Sector-Specific Guidance Needed To Help Employers Under Revamped Wage Rates “Naming And Shaming” Scheme

UKHospitality has welcomed the proposed revamp of naming and shaming of employers who fail to pay National Minimum and National Living Wage rates.

But the trade association has also highlighted the continued potential for administrative errors and called on the Government to work with businesses and to produce sector-specific guidance to help employers understand their obligations and prepare for any changes.

The modernisation of the definition of salaried workers is also positive for both employees and employers alike. This reflects more flexible payment periods which work for both parties.

UKHospitality Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: “There is no excuse for deliberately paying staff below the National Minimum Wage. It is a legal requirement and it is good to see the Government cracking down on rogue employers and highlighting the point that non-compliance is not acceptable.

“The proposals around the definition of salaried workers will help to reduce inadvertent errors by recognising the different ways in which people like to get paid in the 21st Century. We look forward to working with Government and employee representatives to make sure these new rules work for everyone.

“We believe more needs to be done to totally rule out administrative errors, though. Some businesses have been caught out by admin errors in the past, rather than through deliberate underpayment. We have made this point clear to the Government previously and highlighted the potential for employers to make honest mistakes on issues like accommodation offset or staff uniforms. The focus should be on tackling those businesses who knowingly underpay.

“The Single Enforcement Body must be structured in such a way as to allow for regular consultation with business so that interpretation of the regulations can be agreed and clearly communicated to employers.

“Sector-specific guidance which incorporates the various nuances and needs of vastly different businesses would help clear up any misunderstanding and help employers understand their obligations and prepare for the changes. We hope the Government will work with the hospitality industry to promote compliance.”