According to the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), the National Living Wage, Apprenticeship Levy and pensions’ auto-enrolment could lead to reduced opportunities for investment and wage growth because of the increased cost for businesses.
The annual survey interviewed 1,400 businesses and a fifth of businesses complained that the apprenticeship levy was forcing up costs. 75% reported an increase in costs as a result of pensions auto-enrolment.
The changes to employment legislation were designed to help improve wages and prospects for workers, but the BCC is concerned that high employment costs will have a negative impact on employees stating that businesses are under increasing pressure from the burden of employment costs which is likely to influence the choices they make and outcomes for employees.
The government has announced the minimum automatic pension enrolment contributions will increase to 5% in 2018 and 8% in 2019.