Minimising Risk – Disciplinary Hearings
HR Solutions recently presented a free webinar providing guidance on how to conduct the perfect disciplinary investigation. If during a disciplinary investigation meeting the employee was unable to provide a satisfactory explanation for their behaviour and there is a case to answer, then a disciplinary hearing is probably on the horizon. In this article, we look at some key problem areas and provide guidance to help with a disciplinary hearing.
When is a disciplinary hearing the right course of action?
A lot of resource goes into a disciplinary hearing, so make sure that this is the appropriate route to follow by considering the following factors:
An informal warning would be inappropriate
Depending on the circumstances, it can be more appropriate to simply have a documented discussion or to issue a letter of concern, rather than progress to a formal hearing.
The matter is a conduct issue
'Conduct' is when someone has essentially chosen not to do the right thing. This is opposed to a 'capability' issue, where someone can't do the right thing but not for want of trying. This is usually due to limitations such as skills or health.
The employee ought to have known better
There should be rules or instructions that have not been followed. Alternatively, it might simply be a common-sense issue. For example, even though there may not be a social media policy, it should be obvious that posting something which is explicit and offensive about your employer online, where other colleagues or even clients are likely to see it, is not acceptable! It is important to note that allegations would need to be carefully worded if there is not a written rule that has been broken.
It would be consistent
It should be the case that the type of conduct in question would always lead to formal action. There should not be any examples of anyone having done something similar who did not face disciplinary action as a consequence, (unless there is a good reason for treating the two situations differently).
How do you address the allegations to the employee?
- On a disciplinary invite letter, the allegations should be clearly set out. They should state what the employee has done wrong, when this happened and include brief details of what happened.
- The employee must be able to understand exactly what they are being accused of, so they may fully prepare for the meeting.
- There must be no reason for the employee to doubt that the matters of concern are 'alleged', as any evidence that the outcome of the hearing is pre-determined may seriously undermine the meeting and may even result in the outcome being procedurally unfair.
- Disciplinary action can only be taken in respect of allegations that were set out in the invite letter, and only in respect of those which are found to be true. For this reason, allegations must be carefully worded, and there should be an allegation for each matter of concern.
- When there has been misconduct which is serious enough to warrant a disciplinary hearing, the circumstances usually warrant at least two separate allegations. It is important to distinguish these and to deal with each allegation in turn. By doing so, if one of the allegations fall down, you may still be able to take some form of action based on the other.
Further HR Guidance
Free HR webinars: for more detailed guidance, you can sign up for the free webinars on minimising risk by HR Solutions at https://www.hrsolutions-uk.com/upcoming-webinars/
Watch HR webinars on demand: for your convenience all HR Solutions’ webinars are recorded so you can watch them on demand at: https://www.hrsolutions-uk.com/resources/videos-webinars-archive/
Latest News from
Commercialising Quantum in the UK – Do we have what we need to develop a world leading Quantum industry?03/03/2021 12:33:00
In 2021 techUK will be kick-starting a brand new Commericlaising Quantum campaign, as part of the Tech and Innovation programme.
Chancellor announces £520 million ‘Help to Grow’ scheme with a focus on digital adoption for UK SMEs03/03/2021 11:25:00
The Treasury announced a new 'Help to Grow' initiative, providing £520 million to help SMEs recover from the COVID-19 pandemic by adopting digital technologies and providing management training to boost productivity and innovation.
Geospatial: Moving from Maps to Machine Learning02/03/2021 16:25:00
Geospatial is no longer just about maps. With the focus on data and insight, Spatial Data Science will play a growing part in any sector where location is a factor. Nabil Lodey, CEO Envitia writes as part of techUK's #GeospatialFuture campaign
Age-Appropriate Design Code comes into force in six months02/03/2021 15:20:00
Today marks the halfway point of the ICO’s Age-Appropriate Design Code transition period, which will come to a close on 2 September 2021.
It’s time to talk about location02/03/2021 11:25:00
Baz Lokat, Senior Consultant from GeoPlace explores how standardisation can be the evolution of innovation for Geospatial Data, as part of techUK's #GeospatialFuture campaign.
Putting the D’s back into UK R&D - Why we mustn’t forget the other D01/03/2021 16:25:00
The ambition of the UK Government R&D Roadmap, released in July last year, is to make the UK a global leader in science and technology.
techUK's Geospatial Data Campaign Week!01/03/2021 15:28:00
This week techUK members are coming together to envision a future powered by Geospatial intelligence for the UK.
RUSI calls on Government to layout its vision for tackling cyber fraud in a dedicated strategy01/03/2021 14:38:00
New independent report calls for greater collaboration between all stakeholders and a ‘stronger central direction’ to defeat cybercrime.
Digital transformation in UK policing – the road ahead01/03/2021 11:25:00
Guest Blog: Digital transformation within policing and the criminal justice system has gathered pace in recent years, and the pandemic in particular has been a key driver; but Raj Singh, CEO, Innotatio, warns that successive waves of future transformation will bring with them fresh challenges.