This update summarises the key developments for HR managers to look out for in 2019.
Increase in National Minimum Wage rates
Both the National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage rates will increase on 1 April 2019, when the following new hourly rates will apply:
- Workers aged 25 and over: £8.21
- Workers aged 21-24: £7.70
- Workers aged 18-20: £6.15
- Workers aged 16-17: £4.35
- Apprentices: £3.90
From April 2019, the minimum contributions for auto-enrolment pension schemes will increase for both employers and employees, when they will have to contribute a minimum of 3% and 5% (increased from 2% and 3%) respectively.
Changes to the way payslips are issued will apply from 6 April 2019. All workers will have the right to an itemised pay statement and to enforce that right in an employment tribunal. In addition, employees who work varied hours and whose pay changes accordingly must have itemised payslips, showing either:
- the total number of hours worked, or
- itemised figures for the different types of work done and/or the different rates of pay.
Gender pay gap reporting
Organisations with 250 or more employees must publish their gender pay gap figures again on 4 April 2019, and 30 March 2019 for public sector employers. Going forwards, pay gap figures will be more heavily scrutinised and it is likely that organisations will be expected to provide narratives with information about their diversity objectives and targets.
Executive pay reporting
New legislation will come into force in 2019 that introduces new obligations for certain companies from 2020. Large quoted companies will be required to publish executive pay ratios and large companies (with at least 250 employees) must publish details about their corporate governance arrangements.
Immigration - EU nationals
EU nationals currently living in the UK will be able to apply for settled status in 2019, allowing them to remain indefinitely in the UK following the end of the Brexit transition period in 2021.
Extension of Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR)
The extension of the SM&CR will apply to FCA solo-regulated firms from 9 December 2019.