RECORDING, ANALYSING, AND USING HUMAN RESOURCES INFORMATION
.I. Activity 1
There are several reasons for an organisation to collect and record HR data but I was interested in two reasons in particular; First reason is to satisfy “legal requirements” e.g. at the most fundamental level HR needs to collect basic data about its employees for: Compliance with legal or industry requirements. For example employers are required to keep a copy of an employee’s documents such as a passport to prove that an employee is eligible to work in the UK or the Social Security and Income Tax Departments may demand information with regards to employees pay. The second reason is “Sickness/absence management”. Managing absence due to sickness requires effective people management policies, which may be helped by improving employee wellbeing, reduce absence rates and save money.
Managers have a lot of concerns in their day-to-day management of their business. Sickness/absence management is one of the most worrying causes. The unapproved absence of work causes a lot of problems for managers and entails significant additional costs for the organization. Records of individual absence in case of illness or delay allow organizations to monitor individual performance, identify problems and take necessary action in time to resolve the problem.
By law, all organizations, large or small, must keep records of certain information, e.g. record of hours worked by employees, to meet the requirements of the 1988 Working Time Regulations, rates of pay, to ensure the requirements of the Minimum Wage Act 1988, tax details and national insurance are met. Registration of certain personal data also allows employers to monitor compliance with the law.
I have retained two methods of storing Data; (1). Manually: the traditional method of storing data which is to manually record and to keep a paper file for each employee. The benefit of using this method is that you won’t experience any technical issues i.e. system
crashing and manual records can sometimes be more accurate than automated systems. (2). Electronically (Computerised record keeping): the more modern method of storing data is electronically which has much benefits such as, increases flexibility of the information available, requires less storage space, increases efficiency, quicker to update and can be accessed at a click of a button.
Below I have explained two essential items of UK legislation relating to the recording, storing and accessibility of HR;
(1). Freedom of information Act (FOIA) – The FOIA gives you the right to request any information recorded on any subject by any public sector organisation. The request can be made by anyone and is handled under different regulations depending on the information you have requested.
(2). Data Protection Act 1998 – The Data Protection Act controls how personal information is used by organisations and the government. Anyone who is responsible for using the data must adhere to strict rules related to the Data Protections Act 1998; i.e. keeping the data safe and secure, keeping for no longer than necessary, used for limited and specifically stated purposes and used fairly and lawfully.
.II. Activity 2
I have chosen to investigate in the area of Sickness absence rates in the labour market for men and women between1993 to 2013 in UK. According to Labour Force Survey (LFS), Annual Population Survey APS and Office for National Statistics, I have looked at the statistics from January 1993 to December 2013 to identify any trends, patterns and causes.
According to statistics, I noticed that Sickness absence rates have fallen for both men and women since 1993 with men consistently having a lower sickness absence rate than women. Sickness absence has fallen for all age groups since 1993, but has fallen least for those aged 65 and over. 131 million days were lost due to sickness absences in the UK in 2013, down from 178 million days in 1993.
According to the APS and LFS, the 131 million working days lost released in this report were lost due to sickness absences in the UK in 2013, down from 178 million days in 1993. The most common reason given for sickness absence in 2013 was minor illnesses which cover
sickness such as cough and colds but more days were lost to back, neck and muscle pain than any other cause.
II.1 CHART 1
The report also revealed that the number of days lost through sickness absences remained fairly constant through the 1990’s until 2003 before falling to 2011 and has been similar for the past few years. The percentage of hours lost to sickness since 1993 has fallen more than the total number of days lost because over the past twenty years employment has increased. Since 1994 (the earliest data available), the rate for those employed in the public sector has been consistently higher than the rate for those employed in the private sector, although both sectors have seen an overall decrease. Sickness absence rates have fallen for both men and women since 1993 with men consistently having a lower sickness absence rate than women. Sickness absence increases with age but falls after eligibility for the state pension.
II.2 CHART 2: percentage of hours working lost
When interpreting the differences between the public and private sectors, there are a number of factors to consider as such individuals within the private sector are also more likely to not be paid for a spell of sickness than individuals within the public sector and taking account on average, women have more sickness absence than men and the public sector employs a higher proportion of female workers.
According to the APS et LFS focusing on all age categories over the past 20 years, each category saw a decline in their sickness absence rates between 1993 and 2013. Those workers aged between 50 and 64 had the greatest fall at around 1.7 percentage points, followed by those aged between 16 and 24 at 1.5 percentage points. Older workers aged 65 and over, had the smallest fall at 0.5 percentage points between 1993 and 2013.
“Recording of employees work hours” enables employers to make decisions that meet the requirements of the 1988 Working Time Regulations and rates of pay, to ensure the requirements of the Minimum Wage Act 1988, tax details and national insurance are met. Also “Well-organised Records and personal data kept in an appropriate system” allow employers to monitor compliance with the law.