Long hours main reason workers take their employer to tribunal

Long hours main reason workers take their employer to tribunal

TribunalUK workers are most likely to log a claim against their employer for making them work excessively long hours, claims new data by health and safety training provider DeltaNet International. The data, which looks at the number of employment tribunal cases over the last five years, suggests there have been 160,299 jurisdictions (complaints) in relation to employers breaking the Working Time Directive, which outlines the maximum weekly working hours. Under the directive, a UK employee cannot work more than 48 hours a week on average – normally averaged over 17 weeks – unless there is an exception. More →

People working from home have the same legal protections as they do in offices

People working from home have the same legal protections as they do in offices

working from homeEven as the COVID-19 lockdown eases, it is predicted that many people will continue to work remotely for the foreseeable future. Government advice remains that those who can work from home should do so. This throws up a key question for employers both in the current circumstances and going forward. Namely, what are employers’ ongoing legal obligations for the health and safety of homeworkers? Put simply, as an employer, you have the same legal duty of care for the health, safety and wellbeing of employees working from home as you do for those based in your office. So it’s worthwhile knowing what that means. More →

Pandemic highlights precarious reality of workplace legislation

Pandemic highlights precarious reality of workplace legislation

precarious workplace Less than a week on from the Budget, and already the government’s emergency measures to respond to covid-19 feel like they belong to another crisis. While attention this weekend has rightly focused on how our health services and older people can be supported, we also need urgently to revisit the impact on the workplace and especially how we’ll support the many millions of workers who will find themselves off work – sick or in self-isolation – over the coming months. More →

Stress, sickie days and a beamish response to it all

Stress, sickie days and a beamish response to it all

Stress, uncertainty and the medicalisation of dissatisfactionThis is a piece to mark National Sickie Day, which is today. We now have a policy of not offering ourselves as an outlet for any of the deluge of comment pieces and surveys that are published each year to mark days like this. This is largely because we cover the issue year round so don’t feel the need to add to the PR feeding frenzy that they generate. Whatever you make of the findings of the these reports and others like them, even cynics would have to acknowledge they tap into an unmistakable  feeling that work is not as enjoyable as it should be. More →

Avoiding the minefield of WhatsApp communications

Avoiding the minefield of WhatsApp communications

Whether to keep colleagues updated or to share a new idea, WhatsApp groups are increasingly becoming a go-to communication tool in the workplace.  There are benefits to having such informal communication channels – they can be less hierarchical and improve cohesion within the team, as well as being a fast and easy way to communicate and share images. On the flip side, the lack of formality means that there are risks associated with them.   More →

Half of self-employed people do not know what IR35 is

Half of self-employed people do not know what IR35 is

New research from FreeAgent conducted with 2000 self employed people in the UK, claims that more than half (57 percent) don’t know what IR35 is. The sets of tax legislation encompassed by IR35, designed to combat tax avoidance by workers and the firms hiring them, is unknown to over half of the people most affected by it – the self employed. The legislation, which has been heavily criticised by tax experts and the business community as being poorly conceived, badly implemented by HMRC and causing unnecessary costs and hardships for genuine small businesses, has not been well communicated to self employed people, the research reveals. Tax experts have predicted that IR35 could reduce a worker’s net income by up to 25 percent and Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid, recently announced the Conservative Party’s plan to review IR35 as part of its manifesto. More →

Over half of employers are ignorant of the Good Work Plan

Over half of employers are ignorant of the Good Work Plan

good workIn five months’ time, employers will have to adhere to new employment laws proposed in the government’s Good Work Plan. However, the majority of UK businesses are completely unaware that these laws are due to come into effect. A survey by Citation, conducted via OnePoll, has found that 59 percent of British employers do not even know about the Good Work Plan, which proposes a variety of law changes that will come into effect in April 2020. More →

Workplace discrimination based on scare tactics faces crackdown

Workplace discrimination based on scare tactics faces crackdown

finding a voice against workplace discriminationThe UK Government has announced what it claims are new, improved measures to protect workers facing workplace discrimination. The move especially targets those employers who withhold references and enforce non-disclosure agreements to pressure employees into silence. Such tactics could now be blocked under new the proposals announced by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. More →

Here is how you should handle racial discrimination in the workplace

Here is how you should handle racial discrimination in the workplace

A row of legal booksWhile progress has been made with tackling racial discrimination in recent decades, it is clear that it still lives on in the workplace in less overt and more nuanced forms. A survey commissioned by the Trade Union Congress found that over 70 percent of ethnic minority workers say they have experienced racial harassment at work and around 60 percent state that they have been subject to unfair treatment by their employer. Karen Holden, Founder of A City Law Firm, is keen to outline the laws surrounding racial discrimination in the workplace and exactly what the employers responsibilities are. More →

Mental health at work addressed by new consortium of firms

Mental health at work addressed by new consortium of firms

Mental health at workLloyds Banking Group, Unilever the CBI, Bupa and the John Lewis Partnership are among the major firms and other organisations that have signed up to an agreement that aims to transform the approach to mental health in the workplace. The Mental Health at Work Commitment is a promise to adopt six standards which have been developed with mental health charities, large employers and trade organisations. More →

Gig economy worker rights demand a global approach

Gig economy worker rights demand a global approach

A worker takes a break from the gig economyBritish people increasingly work in temporary positions and on short term engagements: part of a fundamental global shift in the way we work. The domestic gig economy has seen the number of workers more than double in number since 2016, according to a recent report from the TUC and the University of Hertfordshire (conducted with Ipsos MORI). Based on interviews with 2,235 individuals, the report’s key finding is that gig economy platforms, such as Uber, Deliveroo and Upwork, are now staffed by 4.7 million workers – or one in 10 working-age adults, up from one in 20 three years ago. It also found that 15 per cent of survey respondents had undertaken gig economy work at some point – equivalent to almost 7.5 million people if extrapolated across the entire economy. More →

SMEs remain in dark about rights of disabled employees

SMEs remain in dark about rights of disabled employees

Firms unaware of rights of disabled employeesDespite ambitious government policies to get a million disabled people into work over the next ten years, the latest ONS data shows a minuscule 5 percent increase since the 2017 goal, which would only see a total of merely 5,800 disabled people in work by 2027 if the pattern continues. In light of the disability employment issue, a new survey of UK SME owners conducted by Bolt Burdon Kemp claims that 95 percent of respondents don’t know the full legal rights of disabled employees. More →

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