‘Flexed’ benefits offer key to retaining staff

first_imgRelated posts:No related photos. Wouldn’t it be great if reward were based on getting things right firsttime. Reward is a powerful tool when driving behaviour and can be usedpositively to improve performance and productivity. Unfortunately, even thebest designed schemes can drive the opposite behaviour. Fixed pay drives the need to be regularly promoted as the annual pay review,which creeps forward at or around the inflation rate, struggles to cover risesin public transport fares and council tax bills – neither of which appear tohave any link with inflation. If poorly designed, variable pay, such as bonuses, promote a dog-eat-dog,silo mentality with everyone trying to get the bonus they need to fund theirincreasingly expensive lifestyle. Benefits, many now fully liable for tax andNI, have gradually been replaced by cash allowances as companies move away fromexpensive benefit administration. The good news is that enlightened organisations will recognise the pitfallsand pressures and design reward strategies that provide maximum benefit to theemployer while minimising business costs. The strategy will focus on corporate,team and individual reward based on performance at all these levels. The trickthen is to create flexibility and choice, extending access to benefits to allemployees and, where possible, their families. Reward strategies must look beyond just attracting new people. They act as apowerful retention tool, particularly in the first couple of years when manycompanies face high employee turnover. The response can be to extendeligibility periods for pay and benefits in the first year. If those same people were able to access benefits that suit their lifestyle,they may be less inclined to leave. Confident employers whose recruitmentprocess gets the right people through the door in the first place will feelbetter placed to focus on retention. Flexible benefits make this possible. I am not talking about ‘cafeteria’benefits, where employees are allocated pots of money or points to buy andtrade benefits set out on a menu. And the funding of self-insured schemes, forexample, does not enable large pots of money to be made available. Things have moved on and the philosophy of choice must be underpinned by ascheme which looks at how existing benefits can be ‘flexed’, such as buying andselling holiday, and adding new benefits, which have either tax or NI savingsor both – childcare vouchers or computers at home, for example. Employers should also consider offering access to health and lifestylebenefits through competitive membership schemes i.e. private medical insurance,and access to those benefits where the company can secure a discount foremployers – for instance, domestic appliances or retail vouchers. Companies are already offering many of these benefits and by incorporatingthem into an effective scheme, they will be able to market and offer a powerfulretention tool for their staff.By Denise Keating, Head of people proposition Marks and Spencer Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. ‘Flexed’ benefits offer key to retaining staffOn 1 Apr 2003 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

Presidential Race Ignites Heavy Voter Turnout in Cape May County

first_imgBy Donald Wittkowski With a hard-fought presidential race topping the ballot, Tuesday’s election generated heavy voter turnout in the traditional Republican stronghold of Cape May County.Figures released by the Cape May County Clerk’s Office showed there was a 70 percent turnout among the county’s nearly 71,000 registered voters.“People really wanted to vote in this election,” Cape May County Clerk Rita Marie Fulginiti said.Atlantic County’s voter turnout was not as strong, despite key races in a number of towns, including a battle for four City Council seats in Somers Point.Just 62 percent of Atlantic County’s 174,257 registered voters cast ballots, according to unofficial returns posted on the county website.Fulginiti said intense interest in the combative presidential race between Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton fueled the big turnout in Cape May County. She called it “voter mania.”About 7,000 mail-in votes were issued in Cape May County, the most ever for the county, Fulginiti said.Trump captured 58 percent of the vote in Cape May County, compared to just 38 percent for Clinton. In Atlantic County, Clinton grabbed 51 percent of the vote, while Trump had 45 percent.Cape May County Republican Chairman Marcus Karavan said he believed the county’s high voter turnout underscored overwhelming support for Trump.“Clearly, Trump generated a lot of excitement, and the people turned out,” Karavan said.According to Karavan, Trump’s election as the 45th president of the United States symbolizes the country’s desire for a “new direction.”“I’m happy we have a new president,” he said.Reflecting its conservative Republican voter base, Cape May County supported both GOP candidates who were defeated by President Barack Obama in the 2008 and 2012 elections.John McCain garnered 53 percent of the vote in Cape May County in 2008, compared to 45 percent for Obama. In the 2012 presidential race, Mitt Romney won 54 percent of the county’s vote, while Obama had 45 percent, Fulginiti said.The 2008 election produced a 78 percent voter turnout in Cape May County, but the figure dropped to 61 percent in the 2012 race.“In 2008, with Obama, people were mesmerized by his message,” Fulginiti explained of the heavy turnout then.Of Cape May County’s 70,801 registered voters, 28,098 are Republicans and 15,633 are Democrats. The remaining 27,070 voters are unaffiliated.In the past 40 years, only two Democrats have been elected to the Cape May County freeholder board. Incumbent Republican Freeholders Gerald Thornton and E. Marie Hayes easily won re-election Tuesday night against their Democratic challengers, cementing Republican control of the five-member board.last_img read more

Grants to preserve local history across state

first_imgRipley County, In. — The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) helps strengthen Indiana’s historical and cultural heritage through annual federal grants it administers to local communities and not-for-profit groups that these organizations put toward preservation projects.This year, the DNR Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology (DHPA) has awarded 11 federal grants for historic preservation and archaeology in Indiana communities (see list below). The grants, totaling $476,696, provide a match of $512,545 in local and private funds, for a total projected investment of $989,241.The funds come from the National Park Service, a part of the U.S. Department of the Interior, which distributes federal funds to the states through the Historic Preservation Fund Program. Since 1974, the state has awarded more than $18 million to Indiana communities through this program.Ripley County: Ball State University will receive a grant of $51,871 to conduct a Phase Ia survey of approximately 80 acres around historic homestead sites identified within Versailles State Park. Along with their associated historical records, these sites tell the story of the early planned settlement as well as early statehood. While some of those stories are incorporated in guided tours, there is much that is unknown, and a targeted archaeological survey will help uncover the remains of daily home life at these sites. The park staff and cultural resource manager would like to use the information to develop more engaging interpretation around these resources. In addition to recording the new archaeological sites, a series of significance statements and primary interpretive themes will be developed. [Contact: Chris Thompson, 765-285-5396].Fort Wayne: The City of Fort Wayne will receive a $5,538 matching grant to assist with a nomination to the National Register of Historic Places of the Kensington Park Historic District. Homes in the district represent a variety of early to mid-20th century styles, including Colonial Revival, Tudor Revival, Craftsman, and American Foursquare. The project will also create and publish a brochure on the Brookview-Irvington Park Historic District as part of the city’s ongoing series, and include a history of the district focusing on landscape architect Arthur Shurcliff’s use of natural features in the neighborhood design. [Contact: Don Orban, 260-427-2160].Henry County: Ball State University will receive a $52,497 grant to conduct an archaeological survey of the Wilbur Wright Fish & Wildlife Area (WWFWA), which consists of 1,070 acres of Blue River Valley floodplains and associated uplands and is currently used as a fishing and hunting area. It is also the former site of the New Castle State Hospital, and encompasses several major prehistoric sites that have been investigated extensively in the past; however, portions of the WWFWA remain unsurveyed. This project will conduct a Phase Ia investigation of approximately 120 unsurveyed acres, and is anticipated to document about 60 newly identified archaeological sites. [Contact: Chris Thompson, 765-285-5396].Indianapolis: The Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site will receive $21,500 for the preparation of a Historic Structure Report for the Indianapolis home and property of former president Benjamin Harrison, a National Historic Landmark. A historic structure report will provide a history of the property and changes over time, a conditions assessment, a prioritization of repair and preservation items, and a guide for short- and long-term plans for maintenance and management of the property. [Contact: Charles Hyde, 317-631-1888].Indianapolis: The Indiana Medical History Museum will receive a $44,450 grant to assist in the upgrading the electrical, fire safety and security systems of the Old Pathology Building at the Central State Hospital complex, which now houses the Indiana Medical History Museum. Built in 1896, it was a state of the art medical research and teaching facility, and was in use until 1968. The museum uses the building’s features, furnishings, and collections, many of which are original, to interpret the history of medicine and medical research to visitors, including doctors and medical students, each year. The electrical system was last updated in the 1930s and is inadequate and potentially hazardous. The electrical and fire detection system needs to be addressed to bring the building to code and safeguard the building and collections. Finally, additional security measures will be installed to discourage vandals and thieves, which have been a problem in recent years. [Contact: Sarah Halter, Indiana Medical History Museum, 317-635-7329].Indianapolis: The Athenaeum Foundation will receive a $50,000 grant to assist with masonry rehabilitation on the ornate primary façade of the distinctive Massachusetts Avenue building. Designed by Bernard Vonnegut, Sr. and Arthur Bohn, the massive corner building is home to more than a dozen tenants; however, mortar joints have eroded over time, creating opportunities for water infiltration and the need to be repointed. In addition, the masonry and limestone accents will be cleaned, as there is no record of the 120-year-old building ever having been cleaned, and there is significant staining across much of the facade. The project will address issues on approximately 8,700 square feet of masonry. [Contact: Cassie Stockamp, 317-655-2755 ext. 155].Indianapolis: The Indiana Humanities Council will receive $50,000 for window rehabilitation that is necessary to secure the 1903 Meredith Nicholson House from water infiltration and improve energy efficiency. This scope of work is based on the 17 windows that have already been rehabilitated on the main facade. The project will complete window rehabilitation of the remaining approximately 32 windows, which are located on the sides and rear of the house. [Contact: George Hanlin, 317-638-1500 ext. 128].Lafayette: Trinity United Methodist Church will receive a $50,000 grant to stabilize and rehabilitate the exterior masonry of the 1872 church. Mortar joint erosion has threatened the stability of brick units. In addition to repointing the masonry, some brick units that are missing or damaged will need to be replaced. The church has undertaken masonry rehabilitation on the east and south elevations. The HPF grant will assist specifically with the west elevation, where water infiltration is creating some damage to the interior of the building. [Contact: Stephen Ash, 765-427-7007].Montgomery County: Ball State University will receive a $50,840 grant to conduct an archaeology survey of the Calvert and Porter Woods Nature Preserve (CPWNP) in Crawfordsville. The reserve consists of 118 acres owned by the DNR and is a designated National Natural Landmark. The project consists of Phase Ia survey of the entire property, all of which is previously unsurveyed. It is estimated that this survey may document about 30 newly identified archaeological sites. The primary research objective is to document the prehistoric and historic cultural resources in the CPWNP for both the SHAARD database and to assist the Preserve with future resource-management planning. [Contact: Chris Thompson, 765-285-5396].Pendleton: The Town of Pendleton will receive a $50,000 grant to rehabilitate the façade of the 19th Century commercial building that is currently used as the Pendleton Town Hall. The façade of this two-story building has been significantly altered by bricking in the second-story window openings, installing one inappropriate fixed window, and replacing the storefront. The scope of work includes removing the brick infill and installing new, historically appropriate one-over-one windows to replicate the appearance of the original windows; repointing and cleaning the masonry; and returning the storefront to its historically documented design and appearance. [Contact: Rachel Christenson, 765-778-8370].Vincennes: The City of Vincennes will receive a $50,000 grant to assist with the rehabilitation of the Gregg Park Shelter. The project proposes to undertake a variety of rehabilitation activities to stabilize and repair the WPA-built shelter, which was built in 1938 and is a large gabled structure faced with random ashlar limestone and smooth-finished quoins and window and door surrounds. [Contact: Michelle Carrico (Southern Indiana Development Commission), 812-295-3707].last_img read more

Igali warns athletes against using performance-enhancing drugs

first_imgRelatedPosts Igali praises Team Nigeria’s performance in Rome tournament All African Games: Our plan is to win many medals – Igali Nigeria on course to winning an Olympic medal in wrestling – Igali Former Olympic athlete, Daniel Igali on Saturday in Yenagoa warned sports men and women in Bayelsa against using performance-enhancing drugs while participating in competitions. Igali, who is the state’s Commissioner for Sports Development, gave the warning while addressing the athletes, saying “using drugs to win in a game is not helpful in strengthening talent”. He expressed worry at the development and noted that the state government would not take it lightly with any athlete who resort to cheating to win medals in any tournament. The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the commissioner, who is also the President of Nigeria Wrestling Federation had received the state’s weightlifters who just returned from a competition. They had participated in the National Open Weightlifting Championships in Jigawa, where they won six medals made up of three gold, one silver and two bronze. Igali commended the weightlifters for their outstanding achievement in spite of the constraints they experienced before their departure. He urged the athletes to always be passionate and dedicated, instead of waiting for monetary incentives before taking part in sports competitions. The commissioner pointed out that weightlifting offers an athlete the opportunity of winning more than one medal at national, continental and global championships. “I urge you to be up and doing. The state government is making arrangements to sponsor and support athletes to the forthcoming National Sports Festival in 2020 and we are hopeful that you will make us proud,” he said.Tags: athletesDaniel Igalilast_img read more