Automated Agency Worker Regulations (AWR) Solutions

Primo Umbrella makes it easier for you to comply with all the latest employment legislation, some of which is complex and involves extra administrative work for employers. For example, since 2011, contractors, freelancers and temporary workers are protected by the Agency Worker Regulations (AWR). Agency workers are entitled to certain rights from the first day of a new assignment plus other benefits after completing a 12-week qualifying period. The aim is to ensure that agency workers are fairly treated and receive the same pay, conditions and rights as your own employees. But keeping track of agency workers can be a headache which is why Primo Umbrella is such a useful tool to have.

What are the rights of a UK agency worker?

From the first day of an assignment, the end client is responsible for making sure that agency workers have access to facilities such as parking, childcare and a canteen. Agency workers are also entitled to information about any relevant permanent vacancies.

After a 12-week qualifying period any agency worker in the UK is entitled to the same basic pay and employment conditions as they would receive if they had been hired by the end client to do the same job. This includes:

  • Equal pay – holiday pay, commission and bonuses etc.
  • Equal working time – rest breaks, rest periods, night work and annual leave

Primo Umbrella helps you comply

Tracking the 12-week qualifying period for agency workers causes the most administrative headaches because the 12-week period does not have to be continuous. A break in a 12 week period causes most software to either reset or continue without taking into account the gap in work.

In addition, the legislation expects the end client to take the reason for the break into account and the 12-week qualification period must be tracked separately for each placement. That’s a lot of extra work for smaller businesses who often don’t have the administrative back up found in larger organisations.

Primo Umbrella makes it easy to track the 12-week qualifying period. Recording the reason for a break in employment is straightforward and quick to do and the software will then track the period on your behalf.

As soon as the 12 weeks are complete, the client specific holidays and pay rates are automatically applied. Primo Umbrella maintains individual diaries for each contractor and automated reports are produced to help you set up new pay rates if necessary.

The 12-week qualifying period pauses, resets or continues as follows:

Where the break is less than 6 weeks Pauses
Where there is a break of 6 weeks or more Resets
Sickness absence Pauses
Annual leave Pauses
Workplace shut downs (e.g. factory closure, school holidays) Pauses
Jury service Pauses
Industrial action Pauses
Pregnancy and maternity related absence Maternity, paternity or adoption leave Continues


Get in touch

Try Primo Payroll for yourself or contact our friendly support team today to learn more about how our automated AWR software can help you.