Trial work is a common practice used by employers to assess the suitability of a person for the job. But the workers are not always paid by the employers for the trial work. The UK law currently does not have a clear guideline whether employers should pay for the trial shift work. It is a grey area and recently there was a call to ban the unpaid trial shift work but the UK government did not think more regulations were needed and the bid failed to pass in the parliament.
Here are top tips to follow before doing a trial shift:
- Agree with the employer (in writing) if it will be a paid trial prior to doing a trial shift
- Agree the duration of the shift, avoid doing unpaid work for longer than a couple of hours and the worker should be paid at least a minimum wage
- Use your judgement to assess whether the employer really has a legitimate job on offer or are they exploiting you for free work
The information above is for general guidance on your rights and responsibilities and is not legal advice. If you need more details on your rights or legal advice about what action to take, please contact an adviser or solicitor