…in brief

This week’s news in brief

Jenny’s off to Toronto

Management and development adviser Jenny Taylor is off to Toronto and
Niagara Falls thanks to PersonnelToday.com and totaljobs.

Taylor, who works for financial services company Skandia, entered a
competition on PersonnelToday.com. "I’m so excited to have won this trip.
I visited Toronto five years ago and have longed to return ever since,"
she said. The next PersonnelToday.com competition will be launched on 16

Consignia cuts jobs

The Communication Workers Union has claimed Consignia is planning to reduce
its workforce by 20,000 after the company announced plans to cut costs by more
than £1bn by March 2003. A company spokeswoman said cost cuts were necessary
due to increased competition and regulatory pressure but denied redundancies
would be on the scale claimed by the CWU. She said, "We want to invest in
our products and the way in which we deliver them. We want to invest in our
people and to ensure our profitability is at a level our shareholder – the
Government – has every right to expect."

Job-hunters hide kids

Nearly a third of job-hunters keep the fact they have children hidden from
potential employers, research from recruitment agency Pertemps reveals. The
study, involving people working in areas ranging from marketing and management
to factories and shops, finds many parents, particularly women, fear employers
would consider them unreliable. Age is also likely to be omitted from a CV,
with 15 per cent saying they would not include it.  www.pertemps.co.uk

Mersey jobs boost

The Merseyside economy has received a massive boost with the launch of a
£67m support package, which could lead to 4,000 new jobs in the region. The
money has been awarded to the Greater Merseyside Enterprises, the area’s new
small business service, following the Government’s successful bid for EU
Objective One funding status for the area. Objective One is awarded on the
basis of an area’s unemployment level and if its GDP per capita is below 75 per
cent of the European average.

Royle sues Man City

The former manager of Manchester City Football Club is suing for wrongful
dismissal and is disputing the size of his compensation pay-off. Joe Royle,
sacked by the club earlier this year, is hoping to use a technicality by
proving that the team was still in the Premiership, despite already being
relegated, when he lost his job. He also claims his replacement, former England
manager Kevin Keegan, was approached 24 hours before his dismissal.

Insurance pay rises

Basic salaries in the UK insurance industry have risen by an average of 4.8
per cent in the past 12 months, according to a survey by Watson Wyatt. The
sector continued to see wider use of variable pay, with less emphasis on basic
salaries and more on bonuses that reflect individual and company performance.
Iain Nichols, a consultant at Watson Wyatt, commented, "The trend in the
sector appears to be more that more companies are managing their pay bill more
tightly and rewarding their higher performers through a combination of base pay
and performance-related bonuses."  www.watsonwyatt.com

DTi unveils jackpot

The DTI has unveiled a £120m science jackpot that will be used to help forge
stronger links between learning institutions and British industry. More than
200 universities, colleges and hospitals across the country will benefit from
the funds which were awarded by an independent board, chaired by Dr John Taylor
of the Office of Science and Technology.

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