Businesses are often affected by external factors, as shown in recent examples of Covid or the cost of living. Where society sees a change in attitudes, employees will often bring these views with them. Because of this, we see common trends in workplace issues. 
For example, following the peak of the pandemic, our most enquired about subject was whistleblowing, making up 19% of enquiries. At the same time, enquiries about redundancy hit a low of 3% (compared to 11% in subsequent years), likely helped by the furlough scheme. 
The cause of trends won't always be so clear. But we think it's helpful to understand what problems have been common. 
Our most common enquiries overall 
It seems a lot of people were ending employment relationships this year. Our most common enquiries were about redundancy (11%), dismissal (10.5%) and settlement agreements (8.5%).  
Enquiries from employers 
Employers have been using this year to get their paperwork in place, with requests to draft contracts and policies making up more than half of enquiries from employers. The most common problem was advice on dismissing employees (9%). 
It's good news that employers are far more likely to contact us as a preventative measure (70%) than because they are facing a claim (9%). Getting advice early on can help prevent disputes, or at least help resolve them more easily should they arise. 
When looking at employers, the industries that contact us the most are Production and Manufacturing (10.9%) Construction (9.1%) and Finance & Insurance (also 9.1%). Meanwhile, for employees, we receive most equiries from the Medical 16.3%, Finance and insurance 12.2% and Education 11.2% industries.  
This does not necessarily mean that these are the industries which have the most problems. These industries are highly regulated, high risk industries, where you would expect employers to be particularly aware of the need to avoid disputes, and employees to be more aware of rules and regulations.  
As employers are most likely to contact us as a preventative measure, this suggests that these industries may be more 'switched on' to employment rights and issues.  
How does this compare to 2022? 
Redundancy and dismissals have continued to be big issues from 2022, when they were the second and third most common enquiries. However, the issue we received most enquiries about in 2022 was disability discrimination. 
Contracts and policies were also the biggest issues for employers in 2022, making up just under half of enquiries. In 2022 we also received a lot of requests about contract advice, which made up 16% of enquiries. 
Find out more about our most common topics 
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Phone: 0121 817 0520 
Address: Spencer Shaw Solicitors Limited 
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Harborne, Birmingham, B17 0DH 
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