INTRODUCING SAM ATANDA OF ACORN RESOURCE SERVICES AND SOME INFORMATION SHE WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOU WHICH MAY BE OF HELP:
Agency Workers Regulations 2010 – What it means for you.
Samantha is a highly experienced Business and Human Resources executive who has operated at board level across both public and private sector organisations over many years. Samantha is the founder and executive director at Acorn Resource Services Limited (www.acornresource.co.uk) – ‘providing individual solutions to individual problems’.
She is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, a member of the British Psychological Society and holds a Master Degree in Employment Law. She is also a qualified and experienced facilitator, project manager, trainer, coach and mentor.
Samantha has worked with various clients to provide solutions across a wide range of employment and organisational issues including change management, support on managing redundancy, workflow mapping and staff administration services review.
Samantha lives and has an office in Uxbridge.
The use of agency workers in the workplace is common practice. Businesses and organisations have used agency workers as additional, flexible, valuable resource to fill the staffing gaps temporarily without having to go through a lengthy recruitment process.
Over recent years, employment law on the national minimum wage, paid holiday and the right not to work more than 48 hours a week on average have given agency workers some rights and benefits. The Agency Workers Regulations 2010 is a further significant step in enhancing agency workers' rights.
Are you an Agency Worker?
If your answer is yes, the Agency Workers Regulations became law on 1 October 2011. The new law gives you rights to equal treatment on basic employment and working conditions as if you'd been recruited directly.
The new rule means that from day one on the job you are entitled to use your workplace facilities and get information on job vacancies.
Your rights are based on those of someone doing a similar job to you at the same workplace (but may be located elsewhere). This right applies if you are working part time as well as full time. There has to be a permanent worker or employee doing the same or similar work to you before you can have the right to equal treatment under the new rules.
Under the new rule, an agency worker is recognised as a worker contracted to someone (normally an employment agency) in the business of supplying individuals to work temporarily under the supervision and direction of a company (the hirer). The rules does not apply if you are a casual worker directly employed by the company, on secondment from another company or if you are genuinely self-employed.
What rights do you get under the regulation?
Day One rights
From your first day at work, you have the same rights as the permanent employees to shared facilities and amenities such as the canteen, workplace crèche (subject to the same waiting lists or conditions as comparable employees or workers), transport services (local pick up service, inter-site transport), toilet and shower facilities, mother and baby room, a prayer room, car parking (subject to the same restrictions as comparable employees or workers), a waiting room, food and drinks machines.
These facilities are usually on-site where you are working but may be elsewhere. The company may provide information on facilities to your agency as part of the information about the assignment. Companies can only refuse you access to facilities if they can objectively justify denying you access.
Cost alone is unlikely to be a sufficient reason to exclude you. Even where there is a good reason, you might be offered partial access to certain facilities rather than being excluded altogether.
After 12 weeks employment
After 12 weeks in the same job with the same company you will have the right to equal treatment in pay, holidays, night work, rest periods/breaks, duration of working time. The new rule does not mean that you become a permanent employee of the company after 12 weeks and your rights cannot be backdated. Any time spent on a job before 1 October 2011 does not count towards the 12 week qualifying.
Although the new law gives you more rights to date, it does not include your right to redundancy pay, notice pay or season ticket loans.
What happens if I do not get what I am entitled to?
If you think the company is not giving you the same right to the shared facilities or after 12 weeks not giving you the same pay and conditions as the permanent staff, you should talk to the company or the agency in the first instance about this. If you cannot resolve the matter informally you can ask for written information which they have to reply to within a set time (about 30 days).
And if you do not get the information, you can make a claim to the employment tribunal against your company and the agency for not giving you equal treatment from day one of you starting work or after meeting the 12 weeks qualifying period.
Do I have to work continuously for 12 weeks before I qualify?
No. If you have breaks that are six weeks or less it will not affect you making up the 12 weeks you need to qualify for same pay and conditions of work. Any break you have in this period will only be a pause. If you have a break that is more than six weeks, you will have to start again to build up the 12-week qualifying period.
The build-up of 12 weeks qualifying period can be paused by absences due to sickness, annual leave or company closure.
Pregnancy and maternity-related absences, maternity leave, paternity leave and adoption leave will not pause the 12-week build up at all - instead the12-week build up period will continue throughout the period of the absence and include these weeks as those counting towards the 12-week total.
What if I do more than one job at a time?
If you do two jobs at the same time, you will need to build up the 12 weeks for each job separately. For example if you work on assignment A and assignment B, you will need to work for 12 weeks on assignment A before you gain your full rights to assignment A and 12 weeks on assignment B before you gain full rights to assignment B.
Where can I find out more?
All the agencies are well aware of this new piece of employment law and would be able to answer any questions you may have. The company where you work should also be aware of these changes but further clarification can be found at www.humanresources-howto.com.
See more about Acorn Resources in their feature http://www.thebestof.co.uk/local/gerrards-cross/business-guide/feature/acorn-resource-services/87341
Read testimonials about Acorn Resource Services on thebestofgerrardscross http://www.thebestof.co.uk/local/gerrards-cross/business-guide/feature/acorn-resource-services/87341/review
Member since: 29th June 2012
Hi! I'm here because Gerrards Cross is a beautiful place to live and it is a community worth supporting. Make thebestofgerrardscross a really great local hub, it's here for you!