… in brief

This week’s news in brief

Employment record

The number of people in employment has reached record levels, according to
the latest official figures. The Office for National Statistics has published figures
that show there are now 28.17 million people in work – the most since records
began. The workforce has grown by 37,000 this quarter, and now has 228,000 more
people than 12 months ago.  www.statistics.gov.uk

Benefit fraud drive

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has introduced a new initiative
to help crack down on benefit cheats. It will allow the department to compare
all benefits records against employment records from the Inland Revenue, helping
to locate people claiming benefits while working. It will also help the DWP
measure the progress jobseekers make between unemployment and work. This will
allow officials to assess the effectiveness of its employment programmes.  www.dwp.gov.uk

Redundancy woes

Redundancy management caused the biggest headache for HR last year,
according to statistics from an HR helpline. Croner Consulting received more
than 100,000 calls to its employment advice lines on more than 65 subjects
during 2003, and more than one in 10 calls were related to redundancy issues.
This was followed by employment terms and conditions; absence and sickness; and
disciplinary procedures.  www.croner.co.uk

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