Recruitment News

....what is current in the World of recruitment related news, views and legislative developments

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  • Improved Rights For Agency Workers

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  • MPs call for action on expenses schemes

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  • Archive

Swedish derogation 'blind-spot'

13 October 2011


The joint meeting of the REC Drivers and Industrial sector groups identified early implementation challenges in relation to the Agency Worker Regulations (AWR). An immediate priority is to address client misconceptions over how alternative supply models can work in practice.

This was the first meeting of the groups since the AWR went live on October 1st. REC members across the board reported pressure from clients to adopt the Regulation 10 (or ‘Swedish Derogation’) model, in many cases without sufficient regard to complexities that this entails.

Members also noted that a number of employers are asking for their agencies to move to the Swedish Derogation model under the mistaken belief that it removes workers from the scope of AWR entirely.

Chair of the REC Industrial Sector, Sally Hewick, explained:

"Whilst the ‘Swedish Derogation’ model does take workers out of scope of the equal pay provision, workers employed by their agencies under Regulation 10 contracts are still entitled to Day One rights on assignment, and to all other equal treatment provisions following 12 consecutive weeks in the same role with the same employer. There needs to be clear dialogue between agencies and clients to ensure that all parties know that this is the case."

Commenting on the issue, REC Drivers chair, Rod Harris, said:

"There appears to be something of a 'blind spot' when it comes to understanding the full complexities of different supply models. We appreciate the need to limit the impact of the regulations on jobs and competitiveness but it is in nobody's interest to create future problems by misinterpreting some of the new requirements.

“It is concerning that clients in these two sectors appear to be pushing for their recruitment partners to adopt the Swedish Derogation model without taking into account the impact this might have on the supply chain.

"Whilst the majority of agencies are well equipped to move their temps onto Regulation 10 contracts where suitable, there is a mistaken belief amongst some clients that this is a simple step that fully removes workers from the scope of the regulations and one which can be adopted at no extra cost. Neither of these points are true, and recruiters across the country must come together to better educate clients as to the commercial and regulatory realities of the Swedish Derogation model."