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The Good Work Plan: What You Need To Know

‘…the biggest shake-up of employment law in a generation.’

The government‘s Good Work Plan is a programme of reforms affecting the United Kingdom’s current employment laws. They have come about in response to the huge growth in the use of casual working and self-employment arrangements.

The changes do not seek to restrict flexibility for employers (as this is seen as key for business), but to provide greater clarity on the terms of engagement and make it easier for individuals to understand and enforce their rights.

April 6 2020 is the date that many of these changes will come into effect. However, recent research by Citation has indicated that one-third of employers are still unaware of the Good Work Plan, some are incorrectly calculating holiday pay, and many are not prepared for the changes.

Though the reforms will affect every single sector, they will have particular significance for the care sector and its workforce.

So what do Shropshire Partners in Care members need to know?

Many people currently working in the care sector will be doing so without a stable contract, with their hours differing every week. For example, the Skills For Care Report published in October 2018 indicated that one-quarter of carers are currently on a zero-hour contract.

A key focus area of the Good Work Plan is seeking to address employment rights for workers without fixed hours, and those working without employee status.

The reforms aim to improve the enforcement of employment rights (especially holiday entitlement and pay), by introducing state enforcement of these rights for ‘vulnerable workers’ (yet to be defined). Over recent years, the rules about what should be included in holiday pay have changed through a series of court decisions on overtime and commission payments.

The Good Work Plan also seeks to improve clarity in terms, for both employees and those workers who have a more casual relationship with the business. It will extend the right to a statutory statement of main terms to all workers, requiring this to be made available by the first day of work, as well as introducing a list of additional information which must be provided.

One of the biggest changes set out in the reforms is allowing some workers the right to request a stable contract. This will not be mandatory, such that those who are happy to work varied hours each week will be able to continue doing so. However, from April 2020, carers who would like more certainty about their hours will be able to request a fixed working pattern from their employer.

The Good Work Plan itself may appear complicated and confusing. Managers and employers in the social care sector wishing to know more could download the white paper, produced by HR and employment law experts,Citation. It clarifies all the major changes and what they mean for both employers and employees.

Got any questions about how you’ll be affected?

Call Citation’s friendly team today on 0345 844 1111 to ask any questions you have about The Good Work Plan, or get in touch herejust mention you’re a SPiC member when enquiring. For additional content that breaks down the different elements of The Good Work Plan, you can also visit citation.co.uk/good-work-plan. It hosts best practice advice and guidance, such as a video on defining employment status and an article summarising the upcoming changes.

Your SPiC member benefit – Citation’s HR & Employment Law support

With complex legislation change on the horizon, there’s never been a better time to consider getting the complete backing of HR experts.

SPiC members are also entitled to preferential rates on Citation’s HR offering, including:

  • Dedicated local consultant
  • 24-hour expert advice line
  • Full legal documentation, including staff handbooks and contracts of employment
  • Access to Atlas, your one-stop-shop HR management tool

Please get in touch by calling 0345 844 1111, or by leaving your details here – just mention you’re a SPiC member when enquiring.