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The Good Work Plan 2020: A Review of Modern Working Practices

Posted on 07 July 2022

​The Good Work Plan (GWP) was created by the Government in response to Matthew Taylors 2017 review of modern working practices. The Taylor report sets out guidelines and recommendations for the UK Government, highlighting the importance of businesses doing more to offer flexible working options to their employees. The GWP came into practice in 2020, shortly after Brexit and alongside the pandemic, delivering significant changes to the law in relation to statements of main terms (SMT’s), developing clarity for workers and enabling fairer enforcement.

According to the REC, this plan rewards people for hard work, celebrates good employers and is ambitious about boosting productivity and earning potential in the UK.

Additionally, highlighted in the REC’s Government and Campaigns report shows the approach follows 5 founding principles of good work:


  1. Satisfaction
    Better jobs and boosted transparency around job quality. Enabling individuals to make better choices about work to suit their needs.

  2. Fair pay
    Aspire to end low pay, new policy around tips and discretionary service payments, improved transparency around salary as well as changes to holiday pay and reference periods.

  3. Participation and progression
    Ensuring everybody has the basic skills to enter the labour market with a realistic scope for development and fulfilment.

  4. Well-being, safety, and security
    Happy and engaged employees experience less workplace stress and are more productive. The GWP also highlights the importance of mental health initiatives.

  5. Voice and autonomy
    Employee engagement experience in the forefront. The Government is investing in an improved tribunal system and providing a mechanism for employee views to be considered on major workforce reforms, such as restructuring.


BLOG: Well-being: Championing better work and better working lives post-pandemic | Smith and Reed Recruitment

The Good Work Plan was established more than 2 years ago, so where are we now?

According to the CIPD Good Work Index, June 2022, 7% of their 2022 sample have moved jobs in the past six months, compared with 6% in previous years. Five per cent have moved jobs in the last six to twelve months. These figures were higher than in 2021, but similar to 2020 and 2019 levels.

A similar story is reflected in workers’ intentions to quit and perceptions of the labour market; 20% workers say it’s likely they’ll quit their job in the next 12 months, compared with 16% in 2021. However, this figure is very similar to employee intention to quit prior to the pandemic, with 18% - 19% of workers saying this in the previous CIPD Good Work Index findings.

The CIPD further state that all jobs have the potential to be better and we should aspire to making good work a reality for all, regardless of personal characteristics or occupation.

Do you have questions about staff acquisition or retention: Looking for Staff - find the right people | Smith and Reed Recruitment


There are so many new, innovative ideas businesses have rolled out since 2020. Whether it’s issuing up to date, transparent contracts and policies or rolling out well-being schemes and developing Learning & Development strategies, the progression is limitless.

Is your business already aligned with The Good Work Plan? What are you doing to accommodate these changes?

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