How do I get an National Insurance Number?
Am I entitled to National Minimum Wage?
I have not received wages. What can I do?
I have a complaint about my employer. What can I do?
What are my rights in the workplace? Where can I get the information?
I'm being bullied at work, what can I do?
Where can I get Careers Advice?
You will have been sent a National Insurance number automatically just before your 16th birthday if you live in the UK and your parents/guardians are receiving child benefit for you.
If you haven’t received a National Insurance number contact the National Insurance Registrations Helpline on 0845 915 7006 for advice. Lines are open 8.30 am to 5.00 pm Monday to Friday.
Further information about national insurance can be found on the GOV.UK website.
If you have an employment contract you are an employee and therefore a worker for the purpose of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) rules.
There are different levels of NMW, you can find them all here.
An employee can make a claim for an unlawful deduction from wages whether or not s/he is still working for the employer and s/he does not need to have worked for the employer for a particular length of time to make this claim.
You should raise a grievance with your employer, which means writing to your employer. Please seek further advice from the advice centre in the Mandela Building as there is a strict deadline if you need to take further action.
If you’re unhappy about something that your employer or a colleague has said or done, you should always try and talk about it with them. It’s a good idea to try to sort out problems early on. It’s a good idea to write down your concerns and anything that happens. This will be useful as a record and reminder of the situation.
If the issue is still unresolved, then you should put in a grievance. A grievance is a way of more formally raising your concerns, problems or complaints about work with your employer
For further info on how to raise a grievance, see the Citizens Advice Bureau's website.
Your rights at work will depend on your statutory rights
Statutory rights are legal rights based on laws passed by Parliament. Nearly all workers, regardless of the number of hours per week they work, have certain legal rights and your contract of employment.
Your contract of employment is the agreement made between your employer and you (employee). This could be in the form of a written agreement or what has been agreed verbally between you. In addition, your contract of employment will also include ‘custom and practice’ agreements- things that may not be written but usually happens.
Your contract of employment cannot take away rights you have by law. However, employment law is complex, for further information on rights at work click here for general information or seek advice from the advice centre in the Mandela Building.
Everyone should be treated with dignity and respect at work. You shouldn’t have to put up with bullying at work. Employers have a ‘duty of care’ to their employees and this includes dealing with bullying at work. There are measures you can take if you are being bullied.
If you think you are being bullied, it is best to talk it over with someone.
Try to sort it out informally first, speak to the person who is bullying you to make them understand the effect their behaviour is having on you.
If that is not possible, seek help from your line manager, your human resources department or your trade union representative. Keep a diary of the bullying behaviour, e.g. times, dates and how you are feeling. You can make a formal complaint through your employer’s grievance procedure.
For further information, have a look on ACAS's website.
The University of Kent has a Careers and employability service, which is based in the Careers building in the entrance to Keynes college driveway on Canterbury Campus, or in Student services on the ground floor of the Gillingham Building on the Medway campus.
There is also information about their service on their website.
For further information, their contact details are:
Careers Advisory Service,
University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent CT2 7ND
Call 01227 764000 ext. 3299
Student Services Department on the ground floor of the Gillingham Building, Medway Campus.
Call 01634 (88)8876
The NUS website also has lots of useful information for students about maximising your Employability skillls whilst at University. In conjunction with the CBI, the NUS has prepared a very useful guide called "Working towards your Future"