Month: August 2016

HR Word: Goldbricking

Goldbricking definition

Goldbricking refers to the practice of passing something worthless off as something valuable, akin to coating a normal house brick with gold plating and passing it off as bullion. In an employment sense, employees that do less than they could – while maintaining an air of being studious – are said to be goldbricking.

Although goldbricking refers to any inefficient, non-work activities passed off as work, nowadays it is commonly used to refer to employees using the internet to avoid work responsibilities. This behaviour is also called cyberslacking.

Goldbricking is part of the wider bracket of counterproductive work behaviour (CWB), or behaviours that are antithetical to the overall aims and needs of an organisation.

The etymology of the term comes from an incident in the late 1800s – a gold brick was ‘proven’ to be gold by cutting off one of the corners. After the payment was made, the buyer discovered that only the corners were gold and the rest of the brick was worthless.

HR Word: Human Capital Supply Chain

​HR word of the day – Human Capital Supply Chain
“Human capital supply chain” refers to the integration of business planning, strategic workforce planning, staffing and recruiting processes and technology to enhance corporate productivity and profitability. Employing methods of common manufacturing and distribution supply chain management principles to human resources and human capital, corporations create an end-to-end, human capital supply chain.
The term was introduced in the 2009 book, Human Capital Supply Chains by Tim Giehl and Sara Moss. The concept consolidates 30 years of expertise by companies like Toyota, Wal-Mart, and Dell in total quality management, lean and strategic supplier relationships, and applies it to the human resources industry. The major aim when implementing a human capital supply chain is to reduce labor costs. While that is attained in the short-term, the long-term tuning of the supply chain can result in growth and strategic competitive advantage.

HR Word: Ghent System

Ghent System definition

The Ghent system refers to arrangements where responsibility for paying unemployment benefits is undertaken by trade unions rather than government agencies or departments acting on behalf of the government.

The system is named Ghent because it was first implemented in the city of Ghent in Belgium. Today it’s popular in Scandinavia, including in Denmark, Sweden and Finland as well as Iceland. Although it originated in Belgium, the country now has a joint system where funds are distributed by both government and labour unions.

In most cases, funds held by the trade unions for distribution are regulated or subsidised by the government. The amount received by individuals will typically depend on previous earnings.

HR Word: Gender Divide

Gender Divide definition

Differences between women and women in society, used in a range of fields including sociology, politics and economics. Within the HR function, refers to differences in how men and women are treated in jobs market and workplace with regard to recruitment, pay, progression, job function, treatment, benefits and perception by colleagues and managers. Commonly referenced in discussions of diversity in the workplace as organisations try to increase the number of women in traditionally male-dominated roles and industries.

HR Word: Workplace Flexibility

​HR word of the day – Workplace flexibility 
Flexibility in organization can be viewed in two main ways – flexibility for organisations and flexibility for individuals. Alis et al (2006) have made the distinction between flexibility of and flexibility for employees. The first of these is where organisations look for flexibility in the way in which they utilities the labour so that they can match the supply with their need for labour more closely. This need to manage labour in flexible ways stems from an increasingly competitive business environment, where employers need to manage labour related costs as efficiently as possible. 
Individual, by contrast, look for flexibility in the way in which they work in order to help them achieve an acceptable relationship between work and non-work activities. Interest in achieving a work-life balance is as a result of social change, both in relation to the way in which work is considered and as a result of increased rates of parents, particularly mothers in paid employment. 
Workplace flexibility involves changes to the amount, timing and/or location of work and may also involve different organisations. It may be designed to meet the needs of employers or employees

HR Word: Aesthetic Labour

​HR word of the day – Aesthetic labour 
Aesthetic labour is where employees are required to look (dress, self-presentation) or sound (voice, language used) in a particular way as part of their paid employment, normally in order to match the desired image of the organisation. 
The term aesthetic labour has been coined by Warhurst et al (2000) to refer to circumstances where physical appearance and embodied capacities and attributes form the basis of employment. In other words, part of paid employment is concerned with how people look, sound, and present themselves. 

Warhurst et al argues that these embodied capacities and attributes which individuals possess are then mobilised, developed, and customised by employers. As such they recruit, select and train staff to suit a predefined corporate style. They report on how employers use the phrases in job advertisements, such as smart appearance, well spoken and very well presented, to signal the kind of people they wish to employ. 

HR Word: Gag Clause

Gag Clause definition

A gag clause is a contractual stipend that prevents employees from disclosing certain sensitive information amount a business, the way it operates, its intellectual and physical assets, and any future innovations.

Gagging clauses are often discussed alongside whistleblowing – the clauses are often designed to prevent employees from speaking out about perceived wrongdoing in the workplace.

Gag clauses differ from non-disclosure agreements in that they form one part of an overall employment contract, whereas NDAs will typically be separate documents and will cover in more depth what is and isn’t acceptable disclosure by the employee.