Revamping labour market enforcement in the UK

Willmott B, Suff R, Brown D, Bajorek Z, Hogan C |   | CIPD | Oct 2020

cover image

This report is the culmination of research carried out by IES on behalf of the CIPD, investigating the state of labour market enforcement in the UK and how it can be improved. The three questions it aimed to address are:

1. Current state: What is the UK’s enforcement regime and is it fit for purpose?

2. Alternative states: What can we learn from how other countries implement and enforce employment rights?

3. Future state: How can the UK best develop and implement the optimal enforcement approach?

The need to improve labour market enforcement was highlighted by the Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices, which emphasised the importance of enhanced enforcement in creating fair and decent work for all. This was followed by the creation of the Director of Labour Market Enforcement role and office in 2017 and the consultation in autumn 2019 on the creation of a single enforcement body (SEB) in the UK.

In advance of the government response, this paper is designed to inform the public policy debate and thinking about how to improve the effectiveness of labour market enforcement to protect people’s employment rights and enhance their job quality.