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first_imgThis week’s lettersLetter of the week Total outsourcing is going too far On the subject of outsourcing, the Pentland Group’s HR director ChrisMatchan asks whether “we really want HR to end up like this?”(Comment, 30 May). Well, I for one say “no”, and senior HR directors should challengethe thinking that suggests that the outsourcing trumpeted by Nortel Networksand PwC is a step forward for the profession or the business it supports. It sounds as though the demand for ever-increasing returns on investment isthe over-riding objective, and not any that HR would have normally stood for. Am I the only HR professional who considers HR to cover the total spectrumof activities that affect the people in an organisation? I cannot see anythingbut trials and tribulations for any company that totally replaces the HRfunction with an 0800 number. To leave the few remaining HR staff concentratingon strategy alone is a pathway to disaster. Employees will become less engaged, less motivated and disenchanted, andeventually turnover will reflect this. For HR to be effective strategically, it has to be involved at every level –not removed. Of course, there are activities that could be handled in a more efficientway, but to outsource the whole thing? I pity the outsourced professional who will be handling a complex Tupetransfer from their outsourced position. Good luck. Paul Brewer HR director – Europe ETI e-HR is behind surge in interest The News Barometer survey asking “Is outsourcing a more effective wayof providing HR services?” (News, 12 June) showed that only 43 per cent ofrespondents believe that to be the case. Yet sources such as the Cranet Survey indicate that 97 per cent outsource atleast one HR service. Does that mean that over 50 per cent of outsourcing experience isunsatisfactory? Clearly not, judging by the enormous interest in HR outsourcingand deals such as the one between Nortel Networks and PwC. As outsource providers, we have noted a huge increase in interest inoutsourcing HR among progressive companies. The main reason is not to cut costsnor to focus on core activities, but the desire to implement an e-HR strategy. The pressure to deliver self-service HR and to tie it into a worldincreasingly focused on e-business is beyond the scope of most in-house HRdepartments. That’s where outsourcing can be a catalyst for change. The ASP model allows an external supplier to cut the delivery time togo-live on a new HR system, and creates the opportunity to outsource selectedHR functions on the same database across the organisation. This is the deliveryscenario that mid-sized organisations are seizing, to gain competitiveadvantage from e-HR. In turn, it will precipitate an unprecedented growth inoutsourced HR services. Bruce Thew Managing director, Ceridian Europe Job loss handled better all round I read with interest City improves on human side of deal, (News, 12 June). Not only are employers in the City getting better at this, but employees tooare handling job losses better and accepting that career transition is part andparcel of modern working life. We carried out global research that found redundancy has little impact onfamily, finances and health. In fact, rather than damaging family ties andpersonal relationships, nearly half of those surveyed felt redundancy hadactually strengthened their relationship with their partner. It is encouraging that job loss is not nearly as traumatic for families asit has been. Over recent decades we have seen a rise in the stockmarket as wellas an in house prices, which has given people greater equity than ever before.This could explain why families feel more financially secure in the face ofredundancy. But it is also good to see that employers are handling redundancy programmesbetter and taking responsibility to ensure HR professionals support departingemployees with career transition services. There is no doubt that they have adirect impact on how well equipped employees feel to deal with it. Tony Gould Managing director DBM, UK Creche would be a good first step It seems journalism is not alone in not meeting the needs of mothers (News,30 May). Why does the Government encourage mothers to take a year off? A bettersolution would be to have policies such as creches at work – enabling us to doour jobs better, with greater peace of mind, knowing we can see our children inour breaks, while not falling behind careerwise. We need a fundamental shift in attitude towards those of us raising the nextgeneration. Kaneez Jaffer Recruitment administrator Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. LettersOn 26 Jun 2001 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

The missing whales: relevance of “struck and lost” rates for the impact assessment of historical whaling in the southwestern Atlantic Ocean.

first_imgThe massive impact that open-boat historical whaling (18th to 20th centuries) had on whale populations has been traditionally estimated from records of oil and baleen plate production. However, an unknown proportion of hunted whales were struck, wounded, eventually killed, but lost, and not included in these records, suggesting that whaling impact may be critically underestimated. Whaling logbooks provide a key source for assessing past catches and losses. Here, we extract detailed records of 19875 days of activity in the southwestern Atlantic Ocean from 255 logbooks of offshore whaling voyages. During the period considered (1776–1923), whalers first targeted southern right whales (Eubalaena australis, 2497 sightings and 658 catches), gradually substituted by sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus, 1157 sightings and 843 catches) after 1840. Loss rate factors, calculated to account for the number of “struck and lost” whales, decreased across time for both species, and were particularly high (ranging 1.09–1.6) for the southern right whale, whose population was drastically reduced by whaling, as compared to previous estimates based on rough catch records. Accurate accounting for these “lost” individuals is essential for reconstructing the impact of whaling on cetacean populations and for a proper assessment of their initial population size and demographic trends.last_img read more


first_imgFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailShare STATUS Of THE HARMONY WAY BRIDGEby Dan Barton, Publisher Of The New Harmony Gazette Lora Arneberg has been acting as a liaison between Indiana Landmarks and The Economic Development Coalition of SW Indiana. She now heads a nine-member committee to reopen the Harmony Way Bridge. Lora recently responded to some questions from the New-Harmony Gazette regarding the progress of her efforts to bring forces to bear on this very important issue.Ms. Arneberg indicated that the project is still moving forward and they are hoping to hold a public forum in the near future. Perhaps in March, she said. It will be an opportunity for the public to ask and get answers to questions about the direction of the committee and what progress is being made. Currently, they are working on legal issues and raising the matching funds for the Regional Cities money.Lora stated that, with regard to repopulating the White County Bridge Commission, with only one Commissioner actively involved at the present, the Federal General Services Administration (GSA), that appoints new Commissioners, has not yet shown any solid movement. She said that they are still in contact though, and she and Indiana Landmarks, President Marsh Davis, are still working with several elected officials on that issue. The officials have all been supportive, she said.The other idea that Lora and the new committee are working on has to do with developing some type of Port Authority instead of staying with the original Bridge Commission concept. This idea doesn’t seem to be fully developed at present, but she indicated that if the Port Authority idea is feasible they, “won’t need the [Bridge] Commission to transfer ownership [of the bridge].”Lora reiterated that she is, “keeping in contact with the GSA, so we have that base covered as a backup plan. We did finally make a good contact at GSA but they had been waiting for the appointment of their new Head and that just happened finally in mid-December.”It sounds like Lora and the Committee are moving forward according to the schedule she discussed with me back in December. It’s reported that she and the ad hoc committee are meeting weekly. It doesn’t look like Ms. Arneberg is letting the grass grow under her feet on this one. It’s a tough project but good reports have been coming into the Gazette. All we can do at this point is with her and the Bridge Committee the best and offer our support.FOOTNOTE:  The City-County Observer posted this article without opinion, bias, or editing.last_img read more

More Enforceable Noise Ordinance Passes Evansville City Council

first_imgTwitterFacebook FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailShare More Enforceable Noise Ordinance Passes Evansville City CouncilJUNE 12TH, 2018 JEFF GOLDBERG EVANSVILLE, INDIANAOnly one man, Jacob Keating, was able to enforce noise complaints in Evansville. As the city ordinance was written, only the EPA was allowed to enforce noise complaints, and Keating is the only man in that office. It created a problem in the city of Evansville; there were nearly 2,000 noise complaints in 2017, and Keating only works from 8-5. Now Keating will have lots more help from his friends at the Evansville Police department.That problem wasn’t the original reason the Evansville City Council took up the issue. That came after residents of Harbour’s Edge started to complain of loud noise coming from KC’s Marina Pointe.The threat of the noise ordinance led KC’s Marina Pointe to make over $100,000 in sound mitigation upgrades. Residents of Harbour’s Edge have said that this has helped tremendously.So with that problem on the back burner, the Evansville City Council was free to focus on a noise ordinance that would help the enforcement problem. After a month-long table and listening to endless testimony from business owners who believed a noise ordinance could chill business and neighborhood associations who want the ordinance so people could sleep a little easier, the Evansville City Council finally came up with a plan that passed unanimously.The original noise ordinance was presented at Monday’s Evansville City Council meeting with an additional 6 amendments plus the ability for councilmembers to add more.The original ordinance includes language that isn’t much different from the new ordinance. In both, they have a limit on noise at 75 decibels outside at the property line. The new part of this ordinance allows for the Evansville Police Department to enforce it along with the EPA.During the meeting, there was plenty of bickering between members of the council with regards to all of the amendments. The meeting wore on and so did people’s patience, but in the end, Evansville City Council got it done.The first amendment allows for municipal vehicles to be exempt from the noise ordinance. This allows for city or county snow plows to plow with impunity.The next amendment creates a limit on when landscapers can do their work. The amendment allows from dusk until dawn to mow the lawn and trim the hedges without fear of a noise complaint. That is except for Sundays, which starts at 7 AM.The amendment on the waste pickup was convoluted in its passing. An original amendment passed that created a limit on when a pickup is allowed in the Downtown TIP District. It took almost 15 minutes for another amendment to come along that completely nullified the earlier one passed. This amendment, which is the one on the books, completely loosens restrictions on when waste pickup can happen in Evansville. This came after a representative from Republic Services said it might create more traffic and a safety hazard if they weren’t allowed to pick up early in the morning.Another amendment passed deals with noisy pets. The dogs can bark and the cats can meow as they please during the day, but after 9 PM and before 6 AM if they have long prolonged noise there could be a noise complaint.The final amendment had the most disagreement. The way it was originally written, police would be able to come into homes to take a reading for noise levels inside. It was originally written to be at 40 decibels, but Councilman McGinn argued to raise that number stating that’s how loud a refrigerator can be. So after it was raised to 55, Councilwoman Mosby argued that there shouldn’t be any noise reading going on inside. That’s how the amendment passed, the only way readings can happen is outside.The ordinance is viewed as a win by many parties. Evansville City Council President Brinkmeyer says it was a good exercise in government compromise. The United Neighborhoods of Evansville are excited that noise complaints will start to be taken legitimately. Even folks from the bars thought the end result wasn’t too overbearing.last_img read more

Bako North Western buys London supplier

first_imgBako North Western has purchased Bako London & South East for an undisclosed sum, it was revealed yesterday.As part of the acquisition Bako North Western, the bespoke bakery wholesaler, said it expected the “unified supplier base” would provide “new and exciting opportunities”.As part of the deal, Bako North Western also acquired Anglian Bakery & Catering Suppliers and it said the national structure of Bako would remain the same.Mark Tomlinson, chief executive of Bako North Western, said: “The joining of these two companies, which share both the same ethos and values, will help us provide new and exciting opportunities for customers and suppliers alike.”For more information on this deal, see this week’s British Bakerlast_img read more

Rewards come roaring back…with a big twist

first_img1Pulse, “2014 Debit Issuer Study,” June 2014 2The Wall Street Journal, “Consumers Say More Rewards Is Their Top Demand From Banks,” August 2014 3Bond, “The Loyalty Report,” 2014 30SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Dante Dominick Danté Dominick is an award-winning content and marketing strategist with specialized knowledge for the financial services industry. He has helped over a hundred community financial institutions improve their image, creative … Web: www.buzzpoints.com Details It’s funny (but not in a ha-ha way) how far-reaching the effects of the Durbin Amendment are for consumers, who largely know very little (if anything) about the legislation.One such example was the disappearing act of debit card reward programs, which declined by 43% from 2010 to 2012.1 But that trend has reversed dramatically. The “2014 Debit Issuer Study” finds that 47% of financial institutions (FIs) offered a debit reward program in 2013, a 47% lift from 2012.1 That’s a complete about-face and all signs point to continued full-throttle growth. This is largely due to a major shift in how these programs are structured.A key takeaway for credit unions: consumers are coming to expect these rewards, even shopping the benefits of varying programs. In fact, The Wall Street Journal reported 88% of North Americans say rewards for banking activities are a top priority (the highest score in the study).2So it’s becoming a table stake to attract and retain members. But not just any program. Details are below, but to avoid burying the lead, here are four keys to a successful program:Don’t pay for the costs of the rewards; other parties will happily do so for you.Offer equal rewards on PIN- and signature-based transactions.If you issue credit cards, have your reward program work on both debit and credit purchases.Offer rewards for any purchase, anywhere.Shifting Costs Yields a Win-Win-WinThe previous dip in debit rewards was a direct result of the Reg II interchange cap placed on most financial institutions, which made the programs too costly. The primary driver in the resurgence is an overwhelming industry trend of shifting the cost of the rewards away from the financial institution. A common method is tying the program to rewards redeemable at retail locations, with either the merchants or third-party reward providers paying for the cost of the rewards. The card holder wins with discounts on things they buy; the credit union wins with increased interchange revenue and member satisfaction; and the merchants win with increased customers and larger spend per purchase.How prevalent is this shift? 55% of FIs issuing a rewards program had a merchant program in 2013, up from 38% in 2011. Meanwhile non-merchant programs dropped from 62% to 39% over the same period.1 Quite simply, why would a credit union incur the expense of the rewards when they don’t have to? Especially when there are other parties who will happily do so to gain a seat at the revenue-generating table.Make It Easy To Earn (aka, Signature-only Rewards Is a Sinking Ship)Pre-Durbin, to cover reward expense FIs everywhere steered account holders to choose signature instead of PIN for debit transactions—to the point of frequently only offering the rewards for signature-based transactions (which yielded far greater interchange profit).While FIs under $10 billion in assets were spared Durbin’s interchange cap, they weren’t entirely spared the effects. For FI’s over $10 billion, the interchange revenue per PIN- and signature-based transactions was $0.24 and $0.23 respectively. Factoring in the lower costs for PIN, these large institutions reap $0.21 in net margin per PIN transaction compared to $0.14 for signature.1Why does this matter for credit unions that are exempt from this cap? Because for the first time, the big banks are on the same side as retailers in favoring—and pushing for—PIN transactions. Those are two powerfully influential forces on driving consumer behavior. Couple this with the fact that PIN is more convenient for and popular with consumers anyway, and it’s clear that a signature-only reward program is not going to appeal to cardholders.This may be unfortunate, since the net margin per transaction for exempt FIs (under $10 billion) is very different at $0.24 for PIN and $0.35 for signature.1 But it is reality. The sheer volume of PIN transactions will have to make up for lower margin. That, and the fact that rewards tied to PIN transactions will keep your card at the top of your members’ wallets. Whereas a card without them will find its way out of their wallet.Double Your Wallet Share With Debit & Credit RewardsAmericans are enrolled in an average of 10.9 loyalty programs, and are active in 7.8 of them.3 While some of these are tied to individual retailers, many are programs tied to the multiple debit and credit cards that individuals have at multiple institutions. To win the battle of the wallet, make your cards the easiest to use at the most locations.It’s no coincidence that the three characteristics below, which card holders revere, are all in the above list in how to successfully propel adoption and recurring use of your loyalty program.If you issue credit cards, have your reward program work on both debit and credit purchases.Offer equal rewards on PIN- and signature-based transactions.Offer rewards for any purchase, anywhere.The fourth key to a successful program—don’t pay for what you don’t have to—is just common sense.last_img read more

Janning: Find your purpose in helping others succeed

first_imgThe first four words of Rick Warren’s bestselling book, “The Purpose-Driven Life,” changed Andy Janning’s life, the former credit union training executive said Monday during his keynote address at CUNA’s Experience Learning Live! in Las Vegas.Those four words: It’s not about you.Those words should serve as a mantra for the credit union trainers and executives who gathered for the conference, says Janning. They must focus on paving the way for success for others: the employees they’re training.“If you help someone else find their place at the table, yours will take care of itself,” Janning says.The former training executive at Forum Credit Union in Indianapolis delivered a moving presentation titled, “50 words: Highlights, hard lessons, and help for your training career.” continue reading » 36SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Are you “bad news” honest?

first_imgThis past weekend, we had reason to celebrate. Not one, not two, but three of our credit union partners were launching one of our solutions. At some of these credit unions, we had been working with their team to coordinate all factors involved for more than a year. This was good news, for their lending department, their members, and us. For one partner, we had just completed twenty training sessions with their entire staff. Their team is excited and we are all ready to make it happen!And then, on Friday afternoon, the server platform powering the service began experiencing severe problems. Our final training session ended up being an exercise in improv and apology, as nothing worked! It was still an engaging time, with good questions posed and explanations given (though the “in action” part was a bit lacking). Needless to say, we were concerned.Our servicing partner was made aware of the problems and began investigating the root cause. At around 10 p.m., we were told the necessary fixes were put in place and it should work fine. continue reading » 3SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Russian mining giant admits waste ‘violations’ at Arctic plant

first_imgA Russian mining giant behind an enormous Arctic fuel spill last month said Sunday it had suspended workers at a metals plant who were responsible for pumping wastewater into nearby tundra.Norilsk Nickel cited a “flagrant violation of operating rules” in a statement announcing it had suspended employees responsible for dumping wastewater from a dangerously full reservoir into wildlife.The incident occurred at the Talnakh enrichment plant near the Arctic city of Norilsk, the company said, one month after the unprecedented fuel leak sparked a state of emergency declared by President Vladimir Putin. Topics : The journalists claimed the factory deliberately funneled the wastewater into wildlife areas and hastily removed their pipes when investigators and emergency services arrived on the scene. Unauthorized dumping The Investigative Committee, which probes serious crimes, said it had received reports of “unauthorised dumping of liquid waste into the tundra” on the site of the facility, and had opened an enquiry.Heavy machinery used to clear the pipes crushed a car delivering officials to the scene, Novaya Gazeta reported.Interfax said no one was injured in the incident which was also being probed.Norilsk Nickel spokeswoman Tatiana Egorova earlier Sunday told AFP that employees of the factory had pumped out “purified water” and that an internal investigation was under way. Russia’s natural resources agency said the decision to remove water from the reservoir was taken to avoid an emergency after heavy rains and recent tests had caused water levels to increase dramatically.  The local emergency services in a statement said the wastewater was not likely to reach the nearby Kharayelakh river.The massive fuel spill last month took place at a plant owned by a subsidiary of Norilsk Nickel, which had said that the fuel tank had collapsed or sank due to melting permafrost due to climate change.Putin declared an emergency situation after the accident and the head of Norilsk Nickel, oligarch Vladimir Potanin, promised to pay the costs of the cleanup.The Russian authorities said earlier this month they had cleared the spill from the surface of a river, but the full cleanup could take years.  More than 21,000 tons of diesel leaked from a fuel storage tank at one of the company’s subsidiary plants near Norilsk. The fuel seeped into the soil and dyed nearby waterways bright red.  A source told Interfax news agency Sunday that in the most recent case, around 6,000 cubic meters of liquid used to process minerals at the facility had been dumped and that the discharge had lasted “several hours”.It was impossible to determine how far the wastewater had dispersed, the source said.Independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta published videos from the scene showing large metal pipes carrying wastewater from the reservoir and dumping foaming liquid into nearby trees. last_img read more

With No Congressional Solution in Sight, Pennsylvania Applies for Federal Lost Wages Assistance Funds

first_imgWith No Congressional Solution in Sight, Pennsylvania Applies for Federal Lost Wages Assistance Funds August 21, 2020 SHARE Email Facebook Twittercenter_img Economy,  National Issues,  Press Release Governor Tom Wolf directed the Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) to submit an application today for President Trump’s temporary Lost Wages Assistance grant funds to provide an additional $300 per week in supplemental payments to some Pennsylvanians receiving unemployment benefits.“By failing to put out of work Americans first and extending the extra $600 per week federal benefit that ended in July, Congressional Republicans are forcing our hand to apply for these funds,” said Governor Wolf. “The president’s convoluted, short-term program, which will likely only provide payments for five or six weeks, will pay those who are eligible only half as much as before and will make 30,000 Pennsylvanians ineligible to continue receiving an additional weekly benefit.“There is still time for Congressional Republicans to pass a good and practical solution that simply extends the extra weekly benefit, and I urge them to act now. As I have said before and will continue to say, the extra $600 per week was the lifeline Pennsylvania families needed to get by. They deserve better.”Last week, the Governor sent a letter to Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation reaffirming his support for an extension of the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program. With Senate Republicans failing to pass a bill continuing FPUC, President Trump on August 8 authorized the Lost Wages Assistance plan.The president’s plan is not a true unemployment insurance program and is, instead, funded by $44 billion from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that is intended for storm disaster relief. Because of this very important distinction, payments to eligible workers will be delayed while states, including Pennsylvania, create a new computer system.If approved, L&I will use this grant funding to provide an additional $300 per week in assistance payments to people receiving unemployment compensation benefits due to COVID-19-related impacts.In order to qualify for the extra $300, eligible individuals must receive at least $100 per week in regular Unemployment Compensation (UC); Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC); Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA); Extended Benefits (EB); Short-Time Compensation (STC) or Shared Work; and Trade Readjustment Allowance (TRA) and must self-certify that they are unemployed or partially unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19.Payments will be made to eligible claimants retroactively from August 1, 2020. The payment could end in a matter of weeks if FEMA funding is exhausted or the federal government enacts a new law or extends FPUC to replace the Lost Wages Assistance payment. It will end no later than December 27, 2020.The FPUC program, funded entirely by the federal government, ended on July 25. The U.S. House of Representatives voted to continue the benefit, but the Senate has yet to approve its extension.Ver esta página en español.last_img read more