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DTI to give masterclasses in efficient working

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TeachingNo, it’s not April Fool’s Day in July.

The DTI has announced a series of free masterclasses to help companies learn how to overcome inefficient working time practices. The nine masterclasses, to take place throughout the country, will give companies the chance to learn how other organisations have benefited from innovative working time solutions.

The specific issues the classes will explore include:

  • managing high client demands (e.g. 24 hour service provision)
  • tackling ‘hot spots’ of long hours working within particular departments/teams
  • creating flexible working arrangements, such as annualised hours
  • overcoming presenteeism
  • revising schedules and rotas

    Trade and Industry Secretary Patricia Hewitt said that “lots of businesses want to challenge the long hours culture, give their businesses and their staff some sense of control and choice, whilst maintaining, or even increasing productivity. Unfortunately, even today, many just don’t know how.

    “These masterclasses will give them an opportunity to learn from other firms who’ve already made improvements to their work practices, and have seen the benefits.

    “This is about sharing best practice, seeing what measures others have found make their companies more productive, and ending the belief that the long hours culture is the foundation of productivity and profitability.”

    The CBI and the TUC are both partners in the project. The project findings will be published in the summer of 2005.

    Paul Sellers of the TUC said they welcomed ‘this move to spread good practice in working time. Our view is that long hours can be tackled by improving work organisation. Many of the examples in this series showcase the contribution that unions can make to this process.

    The truth is that moving to sensible hours can bring benefits for employers and employees alike. These masterclasses will help to show how it can be done”.

    Organisations interested in taking part in the masterclasses or wanting to find out more about the project should contact Barbara Limon, on 0207 960 7438 or email [email protected].

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