Also in the news this week - 8 July 2016

8 July 2016

Firms flouting National Living Wage rules

An investigation by Channel 4's Dispatches has found that some UK employers are ignoring their legal obligation to pay the National Living Wage (NLW). Are You Owed a Pay Rise? looked at the price some low-paid workers are paying as a result of the introduction of the NLW, for example, by losing overtime, having perks taken away or even being made redundant because they are aged over 25. The worst employers are ignoring NLW rules altogether. Employees aged 25 or over who are not in the first year of an apprenticeship are entitled to at least £7.20 per hour. The government is warning employers that NLW rules will be enforced as strongly as the National Minimum Wage.

Almost half of managers can’t handle a crisis

According to Bouncing Back: Leadership lessons in resilience, a report published by the Chartered Management Institute, only 55% of business managers believe they are able to handle crises at work professionally, despite 94% having faced crises during their career, with 78% blaming a lack of support from senior management and 68% citing "culture failure" as responsible. The most common workplace crises were significant conflict with a colleague (54%), unfair treatment (49%) and project failure (36%), with 81% of managers admitting that it had damaged their confidence and 63% saying their capacity to do their job was impaired.

The Insolvency Service issues company accounts warning

Following recent seven-year disqualifications, the Insolvency Service is reminding company directors of their legal obligation to maintain accurate accounts. A West Midlands company director was recently found guilty of manipulating the company’s computerised records system by increasing debtors by more than £100,000, which was later discovered when the company was sold. Susan MacLeod of the Insolvency Service said: "Directors have a duty to ensure that their companies maintain proper accounting records. The Insolvency Service will take action against directors who do not take their obligations seriously and abuse their position of trust."

BoE issues guidance on new polymer £5 notes

The Bank of England has published guidance to help retailers verify the new £5 polymer bank note, which will enter into circulation on 13 September 2016. Featuring Sir Winston Churchill on the reverse side, the new £5 note will be 15% smaller than the current version, and printed on polymer, a thin, flexible plastic material which is more durable. The new notes will feature a range of advanced security features to make them more difficult to counterfeit. Withdrawal of the paper £5 from circulation is expected by May 2017. The new polymer £10 note (featuring novelist Jane Austen) will be issued in summer 2017, and the new £20 note (featuring landscape painter JMW Turner) will be issued by 2020, says the Bank of England.