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Paul Brendon

Rules with Regards to demoting someone..

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Hey guys

 

I am really curious to know what the rules are for demoting someone at work..

 

I have a manager in one of my stores and he is doing a poor job. Basically his general attitude and belief towards work are not in line with what I want and I don't believe he is going to change. he is too soft on his staff, and let's them get away with things. He has a different management style to mine, and whenever I try to make him see it my way, his response is "we will have to agree to disagree".. He doesn't see that it is his soft attitude that is causing staff to like him and not in fact because he is a good manager ..

 

He has been in that position for 2 years and with the company for almost 5 years. I don't want to sack him, as I could use him elsewhere ito do other tasks, but I do want to demote him, either from his managerial role completely or put him as assistant manager to someone else who will be above him.

 

I just wondered what the rules are for demoting someone? Is there a process I have to follow? As I understand it, I can demote him but still keep his rate of pay the same (which I don't want to do). I should mention he is also on a bonus structure.

 

Any help would be really appreciated guys..

 

Paul

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Start with a performance improvement process

 

You DO have a documented process in place for under performers, right?

 

http://www.acas.org.uk/media/pdf/g/7/Acas_how_to_manage_performance-accessible-version-Nov-2011.pdf

 

On exhausting that you can give him the option of leaving or demotion, buit you need to give him a chance to improve and keep a paper trail of it.

 

If you are NOT doing that his underperformance is as much your fault as his. Are you demoting youself?


Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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You need to embark on a capability procedure. Does the employee have demotion as a sanction in his contract, or the company's disciplinary procedure? If so that makes it easier, but you'll still need to follow the capability process and allow 3-6 months for improvement before looking to demote him.

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OK thank you very much..

 

So basically what I understand from this is that it is NOT possible to simply demote someone from their position UNLESS I have exhausted the avenue of structured meetings where I document the improvements required and give him a chance to improve, and if not then perhaps consider demoting him.

 

are written warning necessary?

 

We do have what we call 'informal disciplinary', where we document the behaviour displayed and what improvement needs to take place.

 

This still doesn't solve the fact that fundamentally his attitude and beliefs and demeanour are wrong, and that is not going to change. Do I really have to do a form with him after every little thing?

 

and then its things like I want him to do things one way, and he wants to do it another way. It's just a difference of opinion.

 

I can try and bring it down to specific things and see what happens.

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If you are following the capability procedure with him, you do have to issue stage warnings and offer him training and measurable targets, and whT you expect of him, at each stage.

 

Generally speaking, you can only demote an employee if you have the contractual right to do so. The employee may of course accept demotion as an alternative to dismissal, however. The practical problem is that if you demote him without the right to do so and/or without following the correct procedure, he would almost certainly win a constructive dismissal claim.

 

You could do it informally if you wanted, but you couldnt demote or dismiss him if you did, or even issue a verbal or written warning. Informal may be the way to go if you genuinely wanted to help him improve, though.

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Also, try not to blur the boundaries of misconduct and incapability. Depending on the "attitude" and "demeanour" you mention, it could be either conduct or capability.

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Hi Paul,

 

You've had advice and seem to grasp the general idea. I'd bet there is no formal performance improvement plans at your company or anything like that? You may not even have a formal capability procedure, and I very much doubt the contracts you have given staff contain an express contractual right of demotion..right?

 

Basically assuming the employee will not voluntarily accept the demotion (unlikely especially if it comes with less pay), then you would need to have 'created' a situation where you could be confident of (being able to defend as fair) your ability to say to the employee in effect, 'accept the demotion or resign.'

 

To create this situation fairly, and considering this employee has 5 years service, then you will need to follow a fair cumulative warnings (verbal/written/final written) capability and / or conduct procedure. From 'clean' record to a fair dismissal this is going to probably take 3-6 months, of course depending on the employee's reaction to the warnings.

 

And to do either of the above will involve countless minuted meetings, appeal hearings, invite letters, outcome letters etc etc and the capability procedure would also involve setting objective targets, offering training etc etc

 

Thus, my advice would be to initially try an informal route. The employee has been with the company 5 years, and 2 years in the current role, thus there must be elements about this employee's work that were good and could be again, if you can repair the relationship and re-motivate the employee.

 

Unless you have many spare hours to spend in HR admin, if the informal route does not succed, and you really want to dismiss maybe paying an ex-gratia payment to the employee (compromise agreement etc) might be the way to go.

 

Che

Edited by elche

...................................................................... [FONT=Comic Sans MS]Please post on a thread before sending a PM. My opinion's are not expressed as agent or representative of The Consumer Action Group. Always seek professional advice from a qualified legal adviser before acting. If I have helped you please feel free to click on the black star.[/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS] I am sorry that work means I don't get into the Employment Forum as often as I would like these days, but nonetheless I'll try to pop in when I can.[/FONT] [FONT=Arial Black][FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=Red]'Venceremos' :wink:[/COLOR][/FONT][/FONT]

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