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Employment Agency report highlights importance of industry standards

Employment Agency report highlights importance of industry standards

The annual report from the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate (EASI) has shown an increase in reported infringements. Although this may be largely due to increased enforcement activity, the findings highlight the importance for the industry to remain on the front foot in terms of demonstrating and actively promoting professional standards.

A total of 2,393 infringements were found with 34 per cent of these in the industrial, construction and drivers sector, followed by office work which totalled 22 per cent of all reported cases.

Commenting on the Government Inspectorates Report, Lewina Farrell, the RECs Senior Solicitor and Commercial Advisor said:

Most of the infringements are relatively minor but we need to continue raising the bar in terms of awareness and levels of compliance. The vast majority of agencies are committed to meeting their obligations but need access to regular guidance and training for individual consultants. The demand for legal support in an increasingly complex regulatory landscape is highlighted by the record number of calls to the REC Legal Helpline over the last year.

The REC launched its own Serious about Standards campaign this year to enable agencies to demonstrate their commitment in this area and differentiate themselves in the market place.

Commenting on the EASI Annual Report, Fola Tayo, REC Head of Professional Standards said:

Unscrupulous operators that systematically breach current regulations not only exploit workers but also undercut legitimate businesses. We support the Governments better enforcement campaign and will look to work more closely with the EAS Inspectorate to ensure that there is a consistent interpretation of the regulations.

There has never been a more important time for the industry to demonstrate that it is serious about professional standards through ongoing use of the Code of Professional Practice and Institute of Recruitment Professionals.

REC has supported the better enforcement campaign and has consistently called for enhanced co-ordination between the different enforcement agencies such as the EAS, HMRC, the Home Office and the Gangmasters Licensing Authority.


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