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Redundancy Procedure Checklist

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A checklist outlining issues that may need to be addressed in a redundancy situation.

Contents

Step 1: establish whether there is a genuine redundancy situation

  • Is there a closure of the business for which the employee was employed?
  • Is there a closure of the place of business where the employee was employed to work?
  • Is there a reduced requirement for employees to carry out work of a particular kind?

Step 2: consider pool and selection criteria and list any alternative vacancies

  • Establish how many redundancies are being proposed.
    • If 20 or more redundancies are being proposed in a 90-day period then the collective consultation obligations will arise and it will be necessary to notify the Secretary of State of the proposed redundancies.
    • If fewer than 20 redundancies are being proposed then it will be necessary to follow a fair procedure in relation to each employee at risk of redundancy
  • Consider the appropriate pool of employees if selection will be necessary.
  • Establish a proposed set of objective selection criteria if selection will be necessary Put together a list of vacancies and alternate employment.

Step 3: notify the Secretary of State if collective redundancy

The employer must notify the Secretary of State that it is planning to make collective redundancies:

  • At least 30 days before the first dismissal takes effect (in other words, the date on which notice is to expire or employment is to end) where the employer proposes to dismiss 20 to 99 employees within a 90-day period, or
  • At least 90 days before the first dismissal where the employer proposes to dismiss 100 or more employees.

The notification must be in writing and a copy must be provided to the employee representatives. The employees cannot be given notice of dismissal (see step 11) until the Secretary of State has been notified.

Step 4: first meeting

  • Meet with all of the employees who might be made redundant (as a group).
  • Explain the reasons for the potential redundancies.
  • Explain how many jobs are at risk of being redundant (making sure it is clear that the redundancies are only a possibility at this stage).
  • Explain that ways of avoiding the redundancies are being explored (for example, restrictions on recruitment, alternative employment, re-training, voluntary early retirement, voluntary redundancy, short-term working and restricting overtime).
  • Ask the employees for suggestions of ways to avoid redundancies.
  • Consider asking for volunteers for redundancy.
  • Explain the pools of selection and proposed selection criteria (if relevant).
  • Explain the right to take time off to seek alternative employment.
  • Take a note of the meeting.

Step 5: first letter

  • Confirm in writing the information given during the meeting in writing.
  • Include a copy of the selection criteria and scoring guidelines if relevant.

Step 6: collective consultation

  • Collective consultation will only be necessary where 20 or more redundancies are being proposed within a 90-day period.
  • If necessary, hold elections to elect employee representatives
  • Consult the appropriate employee representatives (with a view to reaching an agreement) on ways and means of avoiding or reducing dismissals and mitigating their consequences.
  • The consultation will usually also cover the appropriate pool(s) for selection and the selection criteria.

Step 7: scoring

  • Score each potentially redundant employee using the selection criteria and scoring guidelines.
  • Ensure that at least two line managers conduct the scoring, to help ensure scores are objective.

Step 8: second letter

  • Write to those employees that have been provisionally selected for redundancy, inviting them to a meeting to discuss their provisional selection.
  • The employee should be advised that they may bring a trade union representative or work colleague to the meeting.
  • Ensure that the letter is reasonably detailed, setting out the reasons for (i) the redundancy situation, (ii) for provisionally selecting the employee for redundancy and (iii) summarising the consultation that has taken place with them to date.
  • Explain that no final decision has been made at this stage, and that a further meeting will be arranged if their selection for redundancy is confirmed.
  • Allow the employee a reasonable amount of time to consider this information before holding the meeting.

Step 9: first individual meeting

  • Consult with each employee individually about their scores, the proposal to select them for redundancy and the terms of the redundancy.
  • Consider any comments from the employee, particularly in relation to their scores.
  • Discuss details of any available alternative employment within the group (including those which would require some retraining and posts on a lower grade).
  • Take a detailed note of the meeting.
  • Where the employer is selecting from a pool of employees, it will need to provide details of the selection criteria and the employee's scores under those criteria. It will not be necessary to provide the scores of other employees or the "break point" (the mark which the employee would have needed to avoid selection), although failure to provide that information may potentially render a dismissal unfair under section 98(4) of ERA 1996. General principles of fairness require the employer to let the employee know why he is being selected for redundancy and to know enough about the assessment process in order to be able to challenge it.

Step 10: follow up

  • After the meeting, follow up any suggestions made to avoid the redundancies and consider any employee representations or challenges to scores.
  • If any employee's score changes as a result of this process, check if this will result in a change to the group of employees that have been provisionally selected for redundancy.
  • If so, repeat the relevant parts of the procedure with any employees that have been selected for redundancy as a result of the review.

Step 11: second individual meeting

  • Where a decision has been made to make an employee redundant, invite that employee to a further meeting.
  • Allow the employee to be accompanied by a trade union representative or work colleague.
  • Assuming that nothing has changed, confirm that the employee has been selected for redundancy.
  • Go through the redundancy package.
  • Remind the employee of the right to time off to seek alternative employment.
  • Take detailed note of meeting.

Step 12: dismissal letter

  • Write to the employee confirming the decision to dismiss them as redundant and specify the termination date (termination may be with immediate effect if the employer is paying the employee in lieu of notice).
  • Explain the calculation of the redundancy payment and any other payments to be made on termination.
  • Confirm that the employee has the right of appeal. Explain how to appeal and the relevant time limit.

Step 13: appeal

  • If employee appeals, invite them to attend a further meeting to hear the appeal. If possible, the meeting should be held by someone senior to the person who held the previous meeting(s).
  • Allow the employee to be accompanied by a trade union representative or work colleague.
  • Following the meeting, write to the employee confirming the outcome of the appeal and that this is a final decision.

For further information contact Paul Grindley on 0113 3993424 or paulgrindley@keeblehawson.co.uk.

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