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Navigating UK payroll during industrial action and strikes

22nd Feb 2023
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Payroll legislation in the United Kingdom is complex. 

The UK has dozens of payroll-related laws to navigate when running a business. 

Here’s how you can make the most of Keypay’s payroll software to get support with compliance when it comes to unpaid leave, and how you can organise your payruns if you are affected by workers going on strike. 

How unpaid leave works 

Unpaid leave is when an employee takes time off work, retains their job but does not receive a salary. 

Apart from specific exceptions, such as jury service, furlough and child care, entitlement to unpaid leave varies and is at the discretion of the employer which can make manually keeping track of this tricky and laborious.

If you run payroll for your clients, who may have different unpaid leave policies, make use of payroll software such as KeyPay so you can save time and easily track and update their payslips accordingly, and keep them up to date on how much leave their employees have left all in one platform. 

Do strikes count as unpaid leave?

Here in the UK, hundreds of thousands of workers including teachers, civil servants and rail workers - have been on strike, or are about to.

According to ACAS, employers will usually pay if someone is on annual leave during a strike. 

If an employee is striking and has not booked paid leave off during the strike period, employers do not need to pay anyone who is on strike. 

How do strikes affect payroll? 

You will need to keep track of a few things including whether or not your employee is taking time off to go on strike. And the number of unpaid leave days they take to strike.

If they take unpaid leave, the number of days they take off to strike can affect their pay. 

According to ACAS, employees who go on strike will not usually get their pay or other contractual benefits like pension contributions. Although in some circumstances, they might get money from their union. This is referred to as strike pay.

You can use KeyPay to save admin time if you know the dates employees will be off by setting up a specific leave category that is tracked, but not paid. If you have the dates in advance you can also pre approve this so it will automatically reduce the pay for those periods.

Experience less payroll stress during strike dates with KeyPay

Save admin time and avoid complicating your payroll admin process if you’re affected by strike dates. 

Organise payments, configure pay run schedules and get visibility over who is off when across your clients businesses easily using KeyPay. 

With KeyPay, you’ll be confident that your software can handle complex payroll and HR scenarios with the Employment Hero integration throughout the year, not just during the strike dates. 

Get more time back doing the things you should be prioritising and spend less time on admin.

 

Disclaimer: The information in this article is current as at 22 Feburary 2023, and has been prepared by KEYPAY LTD (company number 11417566) and its related bodies corporate (KeyPay). The views expressed in this article are general information only, are provided in good faith to assist employers and their employees, and should not be relied on as professional advice. The Information is based on data supplied by third parties. While such data is believed to be accurate, it has not been independently verified and no warranties are given that it is complete, accurate, up to date or fit for the purpose for which it is required. KeyPay does not accept responsibility for any inaccuracy in such data and is not liable for any loss or damages arising either directly or indirectly as a result of reliance on, use of or inability to use any information provided in this article. You should undertake your own research and to seek professional advice before making any decisions or relying on the information in this article.

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