Headlines: September 15th, 1999

In the past organisations have had to periodically manage change in methods
of working, but in the future many will need to do so on a continuous
basis. This was the warning given by Professor John Purcell speaking at a
seminar to mark the 25th anniversary of the Advisory, Conciliation and
Arbitration Service (ACAS). The heightened pace of change is being driven
by a need for greater flexibility in matching the needs of employers with
those of employees. Working outside traditional hours is a typical
situation calling for flexibility.

The problems of change are much to do with vested interests and fears about
the future, and as the public sector has become increasingly involved in
change it has made use of the independent and impartial service provided by
ACAS. The health and education sectors have become prominent users.