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<i>Dear Workforce</i> Shift Work Is Harming Morale. How Do We Make Amends?

September 27, 2009
Our financial services company recently introduced shift work for some service positions, which has led to grumbling and general discontent. For example, our service-desk positions previously were 8 a.m.-5 p.m. jobs, but business needs warranted going to a 24/5 schedule. We are concerned about a drop in morale, along with the attendant productivity drops. We tried to roll this out gradually, giving service people time to adjust and informing them of the change through group meetings and one on one. Still, morale is at a new low since we began the shift-work schedule. How could we have missed on this so badly? And how can we repair the damage? —Sinking Fast, manager, finance/insurance/real estate, Johannesburg, South Africa
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<i>Dear Workforce</i> Why Cant We Solve Tardiness?

January 7, 2009
Our CEO is very particular about punctuality. We do have some people who arrive late (usually not more than 10 minutes each day regularly). As HR, we are always sandwiched between opposing forces: employees who feel that "We are just a few minutes late, and more important, it’s the results that count." On the other hand, our CEO always asks our HR professionals to remind people about being punctual. Now we have been charged with reminding department heads to ensure they have a grip on the matter and to monitor staff attendance from time to time. What items should I write to them about specifically?
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