Step 4

How to comply – what it looks like in practice

STEP 4 – Cooperate to ensure compliance with the Agency Workers Regulations

From 1 October 2011 the Agency Workers Regulations 2010 come into force and will entitle temporary agency workers to the same right to basic employment and working conditions as if they had been recruited directly by the hirer - if and when they complete a 12-week qualifying period in a job. The Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS) has published official Guidance on the Regulations.

The Regulations apply to individuals who work as temporary agency workers – commonly referred to as "temps". They do not include:

• individuals who find work through a temporary work agency but are in business on their own account

• individuals working on Managed Service Contracts where the worker does not work under the direction and supervision of the host organisation

• individuals where a company employs its temporary workers directly

• individuals on secondment or loan from one organisation to another where the main activity of the organisation is not the supply of temporary agency workers

The regulations do not cover employment agencies who introduce workers to employers for direct or permanent employment. Once a worker is placed with a permanent employer they have no further contractual relationship with the agency.

The new entitlements for temporary agency workers are:

• Day 1 rights for all agency workers: Labour Users must ensure that agency workers have the same access as comparable directly employed workers to your facilities (such as canteen, childcare facilities, transport, car parking, common room, and information on your job vacancies) from the first day of their assignment.

• After 12 weeks in the same job: after an agency worker completes a 12-week qualifying period with the same hirer, in the same role, they will be entitled to have the same basic terms and conditions of employment as if they had been employed directly by the hirer. These basic terms are key elements of pay, duration of working time, e.g. if working is limited to a maximum of 48 hours a week, night work, annual leave, paid time off for antenatal appointments and maternity suspension pay.

What this means for Labour Users

Labour Users will need to work with their Labour Provider and provide up to date information on employment terms and conditions so that the Labour Provider can ensure that the agency worker receives the correct equal treatment, as if they were recruited directly, after 12 weeks in the same job. You will need to track the length of time an agency worker works for you to understand when they qualify for these benefits.

The Labour User is responsible for ensuring that all agency workers can access facilities and are able to view information on your job vacancies from the first day of their assignment.

The ALP has provided detailed Briefs and tools to members on the Regulations and runs a training workshop called Complying with the GLA Licensing Standards.

Now take the next step through: Agency Labour.

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