Ruth Mitchell

Workplace legislation under review

The Government has opened a review into workplace dismissal processes, and is calling for employees and businesses to voice their opinions on the subject.

The Employment Law Review will consider awareness, understanding and use of the Acas Code of Practice on Discipline and Grievance. The idea of compensated no-fault dismissal for micro-businesses with less than 10 employees will also be under discussion.

The CBI have long called for Government to reduce the regulatory burden on businesses to support growth, and believes that this review is a move in the right direction which could help to reduce unemployment in the long term.

John Cridland, CBI director-general said: “Businesses tell us the current dismissal process needs to be reformed.

“Introducing compensated no fault dismissal would give firms confidence to hire, as employer and employee can part ways with no fault on either side, and workers would have sufficient money to allow them time to find a new job.

“This reform would work for both parties and should be available to high-growth as well as small firms.”

The Business Secretary Vince Cable believes that despite the flexibility of the UK labour market, there is still room for improvement to balance the needs of business with necessary employment protections.

He added: “We also recognise that not all jobs work out for both parties – the staff member doesn’t quite fit or simply the relationship has irretrievably broken down, and for micros in particular, who often don’t have legal or HR teams, the process to let a staff member go can be a daunting and complicated process.

“We want to give businesses the confidence to hire new staff and make sure when a dismissal needs to be made, they aren’t tied up in red tape. This is an effort to see how extensive the problem is and shed some light on the desire for a change to the rules.”

The Government has also published the annual update on the Employment Law Review, which includes an update to the Employers Charter. This Charter aims to counter misconceptions that employment protections are employee focused, whilst giving greater clarity to managers on what they can do to deal with workplace issues.

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