Agency Workers Regulations

Agency Workers Regulations (AWR) came into force in the UK 2010, and yet we still see agencies struggling to address AWR challenges. In essence, the AWR was designed to give temporary agency workers the right to the same pay, benefits, and working conditions that they would have been entitled to when employed in the same role by the end client, after working for a period of twelve weeks.

This, of course, means that agencies must monitor the status and information of their workers, to identify which qualify for AWR and when. Accurate work data recording is essential to ensure compliance with the law, however, it becomes extremely complicated and time-consuming (and expensive!) when managing hundreds of workers (or more!).

AWR Exceptions

The regulation takes into account several factors and exceptions, which must be carefully tracked for each worker. Under the regulation, temporary agency workers qualify for AWR after they have been in the same role with the same hirer for 12 calendar weeks. Some breaks are to be taken into consideration to pause the clock. According to the regulation, less than a six-week period for any reason, certified sickness absence, annual leave, maternity leave, and other scenarios, pause the clock until resuming the activity at the same job.

However, not being assigned for more than a six week period or moving to a significantly different role within the same hirer would restart the clock.

temp nurse

AWR Management in Medium-sized Agencies

Managing AWR workers can quickly become a nightmare when your agency has hundreds or thousands of workers. It’s virtually impossible to track this manually. The agency is ultimately responsible for AWR, hence the workers can’t be made expected to track their own week count. It becomes essential to find a solution for managing AWR in context with payroll, invoicing and of course, scheduling.

Example: Selena the Science Teacher

Selena is a teacher working for a temp agency. She works as a substitute science teacher in May, June and two weeks in July, but then summer vacation starts. If she goes back to teaching at the same school when the new academic year starts, the count of weeks towards AWR qualification should continue. So, roughly two weeks after vacation she’ll be at 12 weeks and be entitled to a pay rate equivalent to non-temp teachers in that role in that school.

temp teacher

Automation advantages

Being able to automatically calculate AWR statuses in context with the schedule drastically simplifies the management of temporary workers in an AWR-compliant fashion. Removing this compliance hurdle, and automating a time-consuming process frees agency staff to pursue new business. It also significantly increases staff satisfaction while improving worker engagement with the agency.

Sirenum and AWR

Sirenum automates Agency Workers Regulations tracking, making it easy for agencies of all shapes and sizes to be compliant with the law. To learn more about how Sirenum helps with AWR, request a demo now.