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Website URL : http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=3198

How effective is your workplace?

Wednesday 01 December 2010

  • Free, easy to use online diagnostic tool offers businesses guidance to improve workplace relations
  • Early research highlights around 35 per cent of users are from smaller businesses.

Acas, the employment relations service, has launched a new free online tool to help businesses identify and resolve problems at work.

The Acas Model Workplace, www.acas.org.uk/modelworkplace helps employers assess the effectiveness of people management in their workplace. It offers practical guidance on maintaining good employment relations and directs employers to other useful resources to address or prevent potential problems.

The Model Workplace consists of ten key workplace topics, from equality and diversity to recruitment and managing change. Each topic contains multiple choice questions with Acas good practice advice available for each question. After completing a module, users are given a rating of red, amber or green, and advice based on that rating to assess the organisation's employment practices and make improvements where needed.

Early research into the effectiveness of the tool has found that around 35 per cent of users are from smaller businesses with 10-49 employees. The most popular topic is recruitment, selection and induction.

Ed Sweeney, Acas Chair, says:

"The Model Workplace costs businesses nothing to use but could save time, money and stress by offering preventative guidance on how improvements could be made in their workplace relations.

"We know that the tool has proved particularly popular among smaller businesses who don't necessarily have in-house professional HR support. However businesses of any size are likely to find the tool useful."

Sarah Anderson, small business representative and Acas Council member, says:

"The Acas Model Workplace helps businesses access the right support and guidance from the employment relations experts. Businesses need to understand how to get things right at work and the impact of changes in employment legislation. The tool is free to businesses and can help prevent potential problems further down the line."

The Model Workplace is flexible so employers can complete modules in sections and at their own pace. Employers can complete as many modules as they like. Each module contains 7-10 questions and takes ten minutes to complete.

Businesses can register to use the tool which enables them to save their results and revisit these at a later point. Alternatively you can simply complete the modules but not save results.

The online diagnostic tool can be accessed by visiting the Acas website www.acas.org.uk/modelworkplace/.

For media enquiries please contact the Acas press office:

Matt Barker - 0207 210 3924

Clare Carter - 020 7210 3688

Lou Owen - 020 7210 3920

Notes for editors

The Acas Model workplace is a free online diagnostic tool for businesses. Users need to install free software, Microsoft Silverlight, in order to use the tool.

There are three ways of accessing the Acas Model Workplace:

  • Logging in. Customers who have registered with the Acas Model Workplace previously, or who have registered with the Online Booking Service, will be able to log in to the tool by entering their email address and password
  • Registering. Registration is essential if customers want their answers and feedback to be saved - so they can log back in to the tool at any time to view and update these. If you are already registered on the Acas website you don't need to re-register
  • If customers do not wish to register, they can access the tool by filling out the questions in the 'Try it' section. If they do this, their answers and feedback will not be saved, and they will be unable to download PDFs of their module results. Customers who access the tool by filling out the Try It section will be able to register later if they wish.

The ten modules of good people management are recruitment, selection and induction, pay and reward, performance management, flexible working and work-life balance, equality and diversity, communication and involvement, employee representation, discipline and grievance, managing change; and key performance indicators in people management.

Acas' aim is to improve businesses and working life through better employment relations. It provides information, advice, training and a range of services working with employers and employees to prevent or resolve problems and improve performance. It is an independent statutory body governed by a Council consisting of the Acas Chair and employer, trade union and independent members.