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A Year in Review.  Employment Law and HR in 2024 

Both employment law and HR are vital, and both help each other in the workplace. The laws and regulations that govern the employer-employee relationship, as well as the HR policies and practices within an organization.  

What would we do without laws in place? They help set boundaries for both employers and employees on what both parties expect so that there is no miscommunication. The employment law that have been developed are generally aimed at protecting employees’ rights and ensuring fair treatment in areas like hiring, wages, benefits, discrimination, safety, and termination. While HR teams implement and manage internal policies that align with the law. 

But employment law in particular is always developing. Take a look at our guide to see what’s changing in 2024.

Key Employment Law Updates

There will be a change in 2024 around employment law. What are they? And how will they impact you? This year there will be family-focused changes as 2024 will see two pieces of new legislation aimed at making the workplace fairer for families.  

Updates to the Equality Act 2010: The Worker Protection

The Equality Act 2010 will be amended by the Worker Protection Act 2023, which will go into effect in October 2024 and require companies to take “reasonable steps” to stop sexual harassment of their staff members. The aim is to enforce more responsibility on the businesses, encouraging them to create more safe workplace cultures by adhering to regulations. Hopefully, this will result in a This implies that they will have a new, proactive duty to prevent harassment in the workplace. The Equality and Human Rights Commission will soon have a new legislative code of practice added to the Act.   

The Protection from Redundancy Act 2023

The Protection from Redundancy Act 2023, which will begin to start on April 6 of this year, is designed to strengthen the laws that already protect employees who are expecting a child or who are on or returning from maternity, shared parental, or adoption leave from being laid off.

Extra protections will be offered to employees who are on maternity, adoption, or shared parental leave, including rights such as essentially being given first dibs over a replacement position if one becomes available. Additionally, pregnant employees will be covered by the protection of the Act from the moment they inform their employer of their pregnancy until 18 months after giving birth.   

Act of 2023 Concerning Neonatal Care

Additionally, the Neonatal Care (Leave and Pay) Act 2023 was enacted in 2023 and is expected to come into force in April 2025. The Act will allow parents to take paid neonatal leave for up to twelve weeks if their newborn is hospitalised for seven days or more within the first twenty-eight days of life. With this new law, parents won’t have to worry about taking unpaid leave or going back to work in order to spend more time with their critically ill newborns. Following their leave of absence, parents who take paid neonatal leave are also allowed to return to their previous positions.  

Why is HR vital?

Why is HR so vital to business? The UK has extensive employment law and regulations, including anti-discrimination, health and safety, pay and benefits, etc. HR helps ensure companies comply with employment law so that employees are treated well. They also assist in making sure the new laws are being followed so that employees are being treated correctly by the company.  

They are also responsible for employee training programs to help develop skills and keep staff motivated this improves productivity and staff retention. Overall, this helps the company reduce costs and helps train staff for the company to thrive.   

HR establishes policies for workplace conduct, grievance handling, and discipline procedures to maintain positive employee relations and resolve any issues. Most people in their lifetime will have an issue and need to go to HR to sort it all out, but it also helps companies have a plan and know what to do in certain situations.   

Skilled HR management is essential in the UK to ensure compliant, harmonious, and productive workplaces that get the best from people. With complex regulations and a very dynamic labour market, organisations rely heavily on HR.