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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50147
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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Hi, I work for Saga and recently, last year we were told that

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Hi, I work for Saga and recently, last year we were told that we have a new pay structure of gradings 1 - 5, 5 being the highest. I am on 3. we were placed on this grading based on a previous rolling 3 month schedule of what we had done with the key targets, ie Revenue per hour, Call quality scoring, productivity ect ect. Level 3 means I have to hit the target of £40ph, a call quality of 80% plus and a productivity of 73% or more to unlock commission. Now if you do not hit the targets of 3 months out of a rolling 9 then you would be dropped to the pay band below. This has recently come to light that apparently the FCA said that they cannot drop the basic pay of a person because they have not hit their target. I was also speaking to a manager recently who says he thinks that the company will basically discipline you for not hitting your targets with warnings until you are pushed out the door, or give you the option to downgrade yourself, thus avoiding discipline. Then today my manager out of the blue asked me if I wanted to downgrade to level 2?? I said no. I have a feeling the previous manager knew whats coming and said that's what he thinks will happen. So based on the fact that when the original targets were given based on when we were just sales agents, and now we are all multi skilled, ie we now do customer services and sales so about 45% of my calls are customer service calls and also there seems to be a very different picture across the board where some people get a higher percentage of sales than others it does not seem random. Is this legally possible to give you a warning and eventually push you out the door based on not hitting your revenue per hour target, my call quality is regularly over 90% on average with the occasional dip but still over 80% and my productivity is also over 80% regularly too, my main problem is revenue per hour is not high enough. Is this possible to discipline me out of the door? I have worked there 5 yrs This July coming. Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX this makes sense. Richard
Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. do you have monthly performance related one to ones with you manager
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I don't myself as they are all stored on the system.

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.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank-you very much.



It is not possible to just reduce your pay for not hitting target, at least not unless there was a very clear policy on that, which was part of your contract, and the employer had acted fairly and reasonably and only resorted to the ‘demotion’ if all else has failed (e.g. training).

As to disciplining you out of the business, that is possible, but not just like that and the employer must again follow a fair procedure. Not performing to specified targets is basically a capability issue and it is a potentiality fair reason for dismissal under the Employment Rights Act 1996. This should be assessed by reference to an employee's "skill, aptitude, health or any other physical or mental quality" and must relate to the work that they were employed to do.

In order for a dismissal for poor performance to be fair, an employee must be warned that they need to improve, be given reasonable targets for improvement within a realistic timescale and be offered appropriate training and/or support during the monitoring period.

Generally, the reasonableness of such dismissals would be measured against the following criteria:
• Did the employer have reasonable belief in the employee's incompetence;
• Was the situation investigated and was the employee given the opportunity to voice their side of the story;
• Was the employee aware of what was required of them in terms of satisfactory performance;
• Were steps taken to minimise the risk of poor performance through training, supervision, etc;
• Was a proper appraisal conducted and was the problem identified in a timely manner;
• Was the employee told of the consequences of failing to improve and were they actually given the chance to improve their performance;
• Did the employer consider offering alternative employment.

The above are just examples and what a tribunal would generally look for when deciding the reasonableness of a dismissal. If there is a genuine belief or evidence that the employer has acted in a rather heavy-handed manner and not satisfied at least some of the above requirements, the dismissal could be challenged.

The first step is to appeal directly to the employer within the allocated time for an internal appeal. After that the only viable option is to consider a claim for unfair dismissal in an employment tribunal, subject to having at least 2 years' continuous service. There is a strict time limit of 3 months from the date of dismissal to issue such a claim.

I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
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