The Government has published a Code of Practice which sets out an approach to workforce matters in public sector service contracts which involve a transfer of staff from the public sector organisation to the service provider, or in which staff originally transferred out from the public sector organisation as a result of an outsourcing are TUPE transferred to a new provider under a retender of a contract.
This Code will form part of the service specification and conditions for all such contracts (except those where the Best Value Code of Practice on Workforce Matters in Local Authority Service Contracts applies, or where other exemptions have been announced).
The Code recognises that there is no conflict between good employment practice, value for money and quality of service. On the contrary, quality and good value will not be provided by organisations who do not manage workforce issues well. The intention of the public sector organisation is therefore to select only those providers who offer staff a package of terms and conditions which will secure high quality service delivery throughout the life of the contract. These must be sufficient to recruit and motivate high quality staff to work on the contract and designed to prevent the emergence of a ‘two-tier workforce’, dividing transferees and new joiners working beside each other on the same contracts.
Service providers who intend to cut costs by driving down the terms and conditions for staff, whether for transferees or for new joiners taken on to work beside them, will not be selected to provide services for the public sector organisation. However, nothing in this Code should discourage public sector organisations or service providers from addressing productivity issues by working with their workforces in a positive manner to achieve continuous improvement in the services they deliver.