Chances are, if it wasn’t in the last 5 years then they are seriously out of date, legally out of date, uncompliant, out of sync with your company values and probably not worth the paper they are written on!
Ok, so I might be exaggerating slightly on that last point, but the sentiment is clear – you wouldn’t let your buildings insurance contract renew for 5 years on the trot without reviewing it would you? Your contracts of employment are absolutely a form of insurance for your business. In the event of any potential claim or employment tribunal, the contracts you have with your employees will be one of the first things asked for. An adequate, up to date and compliant contract can provide a solid basis in a number of different circumstances.
So, if you answer no to any of these 3 questions, then you probably need to book in a contract review with me. Here we go:
1. Have your contracts been reviewed for recent legislative changes and updates in the last 12 months?
2. Are your staff all on uniform contractual terms where possible? It may be that many of your employees were engaged on different contractual terms. While certain contractual terms may be different for each employee, such as hours of work, holiday entitlement and post-termination restrictions, general terms, such as expenses, sick pay and termination should be the same. Having employees on different contracts can cause administrative issues in the day to day running of your business because you will need to ensure that you are abiding by all the different terms in each contract. By updating and aligning the contracts, this removes the confusion of having certain members of your team on different contractual terms and will streamline the administrative processes.
3. Is the competitive landscape surrounding your business the same as when you hired your first employee? Highly likely that it isn’t. Your market position and competitors are likely to have differed since your original employment contract was put in place. For example, you may now need to implement post-termination restrictions to protect your business from the risk of employees moving onto your competitors and taking your clients, other employees or business processes with them.
Another reason you may choose to update your contracts is that a number of key terms are not working for your business anymore. For example, a common complaint often surrounds high levels of employee sickness absence when they are entitled to an enhanced rate.
Ultimately while you need to ensure that your contracts comply with the relevant legislation, you need also to ensure that they work for your business. If you are considering updating your employee contracts of employment, you should proceed with caution and ensure you get an expert in to help.
Never fear, we are here to help! If you think you could benefit from a review of your employee contracts, contact us now.