Softworks Blog

NERA-What About the Employees Outside the Office?

Posted by Nadine Walsh on Mon, Jun 29, 2015

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Fines range from €1,900 to €15,000 per employee for non-compliance with the Working Time Directive* 

 

These days it's almost impossible to find a workplace where all employees are office based and working 9 to 5 every day. Between remote working, flexible hours, engineers on site visits, client visits and sales executives touring the country, it's rare to find a single department with set office based schedules, never mind an entire organisation.

Did you know that according to Ireland's employment legislation, every employee's working hours and attendance must be recorded? There are no exceptions to the rule. During our recent NERA audit, we were required to provide comprehensive documentation of working hours from all members of our team. At Softworks we offer flexible and remote working options and we also have engineers, project managers, sales executives and account managers constantly on the move. We were required to produce the following information for all employees, including those out of the office:

  1. A record of the number of hours worked by all employees on a daily and weekly basis - including those out of the office.
  2. A record of leave granted to employees in each week by way of annual leave or in respect of a public holiday and payment made in respect of that leave;
  3. A weekly record of the notification of the starting and finishing time of all employees.

Obviously we were able to produce this information easily as we can use our own automated Time and Attendance solutions! We have various options for our employees to register their time and attendance including; PC/Smart Phone clocking and Assumed hours honour based Email Timesheets.  

With Softworks Time and Attendance solutions, ensuring compliance couldn’t be easier. We can assist your organisation to ensure you are prepared for a NERA audit. We make it easy for your organisation to monitor employee attendance without impacting on your company culture.  We can help you build a clear picture of employee attendance through detailed data and reports on attendance, holidays, absenteeism, flexible working and additional hours.

If you would like to explore how our technology could assist you to prepare for a NERA audit and create a “pain” free environment for managing regulatory compliance, get in touch today.

 

P.S If you have a NERA inspection coming up, you may find our guide useful.

 *depending on the breach of employment rights legislation

Topics: NERA

OH NO! ITS NERA!

Posted by Nadine Walsh on Wed, Apr 15, 2015

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We have just been inspected by NERA and have survived to tell the tale. Really? Yes, they even check companies who provide time and attendance monitoring and employee law compliance software!
We weren't scared and you shouldn't be either. We have explained the process we went through & have some information on how you can be prepared for your inspection. 

What is NERA?

NERA is the National Employment Rights Authority body in Ireland. In short, it is their job to ensure all employees in your business are working with fair contracts, are paid regularly - in line with the minimum wage, and are not working too many hours.

How much notice do you get for a NERA inspection? 

We were given a month's notice but this can vary. Their guide says "advance notice" but you can reschedule if you have a genuine reason. 

Why are they coming to my business? 

According to workplacerelations.ie, NERA "aims to secure compliance with employment rights legislation and to foster a culture of compliance in Ireland. Every employer is required by law to record their employee's working hours/time to ensure compliance. Failure to do so may result in legal action. The letter we got stated that these are the 5 items they need to check we are complying with legislation for:  

1. Minimum Wage - ensuring nobody that works for our business is paid less than €8.65 an hour.

2. Working Time Directive - ensuring our staff are working a legal amount of hours per week, that we get fair holiday allowances and that we have adequate rest periods and breaks.. You can find more about the WTD here

3. Younger Workers. They also check that any workers under 18 years of age are treated fairly.

4. Wages/Salary -Every worker had the right to receive a payslip which may be to each employee in paper or electronic format. NERA will also check that your organisation are deducting the correct taxes/USC charges from your salary. 

5.  Non - National Employees. NERA check that any non-national employees have the relevant work permits to work in your business

What do I need to provide? 

They need to check everything on the list below. This may look extensive but should be quick and simple to prepare. Most workforce management systems can export all of the below information on a simple report. NERA also provided a document with a template of all the requirements below which you can manually fill out. 

  • Employee Registration number
  • Name, address, nationality & PPS number
  • Start & End date of contract
  • Everyone's job title/classification
  • Terms of Employment
  • Timesheets showing the hours worked by each employee (including overtime) & also detailing what days of week the employee worked
  • Your company's holiday & public pay entitlement details as given to employees
  • Copies of payslips & payrolls
  • Register of employees under 18 

What happens on the day? 

Well in our case, a lovely man called Sean arrived at a specified time and met our HR team. We provided him with the documentation requested above. He spent some time going through this and then he selected some of our employees at random and conducted quick 5 minute interview. These are confidential & staff have the opportunity to voice any concerns they may have. And that is it - simple! In a few weeks, NERA will send us their evaluation. You can find NERA's guide to inspections here

 

Can your system provide you with the information you need for a NERA inspection quickly and easily? If not, arrange a demo with our experts today.

 Schedule a Live Demo

Topics: Working Time Directive, NERA