Are You Being Made Redundant? Five Questions To Ask.
Being told you are being made redundant puts pressure on you and your family. Unfortunately, you are often stressed and anxious at the very time you need to be thinking clearly. In this post, we set out some questions to help you prepare for a redundancy process.
At its essence, any redundancy process involves your employer stating that they do not need you anymore. After years of hard work, long hours, interrupted holidays and dedication to a business, this can be a very difficult message to hear. Legal definitions of redundancy refer to job roles and employers will often say their decision is not personal, however it is obviously personal to you which is why you should fully engage with the process.
All redundancy processes will involve some type of redundancy consultation. Often this will take the form of a meeting with your employer. It is important to attend the consultation meetings and raise any concerns you have about the redundancy process. The types of questions you ask, or representations you make, will depend upon your personal situation. However, I set out below some of the more common types of queries raised:-
Is this a genuine redundancy?
This argument is used often (but by no means exclusively) when you are the only person at risk of redundancy. You may be of the view that there is no need for a reduction of staffing at all and you are being targeted for reasons wholly unrelated to any genuine restructure or redundancy. You should be ready to challenge your employer about the need for redundancies. Ask why, why now, what are they hoping the redundancy will achieve, what will happen to your duties and responsibilities, what alternatives have they considered etc. Make sure your concerns are known, make sure you obtain a response from your employer to your questions and that there is a record of any evidence you present contradicting their answers.
Is the pool of employees “at risk” of redundancy identified correctly?
Essentially, if your employer has identified a number of people from which they intend to select some employees to be made redundant, you want to be sure that the correct people are in the pool. Challenge your employer as to how they selected the employees involved. Identify those you believe should have been included but were not. Challenge your inclusion in the pool of employees at risk.
Is there an unfair procedure or selection criteria?
This argument is often used if there is a genuine redundancy situation and the pool of employees has been correctly identified, but there is a flaw in the procedure or selection process which would render any resulting redundancy unreasonable or unfair. Is the process discriminatory? Has too much weighting been given to some scores rather than others? Ask your employer why they have chosen the selection criteria they have.
Are you being unfairly selected for redundancy?
This argument is often used in situations where there is some scoring of employees within the selection process. You may feel unhappy about your scores or the person who will be doing the scoring. If you are being made redundant, you need to make sure you understand why you have been chosen.
Are there other positions available?
Your employer has an obligation to try and avoid redundancies wherever possible. That obligation extends throughout the redundancy consultation period all the way through your notice and until the termination of your employment. Therefore, if your employer has a vacancy which would be suitable for your skills and experience, they should offer that vacant post to you if it would avoid your redundancy.
The above is not an exhaustive list and there may be other issues or concerns you may have about your proposed redundancy. It is important that you use the consultation meetings to set out those concerns and obtain a response from your employer. After all, if there is a genuine redundancy situation and they are following a fair procedure, they should have no difficulty in answering your questions.
How can Lincs Law Employment Solicitors help you?
If you are going through a redundancy process and are worried about being made redundant, please call us on 01522 440512 for some initial help and guidance. You are under no obligation and you will not be charged for your enquiry. Alternatively, visit our website at www.lincslaw.co.uk/services/employees/resignation-dismissal-and-redundancy for more information.
Specialist Employment Law Solicitor
Lincs Law Employment Solicitors, Lincoln