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How the Equality Act, Employment Act and Health and Safety at Work Act affect Primark

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 12 (2852 words)
Categories: Employment, Equality, Health, Safety, Work
Downloads: 3
Views: 9

The equality act 2010 sets out the requirements for keeping people safe in the working environment. This includes keeping an accident book and recording all visitors entering the business. This act protects people from discrimination over their race , gender , age , sexual orientation , civil partnership and if they are pregnant .

Designing the job advert and deciding where to advertise the vacancy .

In the job advert Primark cannot advertise that they require a male sales assistant as they would be strong enough to carry boxes of clothing from the stock room .

In the job advert they cannot advertise asking for a female because they may know more about fashion. In the job advert Primark cannot state they would like an employee from the ages of 18 to 30 because Primark need the shelves to be stacked and the stock to be moved at a fast rate . In the job advert Primark cannot state different rates of pay for different genders on the job advert . Primark would receive fines and get a bad reputation as they would have broken the equality act 2010 , which would lead to Primark being unable to attract quality staff .

If Primark was unable to attract staff , the clothes would not be replenished and there would be no stock for the customers to buy . To avoid facing these implications HR should ensure that the job advert complies with all the equality act 2010. As well as not having discriminatory information , the job advert needs to be placed in a location where every race , sex , age and religion can see it . This means it would be breaking the equality act 2010 if Primark only displayed the advert in a catholic Church as this implies that Primark only wants catholic employees . This would stop candidates of other religions applying for this particular job as well as not applying at Primark for any job . This would give out bad reputation for Primark .

Job description and Person Specification

In the job description Primark cannot state different pay rates for different genders . For example Primark cannot state that the pay for males is double the female pay rate . In the job description / person specification a candidates of a certain age cannot be excluded because Primark believes they may not stack shelves as quickly or be able to stand up on the shop floor for the whole day . For example if Primark said they were looking for an retail sales assistant from 18-24 years old , they would be breaking the equality act . On the person specification a certain religion cannot be excluded for example if Primark said they was looking for a catholic employee .

Pregnant candidates cannot be excluded on the person specification and job description on the basis that they may not be able to carry out boxes of stock from the stock room. On the person specification Primark cannot state that they want a female retail sales assistant as they are female and would understand fashion better than man . If Primark did discriminate in the job description or person specification they would be breaking the equality act 2010 . If Primark did have a discriminatory job description /person specification they would receive fines as well as a poor reputation which means Primark would be unable to attract quality staff which would lead to a decrease in the number of customers coming to Primark and purchasing clothing . This means Primark would be labelled as unethical and the staff would become demotivated which will lower their productivity and efficiency . https://getmyessay.com/essay-on-identify-legislation-relates-recording-storage-sharing-information-health-social-care/

Shortlisting Candidates

Primark cannot choose to not shortlist a candidate because they stated in the application form they are a certain age that Primark do not believe is suitable for the role of retail sales assistant as they may not be able to stand up all day. Primark cannot discriminate against a candidate if they are of a certain religion , for example in their cv the candidate may have stated they are did work experience at their local mosque or said they cannot work on Fridays or Sundays . Primark cannot discriminate against a particular candidate over their gender , on their letter of application they may have stated they are female . If Primark does not shortlist a candidate over their race , age , gender or religion , they are breaking the equality act 2010 . HR needs to ensure that they way the candidates are shortlisted complies with the equality act 2010. Therefore they can face fines as well as poor reputation which will put off future candidates and demotivate current employees. Primark can also use the equality commissions website for further help and advice .

Interviewing Candidates

Primark may not ask questions regarding age as the role of retail sales assistant does not require the candidate to be over 18 to sell alcohol . Primark may not ask irrelevant personal questions about the disability and health of a candidate for example “What’s wrong/what happened?” . Primark can ask relevant questions to make sure the candidate is able to get to the interview room ,or if they want to monitor the diversity of applicants for the retail sales assistant . Wheelchair users cannot be excluded for the interview if they have appropriate skills and experience . Primark will need to ensure access for the candidates or move the interviews to the ground floor . . If a candidate is deaf they cannot be excluded , a sign language interpreter needs to be brought in .

Primark cannot ask questions such if the candidate is planning on having kids in the future . Primark cannot ask questions that only apply to one gender or religion for example “do you go to church on Sundays ?” . Asking discriminatory questions breaks the equality act 2010. HR needs to ensure that all questions are non-discriminatory and comply with the equality act 2010 . If Primark breaks the equality act 2010 , they will face fines , get a bad reputation , possible put off future candidates and demotivate current employees. To avoid facing these implications Primark needs to ensure that all candidates are asked the same questions and if there is more than one interviewer bias does not take place and therefore the best candidate is selected on their performance and experience rather than gender , race , age , religion and disability . Notes will taken by the interviewers to act as evidence if an accusation is made .

Offering the job to the successful candidate

Primark cannot ask questions about the candidates disability and health on the application form or in the interview . Primark cannot reject a candidate purely on the fact that they are disabled . If Primark did discriminate against a candidate over their race , sex , religion or age they would be breaking the equality act 2010 .Primark needs to make sure the successful candidate is aware they have the job and should be called . Once the job has been offered Primark can ask unlimited questions about the candidates disability as well as health . Primark can make a judgment whether the candidate if suitable for the role of retail sales assistant based on this .

Drawing up the contract of employment and arranging induction training

When drawing up the contract of employment Primark cannot give different pay rates for different employees or refuse candidates paternity /maternity leave . All the special needs of candidates need to be met with no discrimination . An employee cannot be refused induction training for a factor such as they are disabled as this would be breaking the equality act 2010 . In the induction training special measures should be taken for example a lower till for a disabled retail sales assistant . If Primark discriminated against a disabled employee , Primark would be labelled as unethical and the employees would become demotivated .

Conclusion

If Primark does not comply with the equality act 2010 , they could be prosecuted and face fines which would lead to a raise in costs and a fall in profits . Primark would get a bad reputation which would stop customers shopping at Primark and discourage candidates from applying for roles leaving Primark with a lack of staff . If there was lack of staff the stock would not be getting replenished and customers would have to wait longer at tills and for service . Poor customer service would stop customers returning and lead to a drop in sales and profit . This is why I believe the bad reputation will be the biggest implication for Primark , they can avoid this my complying with the equality act 2010.

The health and safety at work act 1974

This act sets out the general duties which employers have towards employees , members of the public and employees have towards themselves and others. The act requires the employer to provide safe access to the premises , maintain safe machinery /equipment , provide safe facilities including adequate toilets / heating / lighting / ventilation , provide safe training , have an accident book . The employees have to take reasonable care of themselves and others in the workplace , use safety devices and to cooperate with employers on all safety matters including training

Risks of the interview

A hazard that could possibly occur is that an emergency incident occurs such as the fire alarm goes off because of the flammable clothing off or a bomb threat and everyone needs to be evacuated . Primark needs to ensure that all staff are trained to sign in all candidates into the visitor book so they can be accounted for . If a particular candidate is chosen but another job opens up and Primark believes that a unsuccessful candidate is suitable they are able to candidate them . HR needs to make sure emergency evacuation sigs are put onto all floors of Primark and in particular rooms such as the stock room .This means in the case of an emergency all visitors know what to do and where to exit from . All candidates need to be aware of these . HR needs to ensure that all employees are aware of anyone with a disability . In the case of an evacuation they need to know how to evacuate a deaf or disabled candidate . The Primark staff needs to know what the alarm sounds like and where to assemble.

In the stock room there is a risk of the boxes of clothing falling onto the candidates during the tour . They could also trip over discarded packaging from boxes/stock which have not been tidied away . HR will need to ensure all Primark employees are trained in health and safety procedures such as safe handling and storage of boxes of stock in the stock room, so that the candidates or other employees can access the area safely. The candidates could trip over the wires on the floor so they should be covered .

In the delivery area , the forklifts and other vehicles pose as a threat. HR will need to ensure that the loading / delivery bay has clearly marked walkways for pedestrians, and employees using forklifts are trained so they know to avoid these areas. HR will also have to issue safety equipment such as high vis jackets . The forklifts should have flashing lights . HR need to ensure that warning / health and safety signs are clearly visible .

HR will need to ensure they are up to date in any changes to the law and all employees are made aware of these / trained . HR will need to understand the implications of not following the law.

Primark needs to ensure any accidents are recorded in the accident book of customer services so that a record is kept . This shows Primark cares and it is legal evidence . All visitors need to a visitor badge so staff in Primark and in the front of the shop everyone is aware who they are.

Induction training

In the induction training the employees should be shown how to lift and move boxes of clothing /accessories without hurting themselves. They should learn all the fire and emergency procedures. The employees need to learn how to use trolleys and racks to move stock from the stock room to womenswear safely without harming themselves or others . For example putting the trolley on the brake so it doesn’t roll away. The employees need to learn how to operate the bailer and how to dispose of packaging safely . They should be trained in avoiding fire hazards such as not putting boxes of clothing in front of the fire escape . They should be aware of how to report health and safety concerns.

Conclusion

The implications of not complying with the health and safety act 1974 for Primark are that they will be prosecuted by the government . Primark will receive Financial penalties/ fines and a poor reputation leading to an inability to attract quality staff or a fall in demand as customers view Primark as being unethical/demotivated staff lowering productivity and quality. Shareholders may sell their shares and potential candidates may be scared off . The directors may be imprisoned . Poor publicity is the implication that will have the biggest impact on Primark as it affects the shareholders as well as future candidates .

To avoid facing these implications Primark should comply with all the health and safety act 1974 . They can do this by training staff , reviewing their recruitment polices to ensure compliance . They should use the equality commissions website for further help and advice .

Employment rights act 1996

This outlines an employees rights at work , detailing what they can expect from their employer and defining the way they should be treated. A contract of employment should be produced and contain the following : name of employee and employer , the date which employment began , place of work and location , job title and brief description , rate of pay , hours of work , holiday entitlement , paternity/maternity leave , sick pay , pension arrangements .

Designing the job advert and advertising the vacancy , Job description and person specification

The Job advert and job description should include the hours and days of work especially as as Sunday working is required for retail sales assistants stores will trade between 11 and 4 Pm on Sundays . Primark cannot ask the cannot the candidate to start working Sunday’s if it was not stated before , they may not be able to work due to religious beliefs . For example Muslims holy day is Friday and Christian’s religious day is Sundays .

In the person specification , job advert and in the selection Primark cannot state that they only want candidates that are not part of a trade union . This would be breaking the employment’s right act 1996. By law they must give equal rights to those are members of Usdaw, the union of shop, distributive and allied workers

Drawing up the contract of employment and arranging induction training .

Primark must provide the contract of employment within 2 months of starting the job . In the induction training all staff must be provided with staff handbooks which cover the grievance and disciplinary procedures at Primark.

Conclusion

If Primark does not comply with the employment rights act 1996 , they will lose highly qualified new employers . Primark’s reputation will suffer which means a lack of applicants , this means the customers will have to wait longer for service which will affect sales and profits . Primark will be labelled as unethical which will make the employees demotivated and will decrease their productivity . This is why I believe a bad reputation is the biggest implication for Primark . If Primark complies with the employment rights act 1996 , they will not have to deal with any of these implications .

Conclusion

The implications of not complying with the equality act 2010 , employment rights act 1996 and the health and safety act 1974 are fines which will increase costs but will not have that large of an overall impact . If Primark does not comply with these laws they will be labelled as unethical which means a poor reputation . A poor reputation means customers will go to competitors meaning a decrease in sales and profit . Less applicants will be applying leading to a shortage in staff . The current staff will become demotivated and there will be a decrease in productivity . Demotivated employees will give out bad customer service and may not take their job as seriously , this means they would need to be retrained which is expensive and uses up a lot of resources. This is why I believe a bad reputation is the biggest implication for Primark .

Cite this essay

How the Equality Act, Employment Act and Health and Safety at Work Act affect Primark. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/equality-act-employment-act-health-safety-work-act-affect-primark-new-essay

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