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National simplicity day

Posted by Supportis Legal Experts in HR and Employment Law

It’s time to switch off to switch on with National Simplicity Day.

This day honours the life of the naturalist and philosopher Henry David Thoreau, who advocated simple living and in today’s fast-paced society it’s important to stop and take a break from the hustle and bustle of life.

How can you create simplicity within a working environment?

The dictionary definition states “The quality or condition of being plain or uncomplicated in form or design”; simplicity can be applied to all parts of our lives, from creating small manageable tasks out of a much larger one, ensuring a clean clear space to work in, turning off your phone or setting time restrictions for tasks.

Screen time

In many ways technology has made life simpler by enabling us to communicate and innovate more easily, however a recent survey by Ofcom found that we spend 8 hours and 41 minutes averagely spent staring at a computer/ phone screen.

Constantly staring at screens can lead to increased health problems and long term issues. These include eye strain, neck & back pain, headaches and blurred vision. Your company should take into account these considerations and the legal implications, providing support such as eye tests, health insurance and other policies that safeguard employees.

For example, allowing employees to take mindfulness breaks will help revitalise minds and bodies; taking time away from the screens to talk face to face with colleagues not only allows a reset, but helps to nurture workplace relationships, improving teamwork and creating a nicer environment.

ACAS proposes that it may be helpful to set guidelines around device usage; for example, personal use of phones could be permitted during breaks which could help to increase productivity and retain concentration on work related tasks during the working day as well as reducing screen time.

Organisational processes & structures

A focus on simplicity can benefit a company in many ways, including

  • Organisational processes
  • Business structures
  • Recruitment
  • Lines of communication
  • Efficiency and profit

A Siegel + Gale survey found that clear communication drives simplicity with organisations that communicate clearly from the top about their corporate values and goals led to 54% of employees finding it easier to innovate.

The survey also found that simpler workplaces aided recruitment as 65% of employees said that they were more likely to recommend somebody to apply for a job at their company because of the simple organisational structure.

Helping to create clear lines of communication allows employees to feel more engaged within the work place and enables change to take place more effectively, in turn helping to increase efficiency and profit.

Beneficial to all…

In its recent annual Global Brand Simplicity index, Siegel + Gale surveyed 12,000 consumers interacting with 585 brands across 25 industries with the findings showing that 38% of consumers are willing to pay more for simpler experiences and that 70% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand because it is simple.

Although on the face it of this may seem surprising, a clear, simple message in a cluttered world has an obvious appeal.
So if you’d like to find out more about how to implement strategies to create simplicity in your workplace and reap the potential benefits or for further advice on managing employee stress contact one of our Employment Law Advisers on 0161 603 2156 to arrange your free initial consultation.

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