The redundancy process for employers | What is a fair redundancy process?

The redundancy process for employers | What is a fair redundancy process?

In today’s climate we’re helping a lot
of our clients to save costs where possible. And through that we are helping
them to restructure the business sometimes and also possibly make
redundancies. There are a number of key elements that an employer would need to address if they were making redundancies. The first is to make sure they have a
fair redundancy reason and that’s making sure you’ve got a genuine redundancy
situation. After that they’ve got to follow a fair redundancy process which would involve making sure you inform and consult the affected employees and having a selection criteria that are fair and objective and scoring employees fairly and also considering whether you’ve got any alternative vacancies within the group. So to have a look at in a bit more detail about each of those. The first step is to make sure that you are dismissing for redundancy and for employment law purposes you must have a genuine redundancy reason. That is one of three circumstances. The first is that you have a workplace closure. So you might have a number of different sites and you decide to close one of them. The second might be that you’re closing the business entirely so a business closure and the third which perhaps leads to the most dispute is that you have a reduced
requirement for employees to carry out work of a particular kind. So once you have established that fair reason you can then think about what sort of process you’re going to follow. If you don’t establish that it is actually a genuine
redundancy reason then the process you would follow may be quite different
because actually the reason for dismissal wouldn’t be redundancy. So to have a look at the process in a bit more detail. The first step would be to inform and consult with employees. So that would mean you’d have to notify the
employees in writing of the proposals and then you need to have a number of
meetings with them over a number of weeks individually to discuss
your proposals and hear what they have to say. The second key element in the
process that an employer would need to address is having fair and objective
selection criteria and scoring the employees fairly. The best way to have
selection criteria the objective is to make sure that you can assess employees
using objective methods such as disciplinary records or absence records
and that way if you’re challenged you can prove the reasons why you gave
particular employees particular scores. In terms of the scoring ideally you
would have two managers at least scoring each of the employees so that you can
again prove that the scoring is fair it’s done consistently. The way to increase
consistency of course is to give those managers guidelines as to how they
should allocate marks so when they should give an employee a score of five
or when they should give an employee a score of two. The third key element in a
redundancy process is making sure that you are considering whether there are
any alternative vacancies within the group. If there are any alternative roles
within the business it might be that you can completely avoid the redundancy at
all. If there are alternative vacancies and they are suitable for the employee and you offer it to an employee and they unreasonably reject that alternative vacancy you can actually get out of paying such a redundancy payment and actually save more costs than you thought. Ultimately it’s really important
to have a fair dismissal that you have a fair reason so that genuine redundancy
situation and that you follow a fair process which for the most part will incorporate informing, consulting, selection and scoring and then considering alternative vacancies. That way you put yourself
in the best position to defend any employment tribunal claims.


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