Many thanks for your patience, I am pleased to be able to continue assisting with your query now. First of all, I am sorry to hear about the issues he has experienced in his situation.
When a redundancy situation arises, there is a legal obligation on an employer to ensure that it applies a fair selection method when deciding on who is to be made redundant.
Unless someone’s job is unique and they are the only one performing it, the first step for the employer is identifying the pool of employees from which the selection will be made. Often that could be a particular role, a department, even a whole office. There is no fixed procedure which deals with how a pool should be selected and the employer only has to show that its choice of pool was within the range of reasonable responses, depending on what has triggered the need for redundancies. This could often be linked to the needs of the business, for example a need to reduce a particular expense linked to a team, outsourcing certain work, business reorganisation, etc.
The general rules state that when deciding on the choice of pool, the employer should start by considering two questions, which will help them identify which employees should be included:
- Which particular type of work is disappearing or needs to be reduced?
- Which employees perform that particular kind of work?
Whilst the employees covering the work now may not have been doing the work originally, once they are moved into that role and treated as a permanent replacement, they should be treated in the same way as the workers who dud this and are now facing redundancy.
Once the pool has been established the employer has to decide how to select those employees from it, who are to be made redundant. There are various ways of doing this and the more commonly used methods are:
- Scoring matrix based on various criteria (e.g. disciplinary record; standard of work; skills, qualifications or experience; attendance record, performance, etc.) – the employer cannot discriminate when they score employees, which means excluding absences or performance issues related to a disability, pregnancy, maternity, etc
- Asking employees to re-apply for the remaining jobs and going through a competitive interview process, with the unsuccessful ones being made redundant
Whichever method is going to be used, the employer must apply it fairly, consistently and objectively. Unfair selection for redundancy could make the whole dismissal unfair so if there are concerns over the employer's methods of selection, this can be raised in the consultation meetings, in the final redundancy meeting or as part of an appeal. Following redundancy, the option to challenge this in the Employment Tribunal under an unfair dismissal claim also exists.
Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.