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TOP TIPS TO MAKE SURE YOUR HR PLAN IS ROBUST IN 2018

Nickie Elenor, managing director of Nottingham-based Your HR Lawyer, looks ahead to the top issues facing bosses in 2018 – and what they can do to prepare.

GDPR

There has been much talk about the impending General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) – set to replace the Data Protection Act (DPA) – but it will soon be a reality when it comes into force on 25th May.

Virtually all businesses hold employee and applicant data, even if it’s only contact details, so they will need to make sure it’s being stored in line with the new rules.

Employers have to ensure they obtain explicit consent to store information about their staff – and be prepared to delete everything if someone makes a request. The ‘right to be forgotten’ means former employees and unsuccessful applicants could get in touch and ask for their details to be removed.

Failure to comply with the GDPR could result in fines of up to £17million in the most serious cases, so firms cannot afford to ignore it.

Gender pay gap reporting

For the first time, firms with more than 250 employees must produce a gender pay gap report before 4 April, or else face tough sanctions including ‘unlimited fines’. As well as identifying the pay and bonus gaps between the genders, companies also have to publish the proportion of men and women who received bonuses and how each is distributed in the pay structure.

With figures published on the organisation’s and government’s websites each year, firms may well have to overhaul their policies to ensure greater equality.

Wage hikes

A rise in the National Minimum Wage from April is welcome news for employees, though it can put a strain on smaller businesses, especially when they need to budget for the usual increases in maternity, paternity and shared parental pay.

An increase of just a few pounds appears manageable, but companies may struggle to absorb the costs particularly where their margins are slim. Owners and managers need to think about how they will fund the increases, so they don’t get a shock later this year. Look now at where you could make savings across the business and make it your resolution to cut excessive spending and waste.

Tax rules for payment in lieu of notice (PILON)

From April, businesses will have to pay National Insurance Contributions on redundancy or unfair dismissal payments on sums above £30,000 – something they were previously exempt from. Employers are now responsible for telling HMRC how much the worker would have earned during their notice period.

For further advice on navigating the changes ahead, contact the team at Your HR Lawyer on 0115 870 0150 or visit www.yourhrlawyer.co.uk.
 


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