- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
- Specialist wikis
Last edited 03 Mar 2021
Coronavirus job retention scheme
ECA’s Director of Employment and Skills Andrew Eldred said: “The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme surely represents one of the most extraordinary products of these times. An effective 80 per cent state subsidy for wages in the private sector, in a previously liberal free-market economy. However, ECA believes that a more flexible approach needs to be designed into the scheme from the start. First, employers should be given the option to share work more equitably between their employees. In addition, employers and their employees should be free to agree other reduced hours working arrangements, whilst still enjoying the security offered by the Government’s 80 per cent pay guarantee.”
ECA believes that sharing work more equitably between employees could be achieved by them moving between working and ‘furloughed’ status according to a structured pattern – for example, one week ‘on’, followed by one week ‘off’. Arrangements of this sort are quite common for ‘furloughs’ in the USA, and there are similar arrangements for short-time working arrangements in the UK.
Secondly, ECA believes employers and their employees should be free to agree other reduced hours working arrangements, whilst still enjoying the security offered by the Government’s 80 per cent pay guarantee. This extra flexibility should help encourage businesses to continue servicing customers – for example by carrying urgent or safety-critical work – without putting their own survival and the economic security of their employees at risk.
More widely, ECA expressed some concern about the possible impact the new scheme might have on those who continue to be employed and working, compared to colleagues who would not be required to work.
The Government’s coronavirus job retention scheme is open to all companies regardless of size. They can apply to HMRC for a maximum of £2,500 per ‘furloughed’ worker per month, worth 80 per cent of their wages, with a grant paid direct to the business.
Other measures announced by the Government on Friday to support businesses included an extension of the business interruption loan scheme to 12 months, and the ability to defer VAT bills until the end of the year.
This article was originally published by ECA as ‘Coronavirus job retention scheme requires greater flexibility’ on 23 March 2020.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Beyond the pandemic.
- Budget 2020.
- Budget 2021.
- CIOB reacts to 2020 Winter Economy Plan.
- Coronavirus and force majeure.
- Coronavirus impact survey.
- Designing HVAC to resist harmful pathogenic microorganisms (bacteria and viruses such as influenza and 2019-nCov).
- ECA articles.
- Hospital isolation rooms.
- Re-starting construction in a COVID-19 environment.
- Social distancing compliance marshal.
- Survey records business projections after coronavirus storm.
- The future of the coronavirus furlough.
Featured articles and news
Helping communities preserve and enhance historic environments.
Creating comfortable climates despite extreme temperatures.
Study examines how adjustable arrangements can succeed.
Government announces plans to improve accessibility.
Resource addresses pandemic-related NEC4 contract issues.
Incorporating EDI into the provision of fair access.
Government announces global innovation strategy.
An architectural biography. Book review.
The house where the future king of France lived.
The teacher, architectural technologist and mum offers her insights.
Careful planning needed as supply chain issues continue.
The sensitive conversion of a neglected Cornwall structure.