The government has announced up to £37m of funding to prevent work place disputes unnecessarily going to employment tribunals. The measures are part of a package designed to simplify the dispute resolution system.
The extra funding will allow Acas to boost its advice services to make sure it is never too late to choose an informal resolution instead of a tribunal hearing.
Minister for Employment Relations, Pat McFadden, said:
‘The link between successful employment relations and productivity is clear. Early action can often prevent the need for tribunals, bringing enormous benefits to business and employees.
This new system will strike a balance between ensuring workers can protect their rights through employment tribunals while helping them to resolve disputes as early as possible.’
The changes are in addition to changes introduced by the Employment Bill, which is currently before Parliament. The Bill proposes removing fixed periods for conciliation after a claim is made to the tribunal, enabling Acas to get involved at any time until the tribunal reaches its verdict. The Bill is designed to deliver less formal processes to cut red tape and deliver quicker decisions on more straightforward claims. Initial estimates suggest that this approach could save businesses more than £175m a year.