Workforce compliance management is one of the biggest challenges operations and HR leaders face in their roles. They must contend with a seemingly ever-growing web of regulations, laws and industry guidelines which are designed to protect employee rights and safety.
While all organisations want to protect their workers, the breadth of regulations with which most must now comply means breaches can easily occur if the correct processes aren’t in place to manage these risks.
This article explains why traditional methods of compliance management are flawed, inefficient and potentially dangerous to an organisation, and how workforce management solutions can help them vastly reduce the risk of non-compliance.
Most organisations still take a loose approach to compliance management. It’s common for a company’s safety officers and HR leaders to monitor compliance through a combination of paper records, spreadsheets and information logged on siloed systems. Not only do these methods require periodic reviews of numerous resources - between which regulations can easily be broken without anyone noticing - they are also completely divorced from the real-world data that is so vital to maintaining compliance. Manual compliance management presents a number of dangers and disadvantages:
The cost of non-compliance can be significant with penalties for health and safety breaches potentially running into the millions of pounds, while businesses that fail to meet working time regulations are also liable for hefty fines and prosecution. This isn’t to mention the moral obligation all employers have to protect their employees, and the reputational damage that can be done by falling foul of workplace legislation.
The most important areas of compliance that organisations need to remain on top of are:
Ensuring the safety of all employees as well as members of the public is of paramount importance for all businesses. These regulations can vary by industry, but are overseen in the UK by the Government’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Key areas include:
Working time directives are clearly set out in UK law - with employers not allowed to ask their staff to work more than 48 hours per week except for specially exempt industries. There are also regulations limiting the number of hours employees can work at night, a protected 20-minute break period for all shifts of over 8 hours and a minimum rest period of 11 hours between shifts.
Employee leave is also an area where employers must be careful not to fall foul of a range of regulations. In the UK, most workers are entitled to at least 5.6 weeks of paid holiday every year.
In instances where employees are too ill to work, employers must pay Statutory Sick Pay of £96.35 up to 28 weeks. Employees are also entitled to protected maternity leave and paternity leave after the birth of a child, as well as 18 weeks of parental leave for each child over the course of their childhood - although this is unpaid.
There are an extensive number of regulations governing payroll and the payment of employees, including:
Clearly, organisations need the right tools to help guarantee compliance. Advanced workforce management systems are capable of automating much of the compliance process - ensuring standards are not allowed to slip. High quality time and attendance data is a vital component in this - especially when it comes to meeting working time and annual leave regulations.
Accurate time and attendance allows a company to track employees on an individual basis so any potential breaches around working time can be flagged up before they happen. When time and attendance data is integrated into a smart workforce management system, it means:
Our industry-leading system, Crown Workforce Management, gives HR and operations leaders all the help they need to stay one step ahead when it comes to compliance. Crown fully supports all aspects of the Working Time Regulations (i.e. working time limits, in-work breaks and rest periods) as well as other legislative frameworks.
Organisations have more control over how they manage compliance with Crown. Agreements can be set up at three levels - statutory, collective and employee - with individuals linked to a specific agreement. And because Crown captures hours worked in an unprecedented level of detail, you have the confidence in your attendance you need to underpin true compliance.