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.
- 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.