Dealing with complaints from employees, poor performance, or even serious allegations of misconduct will happen in most companies at some stage.
Handling any employee issues with confidence and sensitivity is key. To achieve this you must have the correct contracts and procedures in place and knowledge of the proper procedures, your employees’ rights, and your own rights as an employee.
These things will enable you to take the action you need to protect your employees and your business.
Fair processes are vital and having written policies in place, which are followed by all members of staff, are an essential part of that.
At the very least, employers should be adhering to the ACAS Code of Practice when it comes to dealing with workplace disputes. A proper and fair procedure will require you to: act promptly, carry out a full investigation, listen to all sides and be consistent.
Employers should also allow employees to be accompanied at any formal meeting, make decisions that are reasonable in the circumstances, and allow an employee to appeal against any formal decision.
A lot of unfair dismissal cases could have been avoided simply by the employer following a fair and proper procedure prior to making the decision to dismiss.
How We Can Help With Disciplinary & Grievance Procedure
Our employment solicitors will provide all the support and guidance that you need to take the right steps. We have experience in every type of workplace issue, and with our help most situations can be resolved properly and decisively.
The earlier you deal with a matter the more likely you will achieve an acceptable outcome. We can work in partnership with you from as early in the process as you require so that you and your staff fully understand the process for all disciplinary or grievance issues – large or small. We are also able to provide workplace training for staff to ensure they are aware of the proper procedure in potentially difficult situations.
When the performance of employees decline, or they fail to follow agreed rules and procedures, you can waste valuable management time getting things back on track.
Be sure you understand your options. Be aware of the right way to tackle any problems as soon as they emerge. We can work with you to give you the knowledge and confidence to establish a fair procedure for dealing with poor performance. If things do not improve we can give you practical options to secure the best result for your business.
Absence from work can take many forms – long-term sickness, maternity leave, absence related to a disability, or persistent short-term absences. As an employer you need to be very careful how you handle these scenarios to avoid being the subject of a claim for unfair dismissal or worse, discrimination.
We have the expertise to advise you how to manage sickness absence proactively, ensuring that you stay on the right side of the law. We can draft policies and procedures and provide training so that your managers know how to handle absences. Our specialist employment solicitors can be on hand to support you from the beginning and throughout the whole process including in difficult situations where employees are not able to return to work.
Disability & Discrimination
Discrimination based on age, disability, race, religion, beliefs, sex or sexual orientation is unlawful. Cases of discrimination can be highly complex and an employer faced with this type of allegation would be advised to take expert legal advice as early as possible following any allegation of discrimination.
We focus on providing a swift and cost-effective outcome for our clients in keeping with their instructions. We are skilled at using alternative methods of dispute resolution to avoid matters going though the Employment Tribunal if appropriate. We will advise as to the risks of defending a claim and will take a robust approach where appropriate.
Every company needs clear disciplinary procedures to deal with misconduct in the workplace. More importantly the staff implementing the policy need to understand the process and requirements of the same. Typical examples of misconduct include disruptive behaviour, swearing, verbal abuse, or misuse of company property. We can advise on the appropriate wording for staff handbooks, and policy and procedure documents, so that everyone understands their rights and responsibilities before problems occur.
Many types of misconduct can be dealt with informally, but where misconduct is more serious or persistent, it is important to take formal action and be fair and consistent across the workforce. We will help you follow the correct procedure to increase your chances of avoiding any unfair or constructive dismissal claims or demands for compensation.
To speak to a member of the HR and employment team in relation to grievances and disciplinaries, please call 01283 526200, alternatively you can send us a message and we will get in touch at a time that suits you.