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Redundancy - Consultation Meetings?

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Liz Fox
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:15 Quote
So I have the first consultation meeting tomorrow. This is the first redundancy process I've been through so I'm not entirely sure what to expect. Has anyone any ideas/suggestions of things I should be asking?

xxx

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Brad Burton
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:17 Quote

Yea when's it likely to happen, so you can get the timing right on nicking your laptop.

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Paul Griffiths
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:35 Quote


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Nick Hutt
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:35 Quote

Initially - just listen. Just try and understand how the process is going to work and ask questions that relate to that. Find out what the "timetable" si and get clear in your mind what happens next in the process. You should have it clearly explained to you which ROLES are being made redundant and what criteria is being used to decide who stays and who goes. To be fair there may be some initial vagueness whilst the company themselves works out exactly how they are obliged to go about this process. I've been through this myself - more than once.

Am going to see if I can find you a useful website to look at that explains the process - back in a mo

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Nick Hutt
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:40 Quote

http://www.businesslink.gov.uk/bdotg/action/detail?type=RESOURCES&itemId=1073792401

Take a look at the above. It explains the obligations of the employer which varies rather dependng on how many people are potentially affected. This may just hep you "see where they are coming from" which might be helpful when you can't see why they are behaving the way they are (if you see what I mean). I found the ACAS help line very useful in the past - 08457 47 47 47

Good luck and, whatever happens, you'll be OK...............

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Charmian Brewer
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:43 Quote

Emma Hubbuck, Ops assistant at Bridgwater, as an HR specialist, should be able to help with up to date info. I'll email her a link.

In the past I've had to chair and been on the receiving end of the consultation process. The first meeting usually outlines their plans, expectations, job roles to go, options available and timescales. This one is a good time to listen as you'll be provided with ways to feedback your questions and concerns for them to respond.

 

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Liz Fox
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:50 Quote
Thanks everyone. Basically, theres around 60 of us at risk, and only 31 positions available under the new structure. Vacancies go online on Friday and everyone has a week to apply. Interviews will happen during the first two weeks of December. I'm not sure when the second consultation is, but the third will be around 15/16th December. As those who are being made redundant go bye-byes on the 16th - which I'm dreading!

I'm normally positive about these things and I'm trying still to be, but I'm up against 8 other people at my level and I'm pretty sure I've got the least experience as I was only promoted to this back in May!

My fingers are crossed though...what will be will be...

xxx

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Dean Fosbury
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 16:59 Quote

you go girl!

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Christopher Slay
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 17:01 Quote

If you want to try and keep your job then prepare a personal balance sheet illustrating your net positive contribution to the Company and how you intend to contribute in what you feel the new structure is likely to be.

It could make all the difference between passive acceptance typical of such situations.

Good luck, it is a horible situation to be in, but remember the sun will come up tomorrow.

Positive realism

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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 17:03 Quote

Brush up on interview skills. Talking a good talk is more important than petty things like experience or actually being able to do stuff. I mean just look what Brad has acheived Seriously though, don't be shy about playing up how great you are, or cunningly shoehorning in relevant things you are great at even if the interviewer hasn't asked the question.

Also, and most importantly, don't let it give you an ulcer. I've been at risk plenty of times, made redundant once and things always seem to work out ok.

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Ashley Wilkes
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 17:04 Quote

Likewise, I have chaired the company side of this on more than one occasion when dealing with large numbers of redundancies.

The role of a representative is absolutely critical to the process and a good representative can make the whole thing very much more pleasant. Remember, you will probably be meeting with people you know well and they may even be friends. Nobody likes redundancies, least of all the people who have to tell others the bad news. You will also be representing colleagues and friends. Your ability to listen well, put forward the views of your colleagues and report back clearly is essential to avoiding acrimony.

Above all else, do NOT be misled into thinking that this is a "negotiation". It isn't! It is a communication process. However, a good employer will seek to find areas of agreement wherever possible. A good representative can help to find these areas of agreement. Equally, you are not appointed as a representative to become a lone crusader. You need to make considerable effort to find out what your colleagues want to know and to be sure that you are representing their views (even if your own views are different). Your primary role is to be a conduit for questions & answers.

A common mistake is to think that you will be in the firing line for taking on the role. In reality, the person who takes the representative role seriously and does the job conscientiously and professionally is highly likely to find that they keep their job!!!

The company should explain all this to you, but if you are in any doubt, do get in touch.

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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 18:27 Quote

Unfortunately, in my various roles, I have had to make literally 100's of people redundant. I hate it. Everytime it is just as painful.

But, Steve is spot on. What the employer is doing is adhering to a process required by law to communicate to yourself what is going on. Your role is principally to listen, and respond as appropriate.

However, in this role, there are some selections to be made from the pool of potential redundancies. Here is a potential opportunity for you. The law requires (albeit almost unenforceably) for this selection to be made fairly. In reality, good employers will simply want the best to be kept on, and will have devised a way of selecting who they are. If it involves an interview, you are on an equal foot with the others. Length of service is no longer an acceptable criteria as blatantly as previous, and for me competancy in the role would be more important by miles.

I hope this goes well for you. But if not, it will be a start of something new. Almost everyone I know who has been through it has come out the other side positively. And all your friends here will work to make that as certain as possible.

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Ashley Wilkes
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 18:44 Quote
Quote:

The law requires (albeit almost unenforceably) for this selection to be made fairly. In reality, good employers will simply want the best to be kept on, and will have devised a way of selecting who they are.

How true!

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Jo Evans
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 19:11 Quote

There is a lot of very good advice above. In my view, having been on the receiving end and on the dishing out side the most important thing is to ascertain how they have or are choosing the roles to go. This is the core of the redundancy process and in a reshuffle often overlooked.

Objective testing of their criteria for choosing roles can be interesting and do ask them about who they have used externally to evaluate their methods, what scoring they intend to use etc. Keep copious notes of what is said. It really is all about learning how they intend to do this and what choices have already been made.

Keep positive and get your CV up to date maximising your skills and experience, even though you have a recent promotion, the experience you have been exposed to may be higher than some other candidates for new positions.

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Charmian Brewer
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Posted: 18th Nov 2008 - 19:21 Quote
Quote:

Above all else, do NOT be misled into thinking that this is a "negotiation". It isn't! It is a communication process.

This is not true Steve. It is a consultation period which gives the employees the opportunity to put their case in the event they consider the decision is unjustifiable. I have been involved in consultations that have resulted in decisions to be overturned.

 

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