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Employment and Migration Blog

Heading down the redundancy path

Posted by on 6 Feb 2013

I was recently asked to comment on an article for "In the Black" magazine (a CPA publication) on 'what makes a successful redundancy' - and I thought I'd share a snippet of what I said...

The two main ingredients as I see it are:

1. Plan!!! Make sure you know (a) the proper process you have to follow (yes there is a particular process) & (b) the payments you have to make to affected employees (typically notice, severance & accrued leave), so you can tick off all your legal obligations and avoid unnecessary repercussions (If you don't know or you're not 100% sure of what each of the obligations entail please get in contact with me for further details)

2. Consider the impact of the decision on the lives of the affected employees - & offer outplacement services & if appropriate counselling to help in some way cushion the blow a little - it can make a huge difference!

What's not so simple is handling the emotions of those affected - whilst it might be viewed as an opportunity to reinvent themselves to some (particularly if they receive a big payout to help them along) - it can be extremely devastating for others. So the least we can do to assist both the employee & the reputation of the business / company making the decision - is to get the above things right!!

It is also worth considering alternative courses of action in lieu of redundancies - for example getting a bit creative with your employees current work arrangements (with their consent) - such as putting them all on a 9 day fortnight for a specified period. I've seen theses strategies work and when employees are made aware that they are being suggested / implemented to try and avoid redundancies, most are happy to back them.

If you are willing to share your experiences with redundancy - in particular, what you think worked & what didn't - it would be great to hear from you.

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