With the news that Amazon is taking on 25% more seasonal workers than its bricks and clicks competitors in the US, and Argos hiring up to 9000 additional workers in the UK, there is no doubt that HR professionals in retail are under immense pressure to make sure the recruitment and on-boarding process is not only fast and slick – but also fully compliant.
It is also recognised that illegal working is a major issue for employers in the UK for a variety of reasons, so it is doubly important to ensure that appropriate right to work checks are carried out at the correct times.
The Home Office has simplified the checking process into three stages: obtain, check and copy. However, experienced HR professionals often like to think of the process as five stages.
- Have you got an acceptable and authentic document?
- Is the document in date?
- Are there any restrictions preventing employment?
- Are all associated documents valid – even if written in a different language?
- Can you provide auditable proof that the documents have been seen?
The penalties can be severe. In 2014 the maximum civil penalty fine for employing an illegal worker increased from £10,000 to £20,000 per illegal worker. The Government has also published draft legislation proposing an increase in the maximum criminal penalty from 2 years’ to 5 years’ imprisonment.
Today’s retailers need a reliable set of technologies and processes that protect the organisation and its reputation. Any system should have access not just to UK national but also international data and have an in-built audit trail that can securely retrieve details of all checks performed and any documents screened.
Find out more about employing the right people in retail: