Creating a Great Working Environment

Cheerful coworkers in office during company meeting

One big misconception in the workplace is the belief that an employee’s experience and skill set is the fundamental attribute to the employee reaching full potential and performance levels. An employee’s level of performance in the workplace is highly influenced by their working environment. Creating a positive and comfortable atmosphere is the key to maximising your employee’s, and your company’s potential. Here are our 5 tips to creating a great working environment.

  1. Equal Participation and Communication 

Encouraging your employees to discuss openly about their thoughts and suggest new ideas they might have, gives the employee confidence and promotes a sense of worth. It is crucial that you create an approachable atmosphere for your staff. not only does open communication create confidence to discuss opinions and ideas, but in most cases encourages the employee to openly discuss any problems or issues they are facing in the work place and feel comfortable in doing so.

      2. Training and Development

Training and development is crucial and ultimately contributes to maintaining and improving employee’s knowledge and skills in order to generate the best quality and results. It is crucial that the focus of implementing the training and development is on employee empowerment and building confidence. This is an investment not a cost. Ultimately employee efficiency is improved, therefore leading to financial gain.  If you spend the time to implement appropriate training, you will see the rewards. Employee productivity and job satisfaction is increased, thereby contributing to enhanced morale and reduced employee turnover.

      3. Feedback and Recognition

Providing your employee with feedback, whether positive or negative, will have a profound effect on the employee. Employees can utilize constructive feedback in personal development and self-improvement. Implementing an appraisal process is an excellent way of not only providing feedback to the employee, but gives the employee to the chance to discuss any issues they might be facing in the work place.

Ensure that employees efforts and achievements are recognised. Acknowledge what the employees do well and when possible, implement a rewards scheme for your employee’s achievements. When employees feel that they are being rewarded for their hard work and that efforts have been recognised employee satisfaction will significantly increase.

      4. Creating ‘Team Spirit’

Creating a feeling of team spirit in the work place provides a sense of community and solidarity. When morale and camaraderie levels are high, a strong team culture naturally evolves. Here are some tips on how to create a strong team spirit:

  • Schedule bonding and activity days. Encourage employees to get to know each other and create trust amongst the team.
  • Encourage employers to recognise, acknowledge and praise colleague’s achievments and celebrate as a team.
  • Implement a core set of values to be followed by employees. Focus on maintaining respect, honest and fairness


     5. Creating a Sense of Purpose

Your employees are an asset to your company. Each employee, no matter what job role are equally as important as one another in contributing to the process effectiveness of your organization. Employees who feel they are valuable to your brand are significantly more likely to feel satisfied in their role, produce quality results in their role, and feel reduced stress in the workplace as opposed to those who feel no value. Ensure that you make the time to stress the importance of each employee’s role and how they contribute to the success of the company.

Poor Connectivity Issues



A report by the telecoms firm Daisy Group found that 47% of managers thought they rarely or never suffered from poor connectivity, when in fact companies are experiencing an average of 45 minutes downtime every week.

How much is poor connectivity and downtime costing business?
The report found that this is equal to more than £500 per employee, per year, in lost productivity. A prior study, earlier in the year by OnePoll found that slow internet connections and IT downtime is costing the UK economy £11 billion a year in lost productivity. And a study by Aberdeen Group UK found downtime cost an average of £138,000 per hour, varying across industries from £55,000 per hour in the media sector to £3.91 million per hour for large online brokerages. The costs come from paying employees to simply do nothing, to paying an individual or firm to fix the problem and of course any lost sales. There are also hidden costs such as employee overtime, missed deadlines, damaged reputation and customer dissatisfaction.

What’s the problem?
The problems can often be simple ones such as faulty modems, damaged wires or corrupted profiles. These kind of issues can normally be resolved in a day or so, even a few hours. One survey of UK, US and Canadian firms found that 82% of network downtime problems were caused by IT personnel making errors when configuring changes to the network. An irritating truth, when you know the majority of these kind of errors could have been avoided with more diligence or experience. With the rise of joint space and co-working environments wi-fi connectivity can be an issue. Owen’s Garage is a co-working space in the US and Kurt Rathmann, CEO of ScaleFactor Partners uses it regularly. Inevitably there are connection issues now and again and he eventually calculated that a four hour internet outage could be costing him up to $3000.

What do employees get up to during this downtime?

• 60% – taking care of personal business
• 48% – taking an extra coffee break
• 25% – checking Facebook
• 7% – indulging in a spot of retail therapy
• 9% – looking for a new job
• 30% – swoting up on some work-related reading

What should managers be doing?
The survey also asked managers what they thought they should be doing about such issues. One in eight said they didn’t know, 17% said they’d review things when the contract is due for renewal and another 17% said they would only review things when staff make a complaint. Really, as businesses change and grow, connectivity should be reviewed regularly and in line with these changes to ensure processes aren’t being held back by slow internet connections.

The government have committed to upgrading broadband for many of the UK’s cities and superfast broadband is spreading fast as providers compete. Having a connection that is built with your specific business, users and activity in mind is important to make sure it will work for you. If you need to hire IT professionals to advise or become part of your in-house team, speak to us and see how we can help.

Updates From The Langley James HQ


We’ve been very busy behind the scenes recently working hard on some exciting new projects, and felt it was time to share some of our updates and developments! For over 15 years Langley James have been providing bespoke IT recruitment for organisations of all sizes and specialisms. As our team of experienced professionals has grown so has our portfolio, excellent service and our aspiration for growth.

ISO accreditation

We’re working to continually improve our internal processes and programmes to make our service even more efficient and tailored. We are currently en route to becoming ISO accredited to ensure our fair practices and great service are recognised, and to help us increase productivity and minimise waste.

New Senior Recruiters in our London office

We have recently expanded our team by hiring two very experienced London based consultants, each with over 20 years experience. We’re delighted to welcome these accomplished and highly talented professionals to the team, whose depth and breadth of experience will enhance our businesses significantly. Not only this but being based in the heart of the city means having a presence in the capital, will be priceless for improving our service to London clients and candidates.

HR Focus

Recruiting for IT roles has long been our core focus. However following the strong connections and relationships we’ve built with many organisations over the years, teamed with consultants well versed in HR practices and personnel matters, we are now recruiting for a growing number of specialist HR roles such as HR Advisors and Payroll Administrators. If you are looking for a new addition to your HR team, please get in touch with us to speak to one of our experienced HR consultants.

Website Refresh

Our regular visitors may have noticed some subtle changes to our website recently. We’ve had a bit of a refresh to improve the feel and layout of the site so it’s even easier for you to find what you’re looking for! Our article section also includes some useful pieces to help managers through the recruitment process and to stay up to date with current IT and personnel topics.

We’re here to help, and pride ourselves in offering a boutique style service tailored to individual businesses and candidates, so that not only skills, but personalities are matched. So whatever your recruitment needs, feel free to get in touch with us for a chat.

Three Tips for Avoiding Ageism When Recruiting


A recent poll by Mercer found that only a minority of employers monitor practices for age discrimination. Dealing correctly with ageism in the workplace and particularly in the recruitment process is an important part of organisational diversity, so we look at some of the facts and offer a few suggestions to ensure ageism doesn’t become an issue for your organistion.

Remember it’s not only the older generation that ageism can effect

When we think of ageism at work or in recruitment, it’s often related to older workers, as this is the most reported and perhaps the most common, particularly in the world of technology. Many organisations may feel that recruiting a younger employee is best for their organisation as they are able to offer a lower salary, or because a younger person is less likely to have family commitments and be able to work longer hours, or because a younger person may be seen to have a better ‘cultural fit’ with their hip, fashionable business. The older generation has a lot to offer, and our article ‘Can Older Workers Bridge the Skills Shortage Gap?’ discusses this further.

However, the Guardian reported that “experiences of age discrimination were more common for younger groups, with under-25s at least twice as likely to have experienced it than other age groups” suggesting that employees over 40 had the highest status and “perceptions towards those aged over 70 were more positive than towards those in their 20s”. Respect, experience and maturity come with age, but the younger generation need a chance to develop these attributes so mustn’t be discriminated against either.

Keep pay and progression in mind

A report by XpertHR revealed that; “technology professionals get fewer promotions, lower performance ratings and reduced pay increases once they hit the age of 50.” They found that employees in their 20s got higher pay increases and more regular promotions, decreasing rapidly once they hit 30. The report (which excluded senior management) also revealed that performance rates were higher for those in their 30s, than for those in their 20s, and stayed steady for 40 and 50 years olds before beginning to tail off for those in their 60s. This flags up the issue of whether pay increases and promotion are generally being handed out based on performance or on age.

Incorporate anti-ageism into your overall company culture

Obvious ageism such as compulsory retirement ages or age caps are unacceptable and will end up in court if there are still organisations with these kind of old fashioned and unfair practices in place. However there are many grey areas, particularly in the writing of job adverts and descriptions. It seems that some organisations simply want to find a different way to describe the same thing, without using the latest word or phrase to be struck off the list of acceptable adjectives. For example, following a lawsuit against Facebook for posting a job advert with the phrase ‘class of 2007 or 2008 preferred’ and the since common use of the term ‘new graduate’ Fortune reported that some employers are opting to mask their age bias by advertising for a ‘digital native’. Surely just another way to say ‘young’? The more long-term view is to remove any age expectations from your position and organisation, and adopt a policy that thrives on a number of generations working together.

At Langley James we have a wealth of recruitment and personnel experience and can guide you through the best practice for advertising your job and finding the best candidate. We’ll do the hard work for you! If you’d like more information about diversity or avoiding ageism in your recruitment please get in touch.