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Compliance is all about safeguarding our candidates and clients at Sellick Partnership. The Compliance team ensures that all our candidates are placed into roles successfully and accurately, against an ever-evolving and growing set of requirements.
We mitigate risk by having credible, failsafe systems and processes in place to ensure there is legislative and regulatory compliance across frameworks and Managed Service Providers (MSPs).
Recently, we centralised the compliance function, allowing our Recruitment Consultants and resourcing staff to focus on their day-to-day jobs, building relationships and partnerships with candidates and clients. This also allows for a broadly standardised compliance process, regardless of the specialism or industry we recruit to. Each member of the team is an expert in compliance, striving to mitigate risk for the business.
Here, we have collated some frequently asked questions from our clients and candidates, which we wanted to share with everyone.
Q: What are the benefits of having a centralised Compliance team in a recruitment agency?
A: Having a dedicated Compliance team means that there are people on hand who are able to collate compliance requirements efficiently to ensure all candidates start on time. They remove the compliance requirements from the client and Consultants so that they can focus on other matters. They mitigate risk whilst continually improving and evolving processes, so they align with clients’ needs.
Q: What is your baseline compliance process
A: At the most basic level, we always ensure that our compliance processes meet all legislative requirements that safeguard the business. Some examples of what this includes are:
We work with over 100 clients through more than 29 MSPs, all with different compliance requirements that must be met for each placement. This means that certain cases are more complex than others and the above points are just the minimum standard that we adhere to.
For these complex cases, a more in-depth compliance process is followed – dependent on client and MSP needs.
Q: How long does the Compliance process take
A: A key strategic goal for 2022 was to reduce the ‘offer-to-placed’ time down – i.e., reducing the length of time it takes a candidate to start their placement after accepting the job offer. The Compliance team’s objective was to reduce this from 20 days to 15 days as a minimum. However, in 2022 we reduced this by 50% from 20 days to 10 days.
This was achieved by streamlining processes and digitalising as much of the onboarding processes as possible, as well as creating a ‘returning candidate process’ that would reduce the amount of requests for documents that were obtained from a previous placement.
Q: Who will renew compliance documents?
A: The Compliance team at Sellick Partnership will update any time-sensitive documents a month before they expire to ensure all documentation remains relevant, in date, and current. These might include: criminal checks, criminal declarations, Right to Work checks, CCJ checks, international sanction and PEP checks, credit status checks, and bank account checks.
Q: The placement starting is through an MSP, I need the candidate to start in a short turnaround period, how can I help speed the onboarding process up?
A: Something that often causes the longest delay throughout the compliance process is waiting for external companies to provide references. We make contact for references straight away, but some companies have a 7-14 day SLA on returning references. Temporary waivers are a good mechanism to allow us time to obtain the references whilst the candidate starts the placement. We advise you speak to the Managed Service Providers (MSP) and confirm you would provide a temporary waiver for some references whilst we wait for them to be returned.
Q: Will the identity of the candidate be checked before their first day of work?
A: In short, yes. We follow government guidelines to ensure all candidates' ID and Right to Work (RTW) is checked before their first day. No candidate will start a placement until the compliance team has completed the RTW check and our internal due diligence process to confirm the ID of the candidate presenting themselves for work on the first day.
Q: Why do I need to provide updated documents and information?
A: Regardless of how long a candidate has worked with Sellick Partnership, it is really important that we hold the most current and up-to-date information for all temporary workers that we place, to ensure we meet baseline government standards.
At the point of re-placement, we check your file to see what documentation we hold. For any documents that are still in date, we will not ask for an updated version; only necessary documents are requested for onboarding ease.
Q: What compliance do I need to provide?
A: Once a placement offer has been confirmed to you by your Consultant, they will inform the Compliance team. The Compliance team will email you the placement details including rates, first day details, location, and any compliance requirements. Please refer to this email for confirmation of what we require.
Q: When does my timesheet need to be approved by to guarantee payment this week?
A: All timesheets need to be authorised on the relevant system by 10:00am each Tuesday. Any required changes to this deadline are always communicated with as much notice as possible.
Q: I missed the 10:00am deadline, how can I get paid this week?
A: You will need to ensure that your timesheet is approved on your timesheet system, and then email the Sellick Partnership Payroll team (firstname.lastname@example.org) to request an advancement. Some advancements are subject to a fee and often depend on capacity within the Payroll team. All approved advancements will be paid by COB Friday.
Q: What is an MSP and why am I submitting timesheets through a third-party system?
A: MSP stands for Managed Service Providers, this is the provider the client has chosen to process their roles, compliance, and timesheets through. We collate all the compliance, as the recruitment agency, and submit it to the MSP system for them to pass. They will then create your booking which will, in turn, generate timesheets for you to submit your hours weekly.
Q: When will I receive my logins to submit timesheets?
A: We will send these out the week your placement starts and, as you work a week in hand, you will not need to submit your timesheet until the end of your first week to receive payment during your second week.
Q: How often do I get paid?
A: You must submit your timesheets weekly; we cannot pay monthly amounts. Some MSPs shut placements down if timesheets are not submitted on a weekly basis, so we advise you not to leave your timesheets to bulk submit.
Q: My placement has expired on the timesheet system; how do I get it extended?
A: You need to ask your manager to reach out to the MSP directly and approve the extension with them. Once approved, the MSP will process the extension and you will be able to submit timesheets. If the delay has resulted in you missing the deadline for timesheets, we will liaise with payroll to ensure payment is made once your timesheet is approved.
Q: I use an umbrella company and I have a query about the deductions on my payslip. Who do I contact?
A: For any deduction queries, P60/P45 requests, holiday, sick, and other leave requests please contact your umbrella company directly, as they are your employer.
Q: The rate on the MSP portal is different to what I agreed, what does this mean and will I be paid correctly?
A: We pay you based on your rates on our internal payroll portal. Regardless of what it states on the MSP portal, you will be paid the correct rate that is agreed on your new starter information email that the Compliance team send you. The Compliance team will liaise with the MSP to get the rate rectified on their system.
Q: My MSP portal has changed the rate type to ‘AWR standard’ what does this mean?
A: AWR stands for Agency Worker Regulations. After 12 weeks of continuous employment, you may be entitled to a marginal uplift to align either your pay or holiday pay with the permanent equivalent for your role. This is dealt with internally and any relevant uplifts will be processed by the accounts team and granted accordingly.
Please note: once you reach the 12-week mark it does not mean you will receive a pay uplift, you may already have met the payment threshold from day one.
Q: Who should I provide for my referee details?
A: Your referee details depend on the type of employment. If you were employed via an agency, please provide the agency contact details AND your manager’s email from the placement. If you were directly employed by the company, please provide the HR details AND your manager’s email.
Q: I had a gap in my employment, what do you need from me?
A: For any gaps over 31 days, we require a written gap reference from a professional. You must provide a contact that you have known for three years or more, is not related to you and is not financially engaged with you. Please note we cannot accept references from personal emails, they must have a business email domain.
For example, if a candidate had opted to take an extended period of leave, they would be able to ask a friend to provide a reference – as long as it came from their work/professional email address.
Q: My previous employer no longer exists, what do you need from me?
A: Confirmation of company name so we can find them on Companies House to confirm this, as well as proof of employment such as payslip, P45 or P60. We will also need you to self-declare the employment in an email along with a character reference provided by a professional to vouch for your character.
Q: I don’t know which umbrella company to pick.
A: We recommend you use one of our preferred suppliers for a number of reasons. Each one has undergone an in-depth financial background check by our accounts team to ensure they meet all requirements. As well as this, if an advancement is needed no charge will be incurred for you, and you will not have to submit timesheets to your umbrella company as well as the MSP.
Q: I have chosen my umbrella company, what are the next steps?
A: Please inform your Consultant and the Compliance team, who will set your placement up on the Sellick Partnership payroll system under the chosen umbrella company.
Please note: it is your responsibility to contact your chosen umbrella company directly to complete the registration process with them. Sellick Partnership cannot do this for you.
We hope you have found this guide a useful tool to refer to. However, if you have any more questions that have not been covered or require more information please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here.