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Induction checklist for new staff (downloadable template)
Inductions are vital to ensuring new staff settle into an organisation and make a positive impact. Using a straightforward induction checklist can make onboarding simpler and more effective.A concise and well-structured induction checklist for new staff can heighten the entire induction process, helping any new member of the team to get up to speed quickly and efficiently.An induction checklist can remove some of the pressures that managers and HR professionals face when effectively onboarding new team members.Our downloadable induction checklist includes:First day tasksFirst week tasksFirst month tasksTasks after three monthsTasks after six monthsWhile checklists are helpful in ensuring best practice and a thorough employee experience, they shouldn’t turn the induction into a tick-box exercise. Our free induction checklist template is designed to simplify the onboarding process and support your new starters through their first six months.Whether you are looking for guidance to use across your own company, or interested in learning more about what you need to include, this comprehensive checklist is an indispensable tool to help you and your new employees.
How to effectively manage staff redundancies
Due to the current economic climate, businesses may be presented with some difficult decisions to make regarding their workforce, including redundancy.Managing and making staff redundancies across a business is often an unpleasant but necessary task that many employers may have to consider when reducing their headcount. When faced with the prospect of making redundancies, it’s important for employers to manage the process effectively and efficiently to minimise the impact on both the affected employees and the entire business.Here are some steps employers can take to manage staff redundancies:Create a redundancy planHaving a redundancy plan in place will help employers effectively manage every stage of the process, from consultation and planning to notification and evaluation. It’s important to make sure the initial plan includes checks to see if there is a genuine redundancy situation, what the timescales are, and how consultation will take place.For each stage of the plan, a record needs to be kept, ensuring the entire process is accountable to be delivered efficiently and legally. Redundancy plans should include: An explanation as to why redundancies are being made A timetable outlining next stepsThe meeting process for all affected employeesThe meeting process for all unaffected employeesAn outline of the redundancy criteria and selection processHow the announcements will be madeIf redundancies are in fact unavoidable, the latter stages of the plan should also include selection, notices and payments.Be lawful, fair and transparentRedundancy can be seen as a fair reason for dismissal, but should only be used in certain circumstances where the employee’s role no longer exists and/or is no longer required within the business.As such, when considering employees for redundancy, employers should use a selection criteria that is fair and objective, which might include an employee’s:SkillsExperiencePerformanceLength of serviceEmployers must comply with employment laws and regulations when managing redundancies. Following the correct legal procedure is imperative, as failure to do so can lead to wrongful dismissal claims. Employers should consult with employees and/or their representatives when making decisions that affect their jobs.Offer clear communicationAs with most situations that concern employees, communication is key when it comes to managing redundancies. Be open and honest with employees about the situation – it always helps to explain the reasons for the redundancy and provide as much information as possible about the process.This information can be hard to hear, so employers are encouraged to act sensitively to the emotions of those affected and provide support where necessary. For that reason, the process needs to be transparent, and employees should know what to expect throughout.Alongside the employee, it’s important to remember that redundancies can impact the business in more ways than one – and stakeholders with an interest in the organisation should also receive clear communication. Anyone from customers to suppliers and investors have the right to be informed about any changes, but the focus should be on reassuring them about the future of the business.Remember, communication is there to help to manage any negative impact on the organisation’s reputation or relationships.Provide employee support and guidanceRedundancy can be a traumatic experience for any employee. Therefore, providing the necessary support and guidance to help affected workers cope with the news can go a long way, not only in terms of maintaining best practice but for business reputation.Employers can help employees through:Finding new employmentAccessing training and reskilling opportunitiesCV support and career coachingJob search advice and recommendationsAs redundancy is a last option, it’s worth considering whether there are any suitable alternative roles within the business that impacted employees could be offered.Anyone who has worked for their employer for at least two years at the time their job ends should be offered an alternative role if one is available, or at least be made aware of any opportunities across the business. This may involve individuals undertaking training or upskilling to take on different roles – but if the offer isn’t taken up, the employee will be deemed as dismissed through redundancy and be entitled to receive statutory redundancy pay.This payment is there to help employees during the transition period as they look for new employment, and should be calculated correctly and paid in a timely manner.Consider remaining employeesRedundancies can have a significant impact on remaining employees, who may feel demotivated, stressed, or uncertain about their own job security. As much as the focus may be on creating a supportive environment for those leaving the company, be mindful to keep your existing workforce updated and supported throughout the stressful period.While those workers may not have faced dismissal, they may have been affected by witnessing the experience of their colleagues, which can negatively impact their morale. This can be harmful to the working environment, business operations and to employee performance.Continue to learn and adaptManaging redundancies can be a difficult process, but it can also provide an opportunity for an organisation to learn from the experience and improve upon its practices. Employers should conduct a post-redundancy review to evaluate the situation and identify any areas for improvement so, if it does need to happen again, the business is better prepared.During the redundancy talks, it may be worth taking any feedback on board from the affected employees. This can be used to make changes to any practice and policy currently in place, and, most importantly, improve the support and guidance provided. Proactive measures can help build resilience and better prepare managers for any future challenges.Employers should also look at their redundancy process as a whole, making sure line managers are able to confidently deal with these types of situation. According to research by employment law support firm WorkNest, 74% of employers aren’t providing any training to their line managers on how to handle redundancies – indicating the scale of potential emotional damage that could be routinely occurring though no fault of their own.Staff redundancies can be a challenge, but it’s imperative that the process runs as smoothly as possible. By taking the time to plan, execute and evaluate the task, employers can minimise the impact that redundancies can have on all involved.
Addressing the digital skills gap in accountancy and finance
The accountancy and finance sector has undergone a transformation in recent years as digital technology has become an essential part of most industries. Financial professionals are required to have a range of digital skills, from using software tools to analysing data and managing complex financial systems. However, many organisations are struggling to keep pace with the changes and are facing a subsequent digital skills gap as a result.Research from Fintech Futures found that more than half (57%) of accounting professionals predict that accountancy will become automated within the next few years, indicating an urgent need for businesses to keep up or risk being left behind. Addressing the digital skills gap now rather than leaving it until the last minute means organisations have time to ease staff into new processes, reducing anxiety among workers who may not enjoy the changing elements of their role. In this way they will gradually learn the skills they need to be successful in their roles.Here are some steps employers can take to help prepare their workforce for digital transformation:Identify the specific digital skills requiredThe first step in addressing the digital skills gap is to identify the specific skills required. This will vary depending on the organisation, the role, and the technologies being used. Important skills to consider are:Knowledge of specific software programsMany organisations use specialised software for tasks such as accounting, financial reporting, and tax preparation. It’s essential that financial professionals are proficient in these programs to be able to do their job effectively.Familiarity with cloud-based computingCloud-based computing has become increasingly popular in recent years, offering organisations a range of benefits, such as increased flexibility, scalability, and cost-effectiveness to help grow their business offerings.Data analysis skillsAs data volumes continue to grow, you’ll need to identify professionals who can analyse and interpret large amounts of data to make informed decisions and provide compelling insights to clients and senior management.Cybersecurity skillsAs financial organisations become more reliant on technological advancements, cybersecurity risks will increase. You need professionals who can identify and mitigate potential threats sensitive financial data and ensure compliance with industry regulations.Provide training and educationOnce the specific digital skills have been identified, the next step is to provide training and education. This might involve formal training, online courses, or on-the-job training to help professionals across the organisation enhance their skills and make them well-rounded individuals who can add further value to the company.Formal training programmes can be delivered in-person or online and may cover topics such as software applications, data analysis, and cybersecurity. Online courses can be a cost-effective way to train large numbers of employees, while on-the-job training develops skills in a real-world setting. Encourage continuous learningTechnology is constantly evolving, and it's important for professionals to continue updating and refreshing their digital skills. Employers can encourage this by providing access to learning resources, encouraging participation in training, and creating a culture where learning is easily accessible.Online learning platforms, such as LinkedIn Learning and Coursera, offer a range of upskilling opportunities to improve, while industry conferences and events are also a great way of encouraging professional development among the workforce.Creating a culture of continuous learning can also help foster innovation and creativity in the workplace, as employees are encouraged to explore new technologies and ways of working – enhancing employee engagement along the way.Partner with technology providersTechnology providers can be valuable partners in addressing the digital skills gap. They can provide training and support for their software and systems, as well as insights into best practices and emerging technologies that can have significant impact on the sector. A software company, for example, might be able to offer training or webinars on how to use their product effectively, supply a free trial period for an extended period of time, or provide access to an online user community where professionals can share ideas. Foster a culture of innovationA culture of innovation can encourage professionals to embrace technology and develop their ever-evolving digital skills. Organisations can nurture this culture by encouraging experimentation, celebrating successes such as the development of new technology solutions or the implementation of a new process, and creating an environment that supports learning, development and growth.The digital skills gap is a significant challenge for the sector. Taking positive steps to identify the skills required not only nurtures employees to enhance their knowledge, but also allows the organisation can ensure a future of continued growth.To find your next accountancy role, or the best candidates on the market, find your local Reed office.