Cost Cutting and Supporting Employees During the Crisis

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Recent research indicates that only 5% of employees feel that their employer is doing “enough” to support them during the current cost of living crisis with a further 63% confirming that they would leave their current employer for another company if it provided better financial support. Whilst an employer isn’t obliged to do anything, the hike in inflation whilst many salaries remain stagnant may adversely affect productivity and the morale of staff.

If productivity is impacted or an employee doesn’t seem themselves then an open discussion rather than the commencing of a formal process is the best way forward. Some staff may be in  difficult financial situations with the knock-on effect being evident at work.

What can you do?

The answer doesn’t necessarily lie in pay rises because the cost of living isn’t just affecting employees but businesses also. There are other avenues that you could consider to support your employees such as;

• Allowing employees with office-based roles to work remotely to reduce travel costs;

• The opposite of the above – some employees may wish to work in the office rather than remotely to reduce their utility costs;

• Travel ticket loans;

• Providing staple foods such as bread, fruits etc in communal areas;

• Temporary energy loans.

If staff leave and move to a competitor because they feel that additional support is being offered there, this creates further costs for you in terms of recruiting for a replacement and retraining. Considering options such as the above first, may avoid this.

Additionally, from a business point of view, we may be able to assist you to reduce your own costs by putting stricter policies in place that could reduce absence and/or the need for overtime.  If cost savings need to be made on a larger scale, we can talk to you about restructuring or redundancies.

Right to work checks to change from 1 October 2022

You’ll recall from our previous update that the temporary changes to the right to work checks, because of covid are ending at the end of this month.

From 1 October 2022, you will need to carry out the following when conducting right to work checks:

• Carry out a face-to-face manual check using the worker’s or applicant’s original documents;

• Use the Home Office online service and carry out an online check; or

• Use an Identity Service Provider (ISP).

It is crucial that you implement the new right to work checks as an you can face criminal sanctions if you don’t comply with the new rules as well as being fined £20,000 for each illegally employed worker.

Please contact our Employment team for support on either of these topics.

(September 2022)