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Member wire #93 – Holding onto your staff?


HR Zone Members Newswire Issue 92
05 April 2005

1. How to: Hold onto key staff
2. Payroll Tip: Tax and mobile phones
3. The coach route for learning and development
4. A workforce of drifters?
5. Any Answers: Sick pay for ‘domestic stress’

Editor’s note
Beware, entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well! A recent
survey by Begbies Traynor revealed that one in five respondents
were contemplating starting up on their own. The majority of
respondents had a business plan in place and had even approached
the bank, family or friends for start-up capital.

These fledgling entrepreneurs are often the high fliers in your
organisation. So what can be done to ensure that people with
drive, ambition and initiative do not flee the nest. Share your


Annie Hayes
mailto:[email protected]

Flex research:
Only 8% of employers use flex to manage benefit costs and yet
flex allows you to control and even reduce the cost of
employee benefits. To find out how (and see how many employers
over-estimate the cost of a flex scheme!) read Aon Consulting’s
latest flex research:

Welcome new members
This week, HR Zone welcomes members from the following
organisations, among others, to the site:

Centurion Management Systems; GL Enterprises; Weir Warman Limited;
World Trade Group; Business Interactions (UK) Limited; Barnes
Associates; West Sussex County Council; Oxford Register Office; NCH
Europe; Procter & Gamble UK; Partnership at Work; Oakleigh
Consulting; Pegasus Solutions; The Aziz Corporation; John Wood Group
PLC; Surgo Construction Limited; Cambridge Online Learning; Deloitte
& Touche; MindTree Consulting; Nationwide Building Society

Editor’s Choice

How to: Hold onto key staff
Nick Hood, the senior London partner at Begbies Traynor, looks
at how bosses can retain key staff who may be looking to set up
on their own.

Payroll Tip: Tax and mobile phones
“Does the tax exemption for mobile phones extend to paying the costs
of our employee’s own phones?”

The Guardian’s Britain’s Top Employers
The 2005 Edition is now on the book shelves. Here CCSG,
partners in the book, talk about one opportunity that has until
now been missed by many. High on the Agenda in this month’s
budget, it is now starting an avalanche of activity.

Top news stories

Feature: The coach route for learning and development
Rosey Village, training co-ordinator for engineering company
MWH, gives a personal account of how coaching has meant a step-
change in the way learning and development is approached in her

Trends: A workforce of drifters?
Michael Graham, managing director of Pitman Training, explores
changing attitudes toward the workplace.

Opinion: Crossing the cultural divide
The increase in cross border human traffic has meant that
companies are no longer dealing with a homogenous native
community from which they recruit their staff but now have to
face cross cultural challenges in how they manage employees.

Feature: Employment and occupational health
Guy Hollebon, Partner and Head of the Employment Team, discusses
employment and occupational health in the latest article of a
series produced by Bevans solicitors.

The definitive guide to ECOs
Is your organisation thinking of implementing an Employee Car
Ownership (ECO) scheme?
Want to know how to avoid costly errors and make ECOs work for you?
Attend a Car Benefit Solutions workshop and our team of
specialists can help you explore your options.

Featured Any Answers question: Sick pay for ‘domestic stress’

Q: We have an employee who is off sick because she is looking
after her elderly mother. She has a doctor’s note for “domestic
stress” that runs out next week but she has a note for another

Is there a way that we should pursue this as we understand we
cannot withhold statutory sick pay if she has a doctor’s note.

Katy Brown

Members’ responses
(Edited comments appear – see the site for full details)

I would recommend a home visit to go and discuss the situation
(carefully documented).

If it turns out she needs the time off for the care of her
mother perhaps you could consider flexible hours or an unpaid
career break if she is a valuable employee.

If she is still unable to come to work and she is fit for the
full duties you need to consider dismissal under the
disciplinary policy.

Sandra Beale

Read the full responses to this question – and add your own – at

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