Government urges businesses to tackle employment red tape

For the next three weeks the Red Tape Challenge will focus on more than 160 different cross-Government employment related regulations that businesses have to deal with in all areas of the workplace.
The campaign asks for a variety of suggestions about how regulations can be improved, simplified or even abolished, whilst also ensuring that the current standard of employment rights for employees are maintained. Examples of regulations Government is seeking views on include the rules on collective redundancies, employment agencies, immigration checks, the National Minimum Wage and statutory sick pay, to make sure they are fit for purpose and easier for businesses to understand.
Business Minister David Willetts said: “Businesses regularly tell us that the burden of regulation is too high. So today we are giving them a chance to tell us exactly which rules they think need to be reformed. The Government is committed to growth and the Red Tape Challenge is one way to make sure that we are getting out of the way and letting businesses do what they do best – taking people on and boosting the economy.”
Employment Relations Minister Edward Davey said: “We often hear from businesses that employment related regulation holds them back from growing their firms and employing more people. Whether it is the filling out of endless forms when you hire your first member of staff, the complexities of letting somebody go, or simply manage staff on a day-to-day basis, we want to review these regulations with the aim of giving business more confidence in employing people and creating more jobs.
“We are determined to tackle unnecessary, burdensome red tape that harms job creation and means employers spend less time running their business. But this does not mean this will result in a watering down of employee rights. Today we are launching a real debate with employers and employees, to listen to their thoughts and act on what regulations can be simplified, merged and abolished. This is your time to get involved and have your say on your employment law bugbears.”
Group Chief Executive of Bio Group and Sector champion for the employment law theme Steve Sharratt OBE said: “In business we often feel our voice is not heard in Whitehall, yet I think this is a real opportunity for SMEs to impact on Government thinking and policy on employment regulation. Let’s see what business can do in making a difference, by saying loudly and clearly what is good and bad in the current regulations, what is effective and what is frankly ridiculous and how business believes regulation can be made shorter and simpler.”
The Government will publish the results of the employment related law Red Tape Challenge theme later this year.