Alternatives to lay-offs and redundancies
If your company’s financial situation is heading downhill, laying off employees or making them redundant will of course be one of the first solutions that come to mind. However, it is worth also finding out about the other options, especially if the tight situation looks like it will only be temporary.
Using working hours arrangements, such as a work hours bank, you can regulate the working hours and create flexibility for seasonal work. In this way, you can provide more work for your employees during busy periods and use this extra time to accumulate paid leave for them during quiet periods. During busy periods, special consideration must be given to employees’ work capacity.
You can also potentially avoid lay-offs or redundancies by transferring annual leave. Remember, however, to first negotiate with the employee about this.
Through further training, alternatively, you can develop your employees in order to respond to the changing work environment. Before making training decisions, discuss with the employee about their interest in further training and the possible changes it would bring to their work duties.
Offering other available work before making employees redundant is a one of an employer’s legal obligations. As an employer, you must always find out whether there would be another open position in your company for the employee that is facing employment termination. You are also obliged to arrange any further training for the new duties if this is reasonable from both the employer’s and the employee’s perspective.