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Businesses that import or export goods outside the EU will need to prepare for the new service for declaring these.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will begin a phased launch of the Customs Declaration Service (CDS) in August 2018.

CDS will replace the existing Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system, with all declarations taking place on CDS from early 2019.

CHIEF currently processes declarations to facilitate the international movement of goods between the UK and non-EU countries. CHIEF will continue to run for a time to aid the transition to CDS.

Why CDS is replacing CHIEF

CHIEF is one of the world’s largest and most sophisticated electronic services for managing customs declaration processes, but it’s nearly 25 years old and can’t be easily adapted to new requirements.

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Twenty-eight skills reforms in 30 years have alienated firms, confused learning providers and failed to deliver on skills needs, according to CBI

The apprenticeship levy should be turned into a flexible skills levy so firms can fund more varied training courses for their staff, business group the CBI has urged.

In a new report published today (22 January 2018), and entitled In Perfect Harmony, the CBI calls on businesses, the government and learning providers to take a fresh approach to skills in 2018, explaining that 28 skills reforms in 30 years have alienated firms, confused learning providers and failed to deliver on skills needs.

Policymakers, businesses and providers should therefore collaborate and design a stable national framework for skills – based on the government regulating for quality, rather than designing qualifications as has happened in the past. 

'National, stable and joined-up skills plan'The report says a “national, stable and joined-up skills plan must be central to the government’s industrial strategy – developed and delivered with business and skills providers.”

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In the introduction to the joint CBI / Pertemps Employment Trends Survey, Neil Carberry Managing Director, People & Infrastructure CBI says

The UK stands at the beginning of a new era – not just in terms of Brexit, but even more importantly in how we adapt to, and prosper from, new technologies that are reshaping how we live.

There can be no doubt that work will change, and with that change there is the possibility to create a higher skill, more competitive, more prosperous nation. We face an opportunity, not just a threat.

People will be at the heart of meeting that challenge. On skills, new technology and how we manage our workplaces there is much to do, as this survey sets out. We are delighted to have been able to work with Pertemps again this year to bring it to you. The positive base we start from shines out clearly from the data – high employment rates are likely to persist and employee relations are good. 

The highlights of the report include:

Businesses believe they can continue to generate jobs growth
• Over half (51%) of respondent businesses are looking to grow their workforces over the next 12 months
• Confidence is highest among small and  medium-sized employers, with a positive balance of +58% expecting to add jobs in the coming year
• Growth is expected across all job types, with positive balance scores for permanent (+35%), temporary (+12%), graduate (+18%), and apprenticeship positions (+42%).

Businesses are walking a difficult line on pay
• Half of respondents (52%) aim to raise pay for their employees in line with (or above) inflation in the coming year and only 3% are planning to freeze pay
• Over half of businesses (55%) are now affected by the national living wage, with actions to cope with the costs among those affected ranging from raising prices (21%) to increasing investment in training (32%) to boost the value added by employees
• Looking four years ahead, a quarter (25%) of respondents affected are expecting to restructure their business models while nearly a third (30%) intend to increase automation.

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This inaugural survey aims to capture the leadership and development challenges that people in organisations face and how those issues can affect the effectiveness of organisations.

It also looks to establish what executives see as the: top leadership challenges facing their organisation most important skills for successful leaders, reasons why leaders fail to reach their potential ¢ most useful training and development programmes, key talent management challenges, including the effectiveness of training and development.

Key Findings:

The five toughest challenges facing leaders today are employee engagement, effective strategy execution, talent management, driving work across organisational boundaries and encouraging collaboration across the organisation.

80% of respondents said change in their companies is mandated by senior management.

10% of respondents said change was driven at a lower level and later “blessed” by senior management.

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We wish you a happy festive season & every success in 2018.

The Leadership Lounge will be back online early January.




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The CBI has responded to the Government’s new modern Industrial Strategy.

Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General, said:

“Nine in ten firms see a modern Industrial Strategy as vital to improving living standards in the face of Brexit uncertainty and a sombre economic outlook.  This announcement shows the Government has its eye firmly on the horizon, not just the next few yards.  We welcome the recognition that success will require urgent action in partnership with business. This is the route to raising living standards in every corner of the country. 

“The hard work starts now. Today’s announcement must be the beginning of a strategic race, not a tactical sprint. And it needs to last. This is a time for consistency and determination, not perpetual change with the political winds. The creation of an independent council with teeth to monitor progress will help this.

"The CBI urges the Government to continue on this road, moving fast from strategy to action. Two important tests of success will be that all regions and nations have successful industrial strategies, and that it is supported and not harmed by Brexit. There must be no missed turns on the path to UK 2030”.

On the Grand Challenges, Josh Hardie, CBI Deputy Director-General, said:

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The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has said that employers need to take steps to “stamp out” sexual harassment in the workplace.

Concerns about inappropriate conduct have been thrust into the media spotlight following a flurry of allegations centred on the film industry and, more recently, Westminster.

While Parliament’s employment structure – in which aides are employed directly by MPs – has presented a number of particular challenges to those who have been the victim of inappropriate behaviour, the CBI is convinced that sexual harassment is an issue across a wide range of sectors.

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