Editor's message: Employers and employees may enter into a contract type that is atypical, ie it is not a standard full-time permanent contract. Employers can benefit from arrangements that fit around business needs, while employees may benefit from additional flexibility to fit work around their other commitments.
However, employers need to be aware that employees who work under certain types of contract may have legal rights specific to that type of contract.
The use of zero hours contracts has attracted a certain amount of publicity and criticism. From 26 May 2015, provisions in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 rendered unenforceable exclusivity terms, which prevent individuals from working for another employer, in zero hours contracts.
Felicity Alexander, Employment law editor
Updated to include information on British Gas Trading Ltd v Lock and another, in which the Court of Appeal confirmed that calculations of holiday pay must include commission.
Updated to include changes to the minimum wage rates for workers under 25 and for apprentices, which took effect on 1 October 2016.
The general secretary of the TUC Frances O'Grady warned "greedy businesses that treat workers like animals" that they have no place to hide in her speech at the TUC Congress in Brighton.
The number of people saying they work on a zero hours basis in their main job has increased by 21%, and nearly a third (31%) of people on such contracts say they want more hours than they are currently given.
Sports Direct is to offer its casual retail workers the opportunity to switch from a zero hours arrangement to a permanent contract guaranteeing at least 12 hours per week.
Engaging employees under fixed-term contracts can provide employers with workforce flexibility. Such employees have an array of rights, in particular under the Fixed-term Employees Regulations. We look at five points that employers should watch out for.
The Enterprise Act 2016, which will amend the law on Sunday working, public sector exit payments and apprentices, has received Royal Assent.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to contract types.