Sometimes employees do not perform at the level required by the employer. Where this is a result of standards changing or employee performance slipping, managing the process needs to be handled in a significantly different way than if the performance is as a result of misconduct (which would be handled via the disciplinary procedure).
Contrary to popular belief, employers do not have to put up with poor work performance, and it is perfectly possible to move to dismissal for poor work performance, however the issue must be dealt with carefully and professionally. The employer must be able to show that the employee was given every opportunity to improve their poor work performance and was fully aware of the required standard.
Generally, it is a good idea for employers to have a specific poor work performance policy so that employees are clear about what is expected from them in respect of their performance at work. James House HR can help you with every aspect of poor work performance, from drafting letters in respect of poor work performance, through to attending face-to-face meetings with the employee.
Frequently Asked Questions
I have an employee who is always late. Is this a poor work performance issue?
No, this is a misconduct issue and should be dealt with via the disciplinary process.
How quickly can an issue of poor work performance be dealt with?
Depending on the issue, this could be as little as two weeks, or as long as six months. Generally, poor work performance issues take a little more time to deal with than misconduct issues. We are happy to offer outline advice on any matter before you commit to a definite plan.
Can I simply make the employee redundant?
In some cases redundancy can be the route forward, however there must be a “reduction in work of a particular kind” for this to be a possibility. You will probably find that once we have discussed the issue of poor performance at work, the process is not as daunting as you first thought.
I have an older employee whose performance is slipping. Can I simply make them retire?
Retirement is no longer something that can be thrust upon employees however old they are! If initial outline conversations in respect of retirement have drawn a blank (and care needs to be taken with these), the only option is poor work performance procedures.