At the end of each year we find
ourselves reflecting on our achievements, mistakes or missed opportunities of
the last 12 month and looking forward to what the year ahead may hold.
We will make resolutions that we don’t
keep such as living a healthier life style and going to the gym knowing deep
down it won’t happen. But most of us will at some point be faced with an
employment related issue such as seeking a new job with better prospects or
progressing within our existing Company or a more sinister issue such as a
Employers are likely to face two inevitable key issues
during the season of good tidings. These are holiday and time off requests made
late and fitness to work impaired by alcohol.
As most employers’ holiday year coincide with the calendar
year and contracts stipulating all annual leave must be taken in the year it is
accrued -with some exemptions- employers often find themselves short staffed
during mid to end December.
So, how to avoid the problem? Firstly no employee has any
right to a particular day off.
I had the great pleasure of
meeting the most incredible business woman this week. Ellie Goff the
Owner/Director of Butterfly Lodge Education also known at Wellies On is the
embodiment of today’s women in business.
After a successful teaching
career Ellie brought her dream into reality when Butterfly Lodge a 40
acre care farm based in Abberton opened its doors. Their qualified teachers
combined with Occupational Therapists provide a therapeutic and educational
approach to learning. The farms service users have the opportunity to get
involved with worthwhile, meaningful activities which stimulate the mind and
keep the body active as well as leading to recognised qualifications.
|Don't forget that on 1st October 2013 national minimum wage increases for all levels.
21 and over goes up from £6.19 to £6.31
18 to 20 rises from £4.98 to £5.03
Under 18 moves from £3.68 to £3.72
And Apprentice* increases from £2.65 to £2.68
Employers ensure you make the relevant adjustments and employees make sure you are being paid correctly.
A number of Company’s now allow employees to use their own
devices, such as smart-phones, computers and tablets, to carry out their
duties. By your own devices have clear benefits: including a creating a more
effective way of working, increased flexibility and productivity which all
contribute to a happier working environment boosting morale.
However as with everything there are pitfalls. With the
increased growth or employees using their own personal devices to do their work
consideration should be made regarding the level of security on these personal
Harries Human Resources reported in our blog dated 10
June 2013 “Tribunal Fees Confirmed” about the changes in full swing for the
employment tribunal services.
On and after 29 July 2013 the tribunal service
has implemented their charging structure for anyone wishing to make a claim
based on a two level fee platform.
However, trade union UNISON has launched a legal challenge against
the fee introduction. This judicial
review, if granted could revoke the new fee charges. The union has been granted
permission from the Royal Courts for a review hearing in October 2013.
It is a well known fact that it is good practice to maintain
good audit trails through written records of discussion to log performance both
good and bad in respect of employees. However is it a good idea to allow an
employee to make an audio recording of a formal or informal meeting?
A number of employers believe that when an employee attends
a meeting, such as a grievance or disciplinary hearing, particularly if they
waive their statutory right to be unaccompanied, it is reasonable to allow them
to tape record the meeting if they request to do so.
June a debate was sparked across a multitude of social network portals asking
the question; Does good looks improve your employment prospects?
internet dating website beautifulpeople.com planning to launch a recruitment
agency, it further perpetuates the belief that looks count for a lot both
personally and now professionally. The concept from beautifulpeople.com is to
enable employers to post their vacancies on the website and invite good looking
applicants to submit their CV’s.
It has not been very long since the public fury over the
scandal involving several MP’s and their expenses. Therefore, one would assume
nobody would risk the potential fallout from submitting expenses for personal
items or mileage they have not incurred in the proper performance of their
Sadly it appears that many employees, given the opportunity,
may still see fit to embellish their expenses. Based on our calculations up to a
quarter of expenses are ‘fiddled’ and as such fraudulent.
The Public Interest
Disclosure Act 1998 is often referred to as the Whistle-blowing Act. Employees
who "blow the whistle" on their employer by making a protected
disclosure, such as a exposé concerning an alleged criminal offence or other
wrongdoing, have the legal right not to be dismissed, selected for redundancy
or subjected to any detriment due to the disclosure.
A disclosure made in the
public interest will be protected where the employee makes the allegations base
on a reasonable belief of wrong doing by the employer.