for legal action. This will save employers and employees the stress, costs ... »

StartUp Loans: Why Raising the Age Limit is So Desperately Needed

The first small business news story of the day today is that Lord Young, David Cameron’s Enterprise Adviser, wants to raise the age limit on StartUp Loans. This is a great idea and I’ll explain why… »

Finding the Right Employees to Make your Business a Success

By Mark Holweger, director for Legal & General’s general insurance business Taking on employees can be one of the toughest decisions that a small business makes. In addition to the obvious benefits that extra staff will bring to a business, hiring more employees can also have increased responsibilities for the business owner. So the decision is not one to take lightly. »

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