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American, Delta, United airlines to hire in large numbers in the US



Airlines in the US are on a hiring spree with most carriers keen to get as many flights up in the air as possible. It is anticipated that by 2022, the number of flight attendants will increase from the present 80,000 to 1,00,000. This only shows that a close to full recovery is in sight, sooner than expected, may be by the end of this year itself.

American, United and Delta Airlines are already in the process of hiring or have revealed their intention to hire this year. Southwest Airlines is also working on its hiring process.

While it is true that business travel and international travel are nowhere close to what they used to be before the pandemic, leisure travel is picking up fast. This has led to an increase in fares and a growing demand for crew and support staff. The pilots and other members of the crew who had been given early retirement packages last year, have left behind many vacancies, which will need to be filled up on an urgent basis.

However, the sector is confident of filling these vacancies fast as flight attendant jobs offer lucrative salaries, between $50,000 to $60,000 per annum, while pilots end up earning more than double the amount.

With more and more people getting vaccinated and people discarding their fear of travel, the airlines have started getting their employees back from voluntary leave.

About 18 per cent of the workforce of the major US airlines was reduced in 2020 through voluntary unpaid leaves and premature retirement schemes. In some cases, the staff were sent on voluntary unpaid leave but continued to enjoy benefits and, or even part of their pay.

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Only 43% of those aged 50+ are focused on their mental health



The COVID-19 pandemic has increased feelings of isolation and worry amongst employees, according to research from MetLife. As part of its Re:Me report, MetLife has produced a Guide for employers which highlights the key findings from the report and aims to provide practical tips and actions for organisations who are navigating a changing relationship with their employees following the pandemic. Offering advice and insights for small businesses to larger enterprises, the research compares what different expectations employees have based on their age, gender and their seniority.

Moreover, despite these concerns, only 43% of those aged 50+ were found to be prioritising their mental health currently. Feeling fulfilled and a sense of belonging within an organisation was found to be a greater priority than mental health.

In contrast, younger workers aged 18-29 experienced anxiety around monetary concerns; 35% admitted they continuously worry about their finances which had impacted their productivity levels. Aswell as worries around money, job security was another concern that affected young workers focus and productivity at work.

The shift to working from home during the pandemic has been a key driver of change between employees and employers. Tight restrictions during the pandemic left almost half (47%) of employees feeling isolated from the company they work for. The concern is that as employees belonging and commitment to their employee decreases, so will their productivity and likelihood of staying loyal to their employer in the longer term.

The guide from MetLife is available now and builds upon findings from their recent Re:Me report. The guide looks at different employee demographics and how each group was affected by the lockdown.

Adrian Matthews, EB Director at MetLife UK, comments: “The pandemic has put a significant strain on employees’ mental health and heightened their concerns about job and financial security. Each demographic has been affected by the pandemic in different ways, but employers must view each employee’s situation through an individualistic lens and appreciate that everyone’s experiences are unique – in the same way their workforce are. By understanding their unique challenges, organisations can start to better segment staff and their needs, including the focus groups we have identified through our Re:Me research.

“Although the easing of restrictions and the return to the office is likely to have improved the wellbeing of some employees, for others, anxieties and uncertainty will remain. It is critical that employers remember the lessons learnt during the pandemic and channel this into future changes that better support the needs of each individual employee.”

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UK workers expected to return to offices, but people are feeling mixed emotions about it



More than two-thirds (69%) of UK workers say their employer expects them to return to the office, but people are feeling mixed emotions about it, according to new research from LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network. Around 30% currently feel apprehensive, while 22% are excited and more than a third (34%) just want normality to resume. Around half (49%) say they would ideally prefer hybrid working in the future, where some days are spent in the office and others remotely.

Just over a third (34%) of people that are required to return to the office say their employer expects them back within the next three months, 16% will be back before the end of the year, and 15% are waiting for a date to be confirmed. More than two-fifths (44%) say their employer would like them in the office 1-2 days a week, and over a third (36%) have to be in 3-4 days a week. Some employers (35%) have already decided which days employees must be present, with Mondays and Tuesdays set to be the busiest. 

As ministers consider a more flexible future and companies rethink return to office plans in light of extended COVID-19 restrictions, LinkedIn surveyed 2,000+ workers in the UK who have been working remotely due to the pandemic to understand where they want to work in the future.

With employees having different preferences on where they would like to work – with 49% preferring hybrid working, 38% wanting to work remotely, and just 12% looking to work full-time from the office – the challenge many employers now face is creating workplace policies which accommodate them.

Employers are creating flexibility, with 56% of workers saying their employer is enabling hybrid working, and just 16% indicating that their employer requires them to work from the office full-time. Nearly a quarter (24%) say their employer has already changed their contract to stipulate that they can work either from the office or remotely.

According to the research, people that prefer hybrid working say they will benefit from the flexibility (60%), they believe it offers the best of both worlds (57%), and it will help them to save money (43%). One of the biggest challenges they indicated about hybrid working however is that employees that choose to work remotely may potentially fall into the trap of “digital presenteeism” where they have to show they are working longer hours online to look committed (22%). 

Janine Chamberlin, UK Country Manager at LinkedIn, said: “People are naturally still concerned about COVID-19, and this coupled with the prospect of returning to offices is clearly creating anxiety for some. Others are looking forward to seeing their colleagues again and getting back to a sense of normality. What we’re seeing on LinkedIn is people craving flexibility and the option to decide for themselves where they work. It’s positive to see companies responding by enabling hybrid working which gives employees this freedom, and will be what people look for when considering new jobs. Hybrid working will also help open up jobs to people who may have previously been locked out of them due to location, disability or care-giving responsibilities. With a more flexible future inevitable, we’re on the cusp of helping to make work more balanced and inclusive.”


LinkedIn commissioned Censuswide to survey 2,014 professionals in the UK on 16th June 2021 to understand where people want to work in the future. Censuswide abide by and employ members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles. 

About LinkedIn

LinkedIn connects the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful and transforms the way companies hire, learn, market, and sell. Our vision is to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce through the ongoing development of the world’s first Economic Graph. LinkedIn has 756 million members and has offices around the globe. /

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Five ways to avoid presenteeism with a remote workforce



With many employees now working remotely and with hybrid workplaces on the rise, the traditional office set-up is becoming a thing of the past.

However, many remote workers are finding that, as a result of our ‘always on’ culture, working from home is making it harder for them to set healthy boundaries. Instead, it’s encouraging ‘e-presenteeism’ whereby individuals feel that they need to be online and available all hours of the day.

Presenteeism can manifest in many different ways. Employees working longer than their contracted hours, continuing to work when they’re ill, and feeling like they have to respond to emails outside of working hours are some examples. The result? Employees that are overworked, overwhelmed and at risk of burning out.

In fact, research from LinkedIn and the Mental Health Foundation shows that the pressure to be available means people working from home are, on average, working an extra 28 hours per month.

Working long hours can be detrimental to employees’ mental health and morale, and in the long run, is counterproductive for both the employee and employer. It’s therefore vital for businesses to do all that they can to tackle presenteeism, support their employees’ wellbeing, and ensure they are maintaining a healthy work/life balance. Here are a few ways you can do this:

  1. Encourage your employees to take annual leave

Because so many people are spending so much time at home now, they often don’t feel it’s justified to take time off to relax unless going away on holiday, as they aren’t physically travelling to their working environment.

This isn’t a new problem though, as according to research by Canada Life Group Insurance, one in five (22%) UK employees did not use all their paid holiday allowance in 2014, with one in 20 (5%) stating that this was because their organisation actually discouraged workers from taking the time off. Although this research is six years old, it’s still very relevant to today’s working culture and a common trend among employees who are reluctant to take their full entitlement for fear of losing favour with their managers, which raises concerns about attitudes towards employee wellbeing.

Whether it’s one day or two weeks, time off is key to feeling well and operating well. It’s therefore valuable to remind and encourage your employees to take annual leave. You could even scout out the individuals who haven’t taken any annual leave in the last month, for example, and suggest they take a day off soon. Having time away from work to disconnect is crucial for your employees’ wellbeing. They can rest, recharge, regain a sense of balance and come back to work feeling motivated and engaged.

2. Schedule one-to-one check ins

It can sometimes be difficult to identify indicators of presenteeism, but they often include low productivity, poor standard of work, looking physically tired, and frequently working through lunch breaks, into the evenings and on weekends.

The problem becomes even harder to identify the bigger your business is, which is why it’s so important that it’s on your Managers radar. They need to be keeping an eye on their team members and doing regular check-ins to make sure that individuals are feeling ok and working in a way that’s not damaging their mental health or wellbeing. Ensure your managers promote a working environment where employees feel they can openly talk about their health, both physical and mental, and raise concerns about their workloads if necessary.

3. Set boundaries

Working from home or remotely gives employees the opportunity to be flexible about their schedule. However, it doesn’t mean they should be switched on 24/7 and replying to emails well after their working day has ended. It’s therefore important to separate the professional from the personal when home becomes your office.

Firstly, make it clear that employees aren’t expected to work beyond their usual hours unless essential. You should also encourage employees to take regular breaks away from the screen, like they would at the office, to stretch their legs and get some fresh air throughout the day.

Secondly, reinforce the value of creating a routine, sticking to it and ensuring that work is left at a set time each day. Encourage employees to do something concrete to signal the end of the working day and differentiate between work and home time.

4. Provide wellbeing support

Research has shown that the key causes of presenteeism are poor mental health, financial wellbeing and sleep. So, consider the ways in which you can tailor your wellbeing approach to address these three areas.

There are a variety of services and tools you can equip your employees with to demonstrate the importance of employee wellbeing within your business. For example, Employee Assistance Programmes offer confidential advice, mental health support and more, teaching individuals how to manage stress in both their personal and professional lives.

It’s also in your best interest as an employer to help your employees feel financially healthy and secure. There are a range of financial resources, planning services and debt management tools available to help your employees manage their money more effectively. Look at these resources as preventive measures to help your employees maintain a healthy work/life balance.

5. Improve your culture

While the actions previously discussed are valuable, in isolation they will not make a huge difference to the levels of presenteeism in your workplace. Your culture is the key area to focus on at all times. It’s important to create a culture with the health and wellbeing of your employees at the centre. That way, if an individual feels unwell, they’ll know that it’s right for them to take the day off sick. They know they won’t get judged or challenged by senior members of the team.

One way to do this is by encouraging managers and senior members of your team to the lead the way and set a good example. Allow them to demonstrate healthy boundaries within the workplace, by switching off from work and taking breaks when they need to.

Final thoughts

Remote working comes with lots of challenges, and as your employees adjust to this change in working environment, it’s important to encourage them to set the same boundaries they would if they were working from the office. We deliver a wide range of useful health and wellbeing tools and services through our employee engagement solution, the zone, so your employees have access to the tools they need to secure and maintain a healthy work/life balance.

Head to our resources page to view the full range of services available.

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The entrepreneurial capitals that have thrived over the past year



The UK has seen a huge rise in the number of independent businesses being set up over the past year. New analysis from The University of Law Business school shows 854,948 independent businesses have been established since 23rd March 2020, representing a 43% increase compared to the same period a year before (594,957). 

With London expectedly ranking first, after 239,066 new businesses were registered in the last year, research1 by  ULaw Business School reveals the cities outside of the capital, where new business is booming. 

Top 10 start up cities outside of London  

Boasting 20,222 new registered business, Birmingham is the start-up capital of the UK outside London. The midlands city has nearly twice as many businesses registered within the last 12 months than 70% of its closest rivals around the country, including Leicester (9,429), Leeds (9,340) and Liverpool (8,490) 

The city hosts a range of indie businesses, such as supermarket concept, Roots Market, supplying locally sourced food, natural vitamins and body care products since December 2020.2 

Giving credit to the north, Manchester follows closely behind with 18,313 new businesses established since 23rd March 2020. The Northern Quarter is home to a variety of small businesses, including the cities first health and wellbeing café, Feel Good Club, which opened in summer 2020.3 

Glasgow (11,124), Leicester and Leeds are next to rank, keeping the north of the UK in the top spots. The three cities are home to hundreds of independent boutiques, salons and food vendors. The Savvy Baker in Leeds went viral with her online brownie boxes, raking in 40,000 Instagram followers, and has since set up pop-up stores and hired six full-time staff to help with demand.4 

The top 10 most popular cities to set up a new business outside of London are:  

  1. Birmingham (20,222) 
  2. Manchester (18,313) 
  3. Glasgow (11,124) 
  1. Leicester (9,429) 
  2. Leeds (9,340) 
  3. Bristol (8,768) 
  4. Liverpool (8,490) 
  5. Nottingham (7,044) 
  1. Sheffield (5,237) 
  2. Coventry (5,062) 

Most popular sectors 

Since high-street stores were closed for long periods, it comes as no surprise that online retail business has seen a dramatic increase during the pandemic. Since 23rd March 2020, which was the day the UK went into its first national lockdown, 47,729 retail businesses (via mail order or internet) have been registered, making it the most popular sector for new, independent ventures. 

Working in real estate has also proved popular, with the buying, selling and leasing of real estate ranking 2nd and 4th respectively, with Rishi Sunak’s announcement of the Stamp Duty holiday having a big impact.5 

Management consultancy took the third position, as businesses run remotely have surged in popularity since the start of the pandemic. 

The top 10 most popular start up sectors in the UK in the last year are: 

  1. Online retail (47,729) 
  2. Buying and selling of real estate (33,537) 
  3. Management Consultancy (30,130) 
  1. Letting and operating leased real estate (28,598) 
  2. Freight transport by road (20,539) 
  3. Development of building projects (17,369) 
  4. Takeaway and mobile food (17,050) 
  5. IT Consultancy (16,138) 
  1. Construction of domestic buildings (13,658) 
  2. Beauty treatments (12,816) 

Marco Mongiello, Pro Vice-Chancellor, The University of Law Business School, commented: “Despite such challenging times, the nation has found a way to bring independent business back into the heart of these cities and show. n real entrepreneurial spirit. 

 “Some of the UK’s biggest cities that were once flooded with huge chains are now thriving off independent business; it’s heart-warming to see the support that the country has for each other. 

“Now, more than ever, it is important that we support these local businesses whether that be food shops, beauty salons or tradesmen. The University of Law Business School offers courses for any budding entrepreneur to take the next steps towards running their own successful business.” 

To find out more about The University of Law Business School, please visit: 

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