• Scotland the Blog: Skills to pay the bills?

    "Skills to pay the Bills” was a rap by the Beastie Boys in 1992, when I was halfway through university as a mature student learning new skills. Skills are key to improving productivity and pay, ensuring that we can build inclusive growth. 

    When I joined CIPD eleven years ago, I was asked to look at the Leitch report which recommended a focus on the supply of intermediate skills. Various other initiatives have…

    • 11 Oct 2018
  • Scotland’s ageing workforce: Time to act!

    In December, I am going to see Paul McCartney who is 76. He is still working on and (judging from the exorbitant ticket price I paid to see him at the Hydro), very much earning and productive! And he thought he would easing it back when he was 64!

    CIPD Head of Scotland and NI, Lee Panglea, has been working with leading academics, Age Scotland, Business in the Community Scotland and Scottish Government to look at how we…

    • 28 Sep 2018
  • Everyone is talking about the future of work

    When my local barber told me 'next time you get your hair cut you could be swiping your debit card on a machine, which will proceed to cut your hair with the option of holiday conversations or silent snipping.' I think “yes, I can see this happening”. 

    This week we worked with our academic colleagues at the CIPD’s Scottish centres: Edinburgh Napier University Business School’s Dr Kirsteen Grant, her…

    • 10 Sep 2018
  • Fair Work? Fair Enough. But what can and should people leaders in Scotland do?

    This week CIPD Scotland, in partnership with RBS, hosted the first Scottish Senior Employee Relations Network event. This network will share insight and good practice, and discuss and debate the changing employment picture to better inform and advise both the ER and wider HR profession and government on key opportunities and issues faced in the future world of work; particularly the inclusive and productive jobs agenda…

    • 31 Aug 2018
  • Scotland the Blog: Analytics, Hidden Figures and getting hard numbers on fair work

    CIPD Scotland hosted an HRD event on people analytics in Glasgow this week. A panel discussion brought together Ed Houghton, Acting Head of Research and Thought Leadership at the CIPD; John Stewart, HR Director at SSE, and Peter Cheese, CEO of the CIPD who positioned people analytics as a priority area for professional development and skills. The audience was made up of HR leaders and senior specialists in analytics as…

    • 17 Aug 2018
  • Scotland the Blog: Priming the People Pump means Thinking of all Sizes.

    I have written a lot recently about job quality and how important that is to raising the level of economic growth and productivity in Scotland. HM Treasury recently released some doleful news on Britain productivity performance, with estimates that it is now much lower than initially thought. Scotland performance on this front as a recent Fraser of Allander report shows isn’t exactly stellar. However one issue which really…

    • 3 Nov 2017
  • Decent, Fair, and Good to Middling: Why Job Quality is policy issue of the moment in Scotland and the UK

    Look at the photo. A man is standing with a placard outside the Apple Store in Glasgow advertising cheap iPhone repairs. This is without doubt a job. A person is paid to stand there with a placard. Maybe it works because people do maybe think ““nah forget Apple, I will take my iPhone to this little shop and get it fixed cheaply”. Perhaps he is on a zero- hour’s contract or a temporary job brokered by an agency. Maybe…

    • 7 Sep 2017
  • Pavement, Penthouse and the Quintile Question: How labour market inequality is the heart of the matter

    10 years on from the global financial crisis there has been a jobs rich recovery in U.K but not a recovery of rich jobs. I addressed this in my last blog post as the “recovery-less jobs” phenomenon in the context of Scotland. As two noted academics explained even prior to the global financial crisis, the labour market is highly segregated.

    ‘People can have lovely jobs with lots of stimulation, variety autonomy…

    • 18 Aug 2017
  • Recovery-less jobs? How Scotland is creating jobs but not growth

    Scotland is, according to the respected economic think-tank The Fraser of Allander Institute (FAI), teetering on the verge of recession. A recession is defined by economists as two consecutive quarters of falling output and there is a perception that Scotland may well experience this if adjustments to previous predictions of economic growth are taken into account.
    There is no value in pointing the finger at politicians…

    • 4 Aug 2017
  • The Ownership Effect Could Power up Productivity

    Scotland's latest unemployment rate fell to its lowest ever, now standing at 20% lower than the rest of the UK. That said we still have a significant number of people who have given up searching for work all together. Some don't like the jobs on offer and some who are in employment don't like the jobs they are in, they are engaged only by fear of benefit sanctions. Many work less hours than they would like and a lot are…

    • 14 Jul 2017
  • Why the Gender Pay Gap short-changes us all

    I have been reading about an amazing yet largely unknown eighteenth century Scotswoman Mary Somerville. She was born in Burntisland and became one of the most celebrated scientific authors in history. Her outstanding contribution to knowledge in the face of sexism and exclusion is commemorated in the Oxford College which bears her name. She was a woman in a man's world who had what we now call "STEM skills" in abundance…

    • 10 Jul 2017
  • Putting people to work on principle: the key to all our futures

    We’ve all had much more on our minds than politics recently. The election as we all know, turned out to be significant in Scotland and unprecedented in the UK. As usual at CIPD Scotland we look for what we can do to move forward and adjust. We look to tap into resilience and responsiveness.

    Issues and trends in the world of work will shape Scotland's future as much as the political landscape. The CIPD continues…

    • 28 Jun 2017
  • Scotland the Blog: Scottish Conference 2017 Working well to make work human in the capital

    CIPD Scotland brought our annual conference to Edinburgh’s Iconic Exhibition Centre on 2 March. Building on the success of the recent student conference our team of staff and volunteers worked with the same collaborative purpose to deliver for our members. Over 500 were present including over 400 delegates, our dedicated staff and volunteers, exhibitors and title sponsors Scottish Government. Mattioli Woods and Capita…

    • 8 Mar 2017
  • Future Talent, Technology and Innovation and an inspiring non-standard approach

    The CIPD's Scottish Student Conference held on 18 February at Strathclyde University Technology and Innovation Centre, focused on some big themes. Peter Cheese rallied us all with a focus on coping in complex and probably “too” interesting times. He talked of how we had to understand that technology was a tool not a replacement for humans and that we as the people and development profession had to support organisations…

    • 1 Mar 2017
  • Scotland the Blog: Why Diversity and Inclusion contribute to Working Well in Scotland

    On Tuesday February 7 CIPD Scotland delivered a business breakfast on Diversity and Inclusion in Scotland’s capital and financial hub Edinburgh. Working with City HR and Oracle Corporation we were guests of Standard Life. As one of Scotland leading financial services players’ Standard life are at the forefront of building a better workplace which takes care of people, helps them to achieve, and looks to identify and support…

    • 13 Feb 2017
  • Blue Monday doesn’t equate but getting informed about mental health does

    Today is Blue Monday - a day which, somewhat controversially, has come to be associated in the media with understanding depression. Mental ill-health is one of the biggest threats to well-being and a source of real pain and suffering for many and it costs society a great deal in lost work time and poor productivity, so it’s encouraging to see more people talking about it. Perhaps that’s why The Samaritans is seeing it…

    • 16 Jan 2017
  • Apprentices need Sorcerers like Sandy: How the levy must work in Scotland.

    This week the Scottish government published its response to a consultation on the operation of the apprentice levy in Scotland. This is the Westminster government’s key skills agenda, and many employers and their organisations have raised concerns about its impact and possible consequences. The cost focused and cash strapped oil and gas and construction and engineering sectors are a case in point. CIPD’s North of Scotland…

    • 12 Jan 2017
  • CIPDNI: Belfast blog - Brexit and well beyond

    It’s easy to think the times we live through are the most momentous ever and they certainly are not boring. A key element of thinking leadership in a topsy-turvy world is sense making and perspective taking. Whist working in an airline industry knocked off its axis by 9/11 I was re-assured by the fact that human beings will always have curiosity, a need to relax and do business, and will therefore until they develop self…

    • 14 Dec 2016
  • Brexit, Barnett and Barrels. Three challenges for Scotland’s economy and HR’s role in meeting them

    If anyone has been sleeping in a blissful state of ignorance the Scottish economy and workplace are undergoing some testing times. The continued and drawn out pain around oil and gas the stringent planned cuts in public spending and the turmoil of Brexit and Trump are battering the Scottish economy like our seasonal gales. With major bank RBS required to up its capital holding and therefore reduce its headcount, engineering…

    • 12 Dec 2016
  • Scotland The Blog: Resilience is Human: Ramping up the Recovery in Oil and Gas for the Long Term

    This week as guest of The Engineering and Construction Training Board I attended the Oil and Gas industry awards in Aberdeen. These awards celebrate the contribution of individuals and companies to an industry which is at the fulcrum of The U.K. And Scotland’s economic future. We all know that the industry has faced tough times. Its fortunes impact the whole British economy so it's good that at this gathering spirits…

    • 16 Nov 2016
  • Scotland the Blog: Gig Economy or Skivvy Society?

    I went to a gig last week in Glasgow. The band are are an obscure punk outfit and they won't get a huge amount from the combination of devoted fans admission price and downloads from Spotify. That said they are “gigging”, and the nature of gigging is that it's a creative engagement which delivers unpredictable income in return for creative and irregular output, (and if you are U2 that's some income and it's quite regular…

    • 28 Oct 2016
  • Brexit and Beyond: Supporting the front line and developing a future of Fair Work

    This year in Scotland we're enabling two key networks around people leadership. The Knowledge into Practice group has been active for many years and was put through its paces with a great event in Glasgow on September the 13th with the Army Personnel centre. The theme was the War for Talent. It could probably have been called “At war with Talent” as it was about the challenge the military faces in leading and shaping…

    • 20 Sep 2016
  • Scotland the Blog: Steady as she slows is no answer for Scotland skilled future

    Scotland now has a very different political picture. For the first time in many years the Conservatives will provide distinctive and determined opposition. The previous opposition party Labour has been pushed into further decline and its period of dominance is long behind it. The SNP will not secure a majority for its historic third term but it will be able to work with the pro-independence Greens to get its manifesto…

    • 24 May 2016
  • CIPD Scotland the Blog: Framing Fair Work for Scotland

    Last week the Scottish Government’s long awaited Fair Work Convention (FWC) issued its Fair Work Framework. (FFF). This is the first substantial fruit of Scotland’s distinctive approach to the workplace. The FWC into which CIPD has had major input seeks to engage employers, unions and policy makers in a new conversation about the workplace. Its finding and conclusions though hardly novel are nonetheless credible…

    • 29 Mar 2016
  • Scotland the Blog: Assembling on Productivity

    CIPD Scotland has been strengthening the connection with members and markets in Scotland. The centrepiece is our Scotland Conference run as CIPD's Scottish showcase since the late 90s. In the first decade we hosted our conference in stunning rural and remote locations such as Peebles and Dunblane. As demand for the conference grew in the last five years it moved to cities starting with Glasgow the first of which won Scottish…

    • 16 Mar 2016