Friday, 21 October 2016

HR in October - the calm before the perfect storm

My colleague came into work this morning telling me that her car’s warning light for ice had come on during her journey to work, as the temperatures outside hit below 4 degrees.

Looking out of the window you’d never believe it, it’s a beautifully sunny day – but winter is fast approaching, along with the end of the annual leave year. It’s usually the time of year when software providers see an influx of enquiries from businesses keen to get new staff holiday planning and performance review software in place for the new leave year.

 I absolutely recommend anyone thinking about new software for January book a demo now, because getting everyone in the business on board can take longer than you think, and we know from experience that the end of year is a stressful time for HR Managers. October and early November represents the calm before the storm.

Come mid November, in companies where leave can’t be carried forward, staff get the heebie jeebies because they haven’t used all their holiday entitlement. It’s often only absent mindedness rather than deliberate, but nobody wants to lose their annual leave if they can’t carry it over.

They obviously can’t all take time off at the same time, so its a leave request race – and where clashes follow, particularly when there is a ‘no carryover’ policy, the HR Manager is like Solomon, stepping in to try and make as fair a decision as possible without leaving the business short staffed.

It’s a challenging time anyway, for other reasons. HR are often busy dealing with the seasonal fallout that follows a flurry of office parties – workplace scandals, disagreements that get fuelled by alcohol, social media challenges, staff turning up hungover and staff not turning up at all – and trying to find replacement cover at short notice.

As if they already don’t have enough to deal with, ‘flu season kicks in.  You’ll usually find the HR Manager sniffling their way through the day, unable to take time off when they are themselves unwell, because they simply have too much to do!

When they finally settle down in front of their Christmas Dinner, HR managers will have justified every penny of their whole year’s salary in one month, but those who don’t have a system in place will face a bigger horror when they return – the end of year annual leave report.

 All of this adds up to a very stressful period, and one that will be made worse if you’ve left it until December to start booking absence management software demonstrations.

We are here to help, and here to advise our customers – if you want new software for the next annual leave year, contact us before the storm starts to bite, and we’ll do what we can to help make next winter a little less painful.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Exciting news - Activ People HR plans to attend the first All Wales CIPD Conference

The Activ People HR Team are very excited to be invited to attend the very first All Wales CIPD conference this Friday and Saturday in Cardiff, at which the CIPD Chief Executive, Peter Cheese, will be speaking.

There's something about meeting people at conference that always makes attending very special - Adrian Lewis explained:

"Conference for us is about networking, meeting people, forging alliances and friendships, and above all else, understanding the HR profession so we can best meet their needs. For the first time, we can do all of that without needing to travel outside our region - amazing!"

National pride? A little, and rightly so - we're proud of our heritage, our Rugby, and now our HR! We'll look forward to seeing you all on Friday.

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Opinion: What can Welsh Companies do to stop employees coming to work sick? - Cardiff Business Week

Opinion: What can Welsh Companies do to stop employees coming to work sick? - Cardiff Business Week: New research of 1,300 employees published by the independent job site, CV Library, has found that two thirds of UK workers turn up at the office when they are sick, despite the fact the majority of them (84.3%) believe that employees shouldn’t come to work unwell. It appears that guilt is the main driving force …

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

The language of appraisals

Just because we are a developer of Appraisals Software doesn't mean the Activ Appraisals team don't have a sense of humour.  This cartoon may be tongue in cheek, but sadly it is the fly-by-seat approach to conducting appraisals that can be adopted by line managers.

We know that HR Managers know how to do appraisals in such a way that it leaves employees more motivated and engaged - but here's a post on some of the politically correct language to describe certain office behaviours during appraisals.  It made us smile so we decided to share:

"Good at identifying management problems": Moans a lot
"Gets along extremely well with superiors and subordinates alike": A coward.
"Happy": Paid too much.
"Hard worker": Usually does it the hard way.
"Indifferent to instruction": Knows more than superiors.
"Internationally known": Likes to go to conferences and trade shows in Las Vegas.
"Is well informed": Knows all office gossip and where all the skeletons are kept.
"Inspires the cooperation of others": Gets everyone else to do their work.
"Is unusually loyal": Wanted by no-one else.
"Keen sense of humour": Knows lots of dirty jokes.
"Keeps informed on business issues: Subscribes to Playboy and National Enquirer.
"Listens well": Has no ideas of his own and never contributes to discussions.
"Maintains a high degree of participation": Comes to work on time.
"Maintains professional attitude": A snob.
"Meticulous in attention to detail": A nitpicker.
"Mover and shaker": Favours steamroller tactics without regard for other opinions.

If you'd like a free demonstration of the latest version of Activ Appraisals (and/or a free trial) just click here and we'll be happy to help!

Two thirds of UK Employees claim they work whilst sick, citing guilt as the reason

Two thirds of UK Employees claim they work whilst sick, citing guilt as the reason

Activ Absence Director Adrian Lewis comments on this story from CV Library.