The art of management: people, places and machines

We’ve all had that watercooler discussion comparing the management styles and foibles of our employers and managers. We’ve all, at some time or another, been frustrated with a a perceived lack of ability in our management and at others been completely inspired by those to whom we are answerable.

Management is, of course, a multi-faceted art form. With people, it’s treading the fine line between friend and overlord, task master and the easy-going. With buildings and locations, it’s knowing what needs to be done, when and how and with machinery or the machines of international business, it’s knowing what’s where, what it’s working on and what condition it’s in.

People management made easy (well, easier)

Employers have a responsibility to look after their people in terms of their wellbeing, their remuneration and needs as an employee. That’s where HR come in. These specialists in employment can often handle everything from job advertisement through to recruitment and on-boarding to exit interviews and contract termination, with everything in between.

All this, however, can create large amounts of data and workflow, particularly with larger businesses. To manage this side of the task, there are a number of employment and HR software products which handle everything that the employer might throw at the HR team throughout their employment journey, from automated job offer letters to the printing of the final pay check.

Streamlining the workflow and HR processes allows you and your management team to get on with the business of managing output rather than other concerns, of course.

Payroll and pensions

In 2008, the UK Government passed the Pensions Act. Part of this legislation stated that all employers in the UK must now offer a Workplace Pension. These are essentially private pension plans offered to employees whereby the employer and the employee pay in (typically at a base rate of about 4% of the pay amount from both parties.

The pensions were, of course, designed to mitigate the fact that many young people will not be able to draw a state pension in the future as fund for social support such as this come to an end.

All of this, however, needs management, and again the HR or finance team can rely on software and technology to manage the payroll process including more technical elements such as pension payments. This means that the process is faster, more efficient and accurate and your employees are paid correctly and on time.

Building management; getting buildings connected

Many homes are now using smart technology to manage their heating, lighting and audio-visual equipment. With the likes of Hive and Nest mixed with products from Amazon, Google and Apple, for example, more of our homes and functions are controlled wirelessly through connected apps or even our voices.

It’s no different for larger buildings, of course, with technology allowing the buildings to talk to their caretakers providing information on their energy consumption, status of lights, fixtures and heat.

Many modern buildings, for example, are using multiple technologies in a bid to keep them as environmentally friendly as possible’ whether that’s incorporating solar panels in to the building’s design or fitting the building with sensors so that the lights, heat and other equipment is only activated when it is needed, meaning no one has to remember to switch off the light any more if they are the last person out the door.

Managing machinery

From production lines to bulldozers, from cars to space shuttles and everything in between, connected machinery, including vehicles, is a way to know in real time what your business is doing across the globe. Imagine being able to see and alter the plant machinery in your factory in a country half way around the world from your office chair or knowing exactly where your products are as they sail across an ocean. With connected technology, this is all now entirely possible.

Sertica, for example, are able to provide real time data from a fleet of ships using their ship management software. This software not only tracks ships but can provide real-time analysis, data sync across the fleet and centralized administration of the needs of the line too.

So whatever it is you’re managing, be assured there’s software out there to assist you.