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Legal

Lay-off and short-time working flowchart

Posted on: March 18th, 2020 by Ginny Hallam

If you’re thinking about lay-off or short-time working, we’ve created a flowchart to support you with your thoughts. We’ve uploaded it to Intelligent Employment so those of you with access to our platform will find it in the new ‘flowcharts’ section.

If you don’t have access to Intelligent Employment, let us know and we’ll be able to explain the fee for the flowchart or for Intelligent Employment.

Good Work Plan – employment contract updates

Posted on: February 13th, 2020 by Ginny Hallam

The Good Work Plan means that by 6th April 2020 you need to have updated your employment contracts to remain legally compliant. In particular, every employment contract now needs to include information about training, opportunities for paid time off, and whether hours of work are variable (and lots more!)

Don’t worry though, we’ve got you covered! If you subscribe to Intelligent Employment, the contracts on our platform now include the required changes. We’ve also added a letter to the platform for you to give to your employees outlining changes made.

Here’s all the changes we’ve made, or what you’ll need to update if you’re not using our documents.

  • Days of the week the worker/employee is required to work
  • Whether working hours are variable and how this will be determined
  • Any paid leave the worker/employee is entitled to
  • Details of all remuneration and benefits
  • Details of any probationary period
  • Training entitlement (whether this is mandatory or paid for by the worker/employee)

To make sure we’re providing Intelligent Employment users with the most straight-talking and engaging documents possible, we’ve updated the tone, clause names and order so our contracts are even more user-friendly.

If you’re not currently subscribed to Intelligent Employment, get in touch and we’d love to discuss how we can support you to update your contracts, along with all the other awesome benefits you’ll secure!

Executive People Update

Posted on: January 30th, 2020 by Ginny Hallam

As part of keeping you in our focus, our exec people update ensures you’re on top of the latest changes in legislation, case law and employment law trends. Click here for more information about how we can support you to manage the latest changes.

Tribunal claims carry on climbing 

Claims show no signs of slowing according to the latest Ministry of Justice statistics. The latest figures show claims rose by 38% compared with the same three months in the previous year. We still don’t have any indication as to when tribunal fees will be making a comeback. Great legal advice, manager training, early conversations (and records of them!), consistent processes and a great culture are all valuable tools to avoid finding yourself on the wrong side of claim.

Parental bereavement pay and leave – 6th April 2020

Parents will have a day-one right to take up to two weeks’ leave to help them cope with the death of a child (under the age of 18 or stillborn after 24 weeks). To receive paid leave, they must have worked for you for 26 weeks. It’s not just biological parents – adoptive parents, anyone with parental responsibility for the child, and in some instances foster parents and family members who care for the child will be included. The two weeks’ leave can be taken in full, or as two separate one-week blocks.

Click here for our new parental bereavement policy.

Employment Bill 

Check out our latest update for confirmed changes in April 2020. In addition, the Employment Bill sets out a range of further expected changes for 2020 including:

  • A right to request a stable working pattern – all workers will have the right after 26 weeks’ continuous service
  • A right to neonatal leave and pay for parents – one week’s leave for each week that the baby is in neonatal care
  • Extending redundancy protection for women – from the point the woman notifies you of their pregnancy to six months after the end of maternity leave
  • Tips to be received by workers in full – a Code of Practice will set out how they’re to be distributed on a ‘fair and transparent’ basis

Time to talk

Thursday 6th February is ‘Time to Talk Day’ – aiming to get people talking more openly about mental health. You have a duty of care to your employees so it’s hugely important to up-skill your managers to create positive environments, support those in difficulty and be able to handle mental health challenges in the workplace.

We can support you with training – click here to find out more.

We’ll keep you up to date with the latest news on these new and expected rights.

Inbox impact assessments

Posted on: November 15th, 2019 by Ginny Hallam

Even though employees use work emails and you have a good email policy, doesn’t mean you can freely root around inboxes.

Whether you’re accessing an inbox when an employee’s absent, in an emergency or to investigate, here’s what you need to know.

Employee’s have the right to put their trust and confidence in you as their employer. Snooping at emails without proper cause, will breach that trust and confidence, data protection laws, right to a private life and could give rise to constructive dismissal claims (and possibly discrimination claims). So only access inboxes with good reason.

Before you open an inbox, ensure you’ve carried out an impact assessment to show:

  • the reasons for the access
  • there isn’t another way to secure the information
  • you’ve limited the search to particular terms
  • that any data found will be kept secure, not needlessly shared and deleted appropriately.

If someone is absent and you need to look at their emails, ensure that you limit the view to subject headings only and open only those which appear relevant.

As ever, a policy setting out when you may access inboxes, identifying whether personal use of work email is permitted and the need to mark personal emails as private is a must!

You can access our impact assessment template through the Intelligent Employment platform. If you don’t have access and want to know how it will benefit your business, get in touch!

 

Contract confidence

Posted on: November 8th, 2019 by Ginny Hallam

Compliant, commercial, contemporary – the three Cs that make for a great employment contract.

We review our fair share of them…here’s what we always tend to see:

Poorly drafted post-termination restrictions (or none at all) – meaning little or no protection when the employee leaves.

Old data protection provisions – meaning you’re not securing appropriate consent to take photos of employees or provide references.

Continued accrual of benefits after five years’ service – you could well be discriminating against younger individuals.

Holiday allowance – no reminder that if employees don’t use it, they lose it (new case law makes this important).

Performance processes that are still called disciplinaries – likely to make your process unfair.

Failure to comply with employment contract fundamentals – they’ve been required by law since 1996. Without them you could be exposed to fines of up to four weeks’ pay per employee.

Complex and confusing – tone that is not simple or straight-talking devalues what should be a straightforward document.

With the Good Work Plan making agreed employment contracts a day-one right, it’s a good time to take a fresh look at your contracts. Let us know if you’d like to look into a review or update of your documents.