In the latest announcement from the Chancellor today a number of measures of interest to employers were introduced:
Job Retention Bonus
With the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme being wound down flexibly and due to end on 31 October 2020, the Chancellor has acted upon fears that many of the circa 9 million furloughed employees face imminent redundancy. The Government have introduced a one-off payment of £1,000 to UK employers for every employee they have furloughed who remains continuously employed through to the end of January 2021. Employees must earn at least £520 per month on average between the end of the CJRS and the end of January 2021 in order to be eligible. The bonus payments will be paid to employers in February 2021. Full details of the Job Retention Bonus will be published by the end of July - at this stage there remains a number of questions that we cannot answer!
The Government has created a £2 billion fund to create 6-month work placements for those aged 16-24 who are on Universal Credit and deemed to be a long-term unemployment risk. The funding will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage cost to the employer for 25 hours a week, plus NI and pension costs. An additional £111 million will fund high-quality work placements and training for 16-24 year olds, funding employers with £1,000 per trainee that they take on. Employers who take on apprentices will be paid £2,000 for each new apprentice under 25 and £1,500 when aged over 25. These payments are in addition to existing payments that some employers are already eligible for.
The above funds are supported by investment in the National Careers Service (to the tune of £32 million) and £895 million of funding to double the number of work coaches employed by the Job Centre Plus.
Various other measures announced by the Chancellor today are designed to assist certain sectors (such as the temporary reduction of Stamp Duty and VAT rates for the hospitality sector) and may also give employers in those sectors increased confidence to retain employees – look out also for the “Eat Out to Help Out” scheme in August!
If you do require any further advice on the above, please do contact our Employment Team via email or call us on 01603 610911.