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  • HR Heartbeat: Employment advice to weather any storm, no more salary history questions, and…

HR Heartbeat: Employment advice to weather any storm, no more salary history questions, and…

Read HR Heartbeat to find out what to do if your employee is late because of bad weather like storm Ciaran and more!

First published on Tuesday, Nov 07, 2023

Last updated on Tuesday, Nov 07, 2023

2 min read

Have you heard the latest news?

Welcome to HR Heartbeat, where we give you a rundown of the week's top employment law stories. Stay on the pulse of current trends impacting your business, plus get up-to-the-minute commentaries on all things HR and legal.

WEATHER WARNING: Staff absence expected!

The effects of Storm Ciaran have been felt countrywide from Scotland to Jersey.

It’s caused power cuts in some homes and businesses forcing them to close. And with roads and railways blocked, lots of employees have struggled to get to work.

Whilst the storm itself has thankfully moved on; the weather remains an unpredictable part of running a business.

Remember, employees might come in late or request last-minute time off to deal with the effects of bad weather. So, how do you stay productive when the weather gets disruptive?

Remember, employees might come in late or request last-minute time off to deal with the effects of bad weather. So, how do you stay productive when the weather gets disruptive?

Get the right advice and protect your business. Download BrightHR’s free severe weather and travel disruption policy here.

Is this the end of 4-day working week trials?

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing, and Communities has urged local authorities to stop the pursuit of the 4-day working week.

The three-month pilot for 450 desk-based employees started back in January and was expanded to include waste crews in July.

The government has cited concerns about the taxpayers’ value for money as the reason why they are calling for a halt in the trial.

Despite ending trials, it’s still possible for your employees to request a 4-day working week. But there are stipulations…

Employees with at least 26 weeks' service have the legal right to request flexible working, and this includes dropping the number of hours worked per week so that, for example, the employee would work for 4 days a week instead of 5.

To find out which other conditions apply, ask BrightLightning: Does flexible working include a 4-day week?

Lifting employment barriers for ex-offenders

On Saturday 28 October, reforms to the disclosure of criminal records came into force lifting a barrier to employment for thousands of ex-offenders.

The change in the law means some criminal convictions will become ‘spent’ after a shorter time, so there will no longer be a need to disclose these past criminal convictions to potential employers.

It’s hoped this will help to remove the barriers to employment, education, and housing faced by many with a criminal record.

And as research shows that former offenders in steady employment are 9% less likely to commit further crimes it could be a win-win for all parties involved.

For more advice on this topic, check out our handy blog on what to do if an employee has a criminal past.

Asking about salary history? That belongs in the past!

Three companies this week have pledged to make questions about salary history, well history!

Employers, including the Samaritans, TripAdvisor and Women in Sport have pledged to no longer ask candidates about their salary history to help address the gender pay gap.

Over one hundred employers have signed the pledge as part of a campaign by Fawcett East London.

Research from the Fawcett Society found that 90% of people feel salary history is an unfair way for pay to be decided and instead salaries should be decided on skills and experience.

Some employers may find it challenging to come up with the correct benchmark for salary without asking about history, but BrightHR’s FREE salary calculator can help.

Search 50,000 jobs, across 34 sectors, over 154 areas in seconds and find out the market salary rate for ANY role you’re hiring for, instantly.

And that’s a wrap. Tune in next week for more headlines and make sure you stay ahead of major employment law changes!


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