HR Newsletter #114 December 2017

Employment Update


Sexual Harassment

The news is full of celebrities being accused of all manner of wrong-doings, but what should employers do to protect themselves and prevent such activities?

  1. Have a well-written Sexual Harassment policy (ACAS Guidance)
  2. Ensure it is seen by all staff (place it in your staff handbook and remind everyone about it)
  3. Ensure your culture is one that staff feel comfortable making complaints if they have been the subject of such harassment
  4. Take the appropriate action if the allegations are proven to be true (don’t brush it under the carpet)


Changes to National Minimum Wage (April 2018)

The National Minimum (and living) wage increases have been announced that are to be effective in April 2018 (see table below)

Importantly the Government has changed its target for the National Living Wage – previously it had stated that £9.00 per hour was their 2020 target, but in the last election they changed the target to 60% of median earnings – which is estimated to be about £8.75 per hour.

So with the April 2018 increase to take the Living Wage hourly rate to £7.83 we can expect next year (April 2019) and (April 2020) to add about + 50p per hour respectively.

Start adding these increases to your budgets.

All Employees and workers must receive at least these rates except the following groups of employees:

  • The genuinely self-employed
  • Genuine volunteers
  • Apprentices under 19
  • Apprentices under 26 who are still within the first 12 months of their apprenticeship
  • Students doing work as part of their undergraduate or post-graduate course
  • Workers on certain training schemes
  • Residents of certain religious communities
  • Prisoners
  • The Armed Forces
  • Share fishermen

However, there are no exemptions according to size of business or by sector, job or region. All workers, including pieceworkers, homeworkers, agency workers, commission workers, part-time workers and casual workers must receive at least the National Minimum Wage.