simplynews roundup: 7th May

Trends, updates and a warning from MI5

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  1. Microsoft releases report on hybrid working trends

Microsoft’s 2021 Work Trend Index was released this week; an in-depth report into how 2020 has shaped – and will continue to shape – our working lives.

The report covers seven key trends we’ll see in hybrid working: 

  1. Flexible work is here to stay
  2. Leaders are out of touch with employees and need a wake-up call
  3. High productivity is masking an exhausted workforce
  4. Gen Z is at risk and will need to be re-energized
  5. Shrinking networks are endangering innovation
  6. Authenticity will spur productivity and wellbeing
  7. Talent is everywhere in a hybrid work world

You can read the full report and see the matching infographics here.

  1. Government taskforce urges permanent job flexibility for all workers

As reported by The Guardian, the Government have revealed that 70% of employers who took part in a flexible working taskforce survey, agreed that home working had either boosted or made no difference to productivity.

Peter Cheese, Chief Executive of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and co-chair of the taskforce said: “This is an opportunity to shift ways of working, which have barely changed for generations. It will allow more people with other life commitments to participate in work and improve wellbeing.”

The taskforce guidance could force companies to publish flexible working data and allow new recruits to apply immediately for flexible working, instead of waiting the current 26 weeks.

  1. User’s Gmail, Photos and Drive could be deleted as Google introduces new rules next month

This announcement by Google isn’t as terrifying as it sounds, but it certainly will push its users to get their online folders in order.

As reported by the Daily Express, there are two reasons that your data on these flagship Google services will be removed: 1. If you’re classed as ‘inactive’ for 2 years, and 2. If you exceed your storage limit for 2 years.

The new policies come into force from the 1st of June, and it’s been promised that users will be given plenty of notice if they’re likely to lose personal data, so fingers crossed!

  1. Microsoft Teams will soon automatically record all your meetings

We love a Microsoft update at simply, and this one is no exception. If you’re an avid Teams user (who isn’t?), then you’ll know that currently you have to set a meeting to record manually.

The new feature was confirmed when the company responded to a query on its UserVoice forum, saying that they were “currently working on this request” and would “share an update as soon as one is available.”

Following Zoom, who have offered automatic recording for a while, Teams is eventually going to provide the option to transcribe meetings too. There’s no date for this update yet, but hopefully it’ll be on our screens soon.

  1. Google relaxes remote work plan, letting 20% of employees telecommute

Following an announcement in December that Google would require its employees to work from the office three days a week post lockdown, the company has gone back on this by agreeing to let 20% of employees work from home.

An email from CEO Sundar Pichai told employees that they can request to permanently work from home or work from different offices, as reported by CNBC. However, this change may mean an adjustment in salary.

Pichai said: “Before the pandemic, we had thousands of people working in locations separate from their core teams. I fully expect those numbers to increase in the coming months as we develop more remote roles, including fully all-remote sub teams.”

  1. MI5 warns of spies using LinkedIn to trick staff into spilling secrets

Internal communicators are well-known for building communities, not just within their roles, but also on professional networking site, LinkedIn.

The BBC reported this week that MI5 have warned that spies are using the platform to try and find out company secrets.

This news takes fake profiles to the next level, as 100,000 UK Nationals have been targeted by foreign spies over the last five years. A campaign called ‘Think Before you Link’ has been launched to combat the theft of sensitive information from employees.


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