LettersOn 11 Feb 2003 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. This week’s lettersNo substitute for real experience In ‘Outside input is needed to make HR strategic’ (HR Viewpoint, 28January), Alan Bailey claims HR business partners are few and far between andthe industry needs to look beyond HR to recruit and develop the stars of thefuture. As someone who has moved from a commercial background into HR, I cancertainly recommend it. Having been in PR all my working life – which includeddeveloping two consultancies – I realised my strengths also lie in peoplemanagement. I implemented training schemes in both consultancies, and we ended upwinning industry awards in PR for two consecutive years for our peopledevelopment programmes. About four years ago, after yet another three-hour meeting with a24-year-old brand manager, discussing the personality of his chocolate barbrand, I had to move on. One of my ex-colleagues, who was then chief executive of Edelman in London,asked me to “take a look at our HR – I don’t think we’re getting itright”. I explained that I had no qualifications in HR, but she insistedthat I was the right person because I had always had a leaning towards peoplemanagement and I understood how business worked. I agreed to do it in the short-term, but four years later I am very muchfull-time, having been given responsibility for developing best practice in HRin all of our 12 European offices, and more recently having started workingwith our offices in Canada, Asia Pacific and Latin America. Despite big differences in employment law across the offices and regions andcultural differences – including silly things such as the time of day I have tobreak for lunch when training (12 noon in Stockholm, 1pm in most of Europe, but2pm in Spain) – the challenges our managers face are exactly the same. How do you make sure you get the best people, how do you motivate them whenyou can’t always reward financially, and how do you get managers to take theirpeople management responsibilities seriously? I have now handed the London office over to a professional HR person, and amdeveloping HR staff in our other offices. I also work closely with seniormanagement to develop HR strategy, which places a lot of emphasis onrecruitment, motivation and retention of top talent. Do I miss PR? Not one bit. I still feel that I work in PR, but the challengeis getting the people management right, and focusing on the most important partof our business is a fascinating and ever-challenging scenario. It is demanding– long hours, lots of travel and sometimes having to clean up other people’smesses – but it is hugely rewarding and I know what I do makes a difference. I never really felt that way about the chocolate bar. Liz Fraser European director of HR, Edelman Career breaks can build staff loyalty I was really pleased to see the subject of career breaks covered so comprehensivelyin Personnel Today (Legal Q&As, 28 January). Career breaks are often overlooked as a way of attracting and retaining keystaff, and along with flexible working options are a good way of retainingexperienced people. The public relations industry – like many others in the service sector – isnotorious for its full-on, full-time attitude, with the result that anyemployee over 30 is treated a bit like an antique. We have found that the introduction of career breaks, sabbaticals and a moreflexible approach to work in the past two years has increased our retentionstatistics at the level we need it most – that is for those with more than fiveyears’ experience. Returnees come back fresh, relaxed, creative and, most of all, committed tothe business that gave them this opportunity. The philosophy may seem full of risk, but I can confirm that it’s worth itfrom an HR point of view. Carmel O’Kane HR manager, Firefly Communications Cheap alternative to Porter’s wisdomSo, we need to invest in labour force skills, innovation, and goods andservices that provide companies with sustainable competitive advantage, claimsProfessor Michael Porter (News, 28 January). This guy is amazing – worth every penny of the squillions paid to him by theDTI and others. Aged 57 and speeding downhill fast, I am more than happy to dispense wisdomof equal quality, and for a lot less cash. It might help me earn more than mymissus – a much younger HR manager. Do you think there is any chance that you could put in a good word for mewith the DTI? Paul Williams Training and development manager, Federal Mogul Powertrain Systems Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.
Share this article View post tag: Naval View post tag: Queen View post tag: Defence The launch next summer of HMS Queen Elizabeth, the first of the Royal Navy’s two new carriers, will signal a national awakening to the UK’s continuing authority on the world stage, the First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir George Zambellas, told an audience of experts from the defence and maritime industries today, Tuesday 10 September 2013.The Admiral said:“We await expectantly the rebirth of the United Kingdom’s carrier capability. We look forward to the launch event for HMS Queen Elizabeth next summer, which will be a real moment of national awakening.“Why?“Because she will be the first of two ‘big deck’ aircraft carriers capable of delivering a full spectrum of diplomatic, political and military options.”Speaking at the DSEI (Defence Security and Equipment International) exhibition in London, the First Sea Lord said he wanted to forge a closer relationship with defence industry, set against the backdrop of the UK Government’s commitment to a naval equipment programme which, by early in the next decade, is planned to be nearly half of the defence equipment budget.The Admiral quoted the Prime Minister who has spoken of the UK maintaining the fourth largest defence budget in the world, to equip its armed forces not for the conflicts of the past but for the challenges of today.Admiral Zambellas said this renaissance in the naval equipment programme was fundamental to meeting those challenges and that his ambition was for this genuinely strategic investment to be matched by an equally strategic maritime defence-industrial relationship.The First Sea Lord said:“So how would I characterise the future UK Naval Equipment Programme?“Far from being stopped in the water at a time of austerity and fiscal pressure, the UK is experiencing an extraordinary renewal of its maritime capability.”He added:“And the scale of the UK’s investment in this programme matches the scale of the UK’s ambition to be a genuine international player with real influence and authority in the world.”Although the initial costs of the carrier and other new ship and submarine programmes catch the headlines, the lifespan of these vessels will deliver real value for money to the taxpayer in the long-term.“The reality is that the naval platforms which are being built today will have long life spans – very long life spans.So this longevity delivers real ‘bang for buck,” the Admiral said.He added:“This strategic national investment is linked intrinsically to the Government’s growth and prosperity agendas in a very significant way. In fact, taken as a whole, these core programmes are one of the largest engineering projects in the UK.“Just in the carrier project alone, there are over 100 companies in the UK supply chain. They deliver world class, high-end military capability and the UK defence industry has a tradition of manufacturing excellence in this field.”The First Sea Lord also stressed the importance of innovation to both the Royal Navy and the defence industry.The Admiral said:“The march of technology is remorseless, its options expanding exponentially.“The drumbeat gets ever louder.“In the maritime domain we need to be ready for it.“We need to embrace it and we need to exploit it – because it generates opportunities,”[mappress]Press Release, September 11, 2013; Image: Royal Navy View post tag: Awakening View post tag: Defense Authorities UK: HMS Queen Elizabeth to Signal National Awakening Back to overview,Home naval-today UK: HMS Queen Elizabeth to Signal National Awakening View post tag: National View post tag: Signal September 11, 2013 View post tag: HMS View post tag: Elizabeth View post tag: News by topic View post tag: Navy
Japanese Cabinet Minister Toshimitsu Motegi has welcomed the UK’s recent announcement that it is looking to seek potential accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), saying Japan would “spare no efforts to support the UK” in a meeting with Dr Liam Fox, international trade secretary, this morning.Dr Liam Fox met Motegi, who is responsible for CPTPP, as part of a visit to Japan, the UK’s closest partner in Asia.The UK and Japan are like-minded advocates for global free trade, and building on our existing relationship with Japan is a key element of delivering the UK’s first independent trade policy for over 40 years as we leave the European Union.This is Dr Fox’s first visit to Asia following his launch of a consultation on potentially joining CPTPP, and his welcoming this month’s signature of the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA). Japan accounts for nearly half of the CPTPP’s GDP, and is the UK’s fifth largest trading partner with total trade worth £28 billion, up by nearly 15% in 2017.Dr Fox is also beating the drum for British businesses based in Japan, meeting a range of business leaders and the British Chambers of Commerce Japan. Further, he is highlighting the value of Japanese investment in the UK, in light of the huge and job-creating investments made in the last year by the likes of Hitachi, Toyota and Mitsubishi Corp.International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox said: As we set our own trade policy for the first time in over 40 years, the government is determined to break new ground by putting the UK at the heart of the world’s fastest growing regions, like Asia. That’s why I’m visiting Japan, our fifth largest trading partner, and meeting Prime Minister Abe and colleagues, British businesses and Japanese investors to take our trading relationship to the next level and deliver a new framework for free and open UK-Japan trade. These talks are vital in putting the country at the heart of the Asia-Pacific, a region that will be the engine of global growth in the twenty-first century. Dr Fox welcomed the recent EU-Japan EPA with Theresa May and Prime Minister Abe agreeing to work quickly to establish a new partnership between Japan and the UK based on the final terms of the agreement. Ensuring certainty to businesses in both countries is something they have made clear is a top priority.The 11 members of CPTPP accounted for £82 billion of UK trade in 2016, more than the Netherlands, France or China. The economies of existing members are diverse, spanning a region which is a driving force of global economic growth.