Matthew Taylor’s initial response to consultation on introducing a Single Enforcement Body released

11 November 2019

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) released a consultation on intentions relating to establishing a new Single Enforcement Body (SEB) for employment rights, which ran until 6 October 2019.

The Office of the Director of Labour Market Enforcement (DLME) has circulated a letter from Matthew Taylor, which provides an update on the situation.

The letter advises that because of the enforcement of Purdah rules due to the upcoming general election, consultations on the Labour Market Enforcement Strategy 2020/2021 will be paused, but that workshops focusing on the topic will be organised in the new year once the rules are lifted.

The sessions will feature on two key areas:

  • Recent developments in non-compliance and enforcement – Are there any new or increasing risks that the DLME needs to be aware of and should consider within the 2020/20201 strategy? Have there been any changes in types or severity of non-compliance?
  • Improving enforcement – Have there been any recent changes in the approach of the enforcement bodies? Are there any opportunities for enforcing labour market regulations differently / more effectively?

The advice provided is that further information will be released towards the end of December and that the feedback and issues provided will directly impact the 2020/20201 strategy constructed by the DLME to be presented to ministers at financial year-end.

The letter then addresses the matter of SEB directly and states that, due to the general election and the fact that Taylor has not yet seen the government’s response to the consultation on the topic, this will be revisited once there is some indication of how new government intends to proceed. There is reassurance that Taylor is still invested in discussions surrounding SEB and the design principles behind ensuring the proposed new organisation improves standards and compliance. There is a publication outlining his own initial response to the consultation.

Taylor’s response is divided into three subsections, which relate to the aims and design principles for the SEB, key issues to be resolved before starting the SEB and other measures that could improve the SEB’s chances of success.

Aims and design principles for the SEB has nine main principles, which are as follows:

  • Displaying a strong unified ethos
  • High profile and credible
  • Influential and independent
  • Accessible and enabling culture
  • Powerful and innovative use of data
  • Credible and proportionate compliance and enforcement capacity
  • Maintaining strong national and local partnerships
  • Accountable, transparent and continuous learning
  • Resourcing

The key issues to be resolved before establishing the SEB discusses:

  • Remit, which examines customer journey, scope of the single body and how modern slavery offences in the labour market are enforced
  • Powers, which looks at aligning/boosting existing powers, reviewing sanctions, powers to tackle new and emerging threats and supply chains
  • Data access, intelligence and joint working
  • Governance – overall governance and future of DLME

Other measures which could improve the SEB’s chance of success include:

  • Baseline data and single employment statement
  • Single employment statement

The full document can be accessed here and covers each subject area in considerable detail.

CIPP comment

The CIPP will update its members as soon as there are any further developments in relation to this issue. Once further consultation details have been provided, we will be reaching out to members for their feedback.


Information provided in this news article may be subject to change. Please make note of the date of publication to ensure that you are viewing up to date information.