Preparing for an evolving workplace

At our recent Client Club event, we explored themes around the modern evolving workplace and the measures that employers could, and should, be taking to equip themselves for forthcoming legislative changes, as well as the challenging market conditions from today’s uncertain economic and political climate.

By way of reminder, the changes that are due to be introduced from 6 April next year include:

  • An extension to the holiday pay reference period from 12 to 52 weeks;
  • A new requirement for employers to provide a written statement of terms to all new employees and workers from the first day of their employment;
  • The introduction of a requirement to make deductions for national insurance contributions on the element of any termination payment in excess of £30,000;
  • New off-payroll rules for consultants engaged by large and medium-sized employers via the individual’s own personal services companies

The consensus view reached by those attending was that employers need to be able to evolve and adapt, and that the employers best equipped to do that are those that have high levels of flexibility built into their contracts of employment.  There is no legal right for employers to change employment terms out of operational necessity, but the more that an employer does to anticipate potential scenarios and to incorporate appropriate levels of flexibility within their contract terms, the easier it will be to effect those changes when needed.   While no amount of foresight or flexibility will provide employers with carte blanche to make changes to terms which have a detrimental impact on pay or benefits (for those consent will be necessary), there is certainly a competitive advantage to be gained by being more front-footed about reviewing your contractual terms and conditions routinely to ensure that they reflect market best practice and will stand you in good stead for future or planned change.

So, in preparing your to-do list for the rest of 2019, why not add “Review Contracts of Employment” to that list and get yourself ahead of the game and the tides of change, and speak to one of our specialist employment lawyers to find out how we can help.

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