UK People, Reward and Mobility Newsletter – November 2021

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In this issue, we look at some of the key employment law developments that have taken place over the past month. In particular, we examine: age discrimination in the UK employment market; the use of social media algorithms for job adverts; the law surrounding apprenticeships and the government's plans for encouraging their use; net zero clauses for employment contracts; and some of the key themes across the globe in identifying employment status.

Age discrimination in the UK employment market

United Kingdom: A recent series of reports and statistics published by the Office for National Statistics paints a picture of an increasingly polarised labour market in the UK, with older workers reporting they feel disadvantaged because of their age. This view appears particularly prevalent following the closure of the furlough scheme, with studies suggesting that impending redundancies are likely to disproportionately impact older workers. In this article, we look at the legal protection available to workers who may be subject to age discrimination and explore the potential ways forward for employers and older workers.

Social media algorithms and discriminatory job advertisements – are employers liable?

United Kingdom: The number of job vacancies in the UK has hit a record high according to the Office for National Statistics. As a result, recruitment will be many employers' primary focus and how to attract the best talent is a hot topic for HR teams.

Apprenticeships: what employers need to know

United Kingdom: In this insight, we take a look at the government's plans for apprenticeships from the Autumn Budget, as well as some pointers for employers considering taking on their own apprentices.

Employee or independent contractor? A global perspective

United Kingdom: Across the globe, independent contractors and employee status is a hot topic, particularly with the rise of the gig economy. It is important for businesses who engage independent contractors or workers to assess their exposure and the associated risks related to the employment status of those who carry out work for them. In our webinar series, we have been looking at some of the common themes around the world.

Incorporating net zero clauses into employment contracts

United Kingdom: With the spotlight on Glasgow for COP26, there is growing focus on climate change and alongside it increasing pressure on companies to respond to the climate crisis. As many companies commit to net zero, there are calls for this commitment to be incorporated into all aspects of their businesses, including their employment contracts. The Chancery Lane Project, a pro bono initiative which develops contracts and model legislation to help combat climate change and achieve net zero, has recently published a Net Zero Toolkit to address this demand.

UK People, Reward and Mobility Hub – blog posts

What else has been happening in the world of employment law this month? Read the posts from our blog to catch up.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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