Time Theft, Newcomer Incentives, Protection for BC Workers, and 2023 Workplace Trends
Each quarter, Spraggs Law publishes a curated selection of articles about trending HR and employment-related topics. This quarter we focus on a recent time theft case that’s costing an employee, followed by BC’s new incentives for newcomers, new protections for workers (including gig workers), and important considerations regarding 2023 workplace trends.
The Cost of Time Theft and the Value of Curiosity
One BC Employee is paying close to $3000 for a timekeeping discrepancy
Accurate timekeeping can be challenging, and accidental and intentional time theft is a significant cost for businesses, but it can also cost employees! For example, consider this recent case of a BC employee working from home who has been ordered to pay her former employer for a “50-hour discrepancy between her timesheets and activity recorded by the tracking software on her work computer.” The case draws attention to the seriousness of accurate time tracking and the growing use of employee surveillance methods.
Are you cultivating a culture of curiosity?
While survey results suggest that employers value curiosity in their employees, many organizations may deter curiosity by focusing too closely on short-term performance. This Insights2Action™ article by Deloitte outlines ways companies can foster curiosity and the profitability and other benefits of doing so.
BC’s New Incentives for Newcomers
New Economic Immigration Program
BC’s recently introduced Provincial Nominee Program is creating a conundrum for newcomers. The program incentivizes newcomers who live and find work outside of Metro Vancouver, earning them “points toward their permanent residency application if they have a qualifying job offer in that area.” The program is intended to help stimulate economic growth in urban areas outside the Metro Vancouver Regional District, and it has helped thousands of newcomers since its inception. However, statistics show that the majority of BC’s immigrants are making Metro Vancouver Home.
One Punjabi newcomer with a diploma in digital music production shared his experience and the challenges he faced when trying to find suitable opportunities to settle outside of Metro Vancouver before settling and securing work in Surrey while awaiting permanent residency. He claims that, based on his experience, moving to the interior isn’t always feasible, pointing out the lack of suitable opportunities for Punjabi-speaking newcomers compared to Metro Vancouver.
New Protections for Workers in BC
Establishing employment standards in the gig-work sector
Gig workers in BC have mostly been on their own when it comes to employment standards, but that may soon change as BC creates new policies regulating freelance and gig work. While some gig-worker-based companies, like Uber, are taking the initiative to draft industry standards they’d like to see enacted, BC’s new Parliamentary Secretary for Labour is consulting with workers and other members of gig-work industries with the aim of establishing a set of standards, similar to what Ontario has done with its recently passed Bill 88 protecting digital platform workers.
Protecting Young Workers in BC
January 1st marks the day BC’s amendments to the Employment Standards Act took effect. The new standards made 18 the minimum age for new workers tasked with potentially hazardous work with the exception of “construction, silviculture, forest firefighting, and for jobs from heights that require fall protection,” whereby 16 is still the minimum age.
Labour Stats and 2023 Workplace Trends
Labour stats are in
Statistics Canada recently released a Labour Force Survey, revealing a 0.5% increase in employment in December and other elements affecting labour across Canadian industries.
2023 workplace trends require an HR-driven approach
Earlier this month, Spraggs published an article outlining important considerations regarding 2023 workplace trends. The overarching theme of the article points to the important role HR will play in helping companies successfully pivot, prepare and take advantage of growing trends forecasted to affect and disrupt North American workplaces across all industries.