A new software tool to help all organisations that use agency labour to ensure fair treatment of temporary workers, eliminate exploitation and work towards best practice is launched today by the Association of Labour Providers (ALP).
Recent press reports have highlighted major UK companies claiming to be unaware that agency workers in their businesses have been denied statutory rights and in the most extreme cases have been abused or exploited.
With the damage that a media exposé can cause to brand reputation, turning a blind eye to the maltreatment of temporary agency workers is not only ethically unsound but bad business practice.
Developed in association with Marks & Spencer suppliers, the “Agency Labour Best Practice & Audit Tool” enables businesses that supply or use agency workers to ensure that they are acting ethically and within the law.
It mirrors the Gangmasters Licensing Authority (GLA) Standards and enables labour providers and users to work in partnership towards best practice.
The response from the M&S suppliers who took part in the trial was extremely favourable with all testers stating that they found the tool easy to use and that it would be a considerable asset to their businesses.
As well as the food and agriculture sectors which are regulated by the GLA, the “Agency Labour Best Practice & Audit Tool” tool is totally transferable as a benchmark to other areas where agency working is prevalent such as Catering, Hospitality, Cleaning, Security and Construction.
It can be used by any organisation using or supplying agency workers to ensure due diligence and to demonstrate commitment to corporate social responsibility.
David Camp, Director of the Association of Labour Providers said:
“The vast majority of businesses want to do the right thing and ensure that agency workers receive their due rights and entitlements. We are delighted that M&S suppliers have found this tool to be of such benefit and we thank them for their involvement in its development.
“Used as a partnership tool between labour users and labour providers it will improve legal and ethical standards and help protect the safety and welfare of agency workers.”
Shayne Tyler, Operations Manager, Manor Fresh Ltd said,
“At Manor Fresh assuring that workers are treated fairly throughout our supply chain is of paramount importance to our business and to our brand. The Agency Labour Audit Tool supports us in achieving this aim by providing a comprehensive and consistent benchmark against which we monitor our agency labour supply.
“The structured questions, relevant guidance and reporting tools simplify and standardise our processes.”
Terry O’Dea, 2 Sisters Food Group, Corporate Social Responsibility Director said:
“We have found the Agency Labour Audit Tool to be a straightforward and effective tool to use in partnership with our labour provider to maintain and improve the quality of agency labour supply to our business. It has now formed part of our due diligence process in assuring the ethical and fair treatment of agency workers working in the 2 Sisters Food Group.”