When you’re in a ‘people business’ such as recruitment, having good ethical policies is always important. It’s something that we strongly believe in at Stafforce and is a core value that underpins everything we do. When employers are faced with risks such as illegal working, then we believe it is vitally important to ensure ethical practices are in place to benefit both our candidates and our clients.
Why does it matter?
It matters because we want to prevent the exploitation and abuse of vulnerable workers.
And there are 7 points to highlight our ethical stance and reputation…
- Back in 2004 we were one of the first agencies to be audited and approved by the TLWG (Temporary Labour Working Group) for ethical and legally compliant practices, so our clients could be safe in the knowledge that the workers were not working in the UK illegally.
- We took an ethical stance in 2005; not to get involved in the salary sacrifice Mobile Worker Scheme, which saw other labour providers reducing a worker’s gross pay below the minimum wage and them being charged a hugely unreasonable “administration fee”. We did lose business, however it meant that none of our clients’ reputations were tarnished by paying workers an unfair salary.
- We were then asked to join a steering group with the Gangmasters Licensing Authority, Association of Labour Providers and other organisations to develop a model Service Level Agreement that all agencies should follow. This ensured that agencies adhere to ethical codes of practice and meant that our clients knew they were receiving the best possible service.
- In 2006 we were awarded our Gangmaster’s Licence and featured on the BBC’s Panorama programme after being filmed undercover in our Grimsby operation as the only agency to identify a fraudulent document that a worker was attempting to register with. This demonstrated that our team are focused on preventing illegal working, in the best interests of our clients.
- In 2009 we joined SEDEX, a not-for-profit membership organisation dedicated to driving improvements in ethical business practices in global supply chains. This further demonstrated to our clients that we are committed to ethical practices for our workers, no matter what country we are working in.
- In 2010, we began developing our AWR Strategy with the REC (Recruitment and Employment Confederation) and a steering group of clients to prepare for legislative definition and subsequent change, so our clients had no need to worry about any of the workers we supply.
- In 2012 we developed our own in-house CRM system, which is centred on ethical and compliant monitoring and administration of the Agency Workers Legislation. As far as we know, this is the first of its type in the industry and involved an investment of over £100k. This means that we have future-proofed our business to ensure that now and in years to come we can provide workers that meet the Agency Workers Regulations.
Throughout our business, all decisions are made in the best interests of our clients and in the past we have walked away from business which could have compromised our integrity. Going forward, we are clearly focused on delivering not only the highest quality of service to our clients, but also a service which truly demonstrates that the only way is ethics.