The AWR guidelines created by Department for Business, Innovation
and Skills don’t really give the clarity most people are looking for.
Whilst much of the workings of AWR will be decided by case law,
Aspire People are trying to prepare clients so that a pro-active approach is
driven forward rather than costly reactive steps.
Number One – Do Your Homework
There are solutions to AWR being flown around from schools, governors,
agencies, umbrella companies.
Brush up on the finer details so you can make your own sound decisions based
on the facts.
Number Two – Pass It On
Once you have established the basic workings and principles of AWR pass your
knowledge on to someone else within school – the governing body, head teacher.
Only then can you determine suitable recruitment strategies to minimise the
impacts and operations that cope with the management of temporary worker
Number Three – Honest, Open, Free Communication
AWR requires a constant flow of information from both parties. To
successfully implement AWR schools and colleges are going to have to build
deeper stronger relationships with their agencies and start expecting even more
out of them. If you determine your preferred suppliers before October and set
parameters for communication, you will have a real head start.
Number Four – Audit Your Agencies
Can your agencies cope with AWR? Do they know the legislation inside out?
Can you trust them, otherwise both you and the agency will be liable if you
fall short of the legislation. Gone are the days of using lots of different
agencies, more and more schools are choosing to have 2 or 3 preferred
suppliers. Who is your consultant, have they been trained on AWR? Does the
agency have the resources and capabilities to monitor AWR. Are their charge
rates transparent? Do you know what you are getting from your service? Can you
Number Five – Don’t forget Day One Rights
Most people can get fixated on the rights a temporary worker receives after
the 12 week qualifying period i.e pay and holiday. From day 1 all temporary
workers must have:
Access to job vacancies
Access to collective facilities (car parking, staff room, gym facilities, cafeteria etc)
The AWR can be seen as daunting to start with, there are no loop holes and the clock is counting down till October. The important thing to remember is there are solutions and if we all work together we can reach those. For the temporary workers there added benefits to be had and in this industry that is welcomed, especially as some agencies are under paying their staff. Now staff can get paid what they are worth and what they deserve, after all they are an important part of the education system. This will make them even more motivated to work hard.
So be prepared, be open, check your agencies and do your homework!