For Employers

Five things weve learned from the pandemic.
Five things weve learned from the pandemic.

Hows your crystal ball?

My bet is that youve spent a fair bit of the last 15 months or so gazing deeply into it and trying to predict the future.

And Im equally sure that lots of your predictions like mine have been wide of the mark.

If there was any certainty to be had when the pandemic struck, it was that nothing was certain.

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When we talk about a toxic work culture, we always assume we are talking about another company.
When we talk about a toxic work culture, we always assume we are talking about another company.

Funny, isnt it? When we talk about a toxic work culture, we always assume we are talking about another company.

But how many of us in positions of leadership actually know what the working environment is like on our own shop floors and could honestly say there is no evidence of toxicity there?

From a business point of view, there is nothing to be gained from a poor work environment. Productivity drops, morale plunges, staff start taking more sick leave and employee turnover increases as unhappy workers vote with their feet.

Add in the possibility that at some point a really toxic environment will lead to expensive tribunal or court cases, and it is a situation which needs remedying as soon as possible.

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IR35  What employers need to know
IR35 What employers need to know

There was a fairly seismic change in the tax rules for employing contractors at the start of this month and its already causing headaches.

Under the new IR35 arrangements, if you hire self-employed people and are a medium or large-sized enterprise, its now your duty to make sure you do so on the correct tax basis.

The change means that anyone you take on consistently should be employed on a PAYE basis rather than being left to look after their own tax affairs.

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Can I insist my staff are vaccinated against Covid?
Can I insist my staff are vaccinated against Covid?

As the rollout of the vaccination continues and starts to include more of the general working population a key question is being asked by employers around the country.

Can I force my staff to get the jab?

The short answer is no. Any medical intervention generally requires the consent of the individual and if your employee doesnt want to have the jab that is their choice.

But the real-world situation is a lot more nuanced than that. Your staff may feel strongly that they do not want to work with anyone who has not been vaccinated and feel that you are putting them at risk if you dont insist that everyone has the jab.

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Why should I hire an apprentice?
Why should I hire an apprentice?

The pandemic is continuing to leave a huge mark across the nations business community.

Jobs have been lost, businesses mothballed, and spending slashed as worried workers rein in their expenditure amid the ongoing uncertainty of what might happen next.

So it might seem an odd time to be thinking about taking new staff on. But by using the apprenticeship scheme companies can not only give a valuable opportunity to new starters, but also do so in a cost-effective way.

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Why Domestic Abuse is a workplace issue
Why Domestic Abuse is a workplace issue

Should your company have a policy regarding domestic abuse?

You might think its an unnecessary question. Its domestic abuse, so it has nothing to do with work. Right?

But you couldnt be more wrong.

Official figures from the Office for National Statistics show that an estimated 1.3 million women in England and Wales experienced domestic abuse in the year ending March 2018.

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For Employees

Why working from home could be harming your career
Why working from home could be harming your career

How has working from home been for you over the last 15 months?

Theres no doubt that, for many of us, the chance to work remotely has been one advantage of the lockdown which has blighted the last year or so. Weve been able to juggle work and home life more effectively, cut down on travelling and see more of our family.

But we also know that working from home comes with a number of disadvantages.

It can be difficult to switch off from work, lead to increased isolation, longer hours and increased wellbeing and mental health issues.

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Toxic Work Culture
Toxic Work Culture

There are few things worse than finding yourself in a toxic work culture.

Anybody who has experienced it knows just how draining, exhausting and counterproductive such an environment can be.

The signs that your workplace has fallen victim to such a corrosive culture are not always as obvious as you might think.

Whilst some might be straightforward enough a boss who yells, screams, singles out staff members unfairly and changes their mind at a moments notice others are more nuanced.

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IR35  What it means if you are self-employed
IR35 What it means if you are self-employed

If youre self-employed and particularly if you work through a limited company or Personal Services Company you wont need us to tell you that IR35 came into force at the start of this month.

The new arrangements are meant to crack down on contractors and employers exploiting a loophole in the tax rules which make it more efficient to hire a contractor through a limited company.

HMRC thought this was being abused, and contractors who were essentially employees were dodging significant tax liabilities.

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Jab for Jobs  is it legal?
Jab for Jobs is it legal?

Its been the big debate of the last few month: Should jabs for jobs be compulsory.

On the one hand are the group who says nobody should be allowed back into the workplace until they have had their Covid vaccination.

That way, they argue, everyone will be safe and have peace of mind.

On the other side are those who claim making jabs compulsory for all workers is discriminatory, would be impossible to police and could pit staff member against staff member.

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Why an apprenticeship could be for you

We have a strange relationship with technical and vocational qualifications in this country.

Too often we look down our noses at the sort of schemes which produce the skills, training and knowledge we desperately need to make our economy work.

Take apprenticeships for example. How many parents are happy to see their child take up an apprenticeship if they also have the chance to go to university?

Yet there are considerable advantages to an apprenticeship which should make it an attractive option for any youngster.

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