Posts Tagged ‘equal treatment of temporary workers’

The AWR is finally here…

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011
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Recruitment Agencies 2011 and beyond

The Agency Workers Regulations (AWR) were implemented in the UK on 1st October 2011, as a direct result of European legislation.

So, what effect does this have on temporary workers?

Temporary workers are now entitled to the same basic working and employment conditions as they would be, had they been recruited to the role directly by the organisation.

The AWR dictates that they can now accrue their service and receive equal benefits as a comparable permanent employee.

First day rights

  • First day rights – all temporary employees now have access to all information regarding any shared facilities and permanent vacancies within the company, this includes such things as restroom areas, canteens and restaurants, car parking, crèche facilities and prayer rooms.
  • Following 12 weeks of temporary employment, the employee is entitled to the same pay, working hours, holidays and training as that of a permanent worker in the same role.
  • Exclusions to the above are sick pay, paternity and maternity leave, redundancy pay, payment such as bonuses related to company performance and subsidised benefits such as gym membership and discount vouchers.
  • It does not matter whether you work full or part-time or if you work through different agencies, once you have worked for 12 calendar weeks you are entitled to the same benefits as a comparable permanent employee.
  • The qualifying period is only reset by having a break of 6 weeks or more, or by moving into a substantially different role for the same organisation.

Agency involvement

  • In the majority of instances, the agency is responsible for monitoring on behalf of temporary workers when they reach the qualifying period. As a temporary worker, if you have any questions around your benefits or your qualifying period, you should contact your agency for advice.
  • The new legislation does not imply that companies will now stop using temporary workers. There will always be a need for short-term cover to assist whilst permanent roles are recruited for or to cover staff absence.
  • The new legislation does not change the employment status of a temporary worker.

By Deborah Fowler, a recruiter at PPS

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Agency Workers Directive 2011

Monday, February 21st, 2011
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The Agency Workers Directive (AWD) will be enforced in the UK from 1st October 2011. The main purpose of the Directive is to ensure the equal treatment and protection of temporary agency workers in terms of basic working and employment conditions which are pay, working hours, overtime, rest periods, holidays, training, access to shared facilities and internal job vacancies.

Equal treatment does not include the provision of a pension, occupational sick pay, redundancy pay, bonuses intended to reward longevity of service or loyalty and will not include any changes to the employment status of the temporary agency worker. An essential part of the Directive is that equal treatment rights will not come into effect until the temporary agency worker has been in an assignment for 12 weeks.

The implementation of the AWD will have major implications on the cost and use of agency workers. Yet research has suggested that approximately 60% of HR professionals are unaware that the Directive will be in place in less than 12 months.

This is a significant piece of legislation that carries severe consequences for non-compliance; getting it wrong could result in serious financial and legal ramifications. It is therefore essential for companies to start getting to grips with the potential areas of impact. Below are a few key questions and areas companies can be focusing on in anticipation of the Directive:

Find out more about the Agency Workers Directive here

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