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November, 2018

Give ’em a break – encourage your people to take holiday

Posted on: November 29th, 2018 by Ginny Hallam

As we edge closer to the end of the holiday year (for some) and with the festivities fast approaching, you’ll need to keep the holiday cheer going following the ruling that employers must ensure their workforce have the opportunity to take at least four weeks’ paid holiday (pro-rated for part timers) each year.

‘Use it or lose it’ is no longer the lawful stance to take, so you must inform employees and workers of their right to paid leave and encourage them to take it. Failing to do so will allow them to carry over up to four weeks leave into the next leave year.

Here’s a few proactive steps you can take to encourage your people to use their entitlement:

Clarity – ensure employees and workers have accurate written information (in good time) of their paid entitlement and how they apply for it

Policy – clearly state that the right to carry over holiday will be lost if they don’t take at least four weeks prior to the end of the holiday year

Educate – build holiday discussions into your induction, on-boarding and team meetings

• Due diligence – regularly review team holidays and send out reminders to those who have accrued leave remaining

• ‘Jingle bells’ – set reminders to notify you of anyone who’s not taken or booked holiday to take at least four weeks’ leave – at least three months’ before your leave year ends

Communicate – if you notice a pattern of unused leave, chat with individuals to understand if there are underlying reasons for this

Exits – add a clause into your contracts to allows you to force an employee or worker to take their unused holiday during their notice period, or ensure an appropriate payment in lieu is paid to cover any holiday accrued

We hope you won’t need to, but if worst comes to the worst you can insist employees take their holidays, formally if necessary. Now go forth and get your teams ‘rocking and rolling’ with their requests – ‘tis the season to be jolly after all!

Lessons learned from the Morrisons case

Posted on: November 15th, 2018 by Ginny Hallam

The recent Morrisons case is surprising – despite clear guidance from the supermarket on the appropriate treatment of company information and the obvious illegality of the employee’s data breach during his employment, the courts have found Morrisons could have done more and were liable.

It is still possible to avoid liability for an employee’s malicious acts. Here are a few of our suggestions:

• Policies – identify areas of particular risk and the potential for wrongdoing and ensure you’re clear as to the behaviour that is expected inside and outside of work. Make sure that those policies dovetail with your disciplinary policy. Also take a regular look at your whistleblowing policy and ensure it’s being actively communicated and kept up to date.

• Monitor – introduce systems and processes to identify breaches of your policies and security. Ensure managers are trained to identify unusual behaviour and areas of risk and flag them appropriately.

• Contracts – make it clear employees should be disclosing anything inappropriate (including their own wrongdoing).

• Culture – through training and the promotion of a ‘no blame’ culture, give colleagues the confidence to raise their concerns. Consider an anonymous employee support line.

• Training – introduce training routines to remind employees of your policies and processes (don’t forget to keep a record).

• Audit – a critical eye on your processes, procedures and security is helpful on a regular basis. Make sure to note your findings and act upon them.

• Insurance – have you checked you’re insured against employment related catastrophes? If not, it’s time to find out.

Click here if you would like to discuss your employment related policies and processes. Our Intelligent Employment platform provides access to legally robust documents and policies, supported with access to unlimited, commercially focused advice.