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  • FIRST POST
    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 15th Mar 17, 8:43 PM
    • 33Posts
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    randomfandom
    Agency pay rise and possible back pay...but why?
    • #1
    • 15th Mar 17, 8:43 PM
    Agency pay rise and possible back pay...but why? 15th Mar 17 at 8:43 PM
    I had a phone call from my agency informing me of a pay rise. 'Great', I said, and didn't think too much of it until I got home and read and email which informed me of the rise and stated it would be effective immediately.

    It went on to say they were 'conducting a review of all payments that had been made and will be calculating any backdated payment owed. Once this has been calculated we will contact you to discuss the amount and you will receive payment within 15 days.'.

    I then called the agency to find out what the 'review of payments' was about but the consultant was extremely cagey and just kept saying they were 'working with the employer' and we'd be notified individually if any backdated payment was due.

    Other colleagues have also phoned to find out what's going on and they've all received a similar sort of vague and somewhat defensive response.

    Obviously, I'm pleased I'm getting a pay rise, but it does seem odd that it will take effect immediately, especially as we're only a couple of weeks away from the end of the financial year. It's almost as if it's something they've been mandated to do.

    And why their reticence to discuss the reasons around possible backdated payments, as if they're trying to somehow protect themselves or hide something?

    We're not earning below the minimum wage, so it's not like the Sports Direct issue that has recently been in the news, but this episode has left us with the suspicion that something's been going on, but we're not sure what.

    Has anyone got any ideas about what it might be?
Page 1
    • London50
    • By London50 15th Mar 17, 9:52 PM
    • 1,507 Posts
    • 1,425 Thanks
    London50
    • #2
    • 15th Mar 17, 9:52 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Mar 17, 9:52 PM
    Only thing I can think of is that hours worked against pay per hour SOMEONE has found out that it is below min/living wage.So covering their own backs.
    Perhaps they have heard there is an audit from a gov department coming up in April {after the 6th} and as above.
    Yet great you are getting something even though it COULD have been money you were entitled to anyway:0)
    • TELLIT01
    • By TELLIT01 15th Mar 17, 10:09 PM
    • 3,866 Posts
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    TELLIT01
    • #3
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:09 PM
    • #3
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:09 PM
    My guess would be the same - staff have been paid below minimum wage.
    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 15th Mar 17, 10:13 PM
    • 33 Posts
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    randomfandom
    • #4
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:13 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:13 PM
    My guess would be the same - staff have been paid below minimum wage.
    Originally posted by TELLIT01
    The thing is, as I mentioned in my opening post, we're definitely not paid below the legal minimum wage, so it wouldn't be that.
    • leslieknope
    • By leslieknope 15th Mar 17, 10:22 PM
    • 247 Posts
    • 339 Thanks
    leslieknope
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:22 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:22 PM
    could it be the agency were taking a bigger cut than they should have? for example when we hire agency staff at work we would pay the agency, lets say £13 per hour. they would take £2.50 per hour of that as their fee and the rest would be paid to the employee. maybe they were taking more per hour than agreed with the employer?
    CCCC #33: £42/£240
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    • London50
    • By London50 15th Mar 17, 10:30 PM
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    London50
    • #6
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:30 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:30 PM
    The thing is, as I mentioned in my opening post, we're definitely not paid below the legal minimum wage, so it wouldn't be that.
    Originally posted by randomfandom
    Very strange then, the other thing could be that there is a takeover in the pipeline and info passed on does not match wage structure for people like yourself and they are now trying to sort it out before any further checks are made.
    At the end of the day it is all pure speculation on our part and unless someone higher up your staffing ladder lets something slip I do not think you will ever find out the truth
    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 15th Mar 17, 10:32 PM
    • 33 Posts
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    randomfandom
    • #7
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:32 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:32 PM
    could it be the agency were taking a bigger cut than they should have? for example when we hire agency staff at work we would pay the agency, lets say £13 per hour. they would take £2.50 per hour of that as their fee and the rest would be paid to the employee. maybe they were taking more per hour than agreed with the employer?
    Originally posted by leslieknope
    Yes, I guess that's a possibility. But it seems strange that an agency could get away with skimming off more than agreed, as I would have thought that rates paid to direct to the temps would have been stipulated in the contract.
    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 15th Mar 17, 10:46 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    randomfandom
    • #8
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:46 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:46 PM
    Very strange then, the other thing could be that there is a takeover in the pipeline and info passed on does not match wage structure for people like yourself and they are now trying to sort it out before any further checks are made.
    At the end of the day it is all pure speculation on our part and unless someone higher up your staffing ladder lets something slip I do not think you will ever find out the truth
    Originally posted by London50
    But I'm not sure how easy it will be to cover things up indefinitely. If they're making backdated payments, then people should have the right to know on what basis they've been calculated to ensure that the sum they receive is correct.

    And by the way, this is a public organisation, rather than a private company.

    Save
    • London50
    • By London50 15th Mar 17, 10:56 PM
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    • 1,425 Thanks
    London50
    • #9
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:56 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Mar 17, 10:56 PM
    But I'm not sure how easy it will be to cover things up indefinitely. If they're making backdated payments, then people should have the right to know on what basis they've been calculated to ensure that the sum they receive is correct.

    And by the way, this is a public organisation, rather than a private company.

    Save
    Originally posted by randomfandom
    As I said then, unless someone slips up I do not think you will ever find out the truth behind it.
    I would like to know the reason myself but I honestly cannot think of any straightforward reason why they are being so cagey if they have nothing to hide from the workforce
    • TELLIT01
    • By TELLIT01 16th Mar 17, 8:02 AM
    • 3,866 Posts
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    TELLIT01
    The whole thing does seem very odd. Why all the secrecy if the underlying problem is something as simple as clerical error / finger trouble causing incorrect payment. All the secrecy does is to increase interest in what was going on.
    • dlmcr
    • By dlmcr 16th Mar 17, 12:47 PM
    • 127 Posts
    • 142 Thanks
    dlmcr
    1)
    Status of "temps" they need to be paid the same as permanent if it is identified they are doing broadly the same job. Paying them differently is discriminatory, possibly the client or the agency has just "discovered" that fact and is now fixing it.

    https://www.gov.uk/agency-workers-your-rights/your-rights-as-a-temporary-agency-worker

    2)

    And by the way, this is a public organisation, rather than a private company.

    Save
    Originally posted by randomfandom
    IR35 In / Out changes effective April this year that affect the public sector although as you are temps not contractors probably not.

    http://forums.contractoruk.com/public-sector-ir35/
    • maisie cat
    • By maisie cat 16th Mar 17, 1:10 PM
    • 222 Posts
    • 264 Thanks
    maisie cat
    Are those affected all one gender or the other? perhaps they've found that there is a difference in pay for essentially the same job
    • rtho782
    • By rtho782 16th Mar 17, 2:39 PM
    • 978 Posts
    • 679 Thanks
    rtho782
    The thing is, as I mentioned in my opening post, we're definitely not paid below the legal minimum wage, so it wouldn't be that.
    Originally posted by randomfandom
    Are you close?

    Don't forget as you're agency, you either still get holiday pay or get an equivalent pay enhancement as though you were getting holiday pay.

    So for example, if you don't accrue holiday, your current "minimum" wage is £7.80, i.e. £7.20 hourly rate and £0.60 towards holiday.
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    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 16th Mar 17, 6:31 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    randomfandom
    1)
    Status of "temps" they need to be paid the same as permanent if it is identified they are doing broadly the same job. Paying them differently is discriminatory, possibly the client or the agency has just "discovered" that fact and is now fixing it.

    https://www.gov.uk/agency-workers-your-rights/your-rights-as-a-temporary-agency-worker

    2)

    IR35 In / Out changes effective April this year that affect the public sector although as you are temps not contractors probably not.

    http://forums.contractoruk.com/public-sector-ir35/
    Originally posted by dlmcr
    Temps at my place of work have the option of being paid PAYE, umbrella, or LTD company, but I know that the latter option is being withdrawn as of the end of the financial year.
    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 16th Mar 17, 6:32 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    randomfandom
    Are those affected all one gender or the other? perhaps they've found that there is a difference in pay for essentially the same job
    Originally posted by maisie cat
    No, it affects both genders.
    • randomfandom
    • By randomfandom 16th Mar 17, 6:53 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    randomfandom
    Are you close?

    Don't forget as you're agency, you either still get holiday pay or get an equivalent pay enhancement as though you were getting holiday pay.

    So for example, if you don't accrue holiday, your current "minimum" wage is £7.80, i.e. £7.20 hourly rate and £0.60 towards holiday.
    Originally posted by rtho782
    No, we're not really close to NMW.

    Holiday pay is a proportion of our hourly rate.
    • General Grant
    • By General Grant 16th Mar 17, 7:39 PM
    • 641 Posts
    • 739 Thanks
    General Grant
    Are you close?

    Don't forget as you're agency, you either still get holiday pay or get an equivalent pay enhancement as though you were getting holiday pay.

    So for example, if you don't accrue holiday, your current "minimum" wage is £7.80, i.e. £7.20 hourly rate and £0.60 towards holiday.
    Originally posted by rtho782
    So if they had been paid that way without transparency indicating the holiday element of their weekly pay it would have been illegal since about 2006 when there was a ECJ ruling.

    (And of course the example isn't mathematically true.)
    • MidLifeMayhem
    • By MidLifeMayhem 24th Mar 17, 8:32 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    MidLifeMayhem
    How long have you worked there? If the employees got a 1% pay rise while you've been there, your temp rate should go up by the same amount. Or if you've only been there a while, perhaps they were supposed to pay you more from week 12 (AWR regs, probably explained in the post above with the link).

    A few years ago I had to push the agency quite hard to get them to agree to up the rate when the public sector workers got a payrise. From memory, it took 3 months for it to happen and they paid it all in the one week and I got hit for 40% tax. Eight months later I got the tax rebate. So if they intend to back pay you a substantial sum, get them to spread it over a period of time!
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