Hiring a part-time worker can be an advantage to the business as it could be an opportunity to gain skilled individuals who might not be able to offer their services full-time. This type of employment can be appealing to people who may have young children, or other responsibilities which could prevent them from being able to commit to a job with full-time employment hours. However, before you hire a part-time worker, it is crucial that you have a good understanding of their rights.
It is unlikely that the part-time staff will exceed the maximum weekly working time limit of 48 hours. However, part-time staff are still entitled to the same rest breaks and time off between shifts and are protected under the Working Time Regulations 1998.
Part-time Workers (Prevention of Less Favourable Treatment) Regulations 2000 starts when the employment starts and therefore ensures that part-time staff are not treated unfairly or less-favourably than the full-time staff. This means part-time staff should not miss out on any training due to their part-time hours.
Part-time workers must have the same amount of annual leave as a full-time worker, on a pro rata basis. As an example, if a full-time staff member works five days a week and has 6 weeks of annual leave then a part-time worker who works 2 days a week is entitled to 12 days of annual leave; two-fifths of the full-time workers annual leave. This includes bank holidays as a part-time worker may not work on a bank holiday Monday, meaning they are missing out on bank holiday pay. Taking this approach will also ensure that bank holiday pay for part-time workers remains fair. Alternative calculations can be used for part-time workers, working a set amount of hours a week, as opposed to days.
Furthermore, if a part-time employee is made redundant before a full-time employee because they are a part-time worker it could be considered as less favourable treatment. However, should the redundancy be on fair grounds, the employee must be provided with the statutory redundancy pay.
Overall, it is essential to keep in mind that part-time staff are entitled to the same rights and opportunities as full-time staff. Working on a pro-rata basis could be a good start.
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