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Calls for forensic wage audit

Member: Nifa

As the Government’s consultation on the implementation of the new National Minimum Wage comes to an end, a story has erupted in the North East about contractor’s pay rates. It appears that two subcontractors have had their contracts cancelled following an investigation into wage undercutting and another subcontractor is still under investigation. 

The site’s main contractor took action after the two sub-contractors failed to respond to an investigation looking into contractors’ pay rates. The site was already at the centre of a union investigation into working conditions there. The unions found that a number of overseas workers were being paid below the National Joint Council for Engineering Construction Industry’s (NJC) pay agreements. This in turn prompted the main contractor and site owner to launch an investigation into subcontractors’ pay rates.

However, the unions have not been placated by this, with a spokesman for one saying that he would like to know who the sacked subcontractors are and what the reasons are behind their contracts being cancelled. Meanwhile, another union is demanding a forensic wage audit, saying that it is “the only thing that will get to the bottom of this.”

Forensic accountants are experts at finding the facts rather than accepting what they are told. Using sophisticated software and years of experience in the field, they will investigate every anomaly and look at supporting documentation to find out what really happened. 

Author: Roger Isaacs, 28 September 2015

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