February 2021

Welcome.

This month we would like to share with you the latest news within Cluer HR, as well as keeping you up to date with developments in the world of HR and employment law as they occur.

It’s all part of the service. We hope you find it useful. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome.

Workers Breaching Government Rules

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In theory, it is possible for an employer to take disciplinary action against an employee for breaching the Government’s COVID-19 rules and restrictions outside of the workplace. As a general rule, the actions of an employee outside of the workplace can be considered misconduct if there is a genuine connection to the employment relationship.

By way of examples, disciplinary action could be taken against an employee for flouting COVID-19 restrictions outside of work in the following scenarios:

● The employee is coming into the workplace after breaching the rules, potentially putting the health and safety of other staff at risk.
● The employee cannot work/come into the workplace (if this is necessary to carry out their work duties) because they breached the rules, causing disruption to your business.
● The employee has posted comments and/or photos online showing that they breached the rules, and these posts can be linked to their employment, causing damage to your business’s reputation.

Furloughing for childcare reasons

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Guidance published by HM Revenue and Customs on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme confirms that employees who are unable to work because they have caring responsibilities resulting from coronavirus (COVID-19) can be furloughed, including employees who need to look after children.

An employee may be unable to work because they have no alternative childcare, for example if a school is closed during the coronavirus crisis, or if their child is required to self-isolate. An employee in this situation would not have the right to paid time off (unless provided for in their contract of employment), so a period of furlough may be a potential solution for both employer and employee.

To be included in a claim following the extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme from 1st November 2020, an employee must have been on the employer’s payroll on 30th October 2020 (or 23rd September 2020 if they are rehired and furloughed, after the termination of their employment).

THE BENEFITS OF TAKING MICRO-BREAKS

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Spending hours staring at a screen puts strain on your eyes. When these body parts get tired productivity levels decrease and eventually employee’s health and well-being begin to decrease. This is why it’s important to introduce your employees to the importance of taking micro-breaks.

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5 KEY SKILLS EVERY MANAGER NEEDS TO KNOW

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People often say “you don’t quit a job, you quit your boss”. In order to make a good impression and start on the right foot, we would recommend reading our key skills required to create a work environment your employees can thrive in.

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