Maternity leave – your rights

Maternity leave is an important period for all working mums. It gives women an opportunity to prepare for the birth, then bond with and care for the child during the first days, weeks, and months of its life. Here, we take a look at what rights you have when it comes to organising and taking maternity leave. Who is eligible for maternity leave?......

The Pimlico Plumbers case – making it harder for employers to justify ‘self-employed’ status

The Supreme Court today found in favour of plumber Gary Smith in his claim that he was entitled to sick pay and holiday pay, despite his employer Pimlico Plumbers claiming he was self–employed. Although he provided his own tools and could choose when he worked, Mr Smith worked solely for Pimlico, was required to wear their uniform and to work a min......

Employers must tackle their game plan before kick-off

With the 2018 World Cup about to kick-off in Moscow, football fans will have their eye on the ball, whether for England or their home country. And following England’s 2-1 win in its warm-up friendly with Nigeria, the tactics for the team are likely to be the focus of much debate. But it’s not just the players who need to warm up, as UK business ne......

A dress code to impress….and avoid sex discrimination

A dress code may seem archaic, stringent or unnecessary to many people. However, it can be a powerful tool in creating a particular image of a workplace, which is integral to many professions. How the outside world e.g. clients see us will, whether consciously or not, impact a decision to instruct us. This May, the Government Equalities Office re......

Staff wellbeing a priority for East Anglian businesses

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week which is being supported by the Mental Health Foundation. Tying in with the theme, delegates at yesterday’s Ashtons and HAYS Annual Employment Conference were asked if they were making the wellbeing of their staff part of their business strategy. A straw poll revealed that half of the audience were indeed m......

Women in the Workplace - International Women’s Day 2018

As a woman on the eve of International Women’s Day 2018, I consider there to be three major issues in the workplace that affect women in particular at present:   Flexible Working and Maternity Discrimination   My view remains that one of the key barriers to women remaining in their careers is the lack of flexibility follow......

Ashtons HR Consulting supports National Apprenticeship Week

Jane Hamshaw, of Ashtons HR Consulting, talks about the how Ashtons have utilised Apprenticeships across the business. In February 2014 Ashtons Legal embarked on an initiative of utilising Apprenticeships in a number of roles in various departments across the business.   The first successful Apprentice, who completed a Business Admi......

The Beast from the East and the Journey to Work

Lucy Pakes from Ashtons HR Consulting looks at how to deal with employee absences due to adverse weather. “We have spare toothbrushes and sleeping bags” I was told a few years ago when working in the newspaper industry – key personnel were expected to come into work during adverse weather and to stay overnight to get the morning newspaper out.......

Equal Pay issues – What employers should be doing

The BBC’s equal pay nightmare continues – following the outrage expressed during last summer over discrepancies in pay for male and female presenters, Carrie Gracie’s revelations about editorial staff leaves the broadcaster continuing to make headlines rather than simply reporting them. In the light of the publicity, it is perhaps surprising that......

The Rooney Rule – football leads the way in “positive action” under the Equality Act

English Football league clubs have agreed to introduce a UK version of the “Rooney Rule” starting on 1 January 2018.  The rule was originally named after Dan (not Wayne) Rooney who set up a policy in American football that required teams to interview minority candidates for coaching roles.  English Football League (EFL) clubs are now fr......

Lessons for business from the #metoo headlines

Following the allegations of sexual misconduct against Harvey Weinstein and other leading figures, businesses need to make sure they have clear policies to inspire the right culture in their workplace. The initial revelations about the Hollywood mogul inspired many to open up about their experiences of sexual abuse and harassment, flooding social......

Leadership Development

Jane Hamshaw, of Ashtons HR Consulting, talks about the in-house Leadership Development programme she has developed for the firm. In recent years, the majority of roles within professional services have changed and this is true of Solicitors, Associates and Partners in all Law Firms. After spending years gaining the knowledge they need to undertak......

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Is veganism about to become a 'philosophical belief' and therefore a protected characteristic under the Equality Ac… https://t.co/UNaN0BB5EH
Another #worker status case - @AddisonLeeCabs have just lost their appeal in the Employment Appeal Tribunal, who ag… https://t.co/BPXADHee9U
Office banter or #discrimination claim waiting to happen? See @j_piper1 's article on recent case law in this area: https://t.co/6BvOSlSvTJ