Employers should take steps now to ensure they meet the new national minimum and living wage requirements that come into effect in April.

The rise, which is as much as 6.5% for some workers, has been described by Prime Minister Boris Johnson as “the biggest ever cash boost” to the legal pay floor.

It’s likely the rises – detailed below – will present a challenge for many employers.

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How will wages rise?

  • From April 1, workers aged 21 to 24 will receive 50p an hour more, with their hourly rate rising from £7.70 to £8.20 (a 6.5% hike).
  • Workers, aged 25 and over, will gain a rise from £8.21 to £8.72 (a 6.2% rise).
  • Workers under the age of 18 can expect hourly rates starting at £4.55, an increase from £4.35, while apprentices are to be paid a minimum of £4.15.
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“An annual salary spike of £930 for low-paid workers aged 25 and over will be a difficult adjustment, particularly in smaller businesses which have less opportunity to absorb the costs by passing them on,” says HR Team Director Breda Cullen.

Employers should act now to make sure they are compliant with the changes to wage obligations.

“We urge employers to adjust salaries and wages appropriately as it is a legal obligation that the new minimum wage rates are paid,” Breda adds.

It is important that all employers ensure that workers are paid at least the minimum wage that applies to them.

And it’s important for employers to keep clear records which prove they have cmplied with the national minimum wage requirements.

If you are an employer and you are unsure of whether your policies are compliant, please get in touch with our specialists today.