Employment Agency Standards

Employment agencies legislation and service standards.

Employment agencies in England, Scotland and Wales must comply with the Employment Agencies Act 1973 and regulations.

Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate is part of the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR). The Inspectorate carries out routine inspections of agencies and investigates complaints about agency conduct. The Inspectorate operates an enquiry line 0845 955 5105 (Monday - Friday 9:30 - 16:30).

The DTI , in association with the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and Equity, has also produced Guidance on the Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations 2003. The REC is the main professional body for the UK recruitment industry. Equity is the trade association representing performers and personnel working across the arts and entertainment.

For guidance on the investigation of complaints process adopted by the Inspectorate see Employment Agency Standards - "General Enforcement and Procedural Guidance" and "Prosecution Guidance" for Inspectors.

Not sure if you should complain about an agency? As well as the guidance mentioned above, you can check our Frequently asked questions for agency workers. If you have more questions, please phone the enquiry line. Then if you want to make a complaint, you can either do it by phone or fill in our  Employment agency complaint form (see Related Links).

Already operating an agency or thinking of starting one? Read our Frequently asked questions for agencies