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Working Models in the Workplace

A working model is essentially a business strategy that an organisation adopts – and they can help achieve targets, stimulate growth, streamline processes and support employees. Innovative working models can change the business world as we know it – especially those in Finance and HR functions, which are fundamental to any organisation.

It is important to ensure the models in your business that direct how it functions provide clarity and are supported by procedures and technology that enable them to work in the most effective way. They also need to reflect your values.

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Emerging trends

Stats from the 2021 Workforce Trends Survey Report

11%

of 18-24 year-olds say the business software / apps available to them at work improve team collaboration

30%

reported that they were working more hours on certain days to build in more balance and leisure time on others

37%

of 18-24 year-olds say their manager has introduced regular check-ins since working from home over the last 12 months

54%

said their employer had expected them to do something outside of contracted working hours

Additional insights to help you transform

FEATURED RESOURCES

  • Challenges Facing HR in 2021

    Get the guide to explore the challenges facing HR departments in 2021 and find out what you can do now to overcome them.

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  • Adopting the digital workplace

    See why HR leaders should identify with the common problems outlined, and be encouraged to redefine their role and mission within the business.

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  • The Digitalisation of Finance

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  • What a successful workspace/office might look like

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BLOG // 16-01-2020

Should you move your finance system to the Cloud?

by Andrew Hicks, Chief Financial Officer

Should you move your finance system to the Cloud?

Expert Insight

People can use platforms like LinkedIn to help them establish connections that may have an impact on their career. It provides opportunities to join groups and develop knowledge in different ways.”

Marshah Dixon-Terry

Expert Insight

“Technology really helps with internal mobility and career progression. Having the right solutions can support daily conversations about personal and professional development. It shouldn’t be a monthly or an annual thing, these conversations should be ongoing and using technology to record and review conversations is a great way to see how someone is progressing.”

Alex Arundale

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Top Tips

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4 Tips

for finance operating models

  • Read tips

    Finance teams can really benefit from implementing finance operating models within their business. Some things you need to consider are:

    • Review your team structure – understand what the requirements of the team are and whether you have the skills, resource and structure to achieve business goals
    • Start with the fundamentals – recognise the constraints in your team and fix them, but focus on getting the basics right first
    • Don’t outsource your accounting function – true visibility of performance and budget is much easier when you keep accounting in house. Often outsourced accountants don’t have a true understanding of your business and strategic goals.
    • Find tools that support your operating models – outdated technology won’t serve you moving forward. Ensure your teams are supported by digital technology which enables productivity and efficiencies.

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4 Tips

for creating a workforce planning model

  • Read tips

    Finance teams can really benefit from implementing finance operating models within their business. Some things you need to consider are:

    • Review your team structure – understand what the requirements of the team are and whether you have the skills, resource and structure to achieve business goals
    • Start with the fundamentals – recognise the constraints in your team and fix them, but focus on getting the basics right first
    • Don’t outsource your accounting function – true visibility of performance and budget is much easier when you keep accounting in house. Often outsourced accountants don’t have a true understanding of your business and strategic goals.
    • Find tools that support your operating models – outdated technology won’t serve you moving forward. Ensure your teams are supported by digital technology which enables productivity and efficiencies.

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5 Tips

for a strategic onboarding model

  • Read tips

    There are a number of things that a successful strategic onboarding process includes, such as:

    • Don’t apply a one-size-fits-all model – treat every new starter as an individual in their own right. For each role there will be different requirements. Think about what those specific requirements are before you build your plan.
    • Think ahead – make sure you have a built out induction plan which enables the employee to learn but not become overwhelmed
    • Be prepared to flex – some individuals need more time to get up to speed than others. If the pace of your onboarding programme is too fast, or too slow, consider adapting this to the individual’s requirements.
    • Begin onboarding before a start date – ensure your recruitment team are sharing key elements of your company culture with a hire before their start date, and from the moment they are offered a position they start to feel like part of your team
    • Ensure company values are a key focus – make sure your attitudes and approaches are embedded right from the very beginning, so the employee understands your strategic goals and beliefs within the business

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4 Tips

for adopting a digital workplace

  • Read tips

    Moving to a digital-first mind-set isn’t an overnight exercise for businesses, however business leaders should consider the following when changing their business model:

    • Have a clear view of the problems you are looking to solve - don’t just implement tech for tech’s sake. Think about the challenge you are looking to address and let that lead your strategy.
    • Get feedback from employees – make sure you understand what they need before you embark on a search for solutions
    • Be agile – review solutions that you adopt in the business to ensure they are having the desired outcome
    • Ensure solutions can be personalised – one size no longer fits all. Your needs as a business are bound to change over time. Make sure your investment is going to be fit for the future.

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4 Tips

to implement a finance department structure

  • Read tips
    • Keep your strategic models front of mind – ensure your structure mirrors what is most important to the business
    • Make sure your business values are reflected in your approach
    • Encourage finance to partner with the rest of the business – staying in a silo won’t help meet objectives. Collaboration is really important in a finance department structure.
    • Ensure your software supports initiatives and your new working practices

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4 Tips

to avoid HR challenges

  • Read tips

    There are several common HR challenges which often crop up for many organisations. Some tips to avoid them are:

    • Focus on employee engagement and retention – your people are your most important Ensure they feel valued and rewarded.
    • Consider adopting technology to save on admin – allow your HR team to focus on people rather than admin by reviewing your technology stack
    • Create a diverse, inclusive workforce – make sure employees from all backgrounds feel comfortable within the workplace and have equal opportunities
    • Ensure there is a clear focus on recruitment to attract the best applicants

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a working model in business?

    A working model is essentially a business strategy that an organisation adopts – and they can help achieve targets, stimulate growth, streamline processes and support employees. Innovative working models can change the business world as we know it – especially those in Finance and HR functions, which are fundamental to any organisation.

     

    It is important to ensure the models in your business that direct how it functions provide clarity and are supported by procedures and technology that enable them to work in the most effective way.

  • What is a finance operating model?

    Finance operating models are designed to dictate how the finance function delivers value back to the business. Finance operating models address three fundamental principles to enable finance teams to succeed: capacity, capability and collaboration. By making these three areas a priority, finance teams are set up in the best possible way to drive strategic value in a business.

     

    It is also crucial that an organisation’s finance operating model is supported by functionality within the organisation’s accounting solution. Without this, the hard work which is put into the values and structure of a finance operating model won’t be as effective and the effort will be wasted as the processes in your technology do not match your strategic goals.

  • How do you implement a finance department structure?

    Make sure the team you have in place has clear and defined roles with objectives which link back to overarching business strategy and working models. Your structure should mirror your finance operating model, ensuring that collaboration, capacity and capability are mapped out in your structure. By doing this, your team will be set up in the best possible way to support initiatives and future growth.

     

    To help achieve this, employees need to have a clear view of their goals and feel accountable towards the wider objectives of the team and the business. Having a clear understanding of how their individual goals help to achieve bigger goals set up in your finance operating model will mean this becomes business as usual and will aid success.

  • What is a strategic onboarding model?

    Strategic onboarding refers to how new starters are inducted when they join an organisation. With the vast majority of onboarding programmes now completely virtual, businesses have been forced to consider alternative strategies and what the future of onboarding may look like. Find out more about the different types of strategic onboarding and the future of onboarding.

  • How to use a workforce planning model

    In order to create a successful workforce planning model, businesses need to be able to understand the following:

     

    • Current and future workforce equipment / hardware requirements so that employees can fulfil their roles.

    • Skills resource gaps against current and future needs

     

    Businesses can only effectively create a workforce planning model when they have the appropriate technology solutions in place. Organisations should look to combine time and attendance software, employee management software, performance management and payroll software together in one unified platform to effectively manage their people.

  • What is a flexible workforce model?

    A flexible workforce model is a strategy which enables employees to work hours which suit them – and this may not always be a traditional 9-5. It also allows employees to be flexible about where they work, which may be at home, another remote location or in the office. Many businesses are now looking to adopt a flexible workforce model to improve employee happiness and retention as well as increasing overall productivity in their organisation. If employees can be more flexible around how, where and when they work, businesses are likely to get the best output from them.

  • What is the purpose of HR models?

    HR working models are designed is to help companies manage their workforce successfully.

     

    They also exist to ensure that employees have processes in place which aid productivity, wellbeing and their overall engagement and satisfaction working for the organisation. Working models provide structure and clear focus for employees.

  • What are HR models?

    There are a variety of HR models that businesses can adopt:

     

    • The Standard Causal Model of HRM

    • The 8-box model by Paul Boselie

    • The HR value chain

    • The Harvard Framework for HR

     

    The HR team structure is also really important to shaping the business model. Many HR teams put roles in place that support their working model, such as: HR Shared Services, HR Business Partners and Centres of Expertise. This helps to drive operational efficiency and excellence as your business structure is formed around supporting your workforce in a clear and defined way. By implementing HR models, many HR teams see enhanced employee engagement and retention.

     

  • What is a digital business model?

    A digital business model is where digital transformation is at the heart of a business’s strategy. Digital transformation is when a business reviews the integration of digital methods and systems in business, in order to replace inefficient analogue and manual versions. Generally, businesses are looking to adopt a Cloud digital business strategy as this is more secure and flexible than on-premise alternatives. Find out more about digital transformation.

  • What are the different digital maturity models?

    A digital maturity model is a framework that enables you to understand how digitally mature your business is. Following a digital maturity model will enable your business to understand how far along your digital transformation path you are and what the next steps should be to achieving your desired outcome. There are a range of different models which exist, pioneered by the likes of Google and Deloitte, however the majority of digital maturity models are centred around the following pillars:

     

    •Operations

    •Organisation Culture

    •Organisation Strategy

    •Technology Adoption

    •Customer Demographic

     

    When looking at your digital maturity model these are the five most important things to keep front of mind. Ensure you are meeting the requirements of each of these areas to bring about success.

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