From Hiring to Firing
and everything in between
Manage and Motivate Your Team 
to Maintain Excellent Performance
Protect your business and your team from the distraction, stress and enormous cost of the Employment Tribunal

Areas of advice, support and representation include:

  • HR and legal advice 
  • 'Contracts' and Statements of Particulars of Employment

  • Compliant and Best Practice Policies and Procedures

  • Performance and Absence Management

  • Disciplinary, Dismissal and Redundancy 

  • Bullying and Harassment

  • Grievance, Whistleblowing and Discrimination

  • Settlement (formerly Compromise) Agreements 

  • Employment Tribunals

  • Disciplinary Investigations, including Bullying and Harassment

  • Training - from Hiring to Firing and everything in between

  • Mediation

It's not fair

In my Employment Law work over the years, the most common cry I would hear is "It's not fair - it's stacked against me". Or "The law's on their side".

 

Both Employers and Employees express this solid belief. Both are right - yet both are wrong!

Based on 25 years as a qualified Barrister this is how I explain it

If you're an Employer and don't meet your obligations (contracts, polices, training) and follow the procedures (recruitment, discipline, grievance, dismissal, discrimination, redundancy and more) then of course the law is against you - and rightly so.

If you're an Employee and equally have failed to follow procedures, then the law is against you too.
 

The Employer has a greater expectation placed on them to gather reliable cogent evidence - so if you haven't done so, it may well be held against you.

Where the grey areas arise is where the case is unclear and both have endeavoured to follow procedure.  Then it's down to who the Employment Tribunal believes and, sadly, that is a bit of a lottery - but it's the best we can do. Which is why so many cases end with a negotiated settlement. 

Of course, the better prepared your are to fight an Employment Tribunal hearing - and make it look like you are fully prepared to do so - then the more likely you will achieve a better negotiated outcome.

Your People. Your Profits.
I've created the People Power Programme specifically for small businesses, based on 20 years working with businesses like yours and proud, passionate business owners just like you.
This Programme is designed to help small businesses who have a few employees - maybe 10, 20 or even 50 or more - not enough to have your own HR Manager.
 
In summary, let's empower You and Your Team to generate your business success. We focus on 3 areas:

1.  Employment Law Compliance and Managing People

2.  Confidence, Performance and Team Relationships 

3.  Skills building

 

EMPLOYERS BEWARE

the ‘compensation culture’ is stronger than ever

Compliance First

This is Johnston Consulting's concise, yet comprehensive, employment pack providing you all the contracts and policies you need - and more.  In a nutshell, it will let you get on with your work with peace of mind, for an affordable fixed fee.  

 

If you feel you don't need the whole People Power Programme, at the very least make sure you have Compliance First.

100,000 Employment Tribunal cases

every year

Employment disputes are a fact of life for all Employers. So, it’s all about how to minimise them.  When it comes to Employment Law, your best defence is to ‘Be Prepared’. 

'Compliance First' is Johnston Consulting's concise, yet comprehensive, employment pack providing you all the contracts and policies you need - and more.  In a nutshell, it will let you get on with your work for an affordable fixed fee.  

We don't provide an 'insured' advice service, which many solicitors and consultants do, as there are too many pitfalls.  Even if it does sound financially attractive, remember that it is an insurance policy -  and we all know that insurers are often guilty of not paying up or of making it so difficult to comply with their policies that it becomes more of a hindrance than a help!

These insured advice services seem to me to be a very clear conflict of interests - because the insured advice given has to satisfy the insurance policy not your business.

 

Ask for more details about these concerns.  If you decide that you would like to have an insured service, we can recommend one of our Associates.

Dealing with employee disputes

is as easy as 1, 2,  3…

STEP 1: Comply with your legal obligations

Have an up-to-date written statement of your employees’ terms of employment, as well as essential policies & procedures.  Provide training on ‘following the rules’ and adhere to them. Don’t just pay lip service to your policies or keep them hidden in a drawer! 

STEP 2: Talk the talk & Walk the walk

Provide training on ‘following the rules’ and adhere to them. Don’t just pay lip service to your policies or keep them hidden in a drawer! 

STEP 3: Nip it in the bud

If an Employee ‘breaks the rules’, don’t ignore it; at the very least have an ‘informal chat’.  If it's importat, put it in writing, or at least keep a note for yourself.  In serious cases, don’t shy away from following your disciplinary procedure.  Be 'firm but fair' or 'Hard on issues, Softer on people'.

No-one wants to end up in an Employment Tribunal 


- Think of the bad publicity
- Think of the lost time away from your core business
- Think of the cost: a compensation risk of £5,000 to £50,000 or more
- Think of the stress on you, your managers and all employees involved

So, it makes senses to have Compliance First.

 

Phone or email Scott Johnston for advice (or, if you already have contracts and policies, a free Health Check Audit).

If you frequently have Employee issues, you might like to have a regular Employment Law Clinic...  ask for details.

STILL NOT SURE?  

Ask yourself these 4 questions:

1.  Do you issue a contract of employment or statement of terms and conditions to all your employees? 

- If Yes, is it up to date?  If it has not been updated in the past 12 months, ask for a free Health Check audit

- If No, you are seriously at risk of paying a ‘fine’: up to 4 weeks wages per Employee AND up to 25% additional compensation should you be found ‘guilty’ at an Employment Tribunal of unfair dismissal or discrimination (and more)

Beware:  You are legally required to issue this 'contract' within 8 weeks of an Employee starting with you.  It is better to do it BEFORE they begin their employment so that it avoids confusion about the terms and conditions of employment developing later.

2.  Do you have a Policies and Procedures Handbook, setting out essential policies in Plain English?

- If Yes, is it up to date?   If it has not been updated in the past 12 months, ask for a free Health Check audit

- If No, you are seriously jeopardising your best defence – i.e. that you had taken reasonable steps to prevent situations arising.

3.  Do you provide training to all Employees on your Policies and Procedures?

 - If Yes, is it effective or do Employees just get a ‘tick in the box’?  Are policies actively followed - or do they just live in a drawer!

-  If No, again, you are seriously jeopardising your best defence – i.e. that you had taken reasonable steps to prevent situations arising.

4.  Do Directors and Managers know how to deal with Employees who ‘break the rules’?  Can they handle Grievance and Disciplinary issues?  Do they know the procedures?

-  If No, you are seriously jeopardising your chances at Tribunal and face hefty compensation.

To achieve 'Compliance First' act NOW.

Phone or email Scott Johnston for advice - or a free Health Check audit. 

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