- How to Avoid Blue Monday Blues
- IR35 Changes Review by Treasury
- Are You “Good Work” Ready?
- Blog Monitoring Social Media
- There are Nine Million Lonely People in the UK – Are Your Employees Among Them?
- How to Help Your Team Build Good Mental Health
- Draw Your Team Together to Create Solutions to Problems
- The Works Christmas “Do” (and Don’ts!)
- The Only Way is Up
- A Gentler Route to Approaching a Poor Performance Conversation
- Offering Sabbaticals
- How to Stimulate Intellectual Curiosity in Yourself and Your Team
- Help Your Team Become More Time Affluent
- Bug Off!
- Winter Blues
- Pension and PHI
- Beware! Voluntary Redundancy Can Lead to Unfair Dismissal Claims
- Can an Employer Make a Sick Employee Redundant?
- Are Employees Entitled to Time off to Attend a Funeral?
- Are You Looking for Mr Right*?
- Are All Your Balls Up in the Air?
- Should the UK Offer 24/7 Childcare for Working Parents?
- Gone Today, Here Tomorrow?
- How to Create Informal Mentoring Opportunities
- Perception of Disability
- How Managers Can Help Grieving Workers
- Not All Carrots Are the Same! Money and Motivation
- How to Stop Feeling So Stressed
- Can Dilbertian Thinking Improve Results?
- Court of Appeal Rules in New Holiday Pay Calculation Case
New Year’s HR Resolutions
Here are our top tips.
Change your viewpoint
HR is a business function. It’s there to ensure compliance. Add value to the bottom line and to help operations people do their jobs better. Don’t do their jobs for them. Step into their shoes. You make a successful journey by looking at the map (or app) at place you want to arrive and work back from that. It’s the same with HR. Find out where the manager wants to be. Then you can consider whether that’s the best option, repercussions, risks and tactics.
Keep a record of any conversation you have with an employee about any disciplinary matter (whether informal and formal) or grievance. A problem may seem small at first, but it will come back to bite you later on if left unmanaged. If you have notes of what happened and have written to the employee to confirm what was discussed, you’ll be in a much stronger position to get where you want to go.
Don’t ignore poor performance
Poor performance is the single most common employment issue. Employees are expensive so don’t bury your head in the sand if an employee is not performing properly. Even minor under-performance has a negative impact on profit and your team. If you catch it early, it can often be fixed without too much fuss.
Nip problems in the bud
If I had a £5 for every time I’ve come across a situation where a manager has ignored a workplace employment problem for months (or years) I’d be a rich woman. As soon as you identify an issue investigate and deal with it. Trust me, it’s so much easier that way. Discipline is about correcting problems, not firing people. The sooner you deal with it, the more likely you are to be able to rescue the situation. And if an employee has no intention of meeting and maintaining your standards, let’s be honest, the sooner you part company the better.
Before taking any corrective action, investigate to find out what’s going on. This means taking a holistic look at the facts and then deciding if you need to deal with it informally or formally. Sometimes it’s neither. Recently we advised in the case of two people who worked in the same department and just didn’t get on. There was an incident between them, but it turned out they’d both been somewhat to blame and it seemed like a spat which had just blown a bit out of control. Both were upset. Both were grinding their teeth and lodging grievances. We had a discussion with both to see if we could achieve a working agreement. So far, so good.
Act quickly, sanction softly
If an employee hasn’t responded well to an informal approach get formal. Only have one or two informal conversations, then show you mean business. Where it’s wise to show leniency is in the sanction. Properly consider not just the offence and the facts, but any mitigation too. Give the benefit of the doubt as regards the sanction and err on the side of caution.
Follow your disciplinary procedure
The single biggest reason or employers losing at tribunal is failure to follow your procedure. Read it before you start any disciplinary action. Then follow it to the letter.
Take advice before you shoot yourself in the foot
So many managers make mistakes and then it takes ages to bail them out of trouble. A commercial view is not necessarily the view an employment judge would make, so before you do or say anything that can come back to bite call us. We are always here to help you get things right!
Our office is closed between midday on Christmas Eve and 9am on Monday 5th January 2015.
From all the Russell HR team, we wish you a peaceful and happy Christmas.
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