100 Days of New Government

At APSCo we are focused on the policy reform needed to deliver better workplaces. We know that professional skills are in short supply across key sectors and that technological change is impacting skills demand within the labour market. By partnering with business, the public sector, and advising workers, the recruitment sector is key to the success of Britain’s highly skilled sectors including technology, engineering, life sciences, finance, and clinical healthcare.

Productivity depends on the right workplace regulatory environment, opportunities and protections for workers, and a plan to address skills shortages. The Labour government announced around 40 bills in its first King’s Speech seeking to address these challenges and we’ve read through the detail to bring out the key points for members, in our King’s Speech 2024: Policy Analysis, providing our view on likely impact.

Many recommendations in our 2024 Manifesto – Tackling the Professional Skills Crisis align with the new government’s policies, but APSCo will continue to articulate the case for appropriate regulation, not over-regulation, of our professional recruitment sector to improve efficiency and drive economic growth.


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Staffing Regulation Staffing Regulation

APSCo proposes a series of reforms to the regulatory environment designed to protect individual workers, drive economic growth, and maximise productivity.

APSCo recommends:
  • Defining self-employed status in legislation, reviewing Off Payroll and IR35.
  • Regulating umbrella companies.
  • Excluding highly paid contractors from the Agency Workers Regulations 2010.
  • Requiring reasonable payment terms throughout supply chains.
  • Developing more sustainable supply chains for the NHS workforce with a compliance focus.

Skills & Talent Skills & Talent

More should be done to overcome the skills shortages in the economy by upskilling the workforce.

APSCo recommends:
  • Broadening the scope of the Apprenticeship Levy, in particular more flexible modular training, to align with skills needs.
  • Develop a coordinated national strategy with more employer financial support.
  • Introducing flexible short-term visas for the highly skilled including a rescoping of work permitted under the Standard Visitor Visa.
  • A greater focus on services and skilled immigration in trade deals.

Workforce Fairness Workforce Fairness

Following the changes to the way we live and work since the pandemic, a new policy focus is needed to ensure legislation keeps up with the speed of change in hiring and working practices and workers’ rights.

APSCo recommends:
  • Legislating to support the move to "skills-based hiring".
  • Legislating to encourage people to stay in and rejoin the workplace, including greater tax incentives on occupational health, mental health and health screening budgets.

Harnessing Technology Harnessing Technology

APSCo believes that when combined with a focus on skills-based recruitment, technology can be used to enhance opportunities for good work and drive economic growth.

APSCo recommends:
  • Introducing recognised, auditable standards for the use of AI in recruitment.
  • Making AI developers and technology providers accountable for the transparency and fairness of their technologies, including through clear routes of redress.
  • Ensuring UK regulation is in alignment with global regulatory evolution.


To discuss our recommendations in more detail, don't hesitate to contact our Global Public Policy Director, Tania Bowers - [email protected].