The Pulse – January 2022

The Pulse HR Newsletter header image showing an heartbeat monitor design with a heart shape in the middle of the line.

Your monthly HR newsletter, for busy business owners

Protect your business from ‘The Great Resignation’. Attracting and retaining top talent in 2022

Ok, this might not be the most positive way to kick off 2022, but… your staff are going to leave you.

That’s if you believe the news that a quarter of staff are planning to change employment over the coming months according to a report from earlier this month. .

The reality of it is, there are surplus jobs available right now and, rather than people sticking to their jobs, there really hasn’t been a better time to change than right now. So, if you’re not doing all the right things to keep your people happy, you risk losing them entirely.

Fortunately, with a few changes, it doesn’t have to be difficult to both attract the best people to your company, and keep them there for years to come.

A lot of it comes down to your employer brand. It might sound a little airy-fairy, but people want more than just a good salary these days. They care about whether the company they work for is actively making a difference, that the work culture is a good fit, and that there are more benefits than just a monthly wage.

So, with that in mind, what do you think your employees – and those seeking work – would think about your business? Does it feel like it a great place to be? Do they feel a strong sense of loyalty? Or would they be out the door before you’ve even opened their letter of resignation?

I’ve written a new guide to help you and your business avoid losing staff, and to give you a better chance of finding the best talent when you’re next hiring. And better still, it’s completely free. Download your copy now and if you feel like you need any further advice, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Latest news

Will Blue Monday affect your team?

Fact or fiction: Blue Monday (17th January) is described as the most depressing day of the year.?

We don’t think it is but can understand why it might be for some. Post-Christmas, the midst of winter, dark nights… it all builds a gloomy picture. So, what will you do to cheer your team up this Blue Monday? Consider a little treat like coffee and doughnuts in the break room, or perhaps an early finish (if possible). Try something different this year to give your team a boost and to convince them to get out of bed on those difficult days!

It looks like bad news for the over 50s

Apparently, the over 50s are more at risk from redundancy than their younger colleagues. Worse still, 11% of over 50s who’ve been made redundant in the past 5 years have disappeared from the job market entirely.

Not only does this derail retirement plans, but it can have a real impact on pensions and retirement savings.

If you’re starting the redundancy process in your business, remember, it’s not just younger workers who have a lot to offer!

Working mums draw the short straw

Yep, as if they don’t have enough stress to deal with, working mums, it seems, are being discriminated against when it comes to flexible working requests, too.

Half of working mothers don’t receive the flexibility they ask for at work. And 42% of mums are worried about even asking for more flexibility for a fear of a negative reaction.

Do you think allowing flexible working is the best way to keep women in the workplace and close the pay gap?

Minimum wage is set to rise in April this year. It’s going up to £9.18 for 21–22-year-olds, £6.83 for 18–20-year-olds, and £4.81 for 16–17-year-olds. The National Living Wage is also increasing to £9.50 an hour.

Your latest flexible working updates

On 23rd September last year, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published a consultation document named, ‘Making flexible working the default’. It proposes to make it a right to request flexible working from day one in any job. Currently, there is a 26-week qualifying period.

While this won’t mean that flexible working requests are automatically granted, it does mean that there’s no period of continuous service that employees need to pass to make a request. In turn, that means that people will be able to go into a new role knowing whether it will fit around their life and give them the important work/life balance that we all crave.

After the first lockdown, many of us realised the freedom that remote working can offer us. We managed to maintain our usual working hours but had the freedom to fit in family or home life too.

What could this policy mean for your business? Do you think it will help you to attract better talent? Will it create more paperwork for you? Or is flexible working something that you’ve already seen the benefit of? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this one – drop us an email.

Your Questions (and answers!) this month

What do I do if an employee quits?

First, get it in writing from them. You’ll need to confirm their notice period with them and agree a last day of work. You’ll also need to decide whether they work their notice or you put them on gardening leave. It’s a good idea to find out their reasons for leaving, too.

What do I do if someone close to an employee has died?

First, express your sincere condolences. Make sure your employee feels supported and they understand that work comes second. Agree an initial period of leave and arrange to keep in touch by their preferred method. Take it case by case and seek professional HR advice if you’re unsure.

How do I handle an employee asking for a pay rise?

Ask them to formalise the request and schedule it for conversation at their next review meeting. During this review, let them know how you feel about their performance and why you’ve decided to grant or reject their request. If you reject it, put some measures in place to ensure they get it at their next review.

That’s all for now!

We hope you found the newsletter informative, look out or the next one in February. If you’d like to download a copy for your managers click here.

Keep in touch and have a great month.