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Government proposals to bring in ‘no-fault dismissal’ rules could divide the Coalition partners as the controversial Beecroft report is set to be published.The plans, outlined in the report last October by entrepreneur Adrian Beecroft, aim to slash red tape for employers and make it easier for them to hire and fire staff as they are needed. The report is due to be published later this week but has already appeared on the internet after being leaked.It says that “regulations, conceived in an era of full employment” are stifling the business and job growth that will raise the UK economy out of its slump.The report focussed on small businesses in particular, and said red tape dissuades them from wanting to take on more employees and therefore they grow more slowly than they otherwise might. “In today's era of a lack of jobs those regulations simply exacerbate the national problem of high unemployment,” the report said. “While it may seem counter-intuitive, even making it easier to remove underperforming employees will in the short run not increase unemployment as they will be replaced by more competent employees. In the long run it will increase employment by making our businesses more competitive and hence more likely to grow.”However, the report recognised that the proposal have a downside.“Some people would be dismissed simply because their employer did not like them,” Beecroft admitted. “While this is sad, I believe it is a price worth paying for all the benefits that would result from the change. I believe that employers, many of whom already ‘create’ redundancy situations in order to remove underperforming employees, will accept the higher cost in exchange for the speed and certainty it provides.”In March, the government launched a call for evidence on dealing with dismissal and compensated no-fault dismissal for employers with fewer than 10 staff. This call closes on the 8th of June 2012.Prime Minister David Cameron is said to be considering the proposals and other proposals in the report, which include changes to collective redundancy time scales, scrapping plans for flexible shared parental leave and reforms to the employment tribunal system.Speaking while at an event in Chicago, Cameron said: "On the issue of no-fault dismissal and other proposals like that, I am interested in anything that makes it easier for one person to say to another person: 'Come and work for me,' because we need to make our economies flexible."We need to make our labour markets work as flexibly as possible and we will obviously need to examine each proposal on its merits."However, the ‘fire-at-will’ plans were hit by renewed criticism from business secretary Vince Cable who, according to a close source, has labelled them “bonkers”.A source close to Cable told the Guardian: "The last thing employees want is the dead hand of fear hanging over them about losing their jobs."
Surely this will stifle employment as I cant see many employers wishing to go over the benchmark of employing the 11th worker. They will merely set up another company & divide the workforce between the 2 firms!<br/>I, as an employee, would also be keen to avoid working for a small company!
Whilst this is concerning for employees who may find themselves at the mercy of unscrupulous employers, I can't help wondering if this kind of law may also kick this country into shape. Too many people think they can get away with having bad attitudes towards education and earning a decent living, thinking that their rights will always protect them no matter what they do. Maybe this is the key to people thinking, "Blimey, I've got to pull my socks up, do a good job, turn up for work on time, learn to get on with people and cooperate, otherwise I could be out on my ear". This is what all of us should be doing - taking responsibility and committing to doing a good day's work, not feeling sorry for ourselves and expecting everything to be handed to us on a plate. That's not the real world. My message is, get an education or train to do something, get off benefits and take responsibility. It's actually quite rewarding if you try it.
Having derided the Government for this illthought out proposal, I put it down to their sheer incompetence yet again, but I also decided to find out who Adrian Beeccroft is. Surprise surprise he is n`t an employment lawyer,HR professional nor a business leader but an unknown "investment officer" who was commissioned to recommend huge change in employment law and he has no idea how his recommendations will affect business` and people`s lives. He says he did n`t realise when he started doing this that he was dealing with susch a hot potatoe i.e. the downside is that some people would be dismissed simply because their employer did not like them Oh but what the hack that doe n`t matter. The report reads like a letter to Cameron on his own personal views and the criteria used for commissioning him to head the report was "because his company had to pay out £150000 to a HR Director". If he had any sense or the required business knowledge he would have realised that if you take on an expert in the HR field you are going to pay. Cameron did not need a report to tell him that. His other credentials are that he has paid thousands into the Tory coffers and his key focus in life is to persude our schoolchildren to play cricket. The CIPD should also be aware that he does not rule out doing further work on employment law reform. These are enough reasons for the CIPD to fight this descent into madness with ferocity.
As a personnel manager I have never found it difficult to dismiss bad employees fairly within the existing laws. All this government wishes to do is help its contributors in big business, and I presume this is what they want. I sincerely hope the CIPD fight this proposal most vigorously. Otherwise many innocent workers will be dismissed, when the law should protect them.
I am very concerned about this proposal and other recent developments. Clearly businesses should not have to tolerate under-performing employees, but employment law is there to protect people, not cover up for incompetent managers. There is a risk that some organisations will see this as a way to dismiss workers just because their faces no longer fit. <br/><br/>Whilst we are promised that there is to be no rowing back on discrimination law, if the Government proceeds with all these measures and also introduces fees for bringing a claim in an Employment Tribunal, it’s not hard to see that employees may well decide it’s not worth the hassle or expense of bringing quite legitimate claims. The impact on vulnerable groups like older workers and part-time women could be especially marked.<br/><br/>Denise Keating, CEO, Employers Network for Equality and Inclusion
I'm heartened by the comments above. Labour market economists have debunked the idea that supply side changes, such as those proposed by Beecroft, would make any significant contribution to growth in the UK economy. The Beecroft report is therefore an extremely unwelcome diversion from a focus on how employers, workforces and Government can work together to secure an upturn in economic fortunes. Instead, the case for a growth stimulus Plan B is ever more pressing. <br/><br/>What Beecroft proposes is a major issue for the HR profession and what it stands for in evidence based best practice in employee relations, leadership and management. Put simply, Beecroft would shatter trust between staff and employers for no obvious gain. CIPD should be more prominent in the public debate, drawing on the expertise in the profession, and arguing that these proposals are badly conceived, damaging in the workplace, and won't deliver the economic growth that is desperately needed.
This has to be a joke. David Cameron said he is "interested in anything that makes it easier for one person to say to another person: 'Come and work for me,' because we need to make our economies flexible." So does he really not understand that to create even more insecurity in employment at this time could be detrimental to the economy. Not only would we have people in employment worrying about redundancy, we could now have employees feeling insecure that they can be dismissed because there face doesn't fit and this is during a time when the employment market is precarious at best. How will that boost the economy? Even fewer people will commit to buying houses, cars or make any other substantial financial commitments because they have no guaranteed job security. Beecroft recognises and brushes aside the flaws himself by saying "some people could be dismissed just because their employer did not like them" ... and that Mr Beecroft is the reason why your report should be completely disregarded.
The last comment almost took the words out of my mouth! In theory I would be in favour of this proposal ONLY if it was allowed to be applied to the incompetency of our ministers & politicians.
These ideas will not help grow our economy. Degrading employee rights and creating more uncertainty for regular working folk is a backward step in every way. "Some people would be dismissed just because the employer didnt like them" states Beecroft - you dont say! Why is Cameron giving this biased twoddle the time of day?
The Government's own research recently revealed that dismissal was NOT one of the top 10 concerns for employers when hiring staff!<br/><br/>And yet, this argument was used by the government to justify their introduction of changes to Employment Tribunal related legislation, particularly the extension to the qualifying period before an employee could claim for unfair dismissal, and the introduction of fees.<br/><br/>Amidst the rhetoric and exaggerated figures/claims around vexacious claims, the cry from the government was that difficulties and fears surrounding dismissing employees (and the resulting threat of Tribunal claims) was inhibiting companies from recruiting. I've no doubt this 'scaremongering' was fuelled by a few influential individuals and/or bodies.<br/><br/>As a participant in the IOD's policy voice surveys, I found the questions in their survey to be very biased towards encouraging this 'concern'. I went to great lengths to expand on my responses which countered the belief that issues around dismissal difficulties was a deterrent to recruiting. I am so glad that the government's own research has relegated this nonsense to where it belongs.<br/><br/>Does this mean they will now revisit those changes to Employment Tribunal regs? Will they actually take up this tragic Beecroft report recommendations? Surely not...
I wonder if that will give us the right to sack Cameron a. because we dont like him and b. because as Prime Minister he has underperformed in relation to the expectations he set and we would expect.
The Beecroft ideas are ideologically based, without a shred of evidence to support them.
For goodness sake stop tinkering with these laws The best way to improve the operation of employment laws would to ban lawyers until EAT level. Think how much money that would save.<br/><br/>ETs were created to be cheap informal tribunals. We shouldn't let lawyers loose here