To recap, Beecroft wanted to make it easier to release people who aren't working out as good employees. At the moment, it very hard for businesses to move people on who aren't quite up the job. The law is OK - just - for moving on people who are absolutely terrible, but it isn't a lot of good in situations where things just aren't going as well as they need to - for example, where people are just about getting by - but things are not working out as you hoped.
Tough on you, I hear some readers say. How about helping that person reach the mark? Training? Patience etc? Believe me, most people in business will do all of the above before taking away someone's livelihood. Particularly in small business where everything is face-to-face.
What we need - which we don't have now is the right to make a unilateral decision - without fear of legal challenge - that this person isn't delivering value to our business and they need to go. With requisite compensation, of course. What happens instead is that you can say you're not happy but, in order to avoid a legal challenge, you have to give people all sorts of targets and supports to hit those, even when you're sure, in your heart, this isn't going to work out.
I have been here lots of times in my previous role in a larger organisation. With 250 employees, about ten percent are normally underpeforming. To have that many people in 'special measures' is expensive and takes up all of managers' and HR departments' time. It would be far better, with nearly all those people, to be able to have a grown up conversation that enables a quick, mutually dignified departure.
Will this, as Cable fears, create mass insecurity in an already anxious workforce? I am sure that 90% of people realise that they have nothing to fear from such changes in rules. Those that will be most scared will be the 10% who need to be. Indeed it may, in some cases, be the prompt they need to address some of their issue.
I realise this a very different view to that of most people who don't see themselves as on the Tory Right. But talk to anyone who manages people or runs an organisation and you'll hear a lot of agreement.
One's own view comes down in part to whether you believe that people in the UK, and Europe more widely, are over-protected and insufficiently flexible at work than they need to be in the current world economic situation.
Personally, when I look at how people and companies in other continents work, I see us as asleep at the wheel, living on borrowed time before we get 'found out' and thrown in far greater hardship than we would if acted now and took the wise advise of Adrian Beecroft onto the statute book.