Contracts & Policies
Working out the best contractual arrangements, such as hours of work, part-time v full-time, fixed term v open ended, pay levels, benefits to offer and the level of flexibility that is possible in the role can be difficult. We will work through these with our clients prior to recruitment or before a contract is offered.
Contracts of Employment
Certain terms and conditions of employment must be provided to employees on or before the first day of employment. The information to be provided includes:
- the employee and employer name
- the start date of employment
- the date the employee’s continuous employment started
- the method, rate or scale in place for remuneration calculations
- the intervals for payment
- Training to be provided once employment has started
- terms and conditions relating to working hours such as normal working hours
- holiday entitlement and details relating to public holidays and holiday pay
- sick pay and incapacity for work provisions
- details of pensions and pension schemes
- the duration of notice to be given to, or provided by, the employee to terminate employment
- job title or description of the role
- the expected duration of non-permanent work or the date upon which fixed-term work will end
- the normal place of work or address details of the employer
- details of any collective agreements which directly affect the terms and conditions of the individual
- rules and procedures relating to disciplinary (or referring to a separate accessible document where these are located) and
- identifying the person to whom to raise a grievance or appeal against a disciplinary decision.
We provide contracts of employment that meet legal requirements and are tailored to the particular circumstances of the appointment.
Where the appointment is particularly complex or where restricted covenants are particularly important we may suggest engaging an employment lawyer for the contract which we can arrange.
We usually advocate shorter contracts of employment that refer to a handbook that has more information. This approach has the benefit of changing one document in the event that the organisation makes a change for all employees, such as to the holiday year, the company address or where work is to take place (such as at home or another premises).
Contracts for Services
Sometimes it is better to offer a contract for services rather than employment, for example where the work is very occasional or where the nature of the engagement is more flexible.
The HMRC have clear rules to determine whether the engagement is employment or self-employment (a contract for services) and we can clients to navigate these.
Contracts for services can be with contractors or consultants and the requirements can vary widely. We have experience of setting these up in many sectors.
There are many useful policies and procedures that can be gathered together to ensure that employers have a planned way of dealing with events as they occur, rather than having to think on their feet. Some policies are mandatory, such as for disciplinary and grievance matters. Others are useful, for example to deal with life events such as sickness absence, bereavement, flexible working, maternity, paternity, adoption and retirement.
Providing more detail on topics covered in the Contract of Employment can be useful, for example the contract may say ‘A workplace pension will be provided in accordance with legal requirements’ and the handbook may identify the provider and the contribution arrangements.
Identifying organisational vision, mission and goals can be important when recruiting and retaining employees and the handbook is a useful place to publish these.
We have produced bespoke handbooks for clients in many sectors and view them as a key tool for communicating with employees.
As well as ensuring legal compliance, Bedrock actively consider the best content, style and tone to be applied to contracts and handbooks. This is important because it supports engagement and is often the first written impression that the new recruit has of your organisation.