By: Caterina Russo

Working closely with your Recruitment agency will not only ensure a perfect match between candidate & client but may help you avoid the pitfalls of ‘discrimination’ – Recent REC guidelines advise:

As an employer of staff in the UK, you are subject to a complicated series of responsibilities and rights; obligations and entitlements. No doubt you have some understanding of how they relate to the permanent staff you employ, but what about the temporary staff who work for you through an agency? You also need to consider your relationship with the agency itself and the hiring process for new staff.

In some circumstances, employment tribunals have determined that agency temporary workers are actually employees of the client employer – with consequences including unfair dismissal rulings and maternity leave rights.

Advertisements that specifically request extensive experience or “dynamic” candidates may be in violation of the 2006 Age Discrimination act. Advertising language needs to be carefully crafted not only to refrain from excluding applicants based on age, but even to avoid suggesting that a particular age group would be better suited for the job than another.

Agencies have a responsibility, when placing temporary workers within an organisation to ensure that:

* They have checked the health and safety of the workplace.

* They have taken up references for the candidate

* They have given you all information relating to the candidate that may be relevant.

As specialist recruiters and REC members we ensure we work within recommended guidelines, which regularly change! Harriet Harman has recently championed ‘positive discrimination’ allowing firms to favour female and ethic minorities’ job candidates. Further anticipated changes include the Equalities Bill forcing employers to disclose pay structures in a bid to close the gender gap.

Please free feel to contact our Operational Director Caterina Russo, MREC, if you wish to discuss how current legislation may affect you.