Stafflex Recruitment News Update - September 2018

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Every month, our experts comment on the biggest and most interesting recruitment news across the country.

In this edition, engineering project manager, Graham Black looks at news that the Trade Union Congress (TUC) is calling for the government to cut the working week to four days as well as a recent study by the Migration Observatory estimating that 500,000 EU workers are in low skilled UK jobs as Brexit looms ever closer.


Unions call for four-day working week

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has called on the government to cut the working week to four days as new technology continues to make our jobs more efficient.

General secretary, Frances O’Grady says employees across the country are deserving of a longer weekend and higher pay because too many firms are using technological advances to treat people unfairly.

But Stephen Jennings partner at law firm Tozers Solicitors explains that this would be difficult to implement: “Most private sector employers would take some persuading to agree to a four-day working week – especially while their competitors remain working five days.”

Although artificial intelligence such as robotics and automation could provide a £200bn UK economic boost in the next decade, it is unrealistic to expect these changes to happen in the near future – however nice the idea may be!

To read the full article on unions calling for a four day week featured on BBC News, click here.

Study estimates 500,000 EU workers are in low-skilled UK jobs

An estimated 500,000 EU citizens are working in low-skilled jobs in the UK such as cleaning offices, fruit-picking and warehouse work according to a report by leading academics.

The report by the Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford said that employers could struggle to find workers after Brexit however to combat this, the government has said it wants to extend an existing youth mobility scheme for Australians, Canadians and other specified non-EU countries including Japan and Monaco to allow them work in these low-skilled jobs.

There is plenty of scepticism that such a scheme will not be able to support less desirable jobs for young people such as construction labourers and fruit pickers working in out-of-the-way places across the country.

The government has since tried to squash the uncertainty, stating that they will have an “immigration system in place which works in the best interests of the whole of the UK”.

To read the full article on the recent study that 500,000 EU workers are in low-skilled UK jobs featured on The Guardian, click here.