16 April 2024

Your Voice Matters: The NHBF State of the Industry Quarterly Survey

After recent wage rises, recession and falling inflation we are keen to get the latest insights from you about how business is going.

The survey contains questions about business activity, plans and recruitment intentions. There are also dedicated questions to influence the Low Pay Commission's consultation on wage rates.

You can access the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/D696DL9

Your participation will give us the latest insights that we need to continue to fight your corner and to help you protect your business.

The deadline for responses is Monday 22nd April at 5pm.

The survey should take around 7 minutes. Your responses are strictly confidential.


UK economy grew by 0.1% in February

The Office for National Statistics reported on Friday that the gross domestic product of the UK had grown by 0.1% in the period between January and February. This marks the second consecutive month of economic growth in the UK, which has been primarily driven by the expansion of the manufacturing sector. This news has raised hopes that the UK economy is gradually recovering from the recent recession.


New flexible working laws and Acas Code of Practice

On 6 April, a new flexible working law and an updated Acas Code of Practice on handling requests for flexible working came into effect. To assist employers and line managers with the changes, Acas has created guidance and resources. This covers topics such as working from home and hybrid working, making a flexible working request, responding to such requests, and providing flexible working policy templates. You can find the Acas flexible working guidance by visiting their website.


Enhancing disabled people’s prospects at work

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) have collaborated to create a new guide for managers. This guide aims to help them recruit, retain and promote the progression of individuals with disabilities or health conditions in the workplace. The guide is part of the Disability Confident Scheme, which intends to reduce the gap in employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.


Low Pay Commission UK Visits 2024

The Low Pay Commission (LPC) is an independent statutory Non-Departmental Public Body set up under the National Minimum Wage Act 1998 to advise the Government on the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

They are on the lookout for companies that might be interested in speaking to the commissioners about the impact of minimum wages on their business.  From 1 April 2024, the minimum has increased to £11.44 for those over 21-year-olds which is nearly a 10% increase from last year.  There are also adjustments for other age groups as shown in the link here.

How will the latest announcement affect your business planning?  How would you respond to the rising NMW?  LPC is also interested in talking to companies that are trying to raise their productivity, to showcase their learning journeys in their communication platforms.  The oral evidence given by the companies will be collated along with the research statistics for LPC to make their yearly recommendations to the government about the minimum wage.

If you would like to speak to the LPC Commissioners and bring up issues pertinent to your sector, please refer to the table of visits below and contact Rosina Robinson from the NHBF F.

Visits Schedule


17 to 18 April 2024 (England)

  • Dover


15 to 16 May 2024 (Wales)

  • Cardiff
  • Newport

12 to 13 June 2024 (Scotland)

  • North Ayrshire
  • Glasgow

3 to 4 July 2024 (Northern Ireland)

  • Bangor

31 July - 1 August 2024 (Midlands)

  • Coventry
  • Wolverhampton