Christmas is the busiest time of the year for a lot of business and many Employers rely on their staff taking on extra hours to meet the influx of work. But staffing these busy periods isn’t always easy. Did you know that as an Employer you have the right to insist an Employee works overtime over the Christmas period.
In a recent case of Edwards vs Brambles Food Ltd an employee who was sacked for Gross Misconduct after refusing to do overtime (which she was contractual required to do) with no legitimate reason to refuse. Edwards did claim for unfair dismissal but the tribunal found that Brambles Foods Ltd had fairly dismissed their employee Mrs Edwards.
If you are relying on your employees to help meet an influx of work this Christmas here are our top tips;
- Review your contracts. Without a clause in your contract that requires your employees to work additional hours when required you cannot insist that they do.
- Engage with your employees. You might have the right to require your employees to work additional hours as needed but forcing employees to work isn’t going to create a great working environment and will have a negative impact on productivity.
- Offer incentives. Think about the rewards you are giving your employees for doing the extra work you require. This might be overtime rates or time back in lieu (or even better a combination of the two).
- A great incentive for Christmas overtime is making sure it is paid before Christmas so employees reap the rewards of their hard work during the festive period. Ask you employees what motivates them and find the best solution for your workforce.