The 'Good Work' Report

Article

18 July, 2017

The Taylor Review also know as the 'Good Work' report was published on 11th July 2017 and is an independent review of modern working practices in the UK. The report was undertaken by Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce. It comes at a time when the 'gig economy' is repeatedly in the news and the report attempts to address the challenges faced by the UK labour market and provides significant proposals to amend certain aspects of Employment Law and regulations - for the better, it is hoped.

The report is based on the 'overriding ambition' that work in Britain should be fair, with the Prime Minister commending the review by saying: 'the issues it confronts go right to the heart of the government's agenda and right to the heart of our values as a people'.

Below are some of the key findings and proposals of the review which are to be noted:

  • The current three tiers of employment status should be retained
  • The intermediate category (currently 'worker') would cover casual, independent relationships
  • People in the intermediate category should be classed as 'dependent contractors'
  • The test for 'dependent contractors' would place more importance on control and less emphasis on the requirement to perform work personally
  • The report recommends for new legislation to provide clarity on employment status, particularly for the self-employed, although it is not yet clear how self-employed status will be established by law if this proposal is accepted.
  • In re-defining 'dependent contractor' status, Government should adapt the piece rates legislation to ensure those working in the gig economy are still able to enjoy maximum flexibility whilst also being able to earn the National Minimum Wage.
  • Those who work casually and intermittently can have difficulty establishing the minimum period of continuous employment needed to qualify for some employment rights. The report sets out that more should be done to make the process of establishing continuity of employment easier

Although the government has embraced the review and openly shares the 'overriding ambition', the proposals from the report are yet to be readily accepted and adopted. The Prime Minister has stated that the government plan to provide a detailed response by the end of the year - with whether it agrees with the proposals or not and which recommendations it will implement - having studied the contents of the report.

Indeed, in the meantime, the review will invite much discussion and debate on whether the proposals will in fact help improve the UK labour market and contribute to the national economy success overall.

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