Employment law

When automated decisions fail

Managers are increasingly reliant on computer software and algorithms when assessing the performance of their staff. This is the case both in traditional forms of employment where there is a clear employer-employee relationship, and with gig economy arrangements which muddy the water by attempting (sometimes unsuccessfully) to classify staff as self-employed contractors. One of the […]

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Uber contractors are workers: a blow to the gig economy?

Uber drivers have by the company been treated as fully self employed contractors, as opposed to workers or employees. Uber has always argued that it merely provides a software platform rather than running a fully fledged taxi service – similar to the stance of social media companies that they are platforms rather than publishers. But […]

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Employee monitoring software: is it legal?

For most law firms time recording constructs and the idea of annual billable hours have always meant that “productivity” could be monitored. Any of the managing partner’s typical calls to action of “you’re not billing enough” or “your time recording is down” can be justified where fee-earners have to account for every minute. Even if […]

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Regulation of the gig economy

The gig economy has garnered heavy criticism since it became an integral part of the world of work over the past decade or so. On the one hand it has been credited with providing flexible work for millions of people unable or unwilling to secure full time employment. On the other hand, it has been […]

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Privacy in the workplace … or not?

The debate around workplace monitoring of employees has rumbled on for many years now; employers argue that they are entitled to analyse how their staff spend their working day whilst employees claim it impacts upon their privacy. In 2017 the European Court of Human Rights held, in the case of Bărbulescu v Romania, that the […]

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Employment tribunal judgments online

Employment tribunal judgments are now available online on GOV.UK at www.gov.uk/employment-tribunal-decisions. Previously, in order to read a first instance judgment, you had to hope that one of the parties published it or that the judiciary website considered it to be of sufficient importance to publish or to take a trip to the central register and […]

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A snoopers’ charter for employers?

With Michael Salter As the line between work and personal life blurs the media has repeatedly made reference to a right to snoop, with headlines such as “Bosses can snoop on workers’ private emails and messages” (The Telegraph), “Britain has a new human right … freedom to spy on employees’ emails” (The Daily Mail) and […]

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Commenting on social media: reputational risks

The use of social media in a workplace setting has gained increasing prominence alongside the rise of the internet-enabled office. Social media pervades the working day, and, whilst a number of employers have sought to limit its use during working hours, its mobile nature, accessible via smartphone or tablet, means that seeking to do so […]

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The new emplaw online

The UK’s first specialist employment law website – emplaw online – has been re-launched in January 2015 to provide authoritative, independent and up-to-date information to lawyers, advisors, HR professionals and anyone keen to stay on top of employment law. Constantia Associates, of which Ian Perry and I are the major shareholders, bought the website after […]

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Misuse of social media by employees

Most of us are familiar with reports of employees being disciplined for posting inappropriate material on social media platforms, or employers over-reacting and dismissing an employee when a warning or, even, some training, might have been more productive. There seems to be a greater awareness of the risk even if there is not any greater […]

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