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Essex HR professionals given opportunity to discuss latest changes to employment legislation

HR professionals in Essex will have the opportunity to discuss employment legislation, review the latest changes and look at recent case law during two seminars organised by law firm Birkett Long LLP and recruitment consultants Pure Resourcing Solutions.

Some of the most recent employment law updates, including the abolished retirement age and the increased period before workers are protected from unfair dismissal, have resulted in fundamental changes to HR practices and business recruitment plans.

To help ensure employers in the county remain up-to-date, Birkett Long and Pure Resourcing Solutions have joined forces to host two interactive breakfast sessions in Brentwood on Thursday 14 June and Thursday 21 June.

Sarah McKee-Harris, a consultant within Pure Resourcing Solutions' dedicated HR recruitment team, explained that the events had been designed to encourage discussion and build contacts well as the opportunity to ask legal experts about changes in legislation.

Sarah said:

"To fully understand changes in employment legislation it's useful to be able to discuss the latest cases and hot topics with both legal experts and fellow professionals. In smaller organisations those in HR are likely to work alone rather than as part of a large team. This means they often don't have the opportunity to discuss recent changes with their colleagues. We hope these events will provide both useful discussions on the day and enable those who attend to build relationships with fellow HR professionals in the county so they can discuss further changes and updates in the future."

Tim Ogle, employment law specialist at Birkett Long, believes the changes to the unfair dismissal continuous service qualifying period, and the abolition of the default retirement age are likely to be hot topics at the events.

He said:

"The increase in the qualifying period to bring a claim of unfair dismissal from one to two years was designed to encourage businesses to be more confident in recruiting. It potentially provides employers with more flexibility by effectively allowing an extra long probation period. However, it's important to fully understand the law as employees are still able to bring other employment claims, such as unlawful discrimination, with no continuous service at all. It's also an ongoing subject of debate as to whether the change will have the desired effect on recruitment."

Tim added:

"Another key topic is likely to be retirement. An employer now has to be able to objectively justify retiring an employee at the age of 65, or any other age, but we are only just seeing the first case law precedents filter through on what might amount to justification. We are all still waiting to see what longer term impact this might have on businesses in terms of an aging workforce and the ability for those businesses to expand through the recruitment of up-and-coming talent."

The breakfast events will be interactive. Attendees will have the chance to ask questions and shape discussions as to what is most relevant to their business. It is expected that other subjects likely to be discussed include TUPE and discrimination under the Equality Act 2010 event.

The seminars will take place at FRP Advisory on Warley Hill Business Park in Brentwood between 8.30 and 10.30am. The 14 June is fully booked but a limited number of spaces are still available for 21 June. For more information contact Sarah McKee-Harris at Pure Resourcing Solutions on 01245 708808 or email sarah.mh@prs.uk.com