The Good work Plan 2020
A revolution in working practise is about to impact on our industry and change the way employers engage with their workforce is about to happen, starting in April 2020.
In 2018 the Government commissioned an independent report by Mathew Taylor on how to modernise and inspire the British workforce and its findings and recommendations have sent shock-waves through the Catering Industry.
The principals are to create a British workforce fit for the 21st Century, a workforce that is inspired to do better and to produce more through Employer engagement, improved working conditions and care in the workplace as well as improved regulation and a new Regularly body to police these laws.
Each Industry has its own unique issues and the Catering Sector is no different.
Chefs have suffered for many years from inequality and discrimination, especially in multi departmental establishments, such as Hotels where, clerical staff, reception and HR are all treated differently in terms of facilities and contracts. This will all soon come to an end.
Almost all of Mathew Taylor's recommendations have been accepted by the Government and the departments responsible are busy drafting the necessary legislation which is likely to come on stream bit by bit until the full report is enshrined in Law.
These include ...
The right to have “workers committees” which will apply to businesses of 15 employees or more or 2% of the workforce.
The Committee's will be encouraged to engage with their employer in ways never seen before.
The committees will work with their employer who MUST engage in discussions and set up regular meetings to discuss all aspects that involve the workforce. Employers will be encouraged to seek ideas and put forward proposals to inspire and reward their workforce as part of the Government’s Good Work Plan. The Employer must encourage and act upon agreed grievances and consultations.
Those on Zero Hour Contracts, have at last been recognised. Whilst Zero hours has been useful to some, to many it is a huge lack of insecurity and the report recognises this.
The discrimination of Zero Hours will end. Those on ZH for more than a year must be offered a permanent contract and those working add hock hours will be allowed to ask for a “minimum” working schedule.
Zero Hours will come under the new heading of “one sided flexibility” where contracts that favour the Employer will be seen as discriminatory.
So too will the abhorrent practice of prematurely ending of agreed shifts. Shifts that are cut in the middle of a working day when business is low, and workers are sent home without notice. This practise will cease, and business’s will be required to Re-work their business model in order to accommodate this.
Split Shifts ( one sided flexible working )
Unique to the Hospitality Industry, Split shifts have long been used primarily for the benefit of the Employer. This totally unnecessary and abhorrent practice will also cease in places where the business operates normal straight shift patterns within its Company. Offering split shifts to Chefs and waiters whilst administrative and managerial staff are offered straight shifts will be discriminatory.
The Government have also accepted the need for a designated Ombudsman solely to deal with issues arising from this legislation including hotlines for complaints.
In all, the most radical and positive work-related proposals in a generation. A chance to end the abuse and discrimination seen daily in kitchens every day and an exciting way forward for new chefs coming into the profession.