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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49829
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi, I work in a department which is structured with 2 supervisors

Customer Question

I work in a department which is structured with 2 supervisors and 2 admin assistants. We also have another branch which has 1 of each; I currently work as one of the supervisors. I have been employed on a fixed term contract which ends Dec this year bringing me to 22 months of employment.
Last month I was given my 3 months notice as the person I was covering returned from a project. This person has already resumed this role and I've been working on a number of smaller projects instead. Roughly the same time the 2 people at branch B moved on to a different part of the business and those roles were to be moved in to our branch/department. I was told i would be able to apply for the additional supervisor role which was coming our way.
The tasks of this role have now been moved to our department and one of the admin assistants has been given this role to cover. It was not advertised and I have not been given an opportunity to apply for it. The feedback I've been given over my 2 years has been very positive and I get on very well with everyone. The admin assistant is a very young, attractive, ambitious girl and has a very strong relationship with head of the department who pretty much promised her a promotion months ago when she expressed a desire to leave so she could progress her career.
There has been a some obvious signs of favoritism over the last couple of years and I'm wondering if in this situation the law has been adhered to.
Should this be a job that needs to be advertised? As I'm just shy of 2 years in employment do I have no rights at all? A number of people have commented on how wrong it seems and how poorly it's been handled. I can't help but feel I'm losing my job because a senior manager wants to help progress the career of a girl he is fond of.
Your advice would be much appreciated.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. can you tell me was the position advertised internally please.

JACUSTOMER-tg3bpfaa- :

Hi Ben, no, the position has not been advertised internally or externally.

JACUSTOMER-tg3bpfaa- :

I have been told this has happened 3 or 4 times before.

Ben Jones :

Ok thank you leave it with me I need to look up a few things and then get my advice ready.I will post back on here when done there is no need to wait and you will receive an email when I have responded.

JACUSTOMER-tg3bpfaa- :

No problem, thanks again

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. First of all in terms of the termination of the current employment, if you have been continuously employed at your place of work for less than 2 years then your employment rights will unfortunately be somewhat limited. Most importantly, you will not be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that your employer can dismiss you for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as their decision is not based on discriminatory grounds (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, a disability, sexual orientation, etc.) or because you were trying to assert any of your statutory rights (e.g. requesting maternity/paternity leave, etc.).

If the dismissal had nothing to do with any of the above exceptions then you would not be able to challenge it and your only protection would be if you were not paid your contractual notice period, although I understand that is not an issue here.

The next concern is the opportunity for the other job that exists. Employers have the right to choose who they employ and can make such decisions based on a wide range of factors. There could be a number of reasons why one candidate is chosen in preference to others or why someone is not given a job, even if they are generally considered to be the best candidate. It is generally lawful for the employer to use whatever factors they feel are relevant and appropriate in the circumstances to come to that decision.

As above, the only requirement in law is that the employer’s decision is not based on discriminatory grounds. That means that it should not base its decision on factors relating to gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, etc. If its decision is based on any of these, there will be a potential case of discrimination and the affected person can potentially take this further. However, in the absence of any discriminatory reasons, the employer will rarely be acting unlawfully and will have the general power to be selective over whom it employs, even if it this generally appears to be unfair.

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you

Ben Jones :

Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? I just need to know whether to close the question or not? Thanks