Thursday, 13 August 2015

Public sector employees can retain their position by learning English on the job

Staffordshire business, Busy Bees Benefits says public sector workers may not have to lose their jobs in the wake of a new language policy to be introduced in September. The company, which specialises in employee benefit schemes, says that members of staff could be given more time to improve their skills can use an Earn and Learn scheme to help retain their jobs.

The new legislation states that employees in customer-facing roles must hold English language skills equivalent to GCSE grade C or above. This will affect police officers, social workers, teachers, teaching assistants, Jobcentre Plus workers and council employees as well as employees in the NHS and Armed Forces.

Among these workers will be those who have worked in the sector for years and have proved their worth since the day they were appointed. These employees could be offered the time to improve, but whether they can afford further training is another matter. The cost of qualifications are often expensive, employees will need to access savings on the cost of this new requirement.

“Public sector employers should help their staff save money on the cost of GCSE English by using the Earn and Learn scheme,” commented John Woodward. “The real barrier for employees is the cost of the qualification. It’s all good and well offering time, but if employees simply can’t afford the cost of training, they may be left in a sticky situation.

“In the current climate of austerity, it is difficult for public sector organisations to fund their employees taking this qualification. Therefore, the Earn and Learn scheme will provide help for employees struggling to meet the cost.

“On the scheme, employees are able to exchange part of their salary for training, meaning tax and National Insurance savings can be made on the sacrificed amount. Basic rate tax payers can save up to 32% during a 12-month period and higher rate can save up to 42%.

“All costs relating to tuition, travel, accommodation and substance can all be paid for under the scheme - cutting the cost of this essential training considerably. 

“Employers can save themselves an unnecessary HR disaster and make National Insurance savings at the same time. The Earn and Learn scheme is the perfect solution to the new legislation,” he concluded.

The new legislation is set to commence from September and is said to be rolled out across England, Scotland and Wales, however details on the plans for Scotland and Wales are yet to be confirmed.

For more information on accessing the Earn and Learn scheme, employers and employees are invited to contact Busy Bees Benefits on 0330 333 9100 or on information@busybeesbenefits.com

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