The Confederation of British Industry wants the Government to set a single staging date for all recruitment agencies to comply with automatic enrolment due to concerns that small firms could gain a competitive advantage from a later staging date.
Under the DWP’s auto-enrolment staging plans, the UK’s biggest employers will begin auto-enrolling their staff into a pension scheme from October. Smaller employers will have to comply between October 2012 and February 2018.
Speaking at TheCityUK’s pension conference in London last week, CBI head of labour market policy Jim Bligh said because recruitment agencies compete solely on labour cost, smaller companies will gain a competitive advantage over bigger companies because big firms will have to pay pension contributions earlier than small companies.
Bligh said: “Recruitment agencies and employment businesses are unique in that they compete with each other solely on the basis of labour cost.
“It is unfair that large employment businesses come into auto-enrolment this year or next year whereas the small ones, with whom they are competing very directly all over the country, will come in over a longer period of time.
“It would seem sensible for that sector, and that sector alone, to have a single auto-enrolment date. I do not care when it is as long as they all come in at the same time.”