Labour Hire Agency vs Host Employer: Who Does What?

Bringing in outside labour is a great way for businesses to offload work associated with hiring and managing employees. A labour hire agency takes care of recruitment, selects workers for the job and sends them onsite to work on projects. When handled well, the process is straightforward and beneficial to all involved.

Sometimes, however, questions arise about what aspects of employee management are the responsibility of the labour hire agency versus the host employer. Every company’s policies are slightly different, but there are some general guidelines to follow while hosting labourers.

Employment contracts
Pay, benefits, worker’s compensation and insurance are up to the agency and the employee to negotiate. The specifics of contracts are between employers and employees, and hosts are not directly involved.

Host employers should, however, make sure that workers have been given fair terms and are getting paid adequately. An unhappy employee will not perform well, so employee satisfaction is an important thing to consider when choosing an agency.

Enjoy the convenience of an agency handling employee contracts, but be sure to double-check everything is in order.

Health and Safety
Unlike with employment contracts, agencies and the hosts share equal responsibility for the health and safety of workers. Hosts must maintain a safe environment for labourers in their facility, whether they are from outside agencies or internal teams.
Agencies should send an inspector before sending workers on site and continue inspections for the duration of the employees’ stay. They are responsible for ensuring they are sending their workers into a safe place.

Host employers are still directly responsible for ensuring safety while workers are in their facility. When it comes to safety, hosts should show workers the same concern and consideration as their own staff.

Workers provided by agencies should have appropriate industry training and be well-prepared to do the job required. Host employers should check that the labourers have received the proper training necessary to complete their jobs effectively and safely.
Some task-specific on-the-job training is usually necessary for new employees, and it is the host employer’s responsibility to show new arrivals how to perform required tasks.

Any rewards or concerns regarding an employee’s job performance should also be addressed by the agency. The host employer should pass on information regarding an employee’s performance so it can be addressed by the agency.

Businesses turn to agencies for labour to relieve some of the cost and effort involved with hiring and managing employees. Hence why most aspects of hiring and management fall under the agency’s responsibility.

While the host employer does share responsibility for the employees under its roof, a good labour hire agency effectively communicates with clients and employees to ensure both are happy and get the most out of the arrangement.