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How to keep your job in a credit crunch?

Simply HR Jobs has a Few Tips! You may not be in this position but no doubt working in the HR profession you will know someone who could do with taking on board some of her advice;

Fearful of losing your job? In these economic times it is no surprise. With everyone from the Prime Minister to your HR Advisor is looking worryingly over their shoulders as job security is becoming increasingly important. The cliché is often ‘last in first out’ and in this article I will outline how to make sure you do your best to hold on to your job, regardless of how long you have been in your current position.

The key is making yourself indispensable within your company and we don’t mean by sleeping with your boss!

12 Tips to help secure your Job;

- Treat each day as if it was your first – don’t take extra time on your breaks or waste time on facebook, emailing friends or selling/buying things on ebay. Be really positive and up-beat about what you have to do that day and complete everything realistic.

- If you have spare capacity at work ask for extra tasks – don’t over commit though as it will make you look like you can’t cope

- Go to your bosses with solutions not problems

- Innovate at work – think of ways to save the firm money and time

- Stay on top of current trends & let your bosses know that you are – maybe do a monthly newsletter addressing current issues in the market

- Update your skills and acquire new ones. Take up the offers of training and even seek out training that will add value to your role and as result, the company’s.

- Generate sales leads even if you aren’t in sales – think of friends, family and others in your immediate circle who may work for businesses that could use your services

- Don’t be a clock watcher, in fact make an effort to arrive early and leave later on a regular basis

- Don’t pull any ‘sickies’ – if you are genuinely unwell, go into the office and then be sent home. Make sure any appointments for dentist/doctors are at the least disruptive time to your firm.

- Don’t get involved in office politics, gossip or cliques – save your energy for working. Also – keep your own personal problems out of work.

- Be professional and well turned out at all time. Don’t roll in with a hang-over or say anything derogatory about your work colleagues (especially the boss). Earn a reputation for being dependable, professional, and cooperative.

- Be known – the more people who know you, know your strengths and abilities, know your value to the organization, the less likely you are to be put on that redundancy list.

It is important to maintain your work life balance and not to become a slave to the job. Don’t allow yourself to be exploited by your employer, make sure that you are being rewarded for your efforts. However, if you have any inkling that your company are making cut-backs then put the extra effort in now and it could be your saving grace.

Is your work place hazardous?

We read in the ‘Executive PA’ recently an interesting article about the Top 10 hazards in a workplace. We’ve summarised this for you;

1. Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) “The same old routine”; we all know what it is but good posture and limiting time in stressful working conditions can help prevent or halt the progress of the disorder.

2. Under Pressure; Not dealing with pressure in the workplace can lead to stress which affects performance. 30-40% of absences from work are stress related and as many as 5million people in the UK admit to being stressed at work.

3. Back Pain; is the biggest single cause of sickness resulting in absence in the UK. Wow, didn’t know that! The Dept of Health put a conservative estimate of 11 million working days lost each year due to back pain.

4. A sight for sore eyes!; Working at a computer requires constant eye movement and re-focusing. This stresses the muscles and can lead to vision problems. 46% of office workers spend six or more hours in front of their computer screens a day and the majority (51%) of these are not scheduling appropriate breaks. Guidance from the (HSE) suggests it’s better to take shorter breaks more often (eg; a 5-10 minute break after 50-60 minutes continuous screen and/or keyboard work).

5. Are you getting your 5-A-Day? What you eat has a direct impact on how well your brain works. Make sure you eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day and drink plenty of water.

6. Germs! With more and more of us lunching at our desks it’s important that we regularly clean our workstations and in particular our keyboards. A recent Which? Computer study found a computer keyboard can harbour five terms more bacteria, such as E.coli, than a toilet. OMG, that is gross!

7. Long Hours sat at your desk; Recent studies have shown that working at a desk for eight hours a day or spending three successive hours or more sitting down can double the risk of you getting a blood clot. Although most commonly associated with long haul flights Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) in the workplace is becoming more common.

8. Common Cold; Coughs & sneezes …. spread diseases. The office is the perfect environment for a virus to thrive and although there is still no cure for the common cold there are things you can do to minimise the risk of getting one. A healthy immune system is vital to keeping coughs and colds at bay. Make sure your workplace is well ventilated, there is nothing a virus likes more than a stuffy room crammed full of stressed people!

9. The Office Printer; Research has found that office printers could damage your health. Printer inks are known to contain carcinogens which can affect a person’s health in much the same way as passive smoking. Really? That’s a new one on me!

10. Office Smog; Research by Imperial College London has found that the electronic “smog” generated by electrical office equipment may be exposing workers to raised levels of pollutants and bacteria.

As a HR Professional you will need to be aware of all of these issues to be in a position to carry out your role effectively, and ensuring everyone else in the company does the same. With more emphasis than ever before on employers’ ‘duty of care’ it is essential that companies constantly monitor the health and safety of their employers and ensure that management are not unwittingly neglecting the health and safety of their staff. At the very least, this could lead to absenteeism but it could also result in costly compensation claims and damaged reputations.

B&Q Job Application

I am sure that working in HR you have read many a strange and funny application, This is allegedly an actual job application that a 75 year old pensioner submitted to B&Q in Tunbridge Wells . They hired him because he was so funny…..

NAME: Kenneth Way (Grumpy Bugger)

SEX: Not lately, but I am looking for the right woman (or at least one who will co-operate) DESIRED POSITION: Company’s Chief Executive or Managing Director. But seriously, whatever’s available. If I was in a position to be picky, I wouldn’t be applying in the first place – would I?

DESIRED SALARY: £150,000 a year plus share options and a Tony Blair style redundancy package. If that’s not possible, make an offer and we can haggle.


LAST POSITION HELD: Target for middle management hostility.

PREVIOUS SALARY: A lot less than I’m worth.

MOST NOTABLE ACHIEVEMENT: My incredible collection of stolen pens and post-it notes.

REASON FOR LEAVING: It was a crap job.


PREFERED HOURS: 1:30-3:30 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday.

DO YOU HAVE ANY SPECIAL SKILLS?: Yes, but they’re better suited to a more intimate environment.

MAY WE CONTACT YOUR CURRENT EMPLOYER?: If I had one, would I be here?


DO YOU HAVE A CAR?: I think the more appropriate question here would be “Do you have a car that runs?”

HAVE YOU RECEIVED ANY SPECIAL AWARDS OR RECOGNITION?: I may already be a winner of the Reader’s Digest Timeshare Free Holiday Offer, so they tell me.

DO YOU SMOKE?: On the job – no! On my breaks – yes!

WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE DOING IN FIVE YEARS?: Living in the Bahamas with a fabulously wealthy Swedish supermodel who thinks I’m the greatest thing since sliced bread. Actually, I’d like to be doing that now.



We know this has been doing the rounds for years but it is a classic! What is the funniest thing you’ve ever read on an application form? Please do share it with us.

Interview – Zoe Walters, HR Manager, Norwegian Cruise Line

- You are currently Head of HR for NCL: tell me a little more about your role, how long you have been there and how you got the job

I came to NCL in May 2005 as interim HR Manager for maternity cover, taking over responsibility for the HR function in UK and the other European office in terms HR support. My role is pretty diverse, I get involved in the sexy stuff such as employee engagement through initiative programs, making NCL a compelling place to work, developing training opportunities and working with key stakeholders such as the senior management team to recommend and suggest strategy in meeting business objectives. A run of the mill day can be anything from recruitment, job offers to legal matters, policy drafting, performance management and blue sky meetings!

- What are your previous jobs?

I am from a leisure background predominately although I have IT sector as well. I have worked on cruise ships which is where my love affair with cruising first started! There are a few other jobs to mention but mainly around HR , Recruitment and Fleet/Shipboard personnel.

- What attracted you to this company in particular?

Believe it or not I used to cruise with NCL and I always remembered they never forgot the little things… like having duvets on their ships rather than sheets and blankets (we are talking a few years ago now!), they had a good reputation for quality and being a brand snob that I can be, I am naturally attracted to successful businesses!

- What are the characteristics and skills you have that you believe are particularly suited to what you do?

Tough question! Any HR professional needs to demonstrate patience and empathy at times, people are the most difficult entity to manage and can be massively rewarding. Each individual has to be communicated to in what can be very different ways in order to achieve a positive outcome. I hope I am a good leader as well as a Manager, I hope to inspire others to become what they desire to be and give them confidence to do better in life if they aspire to do so. I am naturally someone who can relate to many walks of life and can bring a lot of past experience into my role which better equips me to provide solutions and advice. The other side of the coin is having commercial acumen, basing decisions on logic, business demand and not being afraid to change your business needs and review this constantly. I believe I am commercially aware of what NCLs business needs are and endeavor to continue to support the strategic goals.

- Greatest challenge:

Getting people to view things from my eyes! Art of persuasion is never easy!

- Favorite aspect of your work?

It is very rewarding to see people succeed to their goals, in each individual there is a journey and I hope that I have been an inspiration to some to pursue their passions. I am enthusiastic in making sure that we have the right people in the right job.

- What would you say is the most difficult thing about your job?

HR is difficult full stop! It takes patience at times when you feel you have none, you really do have to want to do HR to stay in it for the long term…. I feel HR does an injustice if someone is advised incorrectly as they are seen as ambassadors to bring fairness to the work place.

- What would you do, as a career, if you weren’t working in HR?

Another tough question! Interior design, travel writing or something where I can put my creativity to good use!

- Any recommendations for job-seekers looking at a career in HR and/or the Travel industry?

Be passionate about what you want to do, if you are passionate and are prepared to work at it, it can be incredibly rewarding. The travel sector is such a sexy niche to work in and something that every one of us can have in common as we all love to travel whether for business or pleasure. Always such a good talking point for any one!

- What was your new year’s resolution and have you stuck to it?

I decided I would go away one weekend every month. Despite being career driven it’s time I took time out to go and visit people and places I desire. So far I have been skiing twice, Italy twice and next up is Italy, Miami, St Louis and Bermuda – all before July! I am on goal to achieve as I mapped out my travel plans and booked them in advance!

- Ultimate ambition outside of work:

I am ambitious about life and being happy……….. ultimate goal is to be true to myself and follow my dreams and desires… I want to buy land, design and build a house for me to live in before I am 40…..

- Favourite tipple?

Champers and Vino – yummy!

HR isnt very mum friendly profession

Nearly half of mothers (45%) returning to their HR jobs believe they are victims of workplace inequality, according to a new survey.

The Training and Development Agency (TDA) report also found that, out of 11 careers, returning mothers ranked HR as the sixth most mum-friendly.
Teaching topped the poll, followed by jobs in the catering, retail and leisure industries. The legal profession came bottom.

The majority (83%) of HR female workers with young children are looking for a more flexible approach to work, but 24% did say they have adequate career development opportunities.
“Teaching is leading the way in offering a much more flexible way of working for mums returning to the workplace,” said Graham Holley, chief executive of the TDA.


Exclusive: Online recruitment fails to take account of jobseekers’ views on the process

Jobseekers’ experience is ignored in the design, development and delivery of online recruitment, new research suggests.

According to a survey of 800 job applicants by talent management organisation Changeworknow, their needs are often an afterthought for recruiters in online recruitment.

More than nine out of 10 applicants would prefer to complete an online application form rather than a submit a CV and a third will spend more than 45 minutes filling in online application forms.

Nearly all the respondents (98%) think immediate feedback is important or very important, but 25% have never received immediate feedback to an online application.

But Lesley Nash, managing director of Changeworknow, said: “Online recruitment can really only be successful when the candidate is the focus of everything you do and success rests heavily on putting the candidates, their performance and their needs first.

“Candidates are already committed to the concept and process of applying for jobs online, but recruiters underestimate their commitment and capability. As a result recruiters cannot harness the true potential of online recruitment technology and engage their best people.”

Here at Simply Jobs Boards it is our aim to put jobseekers at the forefont of everything we do. We are continually improving the usability of our sites and have big plans for the rest of the year to make applying for jobs on our sites even easier.