With a leap year just around the corner there is good news for UK employers though not so good for employees.
The extra day in 2016 means an extra unpaid day of input from salaried employees across the UK equivalent to costs savings / extra unpaid input for employers of £1.92bn
As an employer it is your responsibility to ensure your employees are eligible to work in the UK. There are heavy penalties if you fail to complete the necessary checks and if you knowingly employ an illegal immigrant you could face an unlimited fine or even up to two years in prison.
Employment status - is someone employed or self-employed? This is one of the main areas of uncertainty in the UK tax system and for businesses one of the most expensive areas to get wrong in terms of higher labour costs, or more worryingly unexpected back tax liabilities.
George Osbourne has announced two changes that will significantly help emloyers deal with the red tape and costs when facing employment tribunals.
Mr Osbourne claims that the changes will reduce the number of Employment Tribunals and boost the economy.
Just how difficult is it to operate a Pay As You Earn scheme? You might think that we at Dataplan Payroll, a payroll company that provides payroll outsourcing, have a vested interest in suggesting that it is unnecessarily difficult. If you are operating PAYE, you won't need convincing. However, if you are not yet convinced of the value of payroll outsourcing, consider H M Revenue and Customs' publication 'Employer Further Guide to PAYE and NICs'.
It used to be that everyone worked more or less the same hours. They would typically start at eight or nine in the morning and work through until five or five thirty in the evening. However, not only do employees now see the work/home balance as vitally important, employers have realised the benefits, too.
Flexitime is an excellent example of this. Whereas employees have always had to take time off work because of their children, trips to the dentist or household emergencies, the way in which this infringes on the workplace has changed. Some employers would insist on people booking a holiday if they were having time off for whatever reason. This would mean employees had less time available for a genuine holiday when they could recharge their batteries.
You will have heard on the news today about Baroness Scotland's fine for employing an illegal immigrant but are you sure that you are not employing an illegal migrant in your business? Unfortunately ignorance of the rule is not enough to avoid you a large fine.
I think that this should comes as a stark reminder to UK business owners that they do have obligations in this area with potentially severe financial consequences and that they should keep their house in order. When questioned there are a surprising number of business owners, particularly small business owners, that are either unaware of or not complying with the legislation.
Even in times of recession it is vital to ensure that your staff are as happy and contented as possible. From a hard hearted business perspective, you don't want the avoidable costs of recruitment and training that will be incurred in replacing disgruntled employees who leave.
In some cases the employee who leaves can also damage the reputation of your business. In human terms, you want to work around people who enjoy their work. The fact is that good staff morale increases productivity as well as enhancing the reputation of a company with its customers and suppliers.