I am frequently contacted by employers who have queries about how to deal with outgoing employees, particularly if it’s a member of a management team. I have created a short guide to help you deal with the issues that could arise with an exiting employee:
1. Exit interview: meetings can be organised with the outgoing employee to discover reasons for the resignation, the resignation may not always be related to the operations of your business but independent issues like salary or working hours. The exiting employee may also be helpful enough to provide you with helpful feedback in relation to your processes.
2. Garden leave: garden leave can only be imposed if there is a provision set for it in their employment contract. When employees have access to confidential information, a garden leave clause is a good idea to include in the contract as this could stop them from poaching or soliciting clients/employees. This may be useful where you do not want the employee to continue with their role, however, equally require them to tranfer their knowledge to their replacement.
3. Restrictive Covenants: ensure you remind your employees about restrictive covenants, providing the covenants are reasonable then you should not have a problem enforcing them in the courts.
4. Settlement agreement: before an employee resigns, if there have been complaints and there is a risk of the matter being taken to an employment tribunal, it may be beneficial to pay a discretionary payment (which may just be a payment in lieu of notice) in exchange for the settlement agreement. Before any steps are taken ensure that you take legal advice from a solicitor, as they provide you with an assessment as to likely costs of defending any claim and compensation if your employee is successful in a claim.
As always if I can provide you with any further assistance on queries on how to handle an outgoing employee, or you have an existing employee that you are worried about or just need some advice as to how to deal with them, please do not hesitate to contact me at 0113 350 4030 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SCE Solicitors is a boutique employment law practice based in Leeds which advises clients nationwide. Please note that the information in this blog is to provide information of general interest in a summary manner and should not be construed as individual legal advice. Read-ers should consult with SCE Solicitors or other professional counsel before acting on the in-formation contained here.