14 recruitment companies make HMRC shame list

Staffline and Randstad Solutions are among the recruitment businesses named yesterday [20 February] by HMRC for failing to pay workers the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

A total of 524 businesses across all industry sectors were ‘named and shamed’ in the announcement for failing to pay over 172,000 workers NMW. The businesses have been ordered to repay workers nearly £16m, plus an additional financial penalty, after the breaches left the workers out of pocket.

The action comes as the National Living Wage is set to increase by 9.8% to £11.44 an hour on 1 April, as announced in November’s Autumn statement.

Named employers included major high street brands such as Greggs, Easyjet, Currys, and luxury department store Harrods. 

HMRC said the businesses named in the list have since paid back what they owe to their staff and have also faced financial penalties of up to 200% of their underpayment. The investigations by HMRC concluded between 2015 and 2023.

When contacted by Recruiter, Staffline, which was said to have underpaid 36,767 workers by £5.1m, responded that the HMRC announcement referenced the period 2013 to 2018. 

“Management would like to clarify that remedial actions were taken in 2019 and formally concluded with HMRC to their complete satisfaction,” the Staffline statement said. 

Randstad Solutions was reported to have underpaid 5,348 workers by £123,505. 

Other recruitment companies on the list included Abacus Employment Services, Angard Staffing Solutions, Team Recruitment (Poole), Major Recruitment, Gi Group, Search Consultancy, Meridian Business Support, Newcross Healthcare Solutions, Neaves and Neat Employment Services (dissolved), Staff 247, Finecare 247.

Meanwhile, the government has launched a National Minimum Wage Naming Scheme R20 Educational Bulletin on Tuesday [20 Feb] to further guide employers on their responsibilities to pay the minimum wage. 

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