These are simple steps to consider when planning redundancies, you should still consult a Redundancy Law specialist such as Knight-Webb to ensure that a difficult transition happens as easily as possible.
Typically employers should:
Step 1: Establish that there is a genuine redundancy situation, take adequate steps to consider alternatives to redundancy, warn and consult with affected staff.
Step 2: Consider the ‘pool’ from which redundancies will be made, and the selection criteria to be applied; list any alternative vacancies within the company or group.
Step 3: Meet with all of the employees who might be made redundant and explain the reasons for the potential redundancies. Consider asking for volunteers.
Step 4: Score each potentially redundant employee using the selection criteria and scoring guidelines.
Step 5: Write to those employees that have been provisionally selected for redundancy, inviting them to a meeting to discuss their provisional selection.
Step 6: Consult with each employee individually about their scores, the proposal to select them for redundancy and the terms of the redundancy. Discuss details of any available alternative roles within the group.
Step 7: After the meeting, follow up any suggestions made to avoid the redundancies and consider any representations made.
Step 8: Where a decision has been made to make an employee redundant, invite that employee to a further meeting and confirm that the employee has been selected for redundancy. Go through the redundancy package.
Step 9: Write to the employee confirming the decision and specify the termination date. Confirm that the employee has the right of appeal. Explain how to appeal and the relevant time limit.
Step 10: If employee appeals, invite them to attend a further meeting to hear the appeal which should if possible be held by someone senior to the person who held the previous meetings.
Step 11: Write to the employee confirming the outcome of the appeal and that this is a final decision.
Under section 139(1) Employment Rights Act 1996, ‘redundancy’ is defined as:
…an employee who is dismissed shall be taken to be dismissed by reason of redundancy if the dismissal is wholly or mainly attributable to—
the fact that his employer has ceased or intends to cease
- to carry on the business for the purposes of which the employee was employed by him
- to carry on that business in the place where the employee was so employed
the fact that the requirements of that business
- for employees to carry out work of a particular kind
- for employees to carry out work of a particular kind in the place where the employee was employed by the employer,
have ceased or diminished or are expected to cease or diminish.
This means that the dismissal must be caused by the employer’s need to reduce its workforce. Redundancy may happen because a workplace is closing down, or because fewer employees are (or are expected to be) needed for work of a particular kind. Normally the employee’s job must have disappeared; it is not redundancy if the employer immediately takes on a direct replacement (although a redundancy situation may also exist in a ‘bumping’ situation).
Knight-Webb Solicitors are experienced in handling Employment Tribunal Claims, including complex Employment Discrimination at Work, as well as extensive Redundancy Law experience, both for employers and employees. We are also members of the Employment Lawyers’ Association and so have a very detailed knowledge and experience of this area.
To understand your situation more clearly and for advice on the best way to proceed just Contact Us and one of our expert solicitors will help you with the best way to proceed. Or us now on 020 72076195