HR2day, a Darlington-based HR specialist, is advising local businesses to ensure they are ahead of the game when the government’s new Good Work Plan comes into effect on 6 April.

The Good Work Plan came about as a result of an independent review and has been dubbed ‘one of the biggest shake ups of employment law in a generation.’

The Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices was published in July 2017 and highlighted the need for changes in employment law, putting forward 53 recommendations. Some of these have already been introduced, including the extension of the right to a payslip to cover all workers and the requirement to outline hours worked for hourly-paid workers, and the final changes will come into force next month.

The key changes employers must be aware of are:

  • An extension to the right to a written statement to all employees, which will entitle all workers, not just employees, a written statement of particulars from their first day of employment.
  • Parental bereavement leave, which entitles employees to a period of leave following the death of a child under the age of 18 or a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy. This may be paid at a statutory rate or be unpaid, depending on length of service.
  • Employers will need to change the way holiday pay is calculated for workers with irregular hours, referencing the past 52 weeks and discarding any weeks that a worker did not earn pay.
  • The right to comparable pay will apply to all agency workers after 12 weeks and employers will be obliged to provide agency workers with a Key Facts document providing basic information about their contract, pay rates and pay arrangements.

Nicky Jolley, founder and managing director of HR2day, said: “Most businesses will have been gearing up to these changes for some time, but the introduction of the Good Work Plan is nearly here and everyone, regardless of how many people they employ, needs to be ready by 6 April.

“The most pertinent change for most businesses will be the documentation that must be supplied to all workers from day one of their employment, as they will all recruit staff at some point. There are still firms that will wait for days or even weeks before receiving a signed contract and still workers who begin training for their role without being wholly clear on their working hours or salary.

“We’ve been supporting many companies who don’t have an internal HR department to ensure their working policies are ready for the changes next month, and that all staff understand what the changes mean for them.

“We’d encourage all businesses in the region to be open and transparent about the changes and highlighting the benefits, while making sure they have everything in place from an administrative perspective for the introduction day.”