Being a business owner is not all fun and games. Every now and then you have to make difficult decisions with major consequences. Dismissing an employee is never a pleasant task, but you are often left with no alternative. Perhaps the team member in question has breached their contract, acted inappropriately, or their quality of work has failed to meet the standards of your organization.
Whatever the reasons behind the dismissal, you need to make sure your decision is fair and justified. After all, you can’t just fire someone because you don’t get on with them. If an employee feels they have been let go unjustly, they might seek legal advice from a firm such as Beyond Law Group Solicitors. A lengthy litigation procedure is the last thing you need, and could have a severe impact on your business operations.
In order to protect yourself, your staff, and your business, here are a few tips to follow the correct procedure when dismissing an employee.
There are very few instances when an employee should be fired on the spot, without warning. Of course, in cases of severe misconduct or criminal action you would be entirely justified in the matter, but most instances of dismissal are the result of a long pattern or poor work or bad behavior. If you are having problems with a particular employee, it’s essential you communicate with them openly and honestly. Let them know that the standard of their work is not up to par, or that their continued absences are unacceptable. If you give them a chance to respond, it may be that they have a reason for their behavior, such as health or family issues.
This conversation will also give you a chance to provide a warning, letting them know that they need to change their ways or a future dismissal might be in the cards. This will give them the opportunity to improve their situation, and with luck, the issue can be swiftly resolved.
Follow the correct procedure
All companies will have an employee dismissal procedure, so make sure you follow yours to the letter. This will dictate the warning systems for your employees, and the number of chances they will get before their actions result in termination.
Rule out discrimination
You need to have a valid reason for terminating an employee’s contract, and you need to be absolutely certain it is not related to their identity. If they are being dismissed for anything even vaguely related to their gender, age, religion, or sexual orientation, you could end up facing legal action for discrimination.
When you meet with your employee to deliver the news, it’s essential you present evidence to support your dismissal. This might be examples of sub-standard work, miscommunications with clients, or statements from other members of staff. This will help you to justify your actions and prevent the possibility of an appeal.
If you have had to dismiss an employee, you will know it is an unpleasant task for everyone involved. But as long as you follow the correct procedure, you can protect yourself and your business in the process.