The beginning of 2023 is a good chance to take stock of everything your business has achieved in 2022 and it’s fair to say 2022 brought many of its own challenges, starting the year in a lockdown and ending the year in a cost-of-living crisis and increased trade union activity. It does appear that there will be more storms ahead for the Nation but what Employment Law changes and HR themes do we expect to see in 2023?
A second spike in the great resignation
Whilst many employers may have found the number of resignations to have reduced at the end of 2022, it is expected that the “great resignation” may have a second wind. According to 2022 women in the workplace report, women are more likely to change jobs faster and more frequently, with many contributing factors to this, including lack of opportunity and recognition. HR leaders can consider how this may impact their HR Strategy and what you can do to ensure your internal culture supports your workers continuous ongoing development to encourage retention. Remember as part of this, progression isn’t always about promotions. Consider if you want to focus your 2023 HR strategy on creating a formal succession pathway with on-the-job training, building relationships with other teams, networking opportunities, and formal learning.
When you consider the effect that the pandemic had on businesses and the expedited change that was required as a result of this, it’s not surprising that many employees are now reportedly resistant to change. A Gartner’s 2016 Workforce Change Survey reported that “74% of employees were willing to change work behaviours to support organisational changes,” but that number dropped to 38% in 2022. Minimising “change fatigue” is important because, if not dealt with, it can result in stress, lower productivity, and burnout. Traditional Change models are not fit for purpose for todays or future needs, as they are linear and have an end point. People and organisations are continuously evolving and therefore HR leaders can consider how to introduce FHOCAL™ a new model for change management into their business. This is designed to bring together the best ideas, theories, research and tools from the field of positive psychology into six key principles to help you create a change-positive culture. For more information on this, join our HR Community session on Thursday 19 January 2023, 10:30 am – 11:30 am.
Changes in flexible working
The Employment Relations (Flexible Working) Bill is a Private Members Bill with the objective of making the right to request flexible working a day one right (as opposed to the current position of 6 months). The employer decision period would also be reduced from three months to two months, and the requirement for employees to explain the impact on the organisation if they switched to flexible working would be removed. It will be noted that whilst the above has received Government backing, it is still some time before this becomes part of UK Employment Law.
Changes in the national living wage and national minimum wage (NLW/NMW)
With the new rates announced in the Autumn Budget, which will come into force on the 1st April 2023, employers can expect up to £1 per hour increases in NLW/NMW and will be likely to already be considering how best to plan for these. At such a sharp increase, employers must also consider how these changes are likely to impact salaried members of staff, to ensure that when taking into account the new raises, those on a fixed salary are not consequently dropping below the minimum wage for their age. Additionally, employers may wish to consider how they can engage members of staff where they are now unable to offer a pay rise above the NMW increases. Employers can consider other options for engagement, such as team building exercises, employee wellbeing surveys and employee assistance programmes to name a few.
Overall, it will be interesting to see how 2023 unfolds and what is in store for us. If you are about to embark on developing your 2023 HR strategy and would like some information on how the People Projects team could support you, please do not hesitate to get in touch.