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The Agency Worker Regulations

Posted on 1/05/2019 by Jon Tongue

The number of agency workers is continuing to increase as we are expecting to approach 1 million workers by 2020. Therefore, it’s becoming increasingly important that employers know how to implement the Agency Workers Regulations within their business.

The Agency Worker Regulations came into play in England, Scotland and Wales on the 1st of October 2011. They ensure equal treatment and safety with regards to basic regulations for workers.

The Rights from Day One

Agency Workers have certain rights that apply from the first day.

The rights include:

  • Collective facilities and amenities provided by your hirer
  • Information on job vacancies with the hirer
  • Employment Status

The Rights from Day 12

After 12 weeks in the job, the workers qualify for the same rights as someone employed directly. This is known as ‘equal treatment’

The rights include:

  • Equal Pay – the same amount of pay as a permanent employer doing the same job
  • Automatic Pension Enrolment
  • Paid Annual Leave
  • Overtime and night work
  • Duration of working time

The regulations DO NOT take in to account the following:

  • Occupational sick pay
  • Maternity pay
  • Redundancy and notice pay
  • Payments related to pension entitlement
  • Bonuses that are not based on individual performance
  • Profit sharing schemes

What resets the qualification period ‘clock’?

  • Breaks between a role for more than 6 weeks will reset the qualification period.
  • If an agency worker starts a new role that’s substantially (completely new) different from the previous one.

The qualifying period will pause when the worker has sick leave or breaks.

Do NOT count the days when:

  • The worker takes a break of 6 weeks or less
  • The worker leaves due to sickness or injury for up to 28 weeks
  • The workplace closes, for example, Christmas
  • The worker is on jury service for up to 28 weeks
  • The worker takes an annual leave.

If the worker pasts 12 weeks in any of these sectors, the worker will qualify for equal treatment.

How does the Agency Worker Regulations impact your business?

The Agency Worker Regulations doesn't have to spell massive changes for your business / company. We've provided a simple process for you to follow:

Communicate with your hiring managers.

The number of agency workers is continuing to increase as we are expecting to approach 1 million workers by 2020. Therefore, it’s becoming increasingly important that employers know how to implement the Agency Workers Regulations within their business.

The Agency Worker Regulations came into play in England, Scotland and Wales on the 1st of October 2011. They ensure equal treatment and safety with regards to basic regulations for workers.

The Rights from Day One

Agency Workers have certain rights that apply from the first day.

The rights include:

  • Collective facilities and amenities provided by your hirer
  • Information on job vacancies with the hirer
  • Employment Status

The Rights from Day 12

After 12 weeks in the job, the workers qualify for the same rights as someone employed directly. This is known as ‘equal treatment’

The rights include:

  • Equal Pay – the same amount of pay as a permanent employer doing the same job
  • Automatic Pension Enrolment
  • Paid Annual Leave
  • Overtime and night work
  • Duration of working time

The regulations DO NOT take in to account the following:

  • Occupational sick pay
  • Maternity pay
  • Redundancy and notice pay
  • Payments related to pension entitlement
  • Bonuses that are not based on individual performance
  • Profit sharing schemes

What resets the qualification period ‘clock’?

  • Breaks between a role for more than 6 weeks will reset the qualification period.
  • If an agency worker starts a new role that’s substantially (completely new) different from the previous one.

The qualifying period will pause when the worker has sick leave or breaks.

Do NOT count the days when:

  • The worker takes a break of 6 weeks or less
  • The worker leaves due to sickness or injury for up to 28 weeks
  • The workplace closes, for example, Christmas
  • The worker is on jury service for up to 28 weeks
  • The worker takes an annual leave.

If the worker pasts 12 weeks in any of these sectors, the worker will qualify for equal treatment.

What can your business do to tackle the Agency Workers Regulations?

Communicate with your hiring managers. 

Understanding and applying the Agency Worker Regulations to your business is critical, holding regular meetings with your hiring manager(s) and the team can help better understand the regulations and analyse on what areas in the regulations that your business can improve on.

Make sure you inform your Agency Worker(s)

Updating your Agency Workers about the agency worker regulations and helping them understand their rights from day 1 and week 12 shows your business as transparent, building on your reputation as a company.

To go that one step ahead,  you can create a terms and conditions paper, that looks at the impact of The Agency Workers Regulations.

To speak about getting your business all set and optimized for the Agency Worker Regulations, contact our branch in Leicester on 0116 262 3733 or email us.