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When the going gets tough, most people get Acas expert advice

Demand for expert advice offered by Acas has risen significantly according to a survey of British workplaces. More than a quarter of workplaces sought advice from Acas in 2011, up from around a fifth in 2004 when the Workplace Employment Relations Study was last carried out. This represents an increase of 29 per cent. Acas was the single most consulted body for external advice in both surveys.

Analysts identified two main drivers for the increase. Firstly, there are the major changes to employment law in issues such as Agency Workers Regulations, the Default Retirement Age and the introduction of auto-enrolment pensions, prompting a need in high quality, impartial advice.

Secondly, this need has been no less important in contentious situations that may have been aggravated by the difficult economic climate. For example, one commentator said that many organisations had relied on Acas for finding ways to minimise the impact of redundancy, particularly at the nadir of the downturn.

Last year, expert advisers on the Acas Helpline fielded almost 925,000 calls, while the website saw a 10 per cent increase in traffic with more than 4.5 million visits. For free and impartial advice, call the Acas Helpline on 0300 123 1100.

Acas can also help by sending specialists out to organisations to diagnose issues and tailor training and support to find answers according to the needs of any company. Visit the Acas Training and Business Solutions area for more information.

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