Today we treated our employees in our Duleek, Tallaght, Warwick, and India offices with a sweet treat.
Our employees were surprised with ice cream at lunchtime as a perfect mid-week rescue.
It certainly went down a treat!
Thesaurus Software had an interesting morning yesterday as we had our first Employment Law breakfast meeting. We met with a number of our customers at the Pillo Hotel in Ashbourne for a two hour employment law seminar.
The morning had a particular emphasis on our HR software Bright Contracts and the importance of having employment contracts and employee handbooks in the workplace. The topics under discussion throughout the morning included:
• Managing sick leave
• How to handle workplace theft
• Employee dismissal - what you need to know
• Employment law update: The Whistleblowing Bill and The Workplace Relations Bill
We were delighted with the turnout for the event and really enjoyed meeting our customers and answering their queries. With the morning being a great success, we are starting to plan more breakfast meetings in various locations across Ireland.
Introducing a contract of employment or a handbook for the first time to current employees, can be a difficult, tricky matter for many employers.
It is an area that many employers put on the long finger, or avoid doing until they have to.
Common reasons for not implementing employee documentation include:
• Lack of time
• Fear that employees will refute the terms of the documents and refuse to sign
• Anxiety that documentation will harm the relationship between management and staff, if the employees feel a new set of rules are being entrust upon then
• A false belief that it will restrict how management deal with employees
However, this does not have to be the case. It is possible to introduce new documentation without spending huge amounts of time, alienating your work force, or causing disruption.
The answer lies in good communications.
To help employers introduce employee documentation, we’ve created a short video outlining our four step guide to rolling out contracts and handbooks.
Alternatively, read our guide to Introducing Contracts & Handbooks to Existing Staff available here http://www.brightcontracts.ie/docs/introducing-contracts-handbooks-to-existing-staff/
Managing sick leave can be a challenge for every employer. It is essential that businesses find the balance between supporting those employees who are genuinely sick and minimising unnecessary absences in order to reduce costs. Costs can include:
The 2011 IBEC Guide to Managing Absence found that over 11 million days are lost to absence in Ireland every year, costing businesses €1.5 billion or €818 per employee. The report also found that employees missed 5.98 days on average, an absence rate of 2.6%.
Absence levels can be addressed by taking some simple steps:
Return to Work Interviews: these are informal meetings between a line manager and an employee on the first day the employee returns to work. Return to work interviews are consistently rated as one of the most effective methods of managing absenteeism levels and it is recommended that they should be included in all sickness absence policies.
This July the Government published the Protected Disclosures Bill 2013, commonly known as the “Whistleblowing Bill”. The aim of the bill is to combat corruption and promote a culture of public accountability and transparency. The Bill encourages workers to disclose information relating to wrongdoing in the workplace by offering protection against penalisation should they make a protected disclosure / blow the whistle.
When the Bill is enacted, likely to be later this Autumn, a whistleblower’s protection will include protection from dismissal or any form of penalisation by their employer. If an employee is found to have been dismissed unfairly for having made a protected disclosure, employers could be faced with compensation payments of up to 5 years remuneration. The usual service level of 1 year for cases of unfair dismissal will not apply to Whistleblowing cases.
In preparation of this new legislation, employers are advised to start reviewing their internal policies and procedures and to start considering establishing a robust whistleblowing policy to suit their business. Should you require assistance, Bright Contracts will be providing template policies and guidance on how deal with whistleblowing complaints.