The DTI has been urged to rethink changes aimed at making it easier for temporary workers to become permanent employees by Team, the association of independent recruitment firms.
Last month, industry minister Alan Johnson announced alterations to the Employment Agencies Act Regulations which Team claims lack clarity.
Under the reform, a company will not be charged a transfer fee by an agency if it recruits a person previously employed as a temporary worker, providing the permanent contract starts at least eight weeks after the original hiring finishes. Team would prefer a 14-week limit, as it believes employers may use the eight-week period as a free recruitment route for permanent staff.
Simon Garbett, chief executive of Team, is pleased the Government has taken the views of industry into account, but said, “We would urge the DTI not to spend a little longer to produce clear regulations that are non-bureaucratic and fair to an industry which has contributed more than any other in getting the jobless total below 1 million.”
Garbett also criticised part of the regulations that will mean recruitment firms will not be able to delay paying a temporary worker even if they do not produce a signed timesheet.
A DTI spokesperson said, “The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) has said it recognises this as a reasonable compromise that enables agencies to protect their interest while the Government has protected those of temporary workers.”