The UK needs an alternative to redundancy, according to the Trades Union Congress.
The UK needs an alternative to redundancy, according to the Trades Union Congress (TUC).
Some 632,000 employees were made redundant in the past 12 months, an increase of 7.5 per cent on the previous year, according to TUC figures.
The trade union body fears that many of those being made redundant are not finding their way back into the labour market, with the number of job seekers currently outnumbering vacancies by more than five to one.
Thursday’s ‘Redundancy Isn't Working’ debate hosted by the TUC considered why UK businesses continue to rely upon redundancy policies which the organisation calls ‘dated’.
The TUC says that such policies not only inflict ‘massive social costs on employees and the economy’, but also waste skills and training investment.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber says, 'Too many businesses adopt a knee-jerk reaction to cost management. Making redundancies is not the only option, nor is it the most efficient in the longer-term.
'We need to concentrate on finding alternatives that could avoid the huge waste of people and skills, and help businesses better respond to the upturn when it comes.’
These could include negotiating to share out the existing work more fairly and using creative solutions like sharing and seconding staff, Barber adds.
'There will still be times when redundancy is inevitable, but it should be the final option, not the first. All too often annual profits are aggressively managed simply to avoid taxation, rather than looking for smarter ways to reinvest into the workforce that created them.'
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