Category: Uncategorized

February 8th, 2017 by Michael Millward

With my car insurance due for renewal in a couple of months it is concerning to read in the Insurance Price Index that my premium may increase by as much as 14%. That is what the Index, which is powered by Willis Towers Watson, says has been the average increase in premiums over the last year. The average premium now stands at £797 a year.

The rate of increase in premiums also seems to be increasing with quarter 4 of 2016 seeing rises of 4% in premiums.

Add to that the increase in Insurance Premium Tax from 6% to 10% and public transport starts to look very attractive.

No driver claims will escape the premium increases, although some will be affected more than others. (more on this later)

Older drivers, which I am not one just yet will according to the Index continue to see the greatest increases. Comprehensive premiums have never been higher for many drivers in their sixties and seventies – those aged 62 (£481), 63 (£494), 64 (£450), 68 (£515), and 71+ (£495), for example, are all experiencing their highest premiums ever. And at 10%, drivers aged 71+ have seen their biggest ever quarterly increase.

As you would expect, although the cost of car insurance for a teenage drivers is now between 56% and 75% of their maximum ever premiums, the cost of insurance for younger drivers remains, by comparison, with the prices paid by older drivers eye-wateringly high.

If you are under 26 years of age you are lucky if you are not paying more than £1,000 a year. Of course it is the youngest drivers, those aged 17 who pay the most. £2,112 a year. This is four times what the average 60 year old pays

Average premiums for people aged 26 and under are all over £1,000. And, after 18 months of 18-year-old drivers typically paying the highest premiums, it’s the nation’s youngest drivers, those aged 17, who now pay the most (£2,112). Motorists aged 60 and over, by contrast, can still typically expect to pay less than £500 (the exception being those aged 68 who pay £515 on average).

Both male and female drivers have seen their premiums rise substantially over the last 12 months. However, males have seen prices accelerate more than their female counterparts, climbing by 15% (+£104 year-on-year) and 13% (+£84 year-on-year) respectively. Meanwhile, the fourth quarter of 2016 has seen a further jump of 4% for both sexes from the previous three-month period. As a result, the average man’s premium now stands at £812, while for women it is £711.

Since 2012 EU rules have banned insurers from taking gender into account when considering insurance premiums. We have yet to see what Brexit will do to this piece of equality, but it seems that the gap in price between men and women’s car insurance premiums continue to widen. There is now a difference of £101 between the sexes in Q4 2016, the first time the £100 barrier has been broken since the EU rules came into force. By comparison, only two years ago (Q4 2014) the gender price divide was almost half as wide at just £51 and as low as £27 immediately after the rules came into place, with men still paying more on average.

Looking across the UK, increases in premiums can be felt in most areas, with no region escaping an annual price hike. In particular, motorists in Scotland have faced the highest percentage rises over the past 12 months. Those in the East & North East and the Highlands & Islands regions of Scotland, for example, have seen the average cost of their car insurance go up by 20% year-on-year to £563 and £589 respectively – the highest of any UK region. Drivers in the Scottish Borders region haven’t fared much better. They’ve seen a 19% annual price hike, although they can take some comfort in the fact that at £531 they still typically pay the least of any UK region for car insurance.

Meanwhile, despite Scottish drivers generally seeing higher annual percentage rises, motorists in the English capital still tend to pay the most for car insurance of all UK regions. And people in the Inner London region pay the most of all – their average annual fully comprehensive policy stands at £1,237 in Q4 2016. In real-terms this is up £152 year-on-year, the largest monetary increase of any UK region too. Only motorists in Northern Ireland saw anything close to this, where the average cost of a fully comprehensive car insurance policy has risen by £134 over the past twelve months, the second largest actual increase of all UK regions.

Across the UK’s other capital cities, drivers in Cardiff, Wales face an average price of £714, up 14% from the same time last year. Meanwhile, those in the Scottish capital of Edinburgh can expect to pay around half that of a London motorist – £558, up 12% from the previous 12 months.

While the price index tends to focus on fully comprehensive car insurance policies, third party fire & theft (TPFT) premiums have increased too and have, in fact, never been higher. The average TPFT policy now stands at £1,311, up 15% year-on-year and 5% quarter-on-quarter.

Amanda Stretton, motoring editor at says:

“Drivers are now paying £95 more on average for an annual comprehensive car insurance policy than they did during the same period in 2015. With the average premium standing at £767, the cost of car insurance hasn’t been this high for over four and half years. What’s more, as prices continue to climb, it seems only a matter of time before we’re back at the 2011 £858 premium peak.

“And it’s not just the price of fully comprehensive policies that have risen over the past 12 months, with the typical third party fire & theft (TPFT) premium at its highest ever cost too. With an average TPFT policy costing £1,311, drivers interested in this level of cover may want to get quotes for fully comprehensive policies too as in some cases it may work out cheaper.

Rising prices make it crucial that I find ways to reduce the cost of motoring wherever I can. advice all motorists like me to shop around using a site such as, which they say can help drivers save on their car insurance and slash running costs with their handy tools, tips and guides.

So I am sticking with Aviva and paying less than I did last year!

Posted in Driving, Uncategorized

September 19th, 2016 by Michael Millward

My good friend Julia Tybura has just telephoned me demanding to tell me about the exciting time she has had today with ClueGo. It’s a treasure hunt based team building event she tells me. Another one I say. No she says this one is different.

Go on then I say, as I settle down for story time.

You have to remember this has been the hottest day of 2016 and rushing around the Southbank, and Covent Garden in London searching for clues is probably not the best way to deal with the heat and humidity.

But Julia has had a great time. It all started with a rendezvous at the London Eye for a briefing, (health and safety etc). Two teams were formed and each was given a pre-loaded iPad and a deadline to by which time they needed to return to the London Eye, when Julia and her team will finish their day with a trip on the Thames Rocket a super-charged boat!

Over two hours Julia and her team run around the Southbank and Covent Garden collecting as many points as possible. After all points mean prizes – so friendly, or perhaps not so friendly competitiveness is the name of this game!

Julia’s team set off along the Southbank, following what were thankfully very easy instructions, looking out for treasure chests, ghosts and zombie icons in the Google map, with the aim of maxing out the number of points they collected.

I tell Julia that it all seems a bit conventional treasure-hunt to me, and she has to agree, but then explains that although the tasks may be similar  posing with a celebrity (or lookalike), interacting with a statue, taking unusual and creative selfies, getting a copy of yesterday’s newspaper and a black jack sweet or even re-enacting a scene from a film, or even just answering lots of unusual, quirky questions about landmarks and London people which were really difficult to crack on wiki or Google! The big difference is the way in which technology is used to give the treasure hunt an added dimension.

If we had wanted we could have scuppered the other teams’ achievements’. We could have used a range of time limited tools that prevented them from using their app/iPad.

It is possible to see where the other team is and their points on your map, so you could, if you wanted use these strategically…

Instead we focused on storming through various other photos, and puzzles to win even more points before arriving back at the London Eye.

Returning to the London Eye on time we had an amazing, white knuckle ride with Thames Rockets on a high speed RIB – again stopping for photos and more questions to win more points – before going back to the Slug and Lettuce for lunch, drinks and medals.

We were, says Julia with great pride the winners with over 600 points!

Julia Tybura (second from left) with her winning team mates

Julia Tybura (second from left) with her winning team mates

Julia tells me that the experience was exciting and that she thinks that it would be really effective for team building, brand or product training and leadership development.

You don’t need to be a technology expert or even familiar with apps to benefit from the approach.

It is says Julia an experience/app that could be used as a standalone experience or as part of an awayday/conference/training or brand development programme.

The ClueGo app was really easy to use and because of its GPS and use of ‘hotspots’ there was an element of surprise, so teams were kept on their toes if they wanted to win or not be ‘attacked’ by the red ghosts or zombies (which would lose you lots of points).

Always with a eye on costs, Julia described it as cost effective too – with an average price point of £45 per person (depending on numbers, location, timings and be-spoking) – so organisations large and small could benefit from some ‘serious fun’ with ClueGo.

Julia Tybura is managing director of Zenon Consulting

Posted in Teams Working Development Leadership, Uncategorized Tagged with: , ,

July 21st, 2016 by Michael Millward

Well it had to happen, today I entered the Dragons’ Den. Not the Dragons’s Den of BBC2 TV fame. I have not been subject to the attentions of Debrorah Meaden or an inquistion from Peter Jones.

No the Dragons’ Den that I entered was completely different, and I was a dragon.

The event was the Business in the Community HEART residential at Leeds Beckett University. The Dragons’ Den took place on the third day.

The HEART partnership was established to help build equality of access to higher education for all those pupils who are capable of succeeding at that level and would benefit from the experience. The aim is to encourage under represented groups to access higher education. These groups include people who may have

  • experience of living in care
  • certain disabilities
  • lived in areas of multiple deprivation
  • lived in families with no direct experience fo highher education

The Dragons’ Den forms part of a residential for young people that was designed to increase their confidence and self-esteem, as well as bringing out the students’ skills and qualities so that they can build a better understanding of the world of work and business.

The students were introduced to the world of commerce with an upcycling project in which they were challenged to create something useful from obsolete computer equipment. The project required the students to learn and understand and then put into practice the skills required to solve problems, manage a project, work as a team, communicate effectively and present their ideas.

I was one of the local business people who was asked to assessed the upcycled products that the young people had created. Along the way I had to explain to one of the project teams what a floppy disk is. Apparently it is not something that the young people of today are familiar with.

HEART Partnership three day residential summer school. West Yorkshire, UK. Ian Hinchliffe /

HEART Partnership three day residential summer school. West Yorkshire, UK.
Ian Hinchliffe /

Without good role models and encouragement there is a risk that the young people of the United Kingdom will not build successful working lives. The Confederation of British Business (CBI) agrees with Business in the Community (BITC) that support from businesses can help schools to raise pupil aspirations further, acheive more and helps young people understand and prepare for the world outside the school gates. Schools have also acknowledged that good employer – education engagement as a means of inspiring improved attainment levels and raising pupil aspirations.

The statistics are quite sobering

  • 1 in 5 children leave school to become NEETs not in education, employment or training
  • 30% of UK employers say that school leavers are too costly to employ because they lack the skills that employers need for them to fill entry level vacancies.
  • 88% of pupils would welcome more access to employers to learn about work and bridge the gap between education and employment.




Posted in Conferences, Education, Education to Employment, Uncategorized

December 10th, 2015 by Michael Millward

Michael Millward has completed two sessions of mock job interviews for pupils studying for a Certificate of Personal Effectiveness.

This is a qualifications that aims to enable candidates to develop and demonstrate personal, key and employability skills, leading to personal effectiveness, and to broaden experience and manage learning through the enrichment activities provided by the ASDAN challenges. The purpose of the qualification is to develop these generic skills so that pupils can receive formal recognition through certification.

The interviews took place over two afternoons and involved pupils who want to undertake careers in automotive repair, information technology, childcare and the entertainment industries.

Following the interviews each candidate receives feedback on both the good aspects of their interview and those areas that could be improved.

Posted in Education to Employment, Uncategorized

June 3rd, 2015 by Michael Millward

In January 2015 Michael Millward volunteer branch chair of the CIPD North Yorkshire branch shared his HR predictions for 2015 in a webinar hosted on behalf of the the branch by Shorebird.

One of the predictions Michael made was that employers would start to make more use of information technology to manage employees and improve the ways in which they used the social aspects of the internet to engage with those employees.

Earlier today Michael delivered a webinar in which he focused on this prediction and identified how straight forward is for organisations of all types to reduce administration time and increase employee engagement with their employers.

Michael explained how the way in which HR professionals’ use of information technology and the internet has developed and the impact this has had on employees, employers and the HR function.

Michael explained how:

  • Making the right technology decisions can make life so much more straight-forward.
  • Technology can be used to focus employees on performance and the achievement of objectives
  • Appropriate use of technology can enhance employee relations and employee engagement.

This is an on-demand webinar that will be useful to both HR professionals, employers regardless of whether they have an existing employee management system, are considering getting one or changing an existing one, or have not considered how technology can enhance employee management and engagement.

You can view the webinar at this link:

How to Use HR Technology Effectively

Posted in CIPD, Uncategorized Tagged with: ,