AWR Information for Candidates

The Agency Workers Regulations were published at the start of 2010 and come into force on the 1st of October 2011. The Agency Worker Regulations originate from the Agency Workers Directive. The aim of the legislation is for Agency Workers to be provided with equal treatment in the workplace.

Upon completion of a 12 week qualifying period, Agency Workers will be entitled to the same basic working and employment conditions that they would have received if an agency worker had been directly recruited by the hirer.

Under the regulations there are also ‘day one rights’, which apply from the first day of the assignment (which can be no earlier than 1st October 2011). These rights include access to onsite collective amenities (such as car parking and canteen), as well as access to information about permanent job vacancies. It is possible that the hirer may decline to offer certain facilities provided they can show good justification for doing so. 

Please see the below frequently asked questions relating to the regulations:

1. What are the Agency Workers Regulations?
The regulations give Agency Workers the right to the same employment and working conditions that they would have enjoyed had they been directly employed by the hirer after 12 weeks in a given job.

2. Who does it affect?
All Agency Workers including those employed via umbrella companies or other intermediaries. Workers who are genuinely self employed are excluded.

3. What is equal treatment?
This principle is based upon an agency worker being entitled to the same basic working and employment conditions as a comparable employee of the hirer after 12 weeks in the same job.

4. What happens if there is no permanent employee comparator?
The agency and the hirer will consider the basic working and employment conditions that the agency worker would be entitled to if the agency worker was recruited directly by the hirer. In the absence of a comparator the agency and the hirer will consider various factors such as internal pay scales and national rates of pay for the job concerned. There may be other conditions which apply generally in the workplace which the agency worker might be entitled to.

5. When does the qualifying period start for me?
This will commence as of the 1st of October 2011. The qualifying period can be paused for particular circumstances, see below:

Type of absence that affects the 12 week qualifying period Effect on the 12 week period
Any reason where break less than 6 weeks Pauses the clock
Sickness absence Pauses the clock up to 28 weeks
Annual leave Pauses the clock
Shutdown Pauses the clock
Jury service Pauses the clock up to 28 weeks
Industrial action Pauses the clock
Pregnancy / maternity related absence Clock keeps ticking throughout the statutory period

6. Can the qualifying period stop?
A qualifying period will stop if there is a break, for a reason not included above, for more than 6 weeks between assignments. The qualifying period may also stop if an agency worker moves to a substantively different assignment.

7. I have worked in an assignment with the hirer for almost a year, why must the qualifying period commence as of the 1st of October?
The agency workers regulations does not have retrospective effect and so the qualifying period will start from 1st October 2011.

8. I only work 3 days a week, how will the 12 week qualifying period work?
The 12 week qualifying period is based upon calendar weeks irrespective of working patterns and the number of days worked each week. In this case, a 3 day week will contribute 1 week towards the 12 week qualifying period.

9. What will I be entitled to after 12 weeks?
Please see below table that illustrates what is and isn’t included following the successful completion of a 12 week qualifying period:

Basic pay Yes
Local bonus schemes / commission structures based on quality or quantity of work done Yes
Overtime payment rates (provided qualifying criteria are met) Yes
Shift allowances Yes
Monetary vouchers of fixed value Yes
Share scheme No
Non local Profit sharing schemes (i.e. STIP) No
Occupational pension schemes No
Occupational maternity / paternity pay No
Occupational redundancy pay No
Benefits in kind No
Occupational sick pay No
Holiday entitlement Yes
Rest breaks / periods Yes
Paid time off for ante natal appointments Yes

Please note that this list is not exhaustive, but includes the key items.

10. The site operates a local bonus scheme, am I entitled to this?
Yes, under the regulations where there is a bonus scheme which relates to quality and / or quantity of work done then you are entitled to the same opportunity to achieve that bonus as a permanent employee in the same role.

11. From day one of my assignment as an agency worker, will I be entitled to apply for a permanent vacancy with hirer?
Unless it is a company re-organisation, you will be entitled to access information about the role.

12. What holiday will I be entitled to?
Upon completion of 12 calendar weeks within the same role with the same hirer, you will be entitled to the same amount of holiday entitlement as if you had been directly recruited directly by the hirer for the assignment.

Further details on holiday entitlement are available within the agency worker’s contract with TLTP and any Assignment Details Forms associated with the particular assignment.

13. When will I see a difference in pay?
If there is an increase in pay it will be paid once you have worked in the same role with the same hirer for 12 calendar weeks.

Please refer to questions 5 to 8 for further details on the qualifying period.

14. Is it possible for agencies or workers to opt out of the regulations?

15. Is the hirer pension plan included?
It is not included.

16. If applicable, will I be entitled to receive any incremental increases in annual leave which are awarded for length of service?
Yes, after completion of the 12 week qualifying period and subject to the agency worker meeting the qualifying criteria for the increase in annual leave i.e 1 year’s service.

17. Will I be entitled to the same incremental pay increases as a permanent worker?
Yes, after completion of the 12 week qualifying period and subject to the agency worker meeting the qualifying criteria for the pay increase i.e 1 year’s service.

18. Am I entitled to occupational sick pay?
No, this is not included within the agency worker regulations. However, subject to the statutory qualifying criteria you may be entitled to statutory sick pay, which may be processed via TLTP.

19. If I am pregnant, how will AWR affect me?
Firstly, a pregnant worker will need to notify TLTP that she is pregnant in writing. TLTP will then notify the hirer, who will then conduct a workplace risk assessment and will endeavour to remove any risks should they be found in the work area. If an adjustment is not possible or not deemed reasonable, the hirer will then notify TLTP. TLTP will then endeavour to find suitable alternative work.

Furthermore, after completing a 12 week qualifying period the agency worker be allowed paid time off for antenatal medical appointments and antenatal classes during the assignment. TLTP may ask for evidence confirming such appointments.

20. Do the regulations impact paternity rights?
No, paternity rights were recently revised in the UK, under The Additional Paternity Leave Regulations 2010.

21. If the hirer supervisor moves me from one role to another, what should I do?
You will have an obligation to notify TLTP as soon as possible about the change in role. Furthermore, if you take up any other assignment during your time with TLTP with another agency, you will be required to keep us informed with these details.

Failure to notify TLTP of these changes may mean that previous weeks worked for the hirer are not counted towards the qualifying period and this will result in a delay in the agency worker receiving equal treatment.

22. If my assignment ends with one hirer and I accept a new assignment with another hirer, will I still be eligible for equal treatment?
No, as this is a new hirer, then the qualifying period will start again.

TLTP Medical

TLTP Medical is a frame work agency for Allied Health Professionals and Health Sector Staff and are on the Crown Commercial Services (formerly GPS), London Procurement Partnership, Health Trust Europe and National Clinical Staffing frameworks.

We are proud to provide innovative medical recruitment solutions with a personal touch and have a proven track record in satisfying and exceeding clients' needs.

TLTP always concentrates on what really matters, providing bespoke solutions tailored around client requirements. We focus heavily on our professional service, ensuring our clients can rely upon us to consistently deliver quality medical professionals nationwide.

As an approved Framework agency authorised to supply the NHS across the UK and a market leader in the provision of Allied Health Professionals and Doctors, TLTP continues to strive for excellence. Its core focus is on raising the standard in medical locum supply and have developed an organisation-wide philosophy of continual improvement to ensure we always exceed client and candidate requirements.

We are confident that our level of service is unrivalled in our industry and by using TLTP, you can be assured of receiving a service second to none.

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