The starting point for successful employee relations is knowing exactly where everyone stands with an employment contract.
You want sensible contracts written in easy straightforward language everyone can understand and that don’t tie you in knots.
It’s vital you get the balance right. Your employment contract should be robust and comprehensive to protect your business against all the likely situations that could come up – but you won’t want to be tied up in over-complex and rigid processes that prevent you from being flexible when you need to be.
Why do my employees need contracts?
In part, because it makes sense for everyone to know what their rights and obligations are to prevent disputes arising in the first place, but also because it’s the law. All permanent employees are entitled to be given written particulars of their employment (an employment contract) within two months of starting work (in April 2020, the law is changing to include workers as well as employees).
If you don’t, there is no defence and a Tribunal can award the employee compensation of up to £2,100.
What should I include in the contract?
Whether you are employing a key senior worker or an apprentice, full or part-time, we will advise you on what should be included in your employment contracts to protect your business and tailor it to meet your needs. To ensure you comply with the latest developments in employment law and good practice we will regularly review contracts and help you implement changes if needed.
Getting the balance right
When you want us to review an existing employment contract or policy or create new ones for you, we will always ensure you have easy to understand documents that are watertight – meaning your staff can’t exploit a loophole or ambiguity against you. Sometimes it means emphasising what is contractual, and what you could leave as discretionary. Often it will mean ensuring your restrictive covenants are fit for purpose.
At the same time, we appreciate there will be situations where you want built-in flexibility so you can adapt to changes. You won’t want a redundancy or disciplinary process to grind to a halt all because an employee has decided to go ‘off sick’. Nor do you want the burden of staff having a contractual right to be accompanied by a trade union representative or colleague at every single meeting with their line manager.
With our contracts, policies and procedures you will always get a sensible, practical approach that is both reasonable to your staff and allows you to manage them effectively.
Always fit for purpose
Following the wrong procedure or having an unsuitable contract will be a waste of your time. Making the wrong decision could be an expensive mistake.
Our expertise covers the whole range from the most complex director’s service agreement to the simplest junior employee’s employment contract.
If you need help, we can guide and train your staff to understand how to put the contracts into practice.
We cover every angle
As well as working on the areas you know you have concerns over, we’ll use our experience to suggest any other terms or policies we think you’d benefit from. Offering suggestions for improvement to your particular business is all part of the service.
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