Following on from the Uber decision that found the drivers were workers, another employment tribunal has considered the employment status of the cycle couriers working for the Citysprint delivery company.
In this case, the couriers were required to pass a two-day training process. Once completed, they received a “Confirmation of Tender to Supply Courier Services” seeking to treat them as self-employed contractors. This also required the new recruits to electronically acknowledge a number of key principles, including:
The couriers are paid weekly in arrears as a result of an automated billing system, only for the jobs they fulfil. The Tribunal found that the “Tender” document did not reflect the true relationship of the parties and therefore they examined the reality of the situation.
They found the courier was required to log-in to Citysprint’s tracking system when working, wear a uniform, work as required by the controller and provide the services meeting the company’s standards. The tribunal therefore found that the courier did not have any freedom to decide how best to deliver the service and that she was integrated into their business. Consequently, while she was working for them she was a worker and entitled to the associated employment benefits, such as the holiday pay claimed in this case.
We are set to see a number of further cases on the issue of employment status which will continue to have significant implications for businesses managing their staff requirements in this way. Watch this space…