Agency Workers Regulations
Agency workers make up about 4% of the UK workforce and the new regulations – set to come into force in October – will give agency workers the same rights on basic working and employment conditions as those in equivalent permanent jobs. The regulations will apply to most workers who are provided by an agency to a hiring company.
Temporary agency labour is a vital part of an organisations flexibility and productivity levels. They are used across a wide and varying spectrum of industry sectors and provide an effective strategy for accommodating peaks and troughs.
Some rights will apply from day one of employment, such as access to childcare, canteens, transport and job vacancies. Other rights, such as pay and some benefits will apply after the agency worker has been in the same job for 12 weeks, whether full or part time.
The impact of the regulations will vary across industries, Job sectors such as construction; education and healthcare are likely to face some of the biggest challenges.
Organisaions should carry out an assessment of their agency worker use, looking at factors such as the normal length of assignments to see how often the 12 week qualifying period will be met. They should also review their agency workers’ roles to see if there are comparable employee posts, and work out whether the agency worker is paid a lower rate than the comparable employee.
The most important step is to liaise with your employment agency – that how we can help if you would like us to assist in the correction implementation of the AWR give us a call and we can arrange a visit or we are happy to send you an information pack.