The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has urged the government to modify the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and make it more flexible so that furloughed employees are allowed to carry out work on reduced hours for their existing employer where possible.
The CIPD stated that making the scheme more flexible could help businesses to bring back employees from furlough gradually; allow firms to flex their workforce more efficiently; and potentially help to reduce the cost of the CJRS to UK taxpayers.
Commenting on the matter, Peter Cheese, Chief Executive of the CIPD, said: 'The government should be commended for its swift action in bringing in the Job Retention Scheme, which has helped protect jobs.
'However, with the scheme . . . extended, greater flexibility needs to be built into it. As it stands, furloughed staff are not able to do any work for their existing employer, meaning organisations which could provide some work for staff on reduced hours are not able to.
'This change would enable employers to bring back workers gradually, which is likely to be necessary if lockdown measures are phased out over time.'