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HR update: Autumn 2013

Zero hours contracts have been in the news recently, with figures suggesting that they are used to employ between 250,000 and one million workers.

Zero hours contracts are contracts for casual work, under which the employer does not guarantee to provide the worker with any work and pays the worker only for work actually done. Workers are usually contacted at the start of each week or at the end of
the previous week and told how many hours they will be expected to work that week. Employees usually agree to be available for work when they are required.

These contracts have traditionally been popular in sectors where demand fluctuates – such as in the leisure sector, for example
– and it is difficult to plan staffing levels. However, in recent years they have been used more widely.

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