Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Wind Down
The Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has become a life saver for most businesses and employees across the country. Unfortunately, there are some businesses which have been forced to close permanently or make reductions in staffing levels, however there is no denying that the aftermath may have been a lot worse.
September and October’s furlough changes…
We’re now coming to the end of the furlough scheme, with October being the final month. September 1st saw businesses around the country having to contribute 10% to a furloughed employee’s wage, with the Government then paying the remaining 70%. Employer contributions such as NIC and pensions have been something businesses have had to contribute towards since August.
The final stage in the furlough scheme comes into effect on October 1st. Employers will then be expected to contribute 20% to a furloughed employee’s wage. Again, the Government will pay the remaining amount to total 80% of an employees’ normal wage when furloughed.
In addition, the Government is set to award a £1000 bonus per employee to employers who have retained furloughed employees until 31st January! Details shortly to be released.
If your business needs to make redundancies…
The Coronavirus Job Retention Wind Down might be daunting to some businesses. No longer will businesses be able to rely on the furlough scheme to ensure their employees are kept in work. With an employees’ wage increasing to 100% across their entire working week and the fact that the happy balance between supply and demand isn’t quite there, some employers will be facing redundancies.
Redundancies aren’t just associated with smaller companies with limited funds either. Every week we’re seeing large, multi-site companies making redundancies due to the economic effects Coronavirus has presented. Regardless of your business size, if you are thinking of making redundancies then you can’t afford to get the process wrong. The redundancy process is one of the most contentious areas of employment law, therefore the correct procedure needs to be followed to ensure the process is fair and reasonable and in line with your legal obligations. Anything less can result in an employment tribunal being brought against your company.
But redundancies aren’t the only option…
Have you thought about short time working, reducing hours/flexible working or re-locating your employees to a different job role?
All of the above are drastic changes that can severely impact the work/life/money balance of your employees; therefore you cannot simply implement these changes without consultation and agreement with your employees. However, if your current contracts of employment already include such clauses that cover these options, then you may not need the employees’ express consent. However, it’s best practice to discuss any drastic employment changes with your employees first. Not only will this help them understand the reasons for your decision, but it will also give them the opportunity to ask you any questions should they have any as well as maintaining good employment relations.
For advice and support regarding the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme or anything mentioned above, please get in touch using the form to the right! Our employment law experts are helping businesses like yours’ 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and we’ve no plans of slowing down!