QS Recruitment are pleased to announce we are offering COVID-19 vaccinations to all our Care Assistants.
As vaccinations provide a much-needed light at the end of the tunnel, it’s crucial to protect the elderly and vulnerable as much as possible.
That’s why we are pleased to announce we are able to source vaccinations for our Care Assistants to help stop the spread and further protect care home residents and staff.
While many of our staff are being vaccinated by the care homes they work for on a regular basis, we quickly became aware that many of our staff were not able to access the vaccine. We decided to take our own action to ensure we are protecting as many carers, clients and residents as we could.
“It is vital that QS Care undertake responsibility for protecting our workers” – Peter Gillespie, Managing Director
Peter Gillespie, Managing Director of QS Recruitment commented “With temporary care staff being just as exposed to the virus as permanent members of staff, we found it vital that QS Care undertook the responsibility to source some way of protecting our workers.
The rate at which vaccines are being administered is a fantastic step in the right direction for the Social Healthcare industry, and QS Care are pleased that we can continue to work alongside our clients, offering vaccinated staff.”
To find out more about our vaccination rollout, please get in touch.
Yet again QS Care have proven to be a diligent and compliant business partner, by passing all recent external audits which were conducted by several third-party companies on behalf of our clients, such as, Nottinghamshire County Council, Lifeways and HC-One. We also passed checks carried out by our ISO accreditation auditors.
Audits can vary hugely from client to client, but all include a wide variety of compliance indicators, such as auditing our workers Right To Work checks, criminal record checks, qualifications and licence checks, training certificates, referencing (including complete work history) and workers induction records. In addition to this the auditors also assessed our compliance with the Agency Conduct Regulations, internal policies and procedures as well as viewing operational examples of working operatives and current clients.
Continually passing external audits demonstrates our commitment to providing a credible, reliable and quality service. We understand that the workforce we provide is vital to your operation. As such, it is essential you can be confident you are provided with good quality staff that have been assessed and checked to the highest standards.
In an industry that has an ever-increasing number of regulations which must be adhered to, it is imperative that we remain legislatively aware, adapting our policies and procedures swiftly and accordingly to any change. We employ our own auditors who conduct regular in-house checks, giving us the benefit of being able to respond efficiently and effectively to any emerging legislation, or to any changes our clients may need. We also provide vital training to our staff wherever necessary in a timely manner.
You don’t have to just take our word for it, our membership with the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and holding the highest ISO Quality accreditation is testament to our commitment to delivering high levels of service. Continually passing our client’s audits solidifies our position of delivering these high levels of service efficiently, legally and with integrity. Please feel free to contact us and we can share the results of our latest audits including our ISO audit report.
Starting from 1 April, employers will face an increase in costs – which could have a substantial effect on your business.
Fundamentally, rising employer costs are emerging from two pieces of changing legislation: workplace pension schemes and the National Living Wage.
To help you get ready for the change, we’ve put together this guide to the new legislation and what changes you can expect.
New contributions to workplace pension schemes
All employers must offer and enrol their workers into a workplace pension scheme.
Currently, the minimum contribution that an employer must pay into a pension is one per cent. From 6 April, this amount will double to two per cent.
Next year, the minimum contribution will rise again, to three per cent. These rises will give a total combined pension contribution of eight per cent in 2019 – with the option for staff to make up the remaining five per cent of the contribution.
Here’s how the workplace pension contributions will change over the next year:
Minimum Employer Contribution
Total Combined Minimum Contribution
Before 6 April 2018
6 April 2018
6 April 2019
The National Living Wage is on the rise
In addition to higher in contributions to the workplace pension, employers will also face an increased cost from a rise to the National Living Wage.
Every April, the new living wage is set by the Low Pay Commission.
Effective from 1 April, this year’s changes to the living wage are outlined below:
Before 1 April
1 April 2018
For both 18-20- and 21-24-year-olds, this change will represent the largest increase in a decade – resulting in a big impact on living wage businesses.
Get prepared for 1 April
The first of these changes come into effect on 1 April, so it’s important that your business is prepared and ready.
Peter Gillespie, Managing Director at QS Recruitment, said: “Having a rise to the National Living Wage and workplace pension contributions at the same time can have a significant effect on businesses. Combined with the recent introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy, employers are facing a huge jump in costs. That’s why it’s important you understand the changes and their impact before they come into effect.”
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Any business can be attacked, and attacks are on the rise. New rules on data security will help businesses protect themselves, but what are they and why should your business care?
What happened in 2017?
2017 was a big year for data breaches, particularly for the care industry. Dominating the headlines was the NHS cyber-attack, which caused one in three NHS Trusts in the UK to have their data accessed by complete strangers. The breach affected over 70,000 devices, including computers, MRI scanners, blood storage refrigerators and theatre equipment.
The ransomware used in the attack not only interfered with confidential data but also in the running of the business with delayed appointments, inaccessible medical records and valuable time lost as a result. The breech cost the NHS £180,000 on temporary emergency measures alone, with overall costs expected to exceed £1m.
Why smaller companies are at risk
When it comes to data security, it’s not just larger companies and organisations that are at risk. In fact, smaller organisations have a greater risk of cyber-attack.
Smaller companies are particularly targeted because they usually have weaker security and are more susceptible to insider attacks and mishandling of data, including lost devices, having no malware protection and relying on simple and easy-to-guess passwords.
In the care industry, you already know the importance of keeping data and information confidential and secure. Without efficient protection, data breaches and cyber-attacks will not only give hackers access to valuable and confidential care data but can also cost small businesses anywhere between £65,000-£115,000, according to Price Waterhouse Coopers.
To protect against future attacks, new EU legislative framework is changing to the General Data Protection Regulation. But what is it, and how does this impact your cyber security?
5 Ways GDPR is changing your cyber security
GDPR is designed to give control over their personal data back to citizens and residents. Incorporating more severe consequences than existing data protection laws, GDPR aims to strengthen data protection against cyber-attacks.
Here’s 5 ways that GDPR will impact your cyber security.
GDPR will affect any business that holds any personal data from EU citizens – changing the way that data is managed.
Fundamentally, GDPR will change the way that this data is managed, giving users complete control. This allows them to decide how much of their data they want to share and how they want it to be used.
As well as controlling how much data is shared, users will also have the right to delete their data at any time, completely removing themselves from your systems.
Under GDPR, companies will need to report any security violations within 72 hours.
Enforced by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), any company that violates GDPR or suffers a data breach will be liable for costly fines of up to €20m or four per cent of global turnover, whichever is greater.
How QS Recruitment are keeping your data secure
Knowing the importance of keeping data secure in the care industry, data protection is one of our top priorities at QS recruitment. You can trust us to handle your data with you in mind, by working with Air IT and using technologically-advanced hardware and software. We ensure that we have all of the relevant GDPR policies in place and a board level commitment, underpinned by a robust and secure system, so you can rest assured that your data is protected.
Anyone can be attacked. That’s why it’s important to ensure that your company keeps confidentiality using the best protection available for your system. AT QS, we don’t just protect your data, we want to help you protect yours. Our IT partner, AIR-IT, offer valuable and impartial advice, and, to ensure your security, are offering a free consultation to any of our clients. For added peace of mind, take control of your cyber security by taking advantage of this free consultation. Book now.
Care home workers across the UK are being urged to get a flu vaccination after doctors warned that a widespread winter flu outbreak may be on the horizon. The NHS has recently announced that it’s bracing itself for a busy time following the widespread influenza outbreak in Australia and New Zealand in their last winter.
Health lobbyists are recommending that all care home workers get inoculated to protect both themselves and the elderly or vulnerable people they are caring for.
The NHS has set aside up to £10m in extra cash to fund the inoculation programme across the UK, meaning that anyone working within the care home sector can get vaccinated free of charge if they attend a community pharmacy with proof that they are employed within this sector. Many of the care home staff we place are agency workers, so may struggle to get free vaccinations.
QS Recruitment will be running clinics at our Head Office in Nottingham, where we will be providing free vaccinations to all our registered care workers.
Peter Gillespie, Managing Director of QS Recruitment said: “Care workers play a vital role in our society, providing amazing levels of support and care to people that need it most. It’s important that we look after the people who take care of the most vulnerable patients”.
“Many people with flu show no symptoms, meaning care workers who feel fit and healthy can unwittingly infect the people for whom they are caring. Getting vaccinated is the best way to stop the spread of influenza and can ultimately, help prevent more serious illnesses from developing or the risk of mortality”.
“As an employment agency, we take our responsibilities extremely seriously, which is why we are running a series of drop-in clinics to give our workers, who may not otherwise be able to access a free inoculation, the opportunity to get vaccinated at no cost”.
“This will give the Care Homes that we work for, the peace of mind that the workers we supply are vaccinated against flu”.
QS Recruitment will be running the first of its free clinics on 17 January at our office on Alfreton Road. For more information call our Head Office and speak to Peter.
Kevin Gray, our Payroll and Accounts Manager, celebrated 20 years of employment with the company in December 2017.
Kevin joined QS Recruitment in 1997, at the age of 18, a Trainee Recruitment Consultant. Within six months of starting his employment, a vacancy arose for someone to take control of the back-office functions for the business (payroll, sales ledger and accounting). Having shown an aptitude for this section of the business, Kevin was appointed to the role.
As the business grew and opened more offices in the years following his appointment, so did his role.
Initially working on his own to prepare the payroll and manage the sales ledger processes, additional staff were recruited to the department and, in 2013, Kevin was promoted to the role of Payroll and Accounts Manager.
In December 2015, Kevin was part of the Senior Management Team which completed a management buyout of QS Recruitment, making him a shareholder in the business.
Since then, he has continued to lead the Payroll and Accounts Department (which is now a team of four) and has taken on many new responsibilities.
The business invests heavily in providing training for all its staff so that they have the tools they need to be a success.
Kevin is no exception and in 2017, he successfully completed the first year of his AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) qualification.
The training will ensure Kevin is prepared to handle the extra responsibilities of managing a growing business.
He said: “As I look back on my 20 years with QS Recruitment, I am proud to have been a part of a company which has grown from one office to five, steadily increasing its turnover year after year. I am immensely grateful too, as QS Recruitment took a chance with me 20 years ago and has given me a life I could not have envisaged for myself at that time.
“I continue to look to the future and looking forward to being a part of QS Recruitment’s continued growth program, with two new offices due to open in 2018. Likewise, I am keen to develop and train the next generation of QS Recruitment staff over the next 20 years”.
To show our gratitude for his years of service, we invited Kevin to choose a gift so that he could mark the occasion and have a reminder of the day. He chose a work of art from Castle Galleries, by Bob Barker, entitled “Is this love”.
Quality Service Recruitment has announced the opening of its latest Branch in South Yorkshire. The new location illustrates the ambition it declared at the time of the Management Buy Out in 2015, to develop and grow the business, not just within the East Midlands but also across Yorkshire. The branch is located on the border of Sheffield and Rotherham and is a 5-minute drive from the M1 on the Magna 34 Business Park (Temple Road).
Established in 1993, QS Recruitment delivers a bespoke high quality recruitment service. The business started as a specialist supplier of HGV drivers in Nottingham and has expanded its offering to provide warehousing, manufacturing and office staff. It also has a separate Healthcare business (QS Care), which provides staffing and recruitment solutions to Care and Nursing homes. QS Recruitment has offices in Nottingham, Burton on Trent, Lincoln, Derby, Worksop and Leicester.
Peter Gillespie, Managing Director said “We plan to double the size of the business by 2021 and the latest branch opening follows on from the successful opening of our Leicester branch in August of last year. We view Sheffield and Rotherham as an excellent market and a key strategical location from which to further grow our branch network throughout Yorkshire”.
“We supply our services to several clients in the Sheffield and Rotherham area, that were already being supported from our Branch in Worksop” said Regional Director Brian Smith. “The new location will provide the existing customers with increased levels of support, whilst providing an opportunity to establish relationships within the area with businesses that require a customer focussed supplier”.
South Yorkshire Branch Manager, Anthony Ellis commented “the area has huge potential for the main core of our business in Logistics, Manufacturing and Health Care. Our research shows significant demand for our services and a large pool of qualified drivers, skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled labour to meet that demand. We are confident that the new office will flourish and both businesses and workers in the area will benefit from our presence”.
QS Recruitment’s focus is simple; to work in partnership with their customers providing solutions where they are required. Contact us if you would like to know more about our business and how we can help you achieve your objectives.
At QS Recruitment, we place great value on what our clients think about the service they have received from us. Whether they’re saying nice things about us or not, the feedback we receive from out clients and workers is incredibly valuable to our business.
While positive feedback can provide a boost, constructive criticism can often help to shape the way we do business and improve our offering to ensure it more effectively meets the needs of all our candidates and partners. For over two decades, we have delivered a high quality recruitment service to businesses throughout the East Midlands. As our name suggests, providing a ‘Quality Service’ is the main objective of our business and we have based our philosophy upon honesty and integrity.
That’s why we’ve introduced a customer satisfaction survey, to give all of the partners and candidates we work with the opportunity to let us know what they think of the service we provide.
In consultation with our staff, and through a customer satisfaction survey conducted on our behalf by a third party in October 2015, we identified the key points of customer service which we must deliver. These are to be:
Pleasant to work with
We wanted to provide a platform for our clients to give honest feedback, as we appreciate that it is sometimes difficult for a client to provide constructive criticism to a member of our staff, with whom they have developed a long-standing relationship with. We also wanted to offer a simple way for our clients to provide feedback to us, that was not too time-consuming.
We will select a sample of 50% of our clients to take part in each survey, which will be conducted quarterly. If chosen to take part, the client’s representative will receive an invitation email. A link within the email will take the participant through to the survey form, which comprises 13 statements about our performance. Feedback on the statements can be provided with the click of a mouse, and the feedback will be based on how strongly the client agrees or disagrees with each statement.
The results of this survey will provide us with a benchmark score for each of our offices. They give a starting point from which to identify any areas of concern that our clients might have, so we can drive through improvements in those areas if needed. They give us the ability to demonstrate to our customers that we are not complacent and will work hard to deliver the improvements they have highlighted to us.
Our key business focus and mentality is to provide a consistent quality service and the feedback we receive through the survey will enable us to deliver on our objective of continuous evolution and improvement. You simply can’t put a price on that kind of insight.
If you have received (or do receive in the future) an email inviting you to take part, please take a few moments out of your day to participate and help shape our continual improvement.
Tony Daly, Finance Director of QS Recruitment stated “we are pleased to announce that after considerable investment in professional advice regarding the VAT Exemption ruling in Section 6.5 of VAT Notice 701/57 we are now positioned to provide our Care division customers with supplies exempt from VAT”. This decision has been based on our (and our advisors) understanding of HMRC’s current guidance which is subject to change.
The exemption only applies to the supply of “staff” so the workers must be under the direction and control of the client. Our supply must be of Nursing Staff, Nursing Auxiliaries or Healthcare Assistants who are either registered or are directly supervised by someone who is. For the benefit of doubt, a Nursing Auxiliary or Healthcare Assistant is defined in the Notice as being someone who is not enrolled on any register of medical or health professionals but whose duties must include the provision of medical, as well as personal, care to patients. is based on the company’s understanding of HMRC’s current guidance which is subject to change
At QS Recruitment we observe that direction, control and supervision of the client in this context is tested by adherence to the following conditions:
The services are supervised by a registered health professional AND the supervisor is professionally qualified to perform and supervise the services;
The services are supervised by a registered health professional AND the supervisor is professionally qualified to perform and supervise the services;
The services require supervision by a registered health professional, and are provided predominantly to meet the medical needs of a client;
The supervisor has a direct relationship with the staff performing the services, and is contractually responsible for supervising their services;
A qualified supervisor is available for the whole time that the care services are provided;
No more than 2,000 hours per week of staff time are supervised by a single health professional;
A supervisor has a say in the level of care to be provided to the client;
The supervisor must be able to demonstrate that they monitor the work of the unregistered staff.
The concession does not apply to the supply of general workers who only provide personal services or where they work in care homes without nursing where supervision by a health professional is not required to provide the service.
Zero hours contract workers lack clarity over employment rights says Acas paper
A report written for the Arbitration Conciliation and Advisory Service (ACAS) has highlighted the lack of awareness of employment rights for zero-hours contracts workers.
Based on an analysis of 70 telephone calls a week made to its helpline by employees and employers, the discussion paper ‘Give and Take? Unravelling the true nature of zero-hours contracts’ reveals a lack of clarity over employment status, and lack of awareness of employment rights to be one of “two broad themes”.
The first theme was a lack of clarity over employment status, and a lack of awareness of employment rights. The second reflected feelings both of fear about future earnings and that they were being treated unfairly, wrote Acas senior policy advisor and the paper’s author Adrian Wakeling.
Wakeling says: “There were numerous calls to the Acas helpline, for example, from both workers and employers unsure if people on zero-hours contracts are entitled to holiday leave and pay and how this is calculated.” Some workers on zero-hours contracts even believed they were permanent employees, he adds.
Acas chair Sir Brendan Barber added: “There appeared to be a lack of transparency on the terms of their contractual arrangements.”
According to the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC), anyone working on this flexible basis will have legal entitlements to:
• National Minimum Wage
• Automatic enrolment for pensions
• Statutory holiday pay
• Protection from unlawful discrimination
• Working time rights
• Protection from unlawful deductions from wages
Barber said that the sense of unfairness and mistrust went beyond the use of exclusivity clauses [which bar them from working for other employers].
“A lot of workers on zero-hours contracts are afraid of looking for work elsewhere,” Barber went on to say, “turning down hours, or questioning their employment rights in case their work is withdrawn or reduced. This deep-rooted ‘effective exclusivity’ can be very damaging to trust and to the employment relationship.