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How to ensure formal discipline runs smoothly
When dealing with a disciplinary matter it’s crucial that you keep up to date with all legislation changes and best practice so that the steps you take won’t result in you ending up with a Tribunal claim.
The below points are top tips to avoid the most common failings during the disciplinary process.
- Make the employee aware of the possible consequences of the disciplinary action. Ensure all this information is included in the invite letter. If dismissal is possible, make the employee aware of this from the start – this then allows the employee the chance to defend them self.
- Provide all the evidence that you have to the employee so they have sight of this before the disciplinary meeting
- Set out the allegations you have regarding the employee’s misconduct clearly, in writing
- Ensure you follow a series of warnings, but also bear in mind that for something very serious, dismissal for a first offence could be possible. Your disciplinary procedure and rules will guide you.
- Gather as much information as possible, try not to rely on one person’s evidence.
- Don’t forget to offer the right of representation by a work place colleague or trade union representative
- Remember to offer the right to appeal against any sanction – even when the employee tells you during the hearing they don’t wish to appeal. Ensure the right to appeal is offered in writing clearly, stating whom they should appeal to and stating the timeframe by which this must be completed.
The disciplinary process can be quite a stressful time for an employer particularly if it is not something you deal with on a regular basis. If the occasion arises that you need to take disciplinary action then, if you follow the above tips, it should make your procedure run more smoothly.
If at all in doubt, then don not hesitate to contact to contact Employer Solutions who will be very happy to talk you through your circumstances and advise appropriately.
Anita Manfredi of Employer Solutions – QCS Expert HR Contributor