Latest Employment News for Small Businesses

Posted: 8th January 2018

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By: Kay Heald

There’s always lots of changes to keep an eye on when you are managing people – this is a short summary rounding up relevant law changes and employment information for small businesses over the next few months:

National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage Increases 

From April, the National Living Wage increases to £7.83 per hour. The National Minimum Wage for 21-24 year olds increases to £7.38 per hour; for 18 to 20 year olds to £5.90 an hour; for 16-17 year olds to £4.20 an hour and the apprenticeship rate increases to £3.70 an hour.

Did you know that the actual Living Wage, calculated independently by the Living Wage Foundation is actually £8.75 per hour.

Statutory Rates Increase 
Also from April, Statutory Sick Pay increases from £89.35 per week to £92.05 and Statutory Maternity, Paternity, Adoption and Shared Parental Pay increases from £140.98 per week to £145.18.

General Data Protection Regulation 

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force on 25th May 2018. Even if the capture and processing of personal data is not a major part of your business, do remember that you will still have responsibilities regarding the personal data held on employees, workers, suppliers and customers.

Did you know that the ICO have set up a free GDPR Helpline for SMEs on 0303 123 1113?

Changes to the Fit for Work Scheme 
The government’s Fit for Work Scheme was introduced in 2014 to provide a free occupational health and assessment and advice service to employers, employees and GPs to help manage sickness absence. From the end of March, the government will be closing the assessment service, but keeping open the website and helpline for sickness absence advice and support.

Pension Contribution Increases 
Contributions to auto-enrolled pension schemes will increase this year to 2% for employers and 3% for employees .