Redundancy – What can employers learn from the collapse of Monarch?

We have seen in the news how nearly 1800 employees of the airline Monarch have been made redundant following the collapse of the company. According to the news, unions acting on behalf of the staff have expressed concerns regarding the handling of the redundancy process and it remains to be seen whether Tribunal proceedings will be issued against Monarch for their alleged failings. The main issue is their alleged failure to give the employees notice of the intention to make people redundant and to pay redundancy pay. Redundancy situations are a difficult and unpleasant situation for all concerned but particularly for those employees affected. Employers must ensure they follow a fair process when going through a redundancy situation or face future proceedings against them. There are differences in the procedures depending on the number of employees affected and employers should ensure they take the appropriate advice before commencing any redundancy process.

A few general points to remember when commencing a redundancy process are:

  1. Have a clear process in place and ensure that your employees are aware of your process
  2. Consult with the employees individually to advise them of the reasons for the redundancies, the selection criteria and why they are being considered.
  3. Choose the redundant staff carefully
  4. Have a selection criteria that is fair, objective and consistent. Examples are attendance record, disciplinary record and skills, experience and qualifications.
  5. Give the correct notice of dismissal and ensure the employee is paid correctly
  6. There is no statutory obligation to have an appeal procedure for redundancy dismissals but it is good practice to offer an appeal.

Redundancy processes can be complex and should not be undertaken lightly. Should you require legal advice in relation to any employment matter please contact our employment law department on 02890329801.