REC calls for delay to employment agency review

The Recruitment and
Employment Confederation (REC) wants the Government to take into account the
impact of the Agency Workers Directive before concluding its review of how
employment agencies are regulated.

The Government is currently
in the final consultation stages of a three-year review of the Employment
Agencies Act.

In its submission to the
final consultation, the REC said the proposed Agency Workers Directive would
usurp major elements of the new regulations, so it would be sensible to delay
any findings.

The REC has also called for
other changes to be made to the final draft, including:

• Excluding workers who
operate as limited companies – REC evidence shows companies do not want the
same protections and obligations as ordinary jobseekers

• Excluding job boards from
the remit of the regulations – REC is currently working with the DTI officials
on an appropriate definition of job board that might be used

• Ensuring that the regulations
permit an employment business to investigate discrepancies in timesheets before
payment without falling foul of the regulations

• Cutting the ‘red tape’ of
issuing terms in repeat and frequent assignments where all parties can
reasonably expect to know what those terms are.

Chief executive of the REC
Tim Nicholson said: "We are pleased the Government has changed many of the
original elements of the Employment Agencies Act (EAA). We believe it is
important to harmonise EAA with the Agency Workers Directive, which might mean
some further delay in implementation."

* In a letter published in
today’s issue of Personnel Today, Minister of State for Employment
Relations, Alan Johnson, urges HR professionals to read the proposed
regulations at

He said his aim in changing
the regulations is to protect jobseekers from unscrupulous agencies, not damage
job boards.

Quentin Reade

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