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Dropping time to train would confirm a commitment to better regulation

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The government’s review of planned regulation to give employees the right to request time to train is a litmus test of its commitment to reducing the burden of business regulation, the Institute of Directors (IoD) has said.

The consultation on whether to press ahead with the new legislation has closed, and the government is to decide on the introduction or not of the regulation.

But the IoD claimed that if the government does not opt for complete repeal, employers will immediately question the true degree of its commitment to improving the regulation system.

The employers’ group described the right to request time off for training as unnecessary, poorly thought-through and badly designed, adding that it would not only impose significantly underestimated costs on employers but would undermine existing good practice in the planning and delivery of workplace training.

In a recent survey of IoD members, over a third (37 per cent) said that employees exercising a right to request training would prompt employers to grant training requests on the basis of individual demands rather than business need.

Alexander Ehmann, head of regulatory affairs at the IoD, commented: “Time to Train won’t just fail to work as planned – it will wreak considerable damage as it undermines existing good practice in the planning and delivery of workplace training. The only satisfactory way of addressing this problem is to repeal the legislation completely.”