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REC & CBI Question Brown

UK recruitment body questions Governments decision to introduce financial incentives to employers to create job opportunities

Ahead of Gordon Browns meeting with business and union leaders about measures aimed at safeguarding jobs during the downturn and the suggestion that plans to help the long-term unemployed may include paying employers up to 2,500 for every person they train, Kevin Green, Chief Executive, Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) comments:

The key is to ensure that broad employment strategies actually work on the ground and at a local level. Within this context, the active cooperation between job centres and private sector recruitment agencies will be crucial to ensure that job seekers get the right support and guidance. This is especially true at the high end where specialised recruiters have expert knowledge of their sector and can move people into appropriate new work opportunities quickly.

Incentivising employers to take on longer-term unemployed may act as a prompt but the key is to ensure that we limit the number of jobseekers falling into that category in the first place - for example, by making the most of the UK's flexible labour market and the opportunities that temporary, contract and interim work can provide. The preventative measure of helping new job seekers access short-term opportunities is as important as the cure" of incentivising the recruitment of the long-term unemployed.

We must protect the crucial 'outlet' that temporary and contract work can provide by ensuring the new European rules on agency work are implemented with the least burden to business and as late as possible. Proposed increases in the taxation of temporary work services in some key sectors also needs to be reviewed. This would essentially amount to a tax on jobs costing employers in affected sectors, including financial, healthcare and charity approximately 390 million at a time when we can least afford it. We have already heard from the CBI today that further redundancies in the financial services sector are expected, the Government should not make this situation worse with negative tax changes at a time when it is pumping millions into incentivising employment.

CBI COMMENTS ON PRIME MINISTERS JOBS SUMMIT

The CBI has also commented on the Prime Ministers jobs summit in London, which was attended by John Cridland, CBI Deputy Director-General.
Mr Cridland said:
These measures to help the unemployed are welcome and important, but we also need initiatives that will stop people being made unemployed in the first place.
We believe that the best way to protect jobs and the economy is to target the credit crunch. If we do not get credit flowing through the economy again, good businesses will fail, causing more job losses and lasting damage to the economy.

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