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Unfair Dismissal? Navigating the Path to a Positive Exit



Recruitment Bee has supported people going through various instances of dismissal from both the employer and employee perspectives. Empathy and understanding are important to allow us to provide advice and guidance or signpost to relevant partners who can assist. Unfortunately, some of these cases, have been unfair dismissals which have resulted in tribunal hearings, highlighting the importance of handling dismissals fairly and in accordance with employment law.


By being well-informed about legal requirements, establishing a clear process, and understanding the reasons behind dismissal, both employers and employees can achieve a positive outcome during this challenging phase. In this blog post, we will discuss key considerations before resorting to dismissal and provide guidance on fostering a mutually beneficial resolution.


Regular Review Meetings


Maintaining open lines of communication through regular review meetings can be instrumental in addressing conduct or performance issues. By engaging in constructive discussions, employers can identify areas for improvement and provide employees with an opportunity to rectify any concerns before they escalate to the point of dismissal.


Following a Formal Process and avoid Unfair Dismissal


Employers should adhere to a formal process when addressing issues that may lead to dismissal. This involves clearly outlining the concerns to the employee, conducting thorough investigations, and providing the employee with a chance to respond. Following a fair process not only demonstrates professionalism but also ensures that decisions are made based on evidence and reasonable grounds.


Employee Accompaniment


During formal meetings related to potential dismissal, employees have the right to be accompanied by a colleague or trade union representative. This provision offers emotional support to the employee and promotes a sense of fairness and transparency throughout the process.


Outlining Steps for Improvement


It is crucial to clearly communicate to employees the steps they can take to improve their conduct or performance. By providing specific guidance, setting achievable targets, and offering necessary support, employers demonstrate their commitment to helping employees succeed and avoid dismissal.


Establishing an Appeals Procedure


To foster fairness and transparency, employers should establish an appeals procedure. This gives employees the opportunity to challenge a dismissal decision if they believe it was unjust. An effective appeals process ensures that all perspectives are considered, potentially leading to alternative resolutions and reducing the likelihood of legal disputes.


Protected Characteristics


Employers must be aware of dismissal grounds based on 9 protected characteristics under the Equality Act, such as pregnancy and age. Dismissing employees on these grounds is considered automatically unfair and can result in legal consequences. It is crucial to treat all employees with respect and ensure that dismissals are based on legitimate reasons unrelated to protected characteristics


Conclusion


Dismissal can be a challenging experience for both employers and employees. However, by implementing best practices and adhering to employment law, a positive exit can be achieved, minimising the potential for disputes and maintaining a positive employer brand. At Recruitment Bee, we are committed to supporting businesses in recruiting talented individuals who are the right fit for their organisations, mitigating the risks of bad hires.


Follow our page to stay updated on top tips and best practices. For more detailed information, we recommend referring to reputable sources such as ACAS (acas.org.uk) and the government's website on employing people (www.gov.uk/browse/employing-people).

 


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