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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 47917
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I have been with my current employer for nearly 27 years. May

Resolved Question:

I have been with my current employer for nearly 27 years. May last year I took up a new position (same job grade etc) setting up a new team and process after a number of discussions with the relevant head of and director about the new role.
Unfortunately this role has not developed as expected and I have also had three changes in line manager during this time with no clear support on requirements, vision and strategy, having said that the rollout and process of this new function was delivered on time with good feedback although team morale is low due to the number of changes.

I have not been happy in this position for some time so had a discussion with my current line manager I think prompted by the recent death of my father a couple of months ago that my own personal performance was suffering as the role had not turned out as expected and was effecting my health both physically and mentally this was also starting to effect members of my team. I have had no real performance reviews during this time due to lack of clear vision and strategy.

Previous to the new role I was vey happy meeting all expectations and classed as a key contributor, never had any performance or disciplinary issues doing many roles.

My line manager, HR and director have come back to me with three options,
1, return to work in the same role although all agree not a great option.
2, find a different role although currently no suitable roles available.
3, resign with an agreed settlement.

What are your thoughts in particular on what a suitable settlement could be considering length of service and past record or pursuing more formal grievance procedures as currently resignation looks the only option.

I do commute a considerable distance so could not take a lesser role as affects some of the benefits.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones : Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Is the way this job turned out your employers fault or can it be blamed on anything else? please note that I am in a long tribunal today so there may be a delay and I may not get back to you until later this evening thank you
Customer:

ben,

Customer:

I think some elements i.e. the lack of support and clear/vision/strategy due to three changes in line manager who all had different views, this has been agreed to some degree (one of my previous line managers raised the same issue) and left to pursue a different role. hindsight being a wonderful thing if I had never changed roles I would still be working happily for this employer and would never consider leaving.

Customer:

not sure if any elements of constructive dismissal as it was myself who raised the issue, could have kept quiet but it was becoming obvious I was not happy (other colleagues mentioned) and was affecting performance and demeanour, I am also conscious this would affect my 15 direct reports which would be unfair.

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. I would not say that there appear to be serious enough reasons to treat this as constructive dismissal and whilst there is nothing stopping you from going down that route and trying your lick, it would be rather risky. So try to avoid having to do this, unless you really believe that the relationship has completely broken down and you have no other option but to resign.


 


Considering you do not wish to take up a lesser role the way forward would appear to be a mutually agreed exit. Now the issue there is that whilst you can go in with a proposed settlement figure and negotiate around it, no one can force the employer to accept it and in the end you will simply have to agree on soothing which you are both happy to accept. So it is not so much a matter of what would be considered fair in the circumstances, but whether the employer can be persuaded to accept it.


 


I would say as a minimum you should look at something that you would get had you been made redundant by the employer. So that would include your contractual notice period, which must be at least 12 weeks and a redundancy payment, which would either be the statutory minimum (https://www.gov.uk/calculate-your-redundancy-pay) or an enhanced payment better than that but only if your contract allows for it.


 


In addition, you could try and negotiate an additional discretionary payment on top of that and that is where the negotiations with the employer would come in. Without direct blaming, in order to remain diplomatic, you should point out the issues that have le to this to make it clear that what has happened is making your position difficult and try to find a way forward with this. You can also use the internal grievance procedure if you want an open and formal procedure to look into what has happened and if there is any blame or anything that can be done to resolve it.

Customer: Thanks Ben
Customer: do you think their is any duty of care for the the length of service I have and unblemished record for the employer to be duty bound to find a role at same level etc as they have some responsibility in how the current circumstances have occurred bearing in mind my open/honesty about the affects of the role both personally and on my team.
Ben Jones :

The duty of care would not be linked to your length of service and record, there is a general duty of care but that would extend regardless of the above factors. The issue is still going to be covered by the implied duty of trust and confidence which I mentioned in my earlier answer and you have to identify to what extent the blame can be apportioned on the employer and whether it was something within their control or not. Whilst they should try and find you a suitable role, they may only do that if one is actually available, rather than go out of their way to create one to accommodate you.


 


Hope this clarifies?

Customer: Thanks Ben I think I have all the info I need.
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