The gender pay gap issue

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All the hype around the gender pay gap debate has culminated in, what I guess most people suspected would be the case, the realisation that women are paid on average less than their male counterparts in a large majority of UK businesses.

This has become a huge issue for some of the country’s most iconic brands who could potentially be hit with criticism from their loyal customers. The social media backlash has already been huge for companies like L’Oreal, who market primarily to women, reportedly coming out second from the bottom of the ‘gender pay gap’ table with a gap upwards of 30% in favour of men.

Agencies and companies alike have, by law, had to file their gender pay gap reports if they employ …

The benefits of an exit interview

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Finding out the reasons behind someone’s decision to leave their job can be key to solving many issues within the workplace.

An exit interview doesn’t need to be a formal affair, with a list of questions that the employee needs to have answered before they are released from their contract. A simple informal chat is all that is required, with the intention of not only finding out what areas the company needs to focus on developing, but also to leave the exiting employee with a good impression of the company. After all the reason they might be leaving could be for salary or re-location and not because of their working environment.

Establishing the reasons behind someone leaving will enable you to fix any problems that …

The Google Human Project

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Six months ago, Google changed its algorithm which affected how websites could climb the search engine page to achieve that illusive top spot. Gone are the days of just having to understand code and algorithms to get to the top. Google wanted a more authentic experience for its users, a human experience.

When someone now looks for content online, instead of looking for keywords used in the search, the new Google algorithm now looks for great content in relation to the search query. It’s not just about how technically brilliant a website is anymore (although there is still a need for a website to be technically awesome!) The focus now is about quality, up-to-date and relevant content. Websites written with great content will get a …

The case for neurodiversity

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The need for diversity within businesses and teams has been a discussion point for a while now, however there is an invisible condition, which despite one in ten people having some form of, is often not considered. Neurodiversity.

There is a staggering pool of untapped talent waiting to be found and given the opportunity to develop their skillsets. Statistics show that 40% of disabled people are now in employment, yet only 32% of individuals with a neurodiverse condition, most commonly autism, are employed.

One of the main difficulties that people with neurodiversity have is that employers have preconceived ideas about how they would, or would not, fit into their business and that uncertainty, and the stereotyping that comes with the condition, effects people’s views on …

The future of video interviewing

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The question has been asked recently whether the recent surge in virtual interviewing will eventually signal the end of the face-to-face interview?

We believe that traditional interview processes aren’t going away any time soon and still have a very important place in the recruitment process, however, the time and cost-saving benefits of interviewing someone via video and its ability to transcend geographical barriers are a real benefit in the current market place to both recruiters and candidates.

Research from job board Monster, found that almost half of respondents use video interviews as part of the selection process, demonstrating that the technology has been embraced more than we thought and isn’t now for tech innovators only. A minority of recruiters (7%) do not use any form …

Advice for the graduating candidate

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As I opened up facebook on what was a relatively chilled Sunday afternoon this weekend, I suddenly felt highly grateful for the stress free day I’d been having when Facebook Time-Hop presented me with a photo from ‘3 years ago today’. Captured on camera was my exasperated face as a final year student, sat cross legged on my broken student bed, surrounded by books, post it notes and lots of multi-coloured pens. About to embark on my final chapter as a student, I was juggling preparing for finals with job applications and feeling totally terrified about leaving my comfort blanket of student-ville.

All of this got me thinking about the advice I’d give to today’s final year students hoping to enter the wonderful world of …

Internship Laws

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A crackdown on unpaid internships has been launched by the Government, with warning letters sent out to companies taking advantage of this ‘free’ labour  and even going so far as to set up enforcement teams to tackle the repeat offenders. Guidance will also be issued to employers informing them that should they take on interns they are legally obliged to pay at least the national minimum wage.

Just because a job description uses words such as ‘intern’ or ‘work experience’ does not mean that the position can be unpaid. Under UK employment law an intern is considered a worker, who is entitled to receive the national minimum wage if the position meets the following criteria:

You are asked to commit to specific hours of work …

Do you balance work and fitness?

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Despite a lot of people having gym membership (or an equivalent fitness allowance) as a work benefit, a recent survey has found that 31.6% of people only exercise once or twice a week with 24% not doing any at all. Exercise not only improves overall health, but is proven to help mental health and increase general happiness levels, which in turn improves working lives and day-to-day productivity. Why aren’t more people making use of these benefits?

It may be that your employer doesn’t offer this as a benefit. If this is the case why don’t you make the proposal that they could? Speak with colleagues to gather support and offer the case that the employer will themselves benefit from a healthier workforce.

Are work hours …

Keeping remote employees engaged

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Flexible working has become common practice in many businesses these days, and as much as it may suit both the employee and employer for people to work remotely from home, it is important to remember that just because you can’t see them they are part of the team.

Often remote workers can feel isolated and undervalued in comparison to their on-site colleagues and not as involved in decision making processes. Feelings of underappreciation will only lead to morale issues, which in turn lead to problems with productivity which can cause issues down the line with staff retention.

The solution is quite simple and one which we always strive to be the best at – communication. Everyone knows that communication between colleagues is key to a …

Don’t forget the IV prep (client)

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Are you juggling meeting after meeting trying to handle tight deadlines and all the other pressures that your day to day job throws at you? Do you suddenly see in your diary that you have an interview booked in that afternoon and wonder how you are going to find the time? And although you know the parameters of the role as it’s in your team, are you confident your interview technique will get the best out of that interviewee?

The days of interviews being one sided, with the interviewee being in the hot seat have well and truly gone. If you want to attract and secure the best talent out there the way you approach interviews from the employer perspective is more important than ever.

Don’t forget the IV prep

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We all know preparation is key to a successful interview right? So why do we often decide to wing it? Time and time again as a recruiter I see candidates who I know are the strongest candidate interviewing for a particular role, rejected in favour of another simply because they were less prepared.

The internet offers an abundance of advice about how to prepare for an interview, offering tips and tactics galore to ensure you give the best impression possible, and 99% of that advice is all still surprisingly relevant, so use it.

If you are working with a good recruiter it should be part of their process to help you prepare for your interview. This doesn’t mean they’ll do all your company research and …

The best jobs of 2018

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A recent report has determined that the role of Marketing Manager is the best job to have in the UK in 2018.

Taking in to consideration three factors; number of job openings, salary and overall job satisfaction, the Glassdoor report ranked the top 25 professions, with marketers coming out in the number one spot. A number of other marketing industry professions appeared in the report.

Find the full list below to see if your role features:

1. Marketing Manager 2. Operations Manager 3. Audit Manager 4. Finance Manager 5. Product Manager 6. HR Manager 7. Contract Manager 8. Commercial Manager 9. Business Analyst 10. Project Manager 11. Business Development Manager 12. Software Engineer 13. HR Business Partner 14. Solutions Architect 15. Production Manager 16. Data Analyst 17. Data Scientist 18. Communications Manager 19. Recruiter 20. National Account Manager 21. Site Manager 22. Mobile Developer 23. Brand Manager 24. Engagement Manager 25. Executive Assistant

Workplace Wellbeing

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Company culture and the benefits employees receive have been talking points for a few years now, but all of this will take a back-seat in 2018 when workplace wellbeing, and more specifically mental health, will be at the forefront of business leader’s minds.

The realisation to take on mental health wellbeing in the workplace as a priority has been building over the last year. As much as the standard benefits, such as gym membership and free food, will always be welcomed it is up to the employer to ensure that their workforce’s mental wellbeing is as much as a priority as their physical one, with absenteeism from non-physical issues on the rise.

Managing mental health can be complex, but the simple introduction of mental health …

The Golden Triangle

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Being the capital London rightly holds the crown as the UK’s business centre, however new studies are revealing that other cities are fast becoming the UK’s growth entrepreneurial areas, particularly with start-up businesses.

Milton Keynes, Oxford and Cambridge (The Golden Triangle) have appeared on various reports as the key places to work, with Milton Keynes standing out as the number one area in the UK for employment growth. It also ranks fourth in the UK for business start-ups and third for the highest number of businesses. Cambridge is also proving to be key business territory with 80% of start-ups still in business after three years and The European Digital City Index’s analysis ranked Cambridge first in the digital entrepreneurial market out of 60 European cities.

It pays to be praised

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It’s long been thought that employees’ main motivators are salary and the usual benefits, but a survey by Workfront that surveyed 1,000 creatives made for some interesting reading and suggests that it’s not the normal money driven incentives that motivate creatives to perform better. In fact it’s the simple and important act of praise for a job well done, which goes to ask, do employers really understand how powerful a tool praise is and are they using it to the best of their advantage?

According to the survey, 37% of respondents said that praise is their number-one motivator. Having worked with placing many creatives in jobs over the past 19 years, it comes as no surprise to us that creatives (and marketers) are lacking in …

Are you ready for Generation Z?

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You’ve heard of the Millennials, but what about the next generation that is entering the workforce right now? Those born after 1996, and are about to knock on the doors of prospective employers everywhere, are known as Generation Z and they, like those before them, need handling in a different way altogether.

These potential employees have no experience of a world without technology. Mobile phones and the internet were becoming common place when they were born, and by the time they were old enough to fully engage with them these technologies were entering their heyday.  They are a generation that is constantly connected to the world and friends via technology, however they are socially conscious and used to building and being part of wider communities, …

The importance of awards and recognition

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Following the huge success of many of my fabulous clients at the PRide awards earlier this month, as I sat writing my ‘congratulations’ cards I found my inner psychology graduate nerdy-ness coming out as I contemplated the significant positive impact that such recognition, and celebration of success, undoubtedly has upon the morale and motivation of employees within the workplace.

Humans seek reward. In basic terms, we have a physiological craving for the ‘happy hormone’ dopamine and we must find ways on a daily basis to release this neurotransmitter to satisfy our bodily demand for it. Processing reward and gratitude is one of the fastest and most effective ways to release dopamine, contributing to a state of contentment and satisfaction. Without praise, reward and gratitude, the …

Do you have a WBFF?

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We’re always banging on about work/life balance these days. Flexible working, benefits, leaving work on time etc. and how that will lead to a happy life, but for some work and life go hand-in-hand.

Obviously having a job that you’re passionate about will lead to a happy work life, for some salary is the box that needs checking here, but for most it would be a job that holds your interest and passion.

However, having a WBFF (Workplace Best Friend Forever) is apparently the key to achieving happiness. Someone who will not only listen to your daily moans and groans, but someone who you will also go out to lunch with…or even the pub. If you don’t have one then go now and get one! …

Will there really be one million new creative jobs?

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The Government have responded to a review into the creative industry that identifies a lack of diversity, a lack of jobs and a lack of funding. The aim of the review is to identify the areas of deprivation in the creative industry and how we can ensure job and financial growth within this vibrant sector. The government commissioned report after they identified the creative industry as being one of the five growth sectors that needs special support and attention as part of the Industrial Strategy.

WHAT’S THE DEAL?

The main recommendation is to create a new sector deal. It recognises that London and the South East is booming with creative opportunity in the UK, but what about those of us that aren’t living in these …

The stress factor: the life of a junior

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Specialising in the junior end of the consumer market, my insight into both the candidate and client expectations is somewhat of a regular hot topic.

Within any industry there is an element of ‘earning your stripes’ and the days of getting up before you went to bed for very little wage have been rife – particularly in deadline and time sensitive environments such as marketing agencies. Although there is a school of thought that an element of stress in certain settings can have a positive impact, it has to be managed. Too much overload can cause burn out, particularly evidenced in the creative industry.

With the line between work and personal becoming ever more blurred, partly due to the digitally connected world we live in …