The best – and worst – excuses for calling in sick

Sick employee absent absence staff phone ill
On our return to work from the last Bank Holiday of the year, there will be those who have perhaps decided to extend the weekend by an extra day, using a variety of different excuses to do so. But it appears bosses in the UK are getting wiser to the usual round of supposed illnesses and accidents, with recent research demonstrating that only one in five bosses consider a migraine a good ex...

Self-employed exemption from safety law in force soon

red tape cut government
With a 1 October 2015 deadline just weeks away, the Government has issued a reminder about a key change to the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 that exempts self-employed workers from health and safety law in many circumstances. The change comes into force under a Deregulation Bill that followed the 2011 Löfstedt Review, which looked to simplify the application of health and safety...

Clash of cultures: the productive workplace?

Amazon close up website
Much has been written about the ‘future workplace’, a lot of which focuses on the importance of the physical working environment. However, news from the US this week has thrown light on the role that softer issues such as workplace culture can play in contributing to worker productivity – with some starkly different approaches. Amazon has been in the news following a report by the New Yo...

999 calls in Wales cut by 50% in a decade

Fire firefighter crane
The Statistical Bulletin published by Statistics for Wales last week showed a continuing decrease in the number of fires and call-outs for the emergency services.  The statistics cover a 12-year period from 2001/02 to 2013/14 and therefore make interesting reading for anyone who remembers the debate around the introduction of the Fire Safety (Regulatory Reform) Order 2005, which came int...