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Values, skills and processes: Getting the perfect balance

Acas has been helping hundreds of organisations over the years to improve their productivity and operate at their best by focusing on everyday aspects of working life.

Last year in pdf icon Building Productivity in the UK [644kb], Acas identified seven 'levers' by which organisations can unlock their potential to become more productive.

Now, in Acas' pdf icon Workplace trends of 2016 [680kb], Gill Dix, Acas Head of Strategy, said that these could be underpinned by three core factors:

  1. Values - such as fairness, consideration, and trust
  2. Skills - particularly managerial skills in implementing policies and procedures and how they nurture creativity and innovation
  3. Processes - the systems organisations use to tell people what to do and how to do it.

Getting the balance right between these is key to how Acas helps organisations, she said.

Building productivity in real life

Gill pointed to some real-life examples of how this has worked in practice. One case study pdf icon Dealing with staff turnover - a case study on getting and keeping the right people [160kb] looked at a high tech organisation that was having problems with staff retention.

It found that it needed to promote and protect its core values, while improving the skills of managers to help them become better, more approachable and fairer listeners.

In another, pdf icon Keeping a check on conflict: a case study in improving people management systems [157kb] the focus was on improving the skills of managers at an organisation in the education sector. By working on communication and conflict management skills, the organisation increased trust, engagement and ultimately productivity.

Gill concluded by saying that any organisation can be both effective and fair, if it is willing to reflect on how things are done, seek help where needed and take action.

Acas publications and services

Acas has in-depth information and advice on pdf icon Building Productivity in the UK [644kb], including links to its report of the same name, comment from leading voices on the topic, and all the relevant case studies.

Acas has also developed a new productivity tool that can help organisations assess where they can do more to get the best from their staff. See the Acas Productivity Tool for more details.

Acas experts are on hand to come to your workplace and work with you on all aspects of employment relations to create a happier, more satisfied, more productive and more engaged workforce. See Workshops, projects and business solutions or call the customer services team on 0300 123 1150.

Practical training is also available on essential Skills for supervisors and Staff retention, including courses on 'The route to successful employee engagement' and 'Toxic workplace cultures - how to avoid them'.

For free, impartial advice and guidance visit Acas Helpline Online.

Visit the Acas Training Courses, Workshops and Projects area for more information.


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