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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 47397
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi there,I am about to go through a restructure at work

Resolved Question:

Hi there, I am about to go through a restructure at work where my role is being significantly reduced: I was managing 16 people and 4 core strands of the business (brand, campaigns, B2B and CRM) and it will be proposed that I will manage only 2 strands of the business (brand and campaigns only) and 5 people. Are you able to help explain my options and if I would have a case for constructive dismissal. Thanks

Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there for?

Customer:

Hi there, under 2 years sadly. I started May 2013 so 17 months

Ben Jones :

ok well to start with the basics, you cannot claim constructive dismissal or unfair dismissal. This is because you need at least 2 years' service with the employer. So even if the restructure is something you disagree with or find that it changes your job description and current duties, perhaps demotes you or has any other similar detrimental effect, you are unfortunately not able to challenge this legally. Your only options are either to raise a formal grievance internally to dispute this, accept the changes as they stand, or leave, but without being able to make a claim

Customer:

thanks

Customer:

so what could the outcomes be if I raised a grievance?

Ben Jones :

the employer could agree with all or part of the complaints and change things to rectify what was done wrong, or they can reject it and things will remain as they are now

Customer:

if I had been there for plus 2 years would I have a case for constructive dismissal do you think?

Ben Jones :

well that depends on what the reasons for the restructure are, how it was handled, etc. Perhaps the employer could also consider redundancy, but it is all unfortunately irrelevant in this case and you cannot wait until you have 2 years service to then claim, it needs to be done now, as it is happening

Customer:

how do you go about raising a grievance and to whom? is it a letter to my boss?

Ben Jones :

check if there is a grievance policy in your workplace and follow that. If there isn't one then it is done in writing to your line manager

Customer:

what's the best to get traction/the response I want? Are there key things to log?

Ben Jones :

it will always depend on the issues complained of, but in your case you would need to highlight the reasons for the changes, why you thinkthey should not have taken place or how the effect on you could have been minimised

Customer:

who has to hear the grievance? is it my boss's boss?

Ben Jones :

no it could be your boss

Customer:

is it the appeal that has to go one higher?

Customer:

do HR have to be involved?

Ben Jones :

it is not necessarily higher, but to a different manager who has not been involved so far. HR do not have to get involved but they can do, for example to sit in and take notes if necessary

Customer:

ah ha I see. ok thanks for your help. it seems like I have little power due to the 2 years thing. I can't imagine a grievance doing much...

Ben Jones :

yes sadly your length of service lets you down but you have little to lose by raising a grievance

Customer:

other than annoying my boss who could then make my life miserable!!!

Ben Jones :

well you know him better to judge whether that is a risk...

Customer:

true. She might not be worth messing with!

Ben Jones :

it's just that legally you have nothing to lose - practically/realistically that is something you can evaluate better than me

Customer:

understood. Thanks Ben, at least I have clarity on my options now. Appreciate your advice and promptness

Ben Jones :

you are most welcome, all the best

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