Why Is No One Talking About Ageism In the Workplace in 2023

By Thom Dennis, CEO of culture and leadership specialists, Serenity in Leadership


The most common form of workplace prejudice reported is age discrimination, with more than 1 in 10 UK adults saying they believe their age has been a factor in not getting jobs they applied for. Globally every second person is still believed to hold ageist attitudes. Yet population demographics are continually changing, and any given workforce may now span five generations and with retirement age increasing, many businesses are missing opportunities to get the best out of their generational workforce through collaboration rather than bias and competition.


Societal Changes – The issues

There are numerous societal factors at play. People are living and working for longer and birth rates are in decline. We are used to seeing generational pyramids in the workplace but now over 30% of the workforce is 50 and over, something that has never been seen before in history, yet this fact is barely given a nod within most workplaces.  A somewhat measly 13% of organisations report age inclusivity being a factor they plan to focus on in the next five years.

We are profoundly ageist. In one study 36% of employees over 50 reported they had been disadvantaged at work because of their age. Companies are still letting go of people over 50 who are considered in effect, a bad look for the company, especially in tech, which is a problem when the youth pipeline is drying up. Younger generations are patronised and accused of being too woke and can feel disadvantaged by being overlooked for projects or their thoughts are not heard, which holds both them and the company back. 

Ageism within the workplace manifests itself through hiring practices, promotions, retention, training and development opportunities and throughout workplace culture and conversation. Whilst there has been a dramatic increase in attention on gender and race inclusion and diversity (rightfully) there has been little progress on ageism (wrongfully).

It is quite a challenge to find solutions to ageism especially because societally in the West we no longer honour our elders. Society often discards them and views them as a drain. 

Employees can miss out on opportunities due to age discrimination which goes on to create a toxic, exclusionary work environment. Stereotypes and biases around age impact all employees and are detrimental to the organisation at large.


The benefits of a multi-generational workforce

Sadly few organisations report age inclusivity being a factor they plan to focus on in the next five years, yet having employees with multiple different viewpoints and life experiences all in the same space and an anti-ageist stance means a stronger workplace for the future. This includes reaping the benefits of collaboration, cultivating organic mentoring environments and expanding team-building possibilities, capitalising on more varied talent and the creativity they bring, enhancing a robust pool of skilled and productive individuals, stronger workforce sustainability, loyalty and consistency, facilitating the preservation of knowledge and encouraging the exchange of best practices and diverse viewpoints to build better emotional and cultural intelligence.


How to bridge the gap and modernise anti-ageist attitudes.


  1. Measure for ageism to bring about actionable and long-lasting change. Ensure employees of any age feel included and secure at work. Understand what share of the workforce is leaving and what skills and talents you are losing as a result so you can work out how to retain future talent.
  2. Seek input from a diverse range of employees to stop bias in policy construction. Don’t make assumptions about what needs to change without involving those impacted.
  3. Don’t make assumptions. A current classic isonly the younger generations will understand and be able to work with AI’. Recognise the skills that all age groups bring from wisdom and pragmatism to creativity and positive energy and don’t assume workers will be ineffectual because of age.
  4. Organise comprehensive ongoing training that delves deeply into unconscious bias and stereotypes and encompasses all aspects of diversity and inclusivity, including ageism. It is crucial to have leadership support and ensure the participation of all employees, management and stakeholders.
  5. Make sure all company collateral reflects diversity in age. Check internal and external messaging, comms and visual displays show variety and inclusivity in age to reflect society.
  6. Formulate and implement comprehensive policies and practices aimed at eradicating age discrimination, including examples, procedures for reporting such incidents, and protocols for addressing grievances. Guarantee equitable opportunities and promotions for all individuals regardless of age. Perpetuating stereotypes may lead to potential legal ramifications for your organisation.
  7. Adopt intergenerational collaboration – Encourage a collaborative workplace culture to promote inclusivity and strengthen intergenerational bonds. Implement reverse mentoring programs that benefit employees of all generations by pairing colleagues from different age groups to work together on tasks.
  8. Encourage career development – With careers now spanning over 50 years there need to be opportunities for continual advancement to challenge employees of all ages and show they have a future in the business and can feel secure in their job.
  9. Address complaints – Listen to, monitor and most importantly address concerns or complaints around discrimination. Establish ways for employees to report age-related discrimination or harassment and have the solutions in place to take appropriate action.
  10. Educate staff members about recognising and addressing age discrimination, providing guidance for both witnesses and targets. Leaders need to role-model gender balance to future generations.
  11. Review your recruitment. Conduct a thorough examination of recruitment policies, employment terms, promotion guidelines, training programs and dismissal policies to detect and rectify any occurrences of age-related prejudice. Evaluate the recruitment process to ensure that the description of the ideal candidate is impartial and refrain from soliciting biased data. As with any type of diversity, the organisation needs to reflect its clients or consumers.
  12. Foster an environment that appreciates and respects all employees of different ages and matches them to suitable roles, irrespective of age, and value loyalty. Adapt and fine-tune by talking about our differences and similarities to re-learn that different generations are not a threat but a valuable learning source. Encourage curiosity, openness and a willingness to learn and adapt.
  13. Ensure company social activities are age-inclusive to encourage participation from all employees.
  14. Put on the agenda the needs of different generations. Assess what are the motivations and needs of every generation in the organisation, in particular, the over-fifties but also play to the skills of the younger generation.

Top Tips to Prepare Your Office for the Winter

As the winter season approaches, it’s essential for businesses to ensure that their office spaces are well-prepared to handle the challenges that colder weather can bring. From maintaining a comfortable working environment for employees to safeguarding equipment, a comprehensive winter preparation plan is crucial. 

This article outlines top tips to help businesses get their offices ready for the winter months, ensuring a smooth and productive season while addressing potential winter-related issues.

Check and Maintain Heating Systems

The cornerstone of a comfortable winter office is a well-functioning heating system. Before the cold weather sets in, schedule a professional inspection of your heating system. 

Ensure that the heating system’s filters are clean, and any necessary repairs, an annual boiler service or maintenance are addressed promptly. A consistent and efficient heating system will not only keep employees comfortable but also prevent disruptions due to unexpected breakdowns.

Insulate Windows and Doors

Proper insulation prevents heat from escaping and cold air from entering the office. Check windows and doors for drafts, and apply weather stripping or caulking to seal any gaps. For added insulation, consider using thermal curtains or blinds. 

Well-insulated office spaces not only keep employees warm but also contribute to energy efficiency by reducing the workload on heating systems.

Service and Maintain Heating Systems

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning  systems play a pivotal role in maintaining indoor air quality and comfort. Regularly clean and replace air filters, as dirty filters can hinder airflow and affect system efficiency. Schedule professional maintenance to ensure that your systems operate optimally, preventing potential issues during the colder months.

Protect Water Pipes

Burst pipes due to freezing temperatures can lead to costly damages. Insulate exposed water pipes, especially those located in unheated areas such as basements or attics. Allow faucets to drip slightly during very cold nights to prevent water from freezing within the pipes. These preventive measures can save your business from the hassle and expenses associated with pipe-related issues.

Stock Up on Essential Supplies

Winter weather can lead to unexpected office closures or delays in supply deliveries. Stock up on essential supplies such as office stationery, printer cartridges, and other necessities to ensure uninterrupted operations. Additionally, consider having extra blankets, flashlights, and non-perishable snacks on hand in case of emergencies.

Promote Employee Safety

Employee safety is always key. Winter weather conditions can create hazards for employees. Ensure that walkways and entryways are clear of ice and snow to prevent slips and falls. 

Place rugs or mats in high-traffic areas to absorb moisture. Communicate safety measures to employees and encourage them to wear appropriate footwear during inclement weather.

Prepare for Power Outages

Winter storms can lead to power outages, potentially disrupting business operations. Invest in uninterruptible power supply (UPS) units to keep essential equipment running during short power interruptions. 

Additionally, develop a contingency plan for handling potential power outages, including remote work arrangements or alternative office locations if necessary.

Concluding Thoughts

As winter approaches, preparing your office for the colder months is a proactive step that ensures the comfort and safety of your employees while maintaining business continuity. From checking and maintaining heating systems to insulating windows and doors, the tips outlined in this article offer a comprehensive approach to winter readiness. 

By implementing these measures, businesses can create a comfortable and productive work environment while mitigating potential issues that can arise during the winter season. Incorporating preventive measures not only prevents disruptions but also reflects a commitment to employee well-being and operational resilience. 

A well-prepared office demonstrates foresight and care, fostering a positive work atmosphere and contributing to the overall success of the business. With these top tips in mind, businesses can navigate the winter months with confidence, knowing that their office spaces are adequately equipped to handle whatever challenges the season may bring.

Inclusive Hiring

How Inclusive Hiring Improves Company Creativity and Problem Solving

Diversity is important in any workforce. And with 66% of employees saying a diverse workplace is a principal consideration when choosing a job, there is clearly room for improvement. 

Diversity is an indicator of how seriously a company and its leadership group take inclusion and equality but it is also a great way for businesses to improve their creativity and problem solving. This is because rather than trying to solve a problem from a fixed point of view, diverse workforces bring different elements to the table. So if you are looking at your hiring process, here is why inclusive hiring should be at the top of your priority list to enhance creativity and problem solving.


Fostering Diverse Perspectives

Hiring from a range of backgrounds brings different life experiences, ways of thinking and challenges assumptions. This leads to new, unconventional solutions and ideas that would not emerge from homogeneous groups. Studies show that diverse teams tend to outperform non-diverse teams by up to 60% and make better decisions in 87% of cases.

Companies with a lack of diversity can develop closed thinking where narrow assumptions go unchallenged. They tend to propose conventional solutions aimed at customers most like themselves. In today’s globalised world, this limited thinking hinders the ability to serve diverse clients and innovate for complex challenges.

Companies have increasingly come to understand the substantial value in creating a diverse workforce in terms of ethnicity, gender, age and income. Hiring inclusively helps reflect this diversity internally. It brings awareness of different priorities, experiences and values which translates into tailored solutions and services.


Improving Innovation Across Your Company 

An inclusive workforce brings a diversity of thought which helps companies develop better products, services and decisions tailored to customers. Unconventional ideas are generated and staff feel greater ownership of projects that match their experiences.

When teams include a range of backgrounds, perspectives and ways of thinking, it leads to more creative options proposed and considered. Assumptions are challenged, new concepts shared and solutions co-created to suit diverse users, while businesses are able to tap into a broader range of insights to drive innovation.

An inclusive culture also empowers individuals by giving equal opportunity to contribute. Unconventional suggestions from diverse staff are more readily accepted and built upon which spurs further creativity. When companies include and value all staff, it leads to greater investment in team projects and goals.

Diverse, inclusive teams experience the important benefits of  higher satisfaction and lower turnover as they feel their unique skills and insights are utilised. This cohesion and shared purpose translates into improved innovation.


Promoting Diversity for the Benefit of Your Workforce 

To gain the benefits of diversity, companies must first build a diverse workforce. This requires attracting talent from a range of backgrounds.

Practical steps for promoting diversity include:


  • Tailoring your website, job adverts and communications to appeal to diverse groups with images and messages of inclusion. With a focus on inclusive design, digital marketing and agencies can support HR campaigns and help to build a website that promotes diversity and engages visitors.
  • Offering flexible and remote working options which widens the talent pool and facilitates diversity.
  • Using inclusive language in job criteria and avoiding phrases that may discourage some candidates. Also, reviewing how candidates are assessed to address any unconscious biases.
  • Providing diversity training and resources for recruiters to help them attract and assess candidates based solely on ability and potential.
  • Offering workplace mentoring and development programmes which gives equal opportunities for career progression regardless of staff background. This is key to retaining diverse talent.
  • Building partnerships with community groups to understand diverse talent needs and promote your company to potential applicants from varying backgrounds.
  • Ensuring diversity and inclusion are integral to your company brand and communicated on your website, social media platforms and other job bulletins. Candidates will assess your culture and values when applying for roles.


By tailoring your communications and reviewing hiring processes to level the playing field, companies can take positive action to build a diverse workforce. Paired with an inclusive culture, a diverse range of talent will be attracted and retained for competitive advantage. Overall diversity must be an ongoing strategic priority for all businesses today.


Better Decision Making to Improve Workplace Culture

Promoting an inclusive culture is essential for realizing the benefits of diverse hiring. When companies create an environment where everyone feels valued and able to contribute fully, it leads to improved decision making. More voices are incorporated and biases reduced.

Inclusive leadership shapes company culture through clear commitment to diversity and inclusion. This means:


  • Communicating the importance of inclusion and diversity through your website, job postings, internal messaging and company values.
  • Providing regular diversity and inclusion training, especially for managers and recruiters. This helps address unconscious bias and ensures policies promote inclusion.
  • Reviewing policies, processes and facilities to ensure they provide equal opportunity and flexibility for all staff regardless of background. This includes, but is not limited to, areas like maternity/paternity leave, flexible working, complaint procedures and workplace facilities.
  • Creating networking, mentoring and development opportunities to support the progression of staff from all groups. This allows individuals to reach their full potential based on merit rather than background.


When companies shape an inclusive culture, people feel their voices are heard and valued while decisions incorporate more perspectives which helps identify optimal solutions. Staff also feel empowered to point out biases and lack of inclusiveness within the company so appropriate action can be taken.


Enhance Inclusivity Policy to Unlock Your Team’s Potential

Inclusive hiring and a diversity of thought are essential for business creativity, problem solving and performance. By empowering people of all backgrounds, companies benefit from a range of valuable insights, co-create optimal solutions and make superior decisions.

Overall, inclusion and diversity should be a strategic priority for all companies seeking to gain a competitive advantage through innovation.

modern open space office interior with blurred business colleagues

4 Day Working Week Now More Important To Professionals Than Work Socials And Relationships

Say good-bye to work culture: Three quarters of professionals (71%) have stated that they would be willing to give up work socials and relationships with colleagues, in favour of a 4-day working week.

The findings come from a recent poll by leading recruiter Robert Walters, of 3,000+ working professionals – and highlights the ‘not-so appealing side’ of the 4-day week to employers, with office relationships taking the biggest hit.


Chris Poole – Managing Director of Robert Walters UK, comments:

“Workplaces have only just turned a corner and started to see more faces in the office – with that has come a burst of energy, collaboration, creativity, and productivity. It is a slight kick-in-the-teeth to hear that a progressive well-being initiative such as a 4-day week could have such a detrimental impact on workplace culture and business relationships.

“With the trials of 4-days being so new to many organisations, the long-term impact is hard to ascertain – but with 71% of professionals willing to forego socials and business relationships, companies should be mindful that poor company culture already costs the UK economy upwards of £20bn a year.

“As with what we experienced with remote working and then the move to hybrid, any change in the workplace brings about its challenges – and a 4-day week will be no different, business leaders need to tread with caution.”

Whilst professionals would give up the social side of their working lives, only 13% are inclined to forego hybrid work arrangements, and only 7% would sacrifice training opportunities in favour of less working days.


Entitlement at its Best?

According to the findings from Robert Walters, a staggering 91% of professionals would be keen for their employer to implement a 4-day week. In fact, a 4-day week now tops the poll on most desirable perks when applying for a job – with 49% stating that this would appeal to them most on a job description, followed by the ability to work from anywhere (35%).

With half of professionals who would like a 4-day week expecting their full pay to remain the same, debates have begun on whether the post-pandemic workforce are ‘the most entitled yet’ – with fewer professionals feeling responsibility for the financial health or stability of their employer.

Just 15% of professionals stated that they would take a 10-15% pay increase over the option of a 4-day week, and it seems office-based soft perks such as work socials or complimentary lunch or breakfasts, are less appealing in the face of fewer working days – with just 1% stating that they would opt for this over a 4-day working week.

Chris adds: “It is absolutely right that workplaces should be held more accountable for the wellbeing of their employees, however professionals need to be considerate to the fact this responsibility goes both ways, and they have a duty to contribute to the success of a business, especially in this current period of economic uncertainty.”


The Hidden Data

Earlier this year the independent trail of 60+ companies and around 2,900 employees undertaking a 4-day week concluded – with many highlighting this as a resounding success.

However, when this data is combined with findings from the Robert Walters poll, it seems that possibly only one side of the picture has been painted, as a result it’s also important to consider the potentially negative outcomes of a change in working days.

Key findings from the 4-day Week Pilot Trail include:

  • Overall working hours only reduced by 4 hours – falling short of the 32 it was meant to achieve
  • 28% reported either working more hours, or no change to their 5-days a week hours
  • 49% reported no change in the typical amount of overtime they do – further 17% reported doing more overtime
  • 22% reported an increase in burnout-symptoms
  • 15% reported an increase in sleeping difficulties – further 45% stated that their sleeping quality hadn’t improved/changed significantly
  • 36% reported no-change to work-life balance – further 10% reported a decrease
  • 26% reported no change to work-ability – with 19% reporting a decrease
  • Just 2% stated workload had decreased – 20% reported an increase, and 78% reported no-change
  • 36% reported work-intensity had increased
  • 42% reported an increase in complexity of their work


Chris adds: “Highlighting this data is by no means a way of pointing out that a 4-day week cannot work. Just as with every kind of trial, a balanced view of the results needs to be provided to assist us in understanding what does and doesn’t work. There is definitely a place for the 4-day working week in business but maybe it’s not the silver-bullet to increase productivity and improved wellbeing, as first thought.”

young businessman sitting in his home office and looking contemplative while working on his laptop

Don’t Wait For Workplace Flexibility Law To Go Into Place To Do The Right Thing

 Ben Thompson, CEO of Employment Hero

The UK should be congratulated on its new law promoting flexible working, which gained Royal Assent a few weeks ago.

This new law gives a variety of protections to employees who are keen to work flexibly, and ensures that employers take on these requests in good faith. After so much change in working behaviour brought about by the pandemic, this act looks to arrange some of that attitude shift into law. It doesn’t force businesses to just allow people to work in any way they want – but it does require that requests that are reasonable are properly considered.

While the act has now gained Royal Assent, it isn’t going into effect until around this time next year.

Before then there is plenty you can do as an HR team to prepare. Indeed, there’s no reason you should wait for the law to be in force to act as if it is.


What the new law changes 

The new law largely changes the process for employees requesting flexible working, rather than flexible working itself.

A right to these requests was established in 2003, but many believe it has been underused and seen as a “perk” – given that employees were only allowed to make a request after six months of working.

Note that this is not a right to flexible working itself, just a right to ask for it. Flexible working can include a variety of changes to hours of work and places of work – a classic case is someone leaving early to pick up their children from school and filling in some extra hours at home.

One key change is the frequency of that request: Employees can now ask twice per year, up from once per year.

Another key change is the format of the request. Employees used to have to explain what effect the change in their working patterns would have on the wider business; they no longer have to do that.

Employers on the other hand, have new obligations when a request is made. They must consult with the employee on the request itself, and they must respond within two months – instead of the three-month deadline currently in place.

While this requirement to consult is new, employers retain the same legal reasons to reject a request as they had before. These are listed here but broadly include what you might expect – an employer can reject a request because it will cost too much for the company or stop it being able to meet customer demand.

Finally, the position of this right to request as a “perk” earned after six months is being shifted. The Government will introduce regulations alongside the new law to make it a day one right, rather than one earned after six months.


Why you should change now

This law change doesn’t go into effect until next year, but there is nothing stopping you from enacting the larger changes at your organisation now.

After all, you will have to make the shift in your policies. Any potential issues with the law change within your business should be ironed out now, before you are legally obligated to make the change.

Crucially, this will show your employees that you value them and want them to thrive at your organisation long term – even if life gets in the way in some way. My organisation Employment Hero already operates with something like flexibility-by-default – our people can work from anywhere in the world with a good internet connection and generally make any time zone work. It’s been enormously beneficial, especially for employee retention – instead of seeing talent leave the company because they are moving overseas or have a toddler to look after, they stay at the company but make the work suit them.

And remember: It is still a right to request flexible working and have it considered in consultation, not to have flexible working itself. If a request comes in that really isn’t workable, you can still reject it.


How you can go further 

Good employers rarely see the legal minimum as the gold standard.

While the new law is being readied for introduction, the Government is also consulting on a new Code of Practice for handling flexible working requests. The code itself will not be legally binding, but failure to follow it could be considered by employment tribunals.

This code is a great place to start if you want to go further than the legal minimum.

A key shift will be a change of attitude from a default of “no” to requests. This is not something that can be perfectly encapsulated in a written policy but is something you can think about as an HR team – when a request comes in think of ways it could work rather than ways it could not.

This could include exploring alternatives, something the draft code encourages. The initial request might not quite work for your business, but is there another alteration that could?

Another way to go above and beyond the legal minimum is to set a standard for flexible working that all employees can access by default. This could include, for example, the ability to work from another country for a set number of weeks a year, if the employee works their usual hours. Or by default allowing parents of children under the age of 12 to leave at 3pm and catch up at work at home. Having these kinds of policies makes it clear that flexible working is welcomed by your organisation – not just endured – and will be a huge help regarding both retaining and attracting talent.

The pandemic shifted a lot in the way we work, opening up whole new attitudes to the traditional 9-5 which has allowed far more people to participate fully in work. It would be a shame to leave that all behind.

7 Reasons Why Your Workplace Needs VoIP

In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, effective communication is paramount to success. 

The ability to connect with clients, partners, and team members seamlessly and efficiently can make a significant difference in productivity and overall business performance. This is where Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) comes into play. 

VoIP technology has revolutionised the way businesses communicate, providing numerous advantages over traditional phone systems. In this article, we will explore why your business needs VoIP and how it can transform your communication infrastructure.

Businesses are having to adapt to changes in the world more so than ever and with so many options when it comes to efficiency and reliability, ranging from options like commercial solar panels, to different communication solutions, businesses are having to make more dynamic decisions than ever before.

1. Cost Savings

One of the key reasons why your business should consider adopting VoIP is cost savings. Traditional phone systems often come with hefty upfront costs, ongoing maintenance fees, and charges for long-distance calls. 

In contrast, VoIP operates over the internet, eliminating the need for dedicated phone lines and associated infrastructure expenses. With VoIP, you can significantly reduce your telecommunication costs by leveraging your existing internet connection. Moreover, long-distance and international calls are generally much cheaper with VoIP, making it an ideal choice for businesses with global operations or clients.

2. Flexibility and Scalability

Flexibility and scalability are other compelling reasons to embrace VoIP technology. Traditional phone systems require physical phone lines and hardware, limiting your flexibility when it comes to adding or removing lines. VoIP, on the other hand, is highly scalable and can easily accommodate your changing business needs. 

With VoIP, you can add or remove lines with a few clicks, making it a breeze to scale up or down as your business grows. Additionally, VoIP allows you to integrate various communication channels such as voice, video, and instant messaging into a single platform, enhancing collaboration and streamlining workflows.

3. Offers a Wide Range of Features

As a digital phone line, VoIP also offers a wide range of features and functionalities that can boost your business productivity. Advanced call routing, call forwarding, and auto-attendant features enable efficient call management, ensuring that calls are directed to the right individuals or departments. 

Voicemail-to-email transcription allows you to receive voicemail messages as text in your email inbox, eliminating the need to listen to lengthy messages. Moreover, many VoIP systems offer call analytics and reporting capabilities, providing valuable insights into call volumes, response times, and customer satisfaction metrics. These features empower businesses to make data-driven decisions, optimise customer interactions, and improve overall customer service.

4. Mobility

Another significant advantage of VoIP is its mobility. In today’s increasingly mobile workforce, the ability to stay connected regardless of location is crucial. VoIP allows you to make and receive calls from anywhere with an internet connection, enabling remote work, flexible hours, and seamless collaboration among distributed teams. With VoIP, you can use your smartphone, laptop, or tablet as a virtual office phone, ensuring that you never miss an important call or opportunity.

5. Privacy and Security

Security is a top concern for businesses, and VoIP systems have made significant advancements in this area. Modern VoIP solutions offer robust encryption protocols, ensuring the confidentiality and integrity of your calls and data. Additionally, many VoIP providers implement various security measures, such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and regular software updates, to protect against potential threats. By choosing a reputable VoIP provider and implementing recommended security practices, you can maintain the privacy and security of your communications.

6. Integration Capabilities

Integration capabilities are another compelling reason to consider VoIP for your business. VoIP systems can seamlessly integrate with other business applications and tools, such as customer relationship management (CRM) systems, help desk software, and collaboration platforms. This integration allows for streamlined workflows, enhanced customer interactions, and improved overall efficiency. For example, incoming calls can automatically display customer information from your CRM system, enabling personalised and efficient customer service.

7. Reliability

Reliability is a critical factor when it comes to communication systems, and VoIP has proven to be highly reliable. VoIP providers typically have redundant servers and failover mechanisms in place to ensure minimal downtime and uninterrupted service. In the event of a power outage or network disruption, calls can be automatically redirected to mobile devices or alternative phone lines, minimising the impact on your business operations. Additionally, VoIP systems often offer features like call forwarding and simultaneous ringing, allowing you to stay accessible even during temporary service interruptions.


Global Fintech Market Size & Share Analysis

The fintech industry has revolutionized financial geography, offering innovative results that combine technology and finance. With its rapid-fire growth and global impact, it’s essential to claw into the size and share analysis of the global fintech request. 

In this article, we will explore the current state Global fintech market size, growth trends, market share, challenges and opportunities in the fintech industry. 

Understanding Market Size Analysis 

Market size analysis plays a pivotal part in assessing the scale and potential of any assiduity. In the case of fintech, it involves measuring the total value of deals, investments, and profit generated by fintech companies. 

This analysis helps give perceptivity into the industry growth and its impact on the global financial ecosystem. 

Fintech Market Size and Growth Trends:

The global fintech request has witnessed remarkable growth in recent times. With the added relinquishment of digital technologies and changing consumer preferences, the request size continues to expand. 

As of 2023 the global fintech industry is estimated to be valued at $305.7 billion which is growing at a CAGR of 6%.

Market Share Analysis in Fintech:

Market share analysis allows us to understand the competitive geography within the fintech industry. It involves relating crucial players and determining their separate shares in the request. 

Established fintech companies, as well as arising startups, contribute to the market share. Presently, the top players in the fintech industry include big companies with significant market shares in sectors similar to payments, lending, digital banking, and wealth operation. 

Factors Influencing Market Size and Share: 

Several factors contribute to the growth and size of the fintech market. Technological advancements and digital transformation have accelerated the relinquishment of fintech results worldwide. 

Also, changing consumer behavior and the demand for accessible financial services has fueled the growth of the assiduity. 

Regulatory developments and government enterprise also play a vital part in shaping the market. Also, substantial investments and backing in fintech startups have contributed to its expansion. 

Market Challenges and Opportunities: 

While the fintech assiduity presents immense potential, it also faces certain challenges. Regulatory compliance, cybersecurity, trust and credibility are some of the hurdles that fintech companies encounter. 

Still, these challenges open doors for fintech companies to improve their growth and invention. 

Collaborations between traditional financial institutions and fintech startups have the potential to drive this sector forward, furnishing better services and bridging gaps in the market. 

Regional Analysis of Fintech Market: 

The fintech sector exhibits indigenous variations, with different regions passing varying situations of growth and relinquishment. North America, Europe, and Asia- Pacific are among the leading regions in the fintech assiduity. 

North America, particularly the United States, boasts a mature and vibrant fintech ecosystem. Europe showcases notable fintech capitals, similar to London and Berlin. 

Meanwhile, Asia- Pacific, with countries like China and India, presents enormous growth openings due to its large population and adding digital relinquishment. 

Future Outlook and Predictions: 

Looking ahead, the fintech market is anticipated to continue its upward line. Forecasted market size and growth trends suggest a promising future. 

Arising technologies, including blockchain, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, will further disrupt and transfigure this sector.. 

These technologies have the potential to revise financial services, offering more effective, secure, and accessible results. 


The global fintech request continues to evolve and shape the future of finance. The size and share analysis give precious perceptivity to the assiduity’s growth and eventuality. 

As technology advances and consumer demands evolve, the fintech assiduity will play a decreasingly significant part in the global financial geography. 

By covering request dynamics, staying streamlined with assiduity trends, and embracing invention, businesses, and investors can harness the openings presented by the thriving fintech request. 


Stacy Dubovik

Financial Technology and Blockchain Researcher

Stacy joined ScienceSoft in 2020, bringing in her expertise in large-scale digital transformation projects and practical knowledge of the finance domain. Stacy frames ScienceSoft’s service offerings and technology guides in corporate finance, BFSI, DeFi, and blockchain. She works side by side with business analysts, software architects, and developers to help create innovative solutions that bring unique client value. Stacy continuously monitors customer expectations and technology trends in the BFSI market and explores the newly-emerging fintech and blockchain products.

diverse professional colleagues discussing tax financial contract papers working in office at meeting

Why it’s Crucial for Scale-Ups to Choose the Right Advisors

By Rafael S. Lajeunesse CEO and founder of ReachX

In the ever-evolving landscape of business, scale-up companies are the driving force behind innovation and growth. These companies possess tremendous potential to disrupt industries, create jobs, and contribute to the economy. However, the path to success is riddled with challenges and uncertainties. Navigating through uncharted territories requires a strategic vision, agile decision-making, and a robust support system. This is where the role of advisors becomes crucial. 

In this article, we will delve into the significance of choosing the right advisors for scale-up companies and explore how their expertise can shape the trajectory of these ambitious ventures. By understanding the value of strategic guidance, harnessing specialized knowledge, and capitalizing on industry insights, scale-up companies can not only survive but thrive in the competitive business landscape.

Sourcing the right advisor is a pivotal first step in the journey towards success. Identifying individuals who possess the right expertise, industry knowledge, and a complementary skill set can provide scale-up companies with a distinct advantage. However, it is not enough to merely select talented advisors; keeping them motivated and engaged is equally important. 

By establishing a culture of collaboration, recognising their contributions, and providing incentives aligned with the company’s growth, scale-up companies can harness the full potential of their advisors.

There are many examples of companies that appointed advisors to help fuel growth, but one that stands out is Airbnb. In its early days, Airbnb sought guidance from Reid Hoffman, the co-founder of LinkedIn, who provided strategic advice and helped the company navigate growth challenges. Hoffman’s experience and network played a crucial role in Airbnb’s expansion and helped them become a global hospitality brand.


Why growing businesses need advisors

With the amount of business advice already available combined with a healthy dose of skepticism, you might be thinking “Why do I need to hire an advisor anyway?” But the truth is, a founder can have years of experience, but running a business is a challenge and no two journeys are the same. Sometimes you’ll come across situations where you don’t have all the answers and in this instance an advisor or group of advisors can help you choose the right route that will benefit your business.

Even when you think you know what the best thing to do is, an advisor is there to ask you the difficult questions you might not have considered.


Here are some key points to consider when you are looking for the right advisor for your business.

Due diligence is a critical aspect of selecting advisors. Thoroughly evaluating their references, previous engagements, and track record can provide valuable insights into their capabilities and compatibility. By seeking recommendations, conducting interviews, and engaging in comprehensive background checks, scale-up companies can mitigate risks associated with ill-suited advisors and forge partnerships built on trust and expertise.

Open Communication To truly reap the benefits of advisors, it is essential to cultivate an environment that encourages them to go the extra mile. Scale-up companies often require advisors to bring a fresh perspective, drive business growth, and solve complex problems. Some founders may lack the broader vision or alternative viewpoints necessary for overcoming challenges. Advisors can provide invaluable insights and help shift the company’s trajectory. However, this can only be achieved if the relationship is clearly established and expectations are aligned. By fostering open communication, actively listening to differing opinions, and being receptive to new perspectives, scale-up companies can unlock the full potential of their advisory partnerships.

Cultural differences can also impact the effectiveness of advisor relationships. While consultancy is widely valued and established in some countries, in others, it may be seen as a waste of money, leading to advisors being disregarded. Overcoming such cultural barriers requires sensitivity and a willingness to bridge the gap by effectively communicating the value that advisors bring. By fostering a culture of respect and understanding, scale-up companies can harness the cross-cultural expertise of advisors and leverage it to their advantage.

When a company finds the right advisor, scalability is usually inevitable. In its early days Tesla received guidance from Steve Jurvetson, a venture capitalist and early investor in the company. Jurvetson provided strategic advice on product development, fundraising, and market positioning, contributing to Tesla’s growth as a leading electric vehicle manufacturer and a household name, proving the power of what the right advisor can bring to the table.

In conclusion, the process of choosing the right advisors is a critical decision for scale-up companies. By sourcing the right individuals, keeping them motivated, conducting due diligence, and embracing different perspectives, these companies can create an environment conducive to growth and success. The strategic guidance, specialized knowledge, and unique perspectives offered by advisors can transform the trajectory of scale-up companies, propelling them towards unparalleled achievement in the competitive business landscape.

Rafael S. Lajeunesse
Rafael S. Lajeunesse
business man with anxiety, burnout or mental health crisis, documents and laptop

How to Manage Anxiety at Work

By Professor Lynda Holt

If you’ve ever suffered from anxiety, you’ll know just how debilitating and all-consuming it can feel. Yet it is your body’s natural response to fear, threat, and the unknown.

It is designed to trigger your fight/flight response, physiologically preparing you for what you might be about to face. You might feel your heart pounding, your palms sweating, or your stomach churning – all a normal response to an adrenaline surge.

Physiologically, that response is designed to be transient, you respond to the threat, and when the threat has passed your neurochemistry returns to ‘rest and restore’ mode.

Think about it like this, an antelope is grazing on the plain, out of the corner of their eye they see a lion approaching, the antelope literally runs for their life. While running the antelope notices the lion has dropped back, and seems interested in something else, as soon as they are at a safe distance the antelope goes back to grazing on the plain.

That is what we are designed to do too, except we face a number of challenges that make us susceptible to more prolonged anxiety. Very simply put, the human brain has three levels of function, the basal ganglia, responsible for most of your autonomic functioning like breathing, required for survival, the limbic brain, responsible for emotion, memory, and perception and the neo-cortex or logical brain.

These work in a hierarchy, the functions that keep us alive both work faster and get prioritised. So much as you might like to think you are a logical person, the chances are your limbic brain – or emotional responses, are responsible for most of the decisions you make, especially when under pressure.

Our big brains create feedback loops, so we constantly analyse, replay, and run scenarios for things, even ones that haven’t happened yet. This, together with persistent stimulation from our busy, always-on, lifestyles, prevents us from being like the antelope and going back to grazing once the threat subsides.

Unchecked it creates a state of mild anxiety because you never return to your rest and restore baseline. The pace, and sometimes the culture, of our work environments can compound this, turning something designed to help you stay safe under threat into something that feels like it threatens your very being on a daily basis.

Of course, anxiety takes many forms, most start when your threat regulation system is persistently triggered, giving you excess adrenaline and cortisol, which draws your processing resources away from your logical function.

While the physiology may be similar for each of us, the experience can be wildly different. You survive by learning how to stay connected with who you are and by having some ‘go-to’ strategies to help you when you need them.


Here are a few ways to manage anxiety at work:


Make space for conversations around anxiety and mental health:

Many leaders are happy to acknowledge anxiety impacts the workplace, but most are far less likely to say that they are the ones feeling anxious. Awareness is the starting point for any healing, make it ok to talk about mental health in your team. This might start with conversations about acceptance and reducing the stigma at first, it may take a while for people to open up about how they feel.


Deal with the busy trap:

Mental toughness is over-rated, treating busyness like a badge of honour is costing people both their mental and physical health. Consider what you can do to ensure you, and your people, reduce the ‘always on’ perception. You might consider how much digital exposure and access is expected out of hours, as well as deadlines and workloads, and remember in the longer term anxiety is bad for productivity as well as well-being.


Stay connected:

Pay attention to how you feel, what you are doing, and how you treat yourself, both physically and psychologically. We can be pretty brutal with our self-talk, or feedback loops, often without us even noticing what we are saying. When you can learn to focus on what you can control, even if that is your self-talk, your attitude, and how you show up, a sense of control will start to calm your nervous system. Sometimes staying connected is about rituals and habits you create to help you in the moment – anything from mantra, to smell, to sound, whatever makes you feel like you or grounds you.


Get Physical:

Finally, if you find yourself overtaken by sudden anxiety, if you feel worried, afraid, or if you can’t switch off your thinking, you may want to think about your physiology. Most of what you are feeling is caused by a surge of neurochemicals designed to help you run away from sabretooth tigers.

One of the best strategies for reducing your anxiety is to burn up some of those chemicals, you might choose to do a few laps round the work carpark, but you probably don’t need to go that far, any movement will help recalibrate your nervous system, so a walk to the loo, or the coffee machine – for a decaf of course.

Take a breath is a long way from rhetoric, it is physical movement, that calms your nervous system, slow deep breaths absolutely reduce anxiety.

You can absolutely lead well and experience anxiety, and while this can make you feel very vulnerable, remember you also get to choose what you share and who with.

Start small, where you feel safe.


About Professor Lynda Holt MA, RGN, DipHE, CPBP, FinstLM, FRSA


CEO, Health Service 360


Lynda is a prominent leadership voice, author and change activist in the healthcare sector. She established Health Service 360, an award-winning development consultancy, back in 2001 and spends her time helping leaders and health professionals to lead courageously, make tangible change, value themselves, and empower their people.

She believes it is each of us, not big organisations, religions, or governments, that change the world, – little action by little action, and as a Professor of Social Leadership at the University of Salford, Lynda helps to equip people with the skills and mindset needed to act and create social change.


Follow Lynda on:

Twitter: @LyndamHolt



Lynda Holt
Serious young man business trainer talking to group of people in office standing around him and listening.

How to Construct a Cohesive Technical Team from Scratch

Taking time to understand the business, its objectives and the profiles of the personnel required will streamline the recruitment process, according to Ronald Binkofski, CEO at STX Next


Assembling a brand-new technical team presents a myriad of challenges, particularly if the team leader is also new to the company.

Managers have to contend with personality clashes, onboarding teething problems and difficulties delivering the right blend of experience, all of which can significantly hinder the performance of a team in its infancy.

However, there are steps that tech leaders can take to navigate these challenges and lay the foundations for a high-performing team.

Conducting thorough research and planning before commencing the hiring phase is often the basis for a team’s success, so those in charge should ensure they are fully prepared before making any major decisions.


Building a successful team takes time

For tech leaders looking to start recruiting, it’s essential that they first understand the profile of the company and the employees it requires before sitting down to interview any candidates.

According to research carried out last year, 56% of senior decision-makers admit rushing the hiring process, outlining the regularity with which employers fall into the trap of bringing staff on board without due consideration.

I spoke to Niloufar Zarin, Head of Machine Learning at Acorai, about this, and she said: “The team leader should begin by taking time to understand the company’s blueprint and size. If they have joined a startup they will likely have a smaller budget but more licence for creativity, while at a large corporation they may have more cash at their disposal but be required to adhere to established procedures. If they’re at a growth stage company they may have scaling issues to consider.

“Identifying the position of the business itself will inform choices around the size of the team needed, the salaries the organisation can accommodate and the personality types that best align with objectives.

“Having a good grasp of product strategy should also be a key consideration. Tech leaders should base the skillsets of employees on the business’ go-to-market strategy: for example if a product needs to be deployed quickly, experienced developers are essential.

“Overall, managers should have a clear picture of what the team should look like before it is assembled, and build a recruitment plan that will best support the business’ goals.”


Prioritising the right culture

As a leader you should know the personality types that mesh well in a technical team, and this knowledge should influence thinking on whether certain candidates are a good fit for a role.

Zarin said: “It’s all about favouring the right personality types: tech leaders should look to hire people who are optimistic, motivated and will buy into the company’s vision.

“One employee with a negative attitude can have a domino effect and lower the morale of the entire team. This often defines whether the wider team chooses to stay at the organisation for a significant period of time, outlining how recruitment can directly affect employee retention.

“The interview stage is where it’s easiest to pick out the candidates that are a good fit for the team you’re looking to build. Conducting interviews personally, in a relaxed one-to-one style, is the most effective way to gauge a candidate’s personality and pinpoint whether they will help drive the team’s success.

“Understanding the aspirations of each team member is also important in the tech industry, where managerial roles bear little resemblance to life as a developer. From an early stage, team leaders should find out whether employees have managerial aspirations or want to stay as an individual contributor and base their development on this knowledge.”


Onboarding made simple

Even if a team leader has picked out the ideal candidates, things can quickly unravel at the onboarding stage. Therefore, it’s important to establish a process that works for all employees before committing to a large intake.

Zarin said: “Onboarding should be a gradual process. Start by introducing one or two people then slowly increase the size of the intake – don’t try to hire the entire team simultaneously.

“If the onboarding process is rushed it may mean there aren’t enough tasks to split between employees. Staggering the hiring of staff members gives tech leaders a chance to evaluate how much capacity the team has and whether extra bodies are required. If employees are left without work to get on with, morale will quickly drop.

“Managers should also make time to introduce new employees to fellow team members, as well as the wider organisation. This will help them settle into their role, while giving them a clearer picture of the business’ culture.”


Hit the ground running

It’s impossible to assemble a high performing technical team overnight, so it’s vital that a diligent and thorough planning phase takes place to ensure that hired employees suit the needs of the business.

The tech leaders that understand the profile of their organisation and the personality types that work best together have the best chance of assembling a successful team.

Ronald Binkoski
Ronald Binkoski
Household expenses concept

Rising Costs, Resilient Businesses: How Amazon SMEs Navigate the Cost of Living Crisis

Amidst the prevailing cost of living crisis, its widespread effects are being felt by individuals across the board. However, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are experiencing a significant blow, with a staggering 61% grappling with surging energy costs, and 47% facing the mounting expenses of materials.

In the United Kingdom, more than 85,000 SMEs have established a presence on Amazon, and they are resiliently exploring innovative measures to navigate through this challenging era of soaring living costs. This article will delve into how some of these businesses are proactively tackling the impacts of the cost of living crisis while skillfully managing their operations.



Freda Health – Socially Conscious Period Brand Absorbing Costs by Going Bulk

Although Freda Health’s sales are still steadily growing on Amazon, they noticed a dip on their own website sales and the cost-of-living crisis has resulted in higher costs. Freda Health have seen an increase in the price of packaging, materials and delivery for the brand, but also heightened demand for donations as women across the UK have been struggling with period poverty.

Despite overall costs having gone up by 27%, they are absorbing as much as possible rather than passing it all on to the consumer. This means getting creative and making internal changes – they’ve had to pivot  their strategy to target more corporate customers to help reduce the cost for consumers.

The founder, Affi Parvizi-Wayne, has seen this change as an opportunity for her business to move in a different direction: “This has fit well with how we have been planning My Freda moving forward as we begin to move towards selling our items in bulk to save on postage and packaging to benefit our costs and shrink the carbon footprint for the business and consumers.”



Funky Soap –  Business Fighting for Survival Explores New Opportunities to Stay Afloat

Anni Kriesche, founder of Funky Soap Shop, has faced a rollercoaster year due to the Ukraine war, supply chain issues and cost of living increases. The combined impact put unprecedented pressure on her business – for the first time Anni feared for the survival of the business she had worked so hard to build up over the past decade.

“Not only did we see our raw materials such as olive oil double in price, we were also seeing our customers being more cautious with their spending in the early months when things were quite uncertain. There were weeks where I couldn’t pay staff wages and I felt devastated and responsible and my health was impacted by the stress of it all.”

Resilience and support from family helped Anni push through and she focused her attention on being resourceful and exploring new opportunities such as offering white label products to hotels and hospitality venues looking to cut back on single use plastic, developing gifting options, and using Fulfilment by Amazon to maximise overseas sales in the US and Canada. Sales have started to pick up since Christmas 2022, and Funky Soap Shop will soon launch its gifting options on Amazon. Although still tough, Anni hopes to be on an upward trajectory now.



Roni B’s Kitchen –  Filipino Sauce Business Refuses to Compromise on Quality Ingredients Despite Skyrocketing Prices

Despite rising supply and operating costs, Roni Badong is determined not to sacrifice the quality of her ingredients, despite a staggering 300% increase in essential ingredient rapeseed oil.

“Like consumers, as a small business, we also have to contend with the rising cost of goods and we have reflected that by increasing our prices. Rather than a blanket increase across our range of products, I’ve increased prices proportionally to the raw ingredients. We know that people are more budget conscious, with customers telling us, ‘I have a budget of X and that’s all I can spend this month.’ On the flip side, people are more willing to support small producers who use natural and quality ingredients. Despite the cost challenges, we refuse to compromise on the great flavour that we’re known for by using cheaper ingredients. As a food business, that simply isn’t an option for us,” says Roni.

Roni’s resourcefulness shines through, whether it’s making shrewd business decisions or finding money-saving hacks in the kitchen. Her mantra is simple: “When faced with tough situations, think creatively and outside the box. I’ve leveraged Amazon’s advertising support to get more eyeballs on my products. As a Filipino, I’ve grown up with the tradition of stretching meals and using leftovers, so I always tell my customers to only cook what they need and make the most out of their ingredients.”

While the cost of living crisis remains an ongoing challenge, the experiences of these SMEs offer valuable lessons for others in the business community. By embracing change, seeking new opportunities, and remaining true to their core values, SMEs can forge ahead and find success even when challenges arise.

Education Conference and Presentation Audience at the conference hall

Where is W in ESG: Why Gender Equity Spans Across ESG

by Sharmla Chetty, CEO of Duke Corporate Education

The Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) factors are becoming increasingly important for board members, investors, governments and regulators and continue to create opportunities and challenges for companies globally. Today, executives are forced to reconsider what ‘value’ looks like and good business goes beyond simply generating financial returns.

While women are not explicitly mentioned in the three main letters, they must be made relevant when we talk about ESG. Women are disproportionately impacted by social issues such as access to healthcare, education, gender-based violence and more. However, it’s equally important to recognise that women are key agents for success, so we must ask ourselves – where is the W in ESG? The answer is that the W (women) needs to be present in every part of ESG, and we must ensure women have the agency to drive action across the ESG factors.


The business case for having the W in ESG

Research shows us that the more diverse teams we have and the more gender justice, the better our results. Women bring different ways of thinking to the table and are often more attuned to social responsibility.

S&P Global Market Intelligence’s study, When Women Lead, Firms Win, found that firms with female CFOs are more profitable and have produced superior stock price performance compared to the market average. The research also showed that firms with high gender diversity on their board of directors have been more profitable than firms with less gender diversity.

Additionally, S&P Global found women to be the most underutilized source of growth that could send global market valuations soaring. Acceleration in U.S. GDP growth under increased female labour force participation could add an astounding $5.87 trillion to global market capitalization in 10 years.

The importance of resilience in the face of challenges is vital for achieving success. While ESG is experiencing occasional setbacks and resistance to its value, it is crucial to stay committed and persistent. In this context, women are particularly suited to adopt this resilient mindset due to their ongoing fight for gender equality.


Challenging the perception of gender equity as solely a social objective

While gender equity has traditionally been associated with social progress, it is important to recognize its wider implications. Gender equity is intertwined with economic growth, environmental sustainability, and good governance. Failing to address gender inequities across these domains hinders progress on multiple fronts and undermines the overall effectiveness of ESG strategies.

In today’s business landscape, diversity is no longer just a buzzword – it’s a driving force behind investment decisions and corporate performance. As companies face mounting pressure to address ESG issues, a critical aspect that cannot be overlooked is the role of women. The W in ESG represents more than just a letter; it signifies the immense value that women bring to organizations and the broader society.


Gender Equity in the Governance and Leadership of ESG

Growing up in apartheid South Africa, I faced adversity and expulsion from school. However, those experiences instilled in me traits such as courage, determination, resilience, and tenacity. I learned the invaluable lesson that change is possible even in challenging times. These experiences fueled my lifelong commitment to championing education as a catalyst for equity, especially for women, as it creates opportunities for a better future and lays the foundation for women’s success in leadership.

Women’s involvement in the governance of organizations is essential for promoting gender equity. Increasing women’s representation on corporate boards and in executive positions enhances transparency, accountability, and fairness within companies.

The business case for gender diversity has already been stated. Leveraging diverse perspectives in governance and decision-making leads to more responsible and sustainable practices. By embracing gender equity, companies can tap into a wealth of talent, creativity, and empathy, making better-informed choices that benefit not only their stakeholders but society as a whole.

As ESG evolves, it is imperative for ESG leaders to assume core business leadership positions throughout the organization. This shift has transformed from a novel concept to an established necessity. Therefore, gender representation in these prominent ESG roles is now an essential requirement rather than an optional consideration.


Gender Equity in the Environmental Impact of ESG

According to ActionAid, Climate change has a disproportionate impact on women, exacerbating existing inequalities. Women, particularly in developing countries, bear the brunt of climate-related disasters, loss of livelihoods, and increased care burdens.

However, women are not just victims; they are also key stakeholders in addressing climate change and driving environmental sustainability. Their unique perspectives and knowledge contribute to innovative solutions and effective mitigation strategies.

To achieve holistic solutions, it is crucial to ensure female representation in decision-making and leadership roles. By including diverse voices, we can develop more comprehensive policies, programs, and initiatives that consider the needs and experiences of all genders.

While progress has been made, women still encounter embedded challenges and new forms of oppression in the workplace and beyond. Recognizing and embracing the power of women in ESG is a catalyst for transformative change. By promoting gender equity in all aspects of ESG, organizations can harness the strength of diverse perspectives, drive sustainable growth, and create a more inclusive and prosperous future for all.