The top 5 Cezanne HR blogs read, shared and talked about by you…

Sickness absence in the UK is changing… are you prepared?

£29 billion is the annual cost of sickness absence to UK businesses according to a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers. At a time when organisations are under more pressure than ever to control costs, it is vital they find the right solution for minimising employee absence. Many forward thinking companies are looking at ways to improve employees’ health, morale and motivation, whilst also tackling the issues of sickness absence and unauthorised leave. For SMEs and start-ups the cost of absence can be crippling, therefore it is essential that strategies and policies are developed to aid employee health and well-being and in turn reduce overall absence.


Five ways to support employees under pressure

When the chips are down, people need to feel that they have the backing of the business and are not beavering away or taking the flak in isolation. The need to be able to discuss problems openly and to feel it’s OK to say if they are not coping. Research conducted by Ashridge Business School together with the NSPCC looked at what strategies companies might need to put in place if they wanted to help people sustain high performance and thrive under pressure.


Why HR should get social?

It’s probably fair to say that some in the HR profession have been a bit slow to appreciate the value that active use of social media tools could add to their role.  If anything, the over-riding reaction seems to have been one of trying to control employees’ use of social media and of dismissing the growing number of internal networking and collaborative tools as just passing fads. The ‘social’ bandwagon, however, continues to roll into town and shows no sign of slowing down.


Getting the best out of your virtual team

Pressure to cut costs and an increased emphasis on flexible working has led to a rise in the number of employees working remotely.  Many managers, however, still have a tendency to see virtual working as ‘second best’ and struggle to manage the performance of people they rarely see. Part of the problem is that those at the helm often fail to adapt their approach – believing the tools and techniques they use in an office environment will work equally well with remote teams.  The reality, however, is that managing effectively in an on-line world calls for new approaches to motivating people, building trust and facilitating communication.  In particular, there needs to be much more emphasis on relationships and less on tasks.


How to… have great conversations with your team

In a small business, having a ‘happy ship’ is vital.  There simply isn’t time for the minor spats, grudges and resentment that can so easily arise simply because someone has been misunderstood or hasn’t got their message across clearly. Indeed research has shown that a negative interaction with someone has a real impact on productivity – it can take someone several hours to recover not just their good spirits but also their concentration after a difficult or unpleasant exchange with a colleague or their manager. Making sure we all have better quality and more productive conversations is the theme of a report talent management specialists DDI.


‘2013: The Year of Social HR’ many declared back in January and now we see why. The world of HR has been dominated by changes in the way we use technology to communicate with each other. The social bandwagon has definitely rolled into town and set up camp, with many embracing it for the better. As well as this communication between teams has been a hot topic throughout the year; the economy has been a pain point for all  and tensions between the workforce need to be dealt with as strategically as possible to ensure the smooth running of the ‘happy ship’.

What do you think were the 5 most talked about HR issues in 2013? Let us know.

Erika Lucas author image

Erika Lucas

Writer and Communications Consultant

Erika Lucas is a writer and communications consultant with a special interest in HR, leadership, management and personal development. Her career has spanned journalism and PR, with previous roles in regional press, BBC Radio, PR consultancy, charities and business schools.