first_img Previous Article Next Article Turbulent timesOn 5 Feb 2002 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. The effects of 11 September hit the airline business harder than most, andwhile the shock waves reverberate around the industry, the challenge for HRprofessionals is to keep their feet firmly on the ground, says Jane LewisIt is just as well the travel industry regards itself as one of the mostresilient in the economy, because it has certainly taken more than its fairshare of knocks in the past year. Old hands insist the current crisis is theworst the industry has faced since it was almost wiped out by the Opec oilshortages in the 1970s. “We’ve had the early-80s recession, the 1987 stockmarket crash, the Gulf War and Black Wednesday,” says British Midlandveteran boss Sir Michael Bishop. “But in terms of seismic shock, this isthe worst”. Within days of the terrorist strikes in September, the travel sector was inturmoil as shock waves began to reverberate across the industry. With bookingsplummeting by as much as 40 per cent, some companies took immediate and drasticaction. It is estimated that 200,000 jobs were axed in the airline industryworldwide during the autumn months – including more than 7,000 at BritishAirways and 1,200 at Virgin Atlantic, both of whose key transatlantic routeswere among the worst hit. The knock-on effect on the aviation supply industrieslooked equally worrying. By November more than 8,000 manufacturing jobs hadbeen cut and Boeing was threatening to slash up to 31,000 from its workforce. The UK holiday industry – parts of which had already been hit by thelong-running foot-and-mouth saga – was equally badly bitten. “We had a blindingly good year until 11 September, way aboveprojection,” says Richard Good, personnel manager at long-haul specialistKuoni Travel. “But then we took a massive hit, and lost about 51 per centof our business almost overnight. We’ve been going 30 years in the UK and havenever had to make redundancies before.” The firm is seeking to cut 10 per cent of its workforce. If everything worksout this year, he says, Kuoni may be able to claw back to the level it was atin 1996. Despite a constant spate of setbacks (the anthrax and shoe-bomber scares;and now warnings from the Government that too much exotic travel is proving badfor the nation’s health), the industry has somehow staggered into the New Yearbolstered by the belief that the worst may be over. The Taliban are defeatedand public confidence is improving: More than a million Britons took to theskies over Christmas – “firm evidence” says airport operator BAA,that “things are picking up”. As everyone in the industry enjoysreminding each other, recovery after the Gulf War kicked in pretty quickly oncehostilities ceased, even though bookings dipped by 60 per cent at the height ofthe crisis. But there is a very real worry that recovery this time around may beconsiderably longer in coming and a good deal more difficult to achieve than itwas 10 years ago. This is mainly because so many of the economic factors now threateningthe travel industry were already in place well before 11 September. With the USteetering on full-blown recession and prospects looking none to happy inEurope, who can say how long consumers in Britain will continue to hold theirnerve. Many economists believe the credit-fuelled spending spree the countryembarked on over Christmas could well prove ‘the last hoorah’. According to one industry source, reservations at the four top touroperators, Thomson, Airtours, First Choice and JMC – though certainly betterthan they were two months ago – are still down by a quarter on what they werethis time last year. All four have responded by slashing capacity this summerby 15 per cent, but the situation for many has been compounded by the risingcosts they face in the wake of 11 September – the charter airlines that many ofthem own are becoming more expensive to run because of higher insurancepremiums and new security measures. So pronounced is this long-term economic trend, it has been argued the eventsof 11 September provided a useful pretext for job cuts that were on the cardsanyway. This may be particularly true of the European airline industry which isstill dominated by a host of loss-making, state-subsidised national carriersthat have been ripe for consolidation for some time. Certainly the upheavalfollowing the terrorist attacks proved the final nail in the coffin for atleast two state monoliths – Belgium’s Sabena and Swissair – and there aregrowing fears about the futures at Aer Lingus, Greece’s Olympic Airways andAlitalia. To some extent “the runes were already cast”, says EasyJet head ofpeople and organisational development Chris Goscomb. Indeed, the continuingsuccess of low-cost carriers like EasyJet and its rival Ryanair throughout theautumn months seems to indicate that if people were nervous about flying, theyhave been able to quickly brush aside those fears as long as the price wasright. As Go CEO Barbara Cassani points out: “People umming and aahingabout whether or not to fly to Italy this weekend see eye-poppingly low faresand say ‘let’s do it’.” Whatever the underlying reasons for the shake-up in the travel industry, onething is clear: The past few months have proved more than usually challengingfor HR – and may well come to be seen as a test-bed for how well new theoriesabout people management in times of economic crisis hold up in real life. Even those who got off lightest claim the process of stemming panic andrefocusing minds in the aftermath of the attacks has been a nerve-wrackingprocess. “From an operations perspective we’ve learned a lot about how wecommunicate with people,” says Goscomb. The company majored oninformation: giving staff constant updates of “what was going on” and”what we were doing”, he says. Above all, he adds, “we focusedon security and the long-term aims of the business. Sticking to the knittingwas the most important thing”. Ryanair, meanwhile, tackled the situation head-on, galvanising staff withthe same gutsy, go-getting attitude it featured in its customer advertising.‘Let’s Fight Back!’ ran the slogan, next to a picture of General Kitchener (aninteresting choice for an Irish company). But the campaign seemed to do thetrick. “Morale at Ryanair,” says one company source “has never beenbetter.” Elsewhere in the industry, this couldn’t be further from the truth. The UKtour operators, in particular, have been hit hard by a bruising period ofuncertainty and retrenchment. “It’s fair to say that morale has beendifficult,” says Peter Constanti, interim HR director at JMC, part ofThomas Cook. “We’ve had to take some tough decisions.” You can saythat again. Things got so bloody at Thomas Cook in recent months (2,000 of thegroup’s 13,000 workforce have already been chopped), that even the company’sSouth African CEO, Alan Stewart, has taken to calling himself the ‘AfricanAxeman’. But in recent weeks, says Constanti, “there’s been a realabout-turn”, sparked by the belief that the consolidation programme”is well on its way to achieving its objectives”, even though thesewon’t be fully realised till the back end of 2002 at the earliest. The group’sremaining workforce have also been asked to take a 3 to 10 per cent pay cut. At least Thomas Cook’s top executives followed suit by taking substantialsalary reductions themselves – more than can be said for board members at rivalAirtours (shortly to be renamed MyTravel), who awarded themselves bonusestotalling £2m last year – in the same period that 2,800 staff, roughly 10 percent of the workforce, lost their jobs. The situation for many employers has been made easier by the long-term trendfor more flexible working contracts in the travel industry, says Richard Cox ofManpower. And there is certainly encouraging evidence to suggest that HRdirectors are also taking a more imaginative, less earth-shattering, approachto the process of retrenchment this time around. For once, it seems, lessonshave been learned. With the memory of the recent skills shortage fresh in theminds of many, the emphasis in some of the more enlightened operations has beenupon measured cutting with an eye to the future. Good employers are looking for solutions like shorter hours and careerbreaks, At BA, staff options put into practice in recent months include part-timeworking, job sharing and unpaid leave. Anything, in fact, that may help reducecosts without undoing the investment already made in the company’s workforce. Indeed, some of the more innovative HR compromises that have been struck inrecent weeks have been hailed by at least one trade association as “theway forward for the whole of British industry”. Typical, perhaps, was thewillingness of pilots at First Choice’s Air 2000 charter airline to save morethan 50 jobs by taking a temporary deferment of pay – in some cases evenagreeing to demotions. A similarly ground-breaking deal at airline manufacturer Airbus helped savethe jobs of 1000 aerospace workers just before Christmas. By voting to cut theworking week, employees will save the company up to £17m in costs as well assafeguarding its skills-base. The agreement, says Sir Ken Jackson, generalsecretary of the Amalgamated Engineering and Electrical Union, “put jobsecurity and protecting the skills base and capacity at the top of the agenda”and showed what could be achieved when unions and management worked inpartnership. Others paid tribute to Airbus for “not panicking in the waysome companies have”. It is clear those companies that do make it through the crisis intact willemerge stronger for it. “It looks bleak at the moment,” says BenHall, spokesman for Virgin Atlantic. “But we will come through and we willbe strong afterwards.” However, as Constanti points out, the real test forthe holiday industry lies ahead. “The critical time for the industry isgoing to be January, February and March,” he says. “If you’re not outof the woods by the end of March, you’ll know you’re not out of thewoods.” Despite warnings from the Association of British Travel Agents that theeffects of the economic downturn on the industry could still be felt in 2005,the long-term prospects for the industry are sanguine, says David Thomas, CEOof the Careers Research and Advice Centre, because it is recognised that”travel and leisure are key elements of the modern economy”. The chief problem for HR in the meantime will be handling uncertainty. Butthat task, argue the experts, will undoubtedly be made easier by the industry’sconsiderable past experience in handling peaks and troughs. The sector istraditionally quick to react to economic cycles: it is often the first tosuffer and the first to recover. As such, many other sectors on the brink ofdownturn, would do well to study its form. “Travel is a permanentlymoveable feast,” says Constanti. “In this industry people are prettyresilient. It’s a fun industry: there’s general feeling of ‘let’s get back tothe enjoyment’.” Telecoms technology cashes inIf one sector’s crisis is another’s opportunity, thebeleaguered high-tech industry has been having a ball at the travel industry’sexpense. The crisis in business confidence that has affected the airlines sobadly has proved a boon to the battered telecoms firms peddling alternativemeans of communication – most notably, broadband video and teleconferencing.According to one expert, it could well prove the catalyst that puts thesetechnologies firmly on the daily business schedule in many companies.More than 33 per cent of major UK corporations have cut down onexecutive travel since 11 September, according to one survey, and most havereported a significant increase in their use of technology. A quarter aremaking more use of telephones and mobiles, a fifth have increased the use ofe-mail and 26 per cent have made further forays into teleconferencing to keepin touch with offices, customers, suppliers and prospects around the world.From the point of view of enlightened human resourcesmanagement, this would certainly be a welcome development if it succeeds inreducing the air-miles that some senior executives have been racking up inrecent years, says Cary Cooper, Bupa professor of organisational psychology atUMIST. Travelling time has seriously affected the work-life balance of manyinternational business travellers, he argues, leading to higher levels ofstress and problems with relationships both at home and at work. While no one is suggesting that business travel could ever beeliminated altogether – face-to-face contact will always play a pivotal rolewhen relationships are being established and deals hammered out – the uptake ofnew technologies offers the promise of change in existing businessrelationships. Eventually the idea of boarding a plane to settle a routinetransaction will seem as futile as it is wasteful. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more


first_imgThe L * invariant coordinate depends on the global electromagnetic field topology at a given instance and the standard method for its determination requires a computationally expensive drift contour tracing. This fact makes L * a cumbersome parameter to handle. In this paper, we provide new insights on the L * parameter and we introduce an algorithm for an L * approximation that only requires the real-time tracing of one magnetic field line between mirrors points. This approximation is based on the description of the variation of the magnetic field mirror intensity after an adiabatic dipolarization, i.e., after the non-dipolar components of a magnetic field have been turned off with a characteristic time very long in comparison with the particles’ drift periods. The corresponding magnetic field topological variations are deduced assuming that the field line foot points remain rooted in the Earth’s surface and the drift average operator is replaced with a computationally cheaper circular average operator. The algorithm results in a relative difference of a maximum of 12 % between the approximate L * and the output obtained using the International Radiation Belt Environment Modeling Library (IRBEM-LIB), in the case of the Tsyganenko 89 model for the external magnetic field (T89). This margin of error is similar to the margin of error due to small deviations between different magnetic field models at geostationary orbit. This approximate L * algorithm represents therefore a reasonable compromise between computational speed and accuracy of particular interest for real-time space weather forecast purposeslast_img read more


first_imgPurplebricks has been given a £266,973 fine by HM Revenue & Customers for breaches of money laundering rules, the largest ever given to a UK estate agency.This follows the £215,000 fine given to Countrywide in March last year for similar offences.Purplebricks has issued a statement saying the breaches took place in 2018 and that it has reviewed its processes since then and “improved our compliance procedures”.The company is one of ten to have their fines published by HMRC for the period 1st August 2019 to 31st January 2020 although it received by far the largest. Laxmi Jewellers, which received the next biggest fine, received a penalty of £23,142.Purplebricks is the only stock market listed company on the list which includes mostly small accountancy firms, a car dealer and several firms that help set up trusts and companies for clients.BreachesAn HMRC statement says that: “These breaches [by Purplebricks] are failures in having the correct policies, controls and procedures, conducting due diligence and timing of verification.”As a supervisor of the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017, which came into effect on 26 June 2017, HMRC has a duty to publish details of businesses that do not comply with the regulations and are registered with HMRC for anti-money laundering supervision.An HMRC spokesperson says: “Money laundering funds serious and organised crime and costs the UK economy billions of pounds every year. The money-laundering regulations are a vital line of defence against that.”aml fine Purplebricks fine HM Revenue & Customs HMRC anti money laundering August 18, 2020Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021 Home » News » Purplebricks given largest ever AML fine for an estate agency previous nextRegulation & LawPurplebricks given largest ever AML fine for an estate agencyThe hybrid’s sloppy compliance procedures are slammed by HMRC who have given the agency a larger fine than even Countrywide’s £215,000 AML penalty of last year.Nigel Lewis18th August 202003,536 Viewslast_img read more


first_img Authorities Most Read News, April 17 – 23, 2017 Back to overview,Home naval-today Most Read News, April 17 – 23, 2017 Share this articlecenter_img View post tag: Most Read News April 23, 2017last_img


first_imgUnico defeated Mackenzie, 11-5. Christian Hampton had two hits for Unico, including an inside the park homer, Joe Cifarelli, Aiden Milachouski, Steven Kass, Nicky Ponczek, Jack Kruchkowski, Jack Nichols and Brenden Devine all had base hits for Unico; Joe Ashe lead Mackenzie with two hits, while Mike McCollum, Tyler Essex and Ariana King all had hits for Mackenzie.Standings: Attisano (3-0), Mackenzie (2-2), Unico (2-2), J & J (1-1), Hudacko’s (1-4)Minor League games:Kuhl’s won against Borker Transmission, 7-2. Carmelo Isler, Aiden Moto and Jose Mogros combined to throw a two-hitter while striking out 13, Carmelo also had two hits, including a triple, Aiden and Jose also had base hits while Brandon De Lo Santos, Caleb Medrano, and Johnny Medrano had a base hit apiece. Will Carrington and Jayden Estavez combined to strike out 13 batters for Borker while Jayden and Erick Safner both had base hits. Bielan beat Perrucci, 8-0. Chris Lopez, Jared Edwards, Patrick Cena and Ethan Villacres combined on a one-hitter and 12 strikeouts. Chris had a base hit for Bielan and Anthony Weimmer had a double for Perrucci.Standings: Kuhl’s (3-0), Bielan Law (2-1), Borker (2-1), Tarantino (0-2), Perrucci (0-3). Major League games:Attisano beat Hudacko’s, 14-4. Attisano was behind 4-3 after four innings, then they scored 11 runs in the top of the fifth. Logan Chi had a big day at the plate, going four for four with two triples, Jake Sullivan had three hits, including a double, Justin Perry had a double and a single, Jadiero Estavez had double and Joey Jasinski had a single. Josh Sanchez and Mikey Boehm had two hits apiece for Hudacko’s while Nick Malloy, Liam Hester and Danny Petrowski all had base hits. last_img read more


first_imgVasco Regula Dear Editor: As a registered Democrat, there are few times where I agree with my Republican friends on issues. But I am intrigued by Republican Senate candidate Bob Hugin, who says he’s a different kind of Republican.He’s pro-choice, supports marriage equality, and supports equal pay. He also sounds like a reasonable person on immigration as well and he supports a path to citizenship for DREAMers. In the current political environment, it’s encouraging to see a different kind of Republican who is not afraid to stand up for what he believes in even if it bucks the party norms. Instead of partisan politics as usual, he wants to work with Democrats and Republicans to make things better for our state.We need more bipartisanship in Washington, not less. For years we’ve seen both parties engage in partisan exercises, and for years we’ve seen them fail to solve problems. Bob Hugin says he will be a different kind of Republican who will get results. I’m willing to give him a chance.last_img read more


first_imgWith Dead & Company tour in full swing, band members Bob Weir and John Mayer sat down with the Asbury Park Press ahead of the band’s New Jersey debut. The two guitarists talk extensively about building a large musical catalog with diverse influences, and how each are astute in hearing these influences and learning from one another.“When John plays blues, you can hear what subgenre he’s going for,” said Weir. “He’s real well-versed in particularly that idiom, but what that told me is that he’s basically a student and fan of American musical heritage.”He continued, saying “I could hear (Mayer’s) appreciation of the various fields, and that’s where our music comes from… We grew up — the guys in The Grateful Dead — grew up in an era in the Bay Area out here, where you had everything that America had to offer on the radio. And we were the kinds of kids who were just playing the buttons on the radio.”“If there was something playing that wasn’t catching our interest, we hit another button. We’d go from rock ’n’ roll to jazz to R&B or blues stations, classical music – whatever it took to grab our attention… And we were all different guys, but we all had that same approach, most particularly Jerry and I.” It seems Mayer has a similar mindset, something that Bob Weir finds endearing. Mayer chimed in about his own influences and mindset for building a diverse repertoire. “When you’re into music the way that Bob and I are, and you know, we’re separated by a lot of geography, a lot of time, but there’s a certain way to be in the music where it’s almost like collecting baseball cards… It’s like you collect the Texas blues card. You collect the Chicago electric blues card. You collect the country-western card.”“And it’s sort of like this love of all these different little cards you can collect and keep in a little stack and walk around with them in your back pocket.  It really for me was just about like sort of just getting another card or trading a card, you know?  And when musicians look at music that way, where it’s just sort of like this Rolodex of influences, it’s actually really great to have that conversation musically, and it’s just a matter of rearranging the cards a little bit.”That’s really part of the Grateful Dead magic, being able to go from folk to blues to funk in the drop of a hat. With these two guitarists up in front and the supreme talents of musicians like Bill Kreutzmann, Mickey Hart, Oteil Burbridge and Jeff Chimenti, there’s plenty of magic left to come!last_img read more


first_img “Being a small community and with a great liberal arts coordination, I was able to take a lot of social sciences that my colleagues weren’t able to take,” he said. “Your inner ear is in tune with gravity. You are made for this planet, and when you leave it, it is confusing for your head and your eyes,” Ford said. Ford said experiencing a new view of earth was one of the most memorable experiences of his 2009 trip to the International Space Station, which lasted almost fourteen days. “The coolest parts are that you have a view of the planet out of the window, and the zero gravity,” he said. “Almost everything you do, gravity is somehow involved. Just doing little things involved a little forethought.” “I knew I wanted to fly when I was 13 or 14. I wanted to be an Air Force pilot and maybe be an airline pilot down the road,” he said. “I took flight lessons when I was 16, and worked at a grocery store to pay for it, so that should tell you how much I wanted it.” Prior to his time at NASA, Ford was a member of the Air Force for 18 years — something he said was a near lifelong dream. Ford, who is scheduled to return to the International Space Station in October of 2012, said he believes the drive to succeed is what enabled him to achieve his dreams, and is the key to success for Notre Dame students. Ford said it takes years to train to be certified as a flight-ready astronaut. Once he was assigned to his flight, he had a little over a year to train with his team. Ford says it took him a while to be accepted into the astronaut-training program, which he began in August of 2000. He said though zero gravity was an entertaining aspect of his time aboard the space staion, it did present its challenges to the human body, especially in terms of acclimating to the new conditions.center_img Though they were just about to be launched into space, the flight crew sitting in the cockpit of the space shuttle Discovery was not too nervous just prior to their Aug. 28, 2009 launch, according to astronaut Kevin Ford. “I applied three times before I was accepted. I still have the rejection letters at home,” he said. While at Notre Dame, Ford was a member of the Air Force ROTC and lived in Morrissey Manor. He said that Notre Dame prepared him in ways for his career and training that no other school could. “Quite frankly, I don’t think anyone in our cockpit was nervous. If you are nervous about anything, it’s about throwing the correct switch at the right time,” he said. “After being on the launch pad for three hours in a space suit, it is nice to be launched into space.” Ford, a 1982 graduate of Notre Dame with a degree in aerospace engineering, participated in the flag presentation ceremony prior to this weekend’s football game between Notre Dame and Stanford. “A big part of training is astronaut candidate training, which lasts about a year and a half to two years. You get some hands on and leadership training,” he said. “They also teach you some technical training that you will need to fly a space shuttle. After completing this you are assignable to a space flight.” He also said Notre Dame’s course requirements helped make him a stronger student by forcing him to take classes he normally would not take, which has paid off in his career as an astronaut. “It’s a special place to get a good feel for other people’s point of view. The fact that Notre Dame has this real diverse attitude provides well,” he said. “Patience is required in training, and you are essentially a student for something that has risk associated with it.” “Consider your life and educational experiences. If you have a dream or goal, persistence is a virtue. Don’t be afraid to get out there,” he said.last_img read more