The report on Matthew Taylor’s 9-month review into the shape of the UK labour market is released today to great anticipation from UK businesses.
When Teresa May commissioned Matthew Taylor, the former head of policy to Tony Blair to look at employment practises, many business leaders could be forgiven for being concerned that his recommendations may stifle an innovative and flexible labour market. Instead, Mr Taylor has said that businesses have nothing to fear from his recommendations.
Business leaders will be pleased to read that the report highlights the strengths of our flexible labour market to the economy and rather than suggesting blanket bans on zero-hours contracts, has identified seven principles for fair working practise that prevents companies exploiting legislation while retaining our flexibility.
Mr Taylor recommends that workers in the ‘gig economy’ are reclassified as “dependent contractors” and are entitled to benefits such as holiday pay. He goes on to suggest that the law should change to allow free adjudication on an individual’s employment status to minimise time wasting and legal costs for anyone seeking tribunal.
For recruiters providing agency workers, this still presents a challenge, as the proposals are unlikely to bridge the cost gap gap between gig working and agency fees.
With employers and recruitment companies already dealing with IR35, AWR, apprenticeship levy and the minimum wage, the open-minded nature of the Taylor report may help pave the way to addressing the taxation and legal confusion of a flexible labour market , without the burden of increased or restricting legislation.
While the job of recruiters remains as challenging as ever, we are likely to continue to benefit from a vibrant and flexible landscape.
The full report can be found on the .gov website here.