Headlines: January 6th, 2009

Companies can now sell the time of under used staff through a new online system. StaffShare has been designed to match under-utilised corporate skills with charities and voluntary organisations which need the skills but may not have the resources or requirement to use them permanently.

The site allows organisations to register the details of staff who are under used or who are in a redeployment pool, and to offer their services on a short or medium term secondment basis. Charities and voluntary sector bodies that want to take up an offer can buy the relevant services through the website.

The initiative is the idea of Work Wise UK, a not-for-profit organization aiming to promote smarter working practices. It has been welcomed by the TUC. Its general secretary, Brendan Barber, hoped lots of organisations would sign up to the scheme which would help to keep people in employment and allow the Third Sector to draw on specialist expertise. “Staffshare is part of a new approach that is needed if we are to avoid the waste of talent and human tragedies that occur if companies rush prematurely into redundancies when conditions start to get tough,” Mr. Barber said.

The chief executive of Work Wise, Phil Flaxton, said the last ten years had brought unprecedented growth and employment levels but recent events meant all sectors of the economy would be under increasing pressure to work smarter and be more productive. “StaffShare provides organisations with a simple yet effective conduit through which specialist skills can be safely traded via employee secondment without the risk of loss of skills, intellectual property, unique selling points or market intelligence,” he said.

Companies can currently register individuals to be included in a pilot StaffShare scheme which starts this month at www.workwiseuk.org. Third Sector bodies can use the same site to search for the skills that they need.