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Employing People Campaign to help businesses save millions in admin costs

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Issued 13 August 2008

Department for Business launches 'Employing People Campaign' to help businesses save millions in admin costs

A NEW campaign to help businesses save time and money on employment costs was launched today by the Department for Business.

The 'Employing People' campaign is part of the department's Employment Law Guidance Programme and follows recent research which showed that businesses were spending unnecessary time and money complying with employment law.

The campaign aims to promote savings by directing businesses to Business Link's online tools, calculators and interactive guides, to help them understand their legal obligations and reduce unnecessary duplication of materials and wasted effort.

Employment Relations Minister Pat McFadden said: "Complying with legislation can be complex at times but employment law is often easier than business owners think. Instead of spending money on buying in professional advice on employment law, employers can get access to a range of easy-to-use, fully compliant documents that take only a few minutes to complete. In challenging economic times, it is all the more important that employers make full use of these free services.

"For example, producing written statements of employment is a significant burden for employers in both time and money, and many businesses are paying external advisers to draw these up for them. In the last year, however, over 40,000 firms have benefited from switching to the written statement tool we have provided - each of them saving around 120 every time that they do so."

The Department for Business is committed to reducing employment law admin burdens on businesses by 365m per annum by May 2010. By engaging with key business stakeholders such as the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), British Retail Consortium (BRC) and British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), the campaign will reach out to businesses of all sizes, across a variety of sectors, offering simple, practical advice and guidance on the full range of employment issues, from drafting documents to simplifying record-keeping.

As part of this outreach, the department recently provided over 300 stakeholder organisations with a toolkit to help their members demystify some of the practices around employment law.

Katja Hall, the CBI's Director of Employment policy, said: "This is a welcome campaign, offering businesses helpful advice about how they can cut down on admin associated with employing people. Small firms in particular will appreciate the government's support and guidance being in one place, with the free tools a cost effective way to reduce time spent calculating things like sick pay."

Stephen Robertson, Director-General of the BRC, said, "In tougher economic times, employers can't afford to throw away money by getting caught up doing unnecessary paperwork. So we welcome the Government's moves to help employers to save money and time on their employment law obligations. That's why we are playing a key role in helping design and develop the tools and guidance on the businesslink.gov website to make sure that it offers just what businesses need."

Kieran O'Keeffe, Senior Policy Adviser at the BCC said, "Our members - particularly if they are smaller firms- always struggle with employment law. Anything that the Government can do to promote simple guidance that cuts out unnecessary expense and paperwork is most welcome. The 'Employing People' campaign was promoted at our national conference this year and we will be helping to roll out a series of regional seminars over the coming months."

For more information on the Employing People Campaign and the tools it provides, visit http://www.businesslin k.gov.uk/employingpeople.com.

Notes

1. Additional Quotes from Members of Stakeholder Group

TUC

Sarah Veale, Head, Equality and Employment Rights Department said "Both employers and employees benefit from accurate, free guidance on employment law. The TUC is working with BERR to improve the material on the Directgov and businesslink.gov websites, so that employers are aware of their legal obligations to staff. And if there are ways that businesses can save money, but still give employees what they need, then that clearly has to be a good thing".

FSB

Alan Tyrell QC, Chair of the Employment Law Policy Committee said "Saving small business owners time and money through reducing administrative burden is always warmly welcomed by the FSB. Small businesses owners spend an average of 7 hours a week just filling in forms and expecting independent retailers to understand the complicated ins and outs of employment law is unfair. BERR's simplistic approach to demystify employment law is a promising guide for what can be an cumbersome process."

CIPD

Mike Emmott, Adviser, Employee Relations said "Employers are looking for clear, easily accessible advice and guidance on employment law and practice. We welcome the opportunity to work with BERR to develop guidance and online tools that are easy to find and use."

2. The Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform helps UK business succeed in an increasingly competitive world. It promotes business growth and a strong enterprise economy, leads the better regulation agenda and champions free and fair markets. It is the shareholder in a number of Government-owned assets and it works to secure, clean and competitively priced energy supplies.


About the Author

Crown Copyright. Material taken from the BERR- Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform replacing DTI - Department for Trade and Industry. Reproduced under the terms and conditions of the Click-Use Licence.


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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2008-08-18 10:38:00 in Business Articles

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