On 11 July 2017, the ‘Good Work: The Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices’ was published with the view to improving working life and employment rights. The review focused on key areas such as worker status, the rights of vulnerable workers such as zero hour workers, agency workers and the growing Gig economy.
Following numerous consultations, on 17 December 2018 the Government has published the Good Work Plan which they describe as “the biggest package of workplace reforms for over 20 years”. The Plan has built on the original Taylor review recommendations and is broken down into three main themes: fair and decent work; clarity for employers and workers; and fairer enforcement.
Some of the proposed changes will take effect as early as April 2019, whilst others may not be implemented until April 2020.
1. There will be a right to a detailed payslip which will extend to workers, not just employees and the payslip must show the number of hours worked for those with variable hours and pay. This will take effect from 6 April 2019.
2. A right for all workers to request a more stable and predictable contract after they have worked for a company for 26 weeks.
3. More clarity on employment status. It has been proposed that after further research, an online tool will be developed to help determine employee status. At the moment we have seen disparity between decisions made by HMRC and the courts which has meant that you may be a worker for tax purposes but not one to enable you to access employment rights.
4. From April 2020, it will be easier for workers to establish continuity of service as the break in service period will be extended from 1 week to 4 weeks which means that workers who have breaks in service of less than 4 weeks will still have continuity of service, giving them a greater chance of accessing key rights.
5. From April 2020, the reference period to calculate holiday pay will be extended from 12 weeks to 52 weeks. The Government are planning to launch a holiday awareness campaign.
6. From April 2020, all workers will be entitled to more detailed written particulars of employment from the first day of their employment. Companies will therefore need to have contracts ready and drawn up for employees to sign either before or on the first day of employment. Currently employers must provide the statement of terms within 2 months of employment starting.
7. From April 2020, agency workers will have the right to be provided with a Key Facts Page which informs them of the type of contract they are working under and who will be paying them. The ‘Swedish Derogation’ will also be abolished.
8. There will be a new state-led enforcement of holiday pay for vulnerable workers.
9. There will be new and stricter enforcement of tribunal awards which will include a naming and shaming scheme for employers who fail to pay awards.
10. With effect from April 2019 the award an employment tribunal can make for aggravated damages will be increased from £5,000 to £20,000.
11. It is likely that tribunal fees will be introduced again although this has not yet been confirmed.
12. With effect from April 2020, there will be a ban on making deductions from staff tips.
13. From April 2020, the threshold required for a request to set up information and consultation arrangements will be lowered from 10% to 2% of employees, subject to the existing minimum of 15 employees.
It is advised that companies start to act on these changes as soon as possible to ensure compliance. Bhayani HR & Employment Law can assist with reviewing your current situation and making recommendations for change. We can also provide up to date policies and contracts of employment to assist you with implementing the proposed changes.