The return to work post-COVID has obviously been different from one business to another and we are seeing a wide range of approaches from full time back at work, permanent home working or a hybrid approach. There are also those workplaces which by nature are unable to offer home working.
Whilst businesses have largely been able to adapt to these new arrangements, they do bring increased pressures on the business and additional risks that need to be correctly managed.
It is incredibly important going forward that all employees are aware of what is expected of them and what they can expect from their employers.
Given the new approach to work for many, I suspect most companies haven’t reviewed their employment documentation such as contracts of employment and employee handbooks. This begs the question – are employees now totally clear of their new working arrangements and do their contractual documents reflect this?
Managing your workforce in a small to medium-sized business can become a real headache as typically we don’t have the expertise in-house to deal with issues. We also don’t have the resources to employ a HR manager.
If you don’t already engage the services of an Employment Law professional we would strongly recommend looking into this as you could easily find yourselves running into problems if you haven’t undertaken a review of your employment documentation in the last two years.
Should you find yourselves with a problem there is an insurance policy available which can support you through it, known as Employment Practices Liability. Many of these policies also provide an advice line which you can refer to on a day-to-day basis to head off potential issues ahead of time.
Employment Practices Liability
The cover is designed to provide you with the legal support you need in the event of a potential employment tribunal. In addition to this, the cover will also pay any awards made against you should the tribunal not go your way.
If arranged correctly, this cover will support you regardless of whether you have followed the correct procedures or consulted with a specified advice line.
Beware however of cheap imitations!
There are a number of providers of HR services, who also supply an ‘insurance backed’ helpline service. Whilst these services are cost-effective and have a place, the insurance cover provided comes with conditions which make claiming particularly difficult.
It may now be worth reviewing your insurance provision and considering whether you can afford to ignore the protection that Employment Practices Liability cover can provide.
If you’d like to know any more, feel free to get in touch on 0114 398 4498 or visit: www.actusinsurance.co.uk