HR guidance documents

Here you will find guidance documents surrounding topical HR issues. We will develop new content regularly throughout the year so check back often for more information. Alternatively, sign up to our HR Practitioners Forum mailing list to be among the first to know when new content is added.

Equal Pay Auditing Guide

Equal pay auditing is a subject that requires some background knowledge before you can consider whether it is an option for you. Our Equal Pay Auditing Guide for HR professionals will help you determine whether an equal pay audit is right for your organisation, what steps to take and where to get further information.

Safeguarding in employment

Safeguarding issues can be hard to handle. Simply understanding where they fit in the broader context of employment law can be difficult enough. Our new guide to handling safeguarding issues takes you through this area to help you to understand what is and what isn't safeguarding, and the policy and process impact of that distinction.

*Updated* Modern slavery

Modern slavery is a crime and a violation of fundamental human rights. The International Labour Organisation estimates that there are 45.8 million victims of modern slavery worldwide, with potentially 13,000 victims living in the UK. The Modern Slavery Act 2015 introduced the requirement for any organisation selling goods and services, with a turnover of £36 million or more, to produce an annual statement confirming the steps it has taken to eradicate slavery and human trafficking within its business and supply chains. Smaller responsible organisations and suppliers are also choosing to prepare their own modern slavery statement. As responsible co-operative buisnesses and employers, it is important to take all practical steps to prevent and detect modern slavery. Co-operatives UK has developed a modern slavery toolkit, poster and training video to help you to meet your obligations and show to members, customers and the public how your organisation is tackling modern slavery. 

Gender pay gap reporting

The Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017 came into force on 6 April this year. The Regulations oblige all organisations employing 250 or more employees to publish certain information relating to their gender pay gap on an annual basis. The first reports are due to be published by 4 April 2018, with many organisations wishing to publish earlier than this. Our updated gender pay gap reporting guide explains what organisations need to do in order to meet their obligations, and makes some suggestions for steps they could take to improve their overall gender pay gap. 

The apprenticeship levy

With the advent of the Apprenticeship Levy fast approaching, you'll need to know what you have to do before the first payment is due on 6 April 2017. Our updated Apprenticeshp Levy guidance explains who needs to pay the levy, how you should calculate it and how you can access your funds to pay for apprenticeship training and assessment.

Managing under-performance in co-operatives

Performance management can be a difficult task in any organisation, but it can feel particularly daunting for colleagues in flat structured worker co-operatives who may not feel that they have the authority to manage or discipline a peer. Add to that the problem that issues with performance can stem from a number of reasons, sometimes because the colleague in question needs more guidance or support, sometimes because even with support they don't have the capability to complete the role to the required level, and sometimes simply because they don't want to work at the level expected, and you end up with a situation that it might feel easier to ignore than to tackle. Letting things lie, though, will inevitably lead to bigger problems in future and the easiest and best way to manage under performance is to tackle it early and head on. Our new managing under-performance in co-operatives guide explains the basic performance management process, suggests some tools to help you, and gives some hints and tips on how to deal with these difficult issues if you work in a flat-structured worker co-op.

The General Data Protection Regulation

The EU has been working to update data protection legislation for some years now. The General Data Protection Regulation was finally published in April 2016 and is due to come into force on 25 April 2018. The changes will impact any organisation gathering or processing personal data and introduce some potentially significanly more onerous requirements. Our guide sets out the main aspects of the new regulations.

Redundancy guide

Being made redundant can be hard. Our practical guide gives advice and guidance for individuals who are being made redundant, including useful contact details for where they can go for further support. 

Holiday pay

In British Gas v Lock the EAT have held that commission should be included in holiday pay. Expect the debate to go on for some time as further appeals work their way through the system. Legal firm Mills & Reeve have developed this paper explaining the current position on calculating statutory holiday pay.

What would 'Brexit' mean for employment law?

As the referendum on whether the UK should stay in or leave the EU approaches, our legal partners Mills & Reeve LLP have kindly allowed us to share this analysis of the potential impacts on employment law of a vote to leave. Not intended to influence anyone's position on their vote, we share this so that HR practitioners can formulate their thoughts on what they might need to consider if the leave campaign prevails on 23rd June. 


The Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (“TUPE”) is relevant to anyone who is:

  • buying / selling a business or taking over / relinquishing a service
  • developing or converting a newly acquired business from one use to another
  • an employee whose employer has or is about to change

Employment Barrister Jack Mitchell has produced this guidance document for us explaining how these issues may be relevant to your co-operative and what you should do if they are. 

Social media and work

Employees' use of social media is increasingly important to employers as the boundaries between work and home life become less and less distinct. Together with the law firm Mills & Reeve we have developed the attached policy template to help you to address this tricky topic. 

Equality and diversity

Equality should be an important consideration for all employers, and as one of the ICA values it is even more pertinent to co-operatives. Law firm Mills & Reeve have kindly allowed us to share the attached briefing paper on equality, diversity and discrimination within employment. 

Are your employees safe to drive?

A tragic bin lorry crash in Glasgow in December 2014 threw light on a number of legal issues for employers. With the legal firm Mills and Reeve, we have developed a briefing and checklist to ensure you know what to do to be sure your employees are safe to drive.