Legislation and regulation
May 15, 2019
The number of non-EU born workers in employment has increased over the past 12 months due to a tightening labour market, according to statistics published this week by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Figures show that just over a third of the 364, 000 net annual increase in the number of people in work over the past year has gone to people from outside the European Union, although the number of EU-born citizens in work has also risen. The number of non-EU born citizens in employment has increased by 123, 000 during the past year, while there has been a notable quarterly increase of more than 117,000 EU-born citizens.
April 11, 2019
Following the TUC’s recent call for an overhaul of shared parental leave rights, a new interactive study created by Red Letter Days claims to display just how many babies are born every minute in 169 countries and what each has to offer its citizens when they become a parent, such as maternity and paternity leave as well as outlining the benefits of having both maternity and paternity leave in place. Estonia tops the list as one of the best countries for maternity leave, offering 62 weeks for new mums, while the United States remains at the bottom with zero weeks of guaranteed leave. more…
April 8, 2019
This year is set to be a busy year for HR and employment law. From post-Brexit immigration rule changes and gender pay gap reporting, to age discrimination at work, employers are faced with amended employment laws and new deadlines for their organisation to meet. These are ten important areas of the law that HR professionals and business owners need to be aware of. more…
April 1, 2019
New service charge rules which aim to ensure there are no hidden costs and clarity around disputes, come in to force today (1 April 2019) and are mandatory for RICS professionals. ‘Service charges in commercial property’ has been developed with industry leaders, including major property organisations and professional bodies to secure transparent, upfront and fair costs for businesses as part of the maintenance and upkeep of their building. Amongst the rules, any charges incurred by the tenant must be explained fully at the outset and in accordance with the terms of the occupational lease, whilst any upkeep costs not specifically mentioned or explained in a lease must be made irrecoverable from the tenant.
March 8, 2019
It has probably not escaped your notice that today is International Woman’s Day, which for Workplace Insight means a plethora of studies on the topic of women/jobs/salaries and ways women might work differently to men. We’ve decided not to waste anyone’s time and ignored most of them (particularly the patronizing ones on how ladies are so intuitive) but managed to find a few kernels of information. First, the good news that women have doubled their share of top jobs at technology companies, pulling in higher salaries than men last year, according to executive search firm Odgers Berndtson. more…
March 1, 2019
The government is being encouraged to implement mandatory ethnicity pay gap reporting when it announces the outcome of its ‘Ethnicity pay reporting’ consultation, which closed in January. Pre-empting that, fifteen companies have signed a commitment today to work towards mandatory ethnicity pay gap reporting. Signatories include the Bank of England, Deloitte, KPMG, WPP, Santander and EY. The commitment, driven by membership organisation INvolve, aims to get more businesses voluntarily reporting on their ethnicity pay gap. In 2018 The Resolution Foundation estimated the ethnicity pay gap at £3.2bn. A report from INvolve also showed that white people earn on average between £67 and £209 more per week compared to similarly qualified individuals of a different ethnic background, and that the most ethnically diverse workplaces are 35 percentage points more likely to financially outperform industry averages.
February 22, 2019
Nearly a quarter (24 percent) of UK employers admit they would be less likely to hire someone with a disability, new data from disability charity Leonard Cheshire shows, and over two thirds (66 percent) of managers cite the cost of workplace adjustments as the barrier to employing a disabled person, up from 60 percent in 2017. Seventeen percent of disabled candidates that had applied for a job in the past five years said the employer withdrew the job offer as a result of their disability. Attitudinal barriers continually featured in the latest research. Of the employers across the UK that said they were less likely to employ someone because they were disabled, 60 percent were concerned that a disabled person wouldn’t be able to do the job. Of the disabled people in the UK who applied for a job in the last five years, 30 percent said they felt like the employer had not taken them seriously as a candidate.
February 21, 2019
Although official figures from the ONS show a decline in consumer spending throughout much of 2018, optimism amongst small businesses remains high, with UK SMEs hoping to grow their headcount by an average of 21 percent over the next 12 months. The new research from Opus Energy claims that half (51 percent) intend to grow their business in terms of people, with some even predicting they’ll increase their workforce by 50 percent. IT (39 percent), health (33 percent) and financial services (28 percent) were the sectors expecting the most growth. Even in the worst affected sectors, growth was still predicted. Half (50 percent) of retailers still expected to grow in 2019, at an average of 19 percent. 65 percent of food and beverage producers predicted an average headcount increase of 18 percent and 69 percent of manufacturers expected to grow at an average of 14 percent; despite facing the uncertainty of Brexit and the “death of the high street”.
February 19, 2019
It’s been argued that one of the main drivers behind the gender pay gap and inequality in the workplace is when it comes to having children. Now new research from Money Guru has revealed that 70 percent of UK employers believe that women should declare their pregnancy during the recruitment process with one in seven (14 percent) of employers admitting to being reluctant to hire someone who may go on to have children. Studies show that 39 percent of young mothers have been illegally asked in job interviews about how being a mother would affect their ability to work.
February 15, 2019
New research commissioned by the Government Equalities Office (GEO) has found that more companies are prioritising reducing their gender pay gap since the legislation was introduced in 2017. The research found that 69 percent of employers now view closing the gender pay gap as a high or medium priority, an increase of 8 percent on last year. With 10,000 companies reporting their pay gaps last year, the new research also showed that 67 percent of companies are having discussions at board-level to find ways of closing the gap. The GEO published the results as it announced two new pieces of guidance, providing step by step advice for employers which helps them to identify potential causes of the gender pay gap in their organisation and develop an effective action plan to tackle it.
January 21, 2019
A majority of MPs have backed a recommendation to increase gender diversity in business by extending the “Women in Finance Charter” to cover all businesses in the UK. The recommendation comes from the professional accountancy body AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians). The Charter asks financial services firms to commit to implement four key industry actions; to have a named senior executive responsible and accountable for gender diversity and inclusion; set internal targets for gender diversity in senior management positions; publish progress annually and ensure the pay of the senior executive team is linked to delivery against these internal targets on gender diversity. more…
January 17, 2019
There is a ‘significant risk’ that the reporting ethnicity pay levels could be ‘counterproductive’ unless key differences between it and gender pay are recognised, said the Institute for Employment Studies (IES) in its response to the UK Government’s consultation on ethnicity pay reporting. Although the IES supports the government’s proposals to introduce mandatory reporting of ethnicity pay gap information, it suggests that cultural and practical barriers to collecting and reporting ethnicity data are greater than for gender pay. More time and greater government support are therefore needed to prepare for these changes. The consultation response voices specific concerns that measures to increase the recruitment of under-represented groups, for example through apprenticeships or paid internships, could serve to widen pay gaps initially. This could inadvertently discourage employers from taking positive action to improve their ethnic diversity. Reporting arrangements therefore need to also take account of changes in the levels of employment participation for different ethnic minority groups, as well as their pay.
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