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Can I Take on More Staff After Making Person Redundant?

By: Emma Eilbeck BA (hons) - Updated: 17 Jan 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Redundant Employers Staff Redundancies

Q.

If I were to make a member of staff redundant due to the economic downturn, would I be able take on more staff when and if things pick up?

(M.W, 8 July 2009)

A.

As the credit crunch takes hold more employers are being forced to shed members of their workforce in order to keep costs down. The last thing you want to do is appear insensitive to any loyal staff you have had to make redundant, but it may be you need to recruit more staff into other areas of the business.

But before you embark on any redundancies make sure that the person’s job has actually become redundant.Redundancy means that their role no longer exists or there will be less demand for their job in the foreseeable future.

For example, if you employ a group of builders and there is no work for them for the next six months you will need to make some redundant. But if there is work coming in that you know about, be careful not to use redundancy as an excuse to get rid of some dead wood within the workplace, or you could find yourself in hot water.

There are no set rules as to how long you have to wait before recruiting extra staff but you could land yourself in a legal battle if you take on somebody to do a job that has just been made redundant.

If however you are recruiting to the same role because you have won a new contract or some extra business has unexpectedly come your way, this is acceptable.

But to be on the safe side, if you are thinking of taking on any new recruits after making redundancies you should make sure their job role differs to that of the people you have just made redundant. If you are already thinking about taking on a new member of staff in that same role you should ask yourself why you need to make that person redundant in the first instance.

One potential grey area within redundancy law is when you are genuinely cutting down your workforce but you make one member of staff redundant and place an existing employee into their role. This is generally deemed to be acceptable as long as you have reduced the overall size of the workforce and you can prove there is a genuine need for doing so.

If you are making more than 20 staff redundant you will need to go through a consultation period for 30 days. You should also do everything to can to help place them somewhere else within the business and consult their trade union – if they have one.

It is not uncommon for staff that have been made redundant to seek their revenge on employers through unfair dismissal charges. It is important that when you make redundancies you can prove that their job is no longer needed or there will be less demand for it in the future, as long as you follow these rules you should not land yourself in hot water.

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[Add a Comment]
Cazza - Your Question:
My role is being made redundant. I have been told that I will not be job matched in the new company restructure. However, we have also been told that due to not being job matched we cannot apply for any ring fenced jobs either. The company will try to redeploy me if they can.Do I have a right to refuse to be redeployed into another role if it does not meet my skill set?

Our Response:
You can see more via the WorkSmart link here , which should help answer your question.
RedundancyExpert - 18-Jan-18 @ 12:01 PM
My role is being made redundant. I have been told that I will not be job matched in the new company restructure. However, we have also been told that due to not being job matched we cannot apply for any ring fenced jobs either. The company will try to redeploy me if they can. Do I have a right to refuse to be redeployed into another role if it does not meet my skill set?
Cazza - 17-Jan-18 @ 9:18 AM
I’ve been a waitress for 3 years now and we have just been told both companies are being made redundant his closing one cafe but keeping our one open can he take on new staff stright away and is it fair for him to do this.
Mich - 13-Jan-18 @ 9:41 AM
Bab1 - Your Question:
I was made redundant in November the company that made me redundant are advertising again for the same job. I was told that they were reducing the fleet and that there was no work due to end of season I was also told that if they took on again in the new year they would let me know. They have not been in touch.

Our Response:
Much depends upon the terms of the redundancy and whether it can be deemed to be genuine. You cannot apply for unfair dismissal unless you have been with your employer for more than two years. If you have and you feel you have been treated unfairly and think you have a claim for unfair dismissal, then your employer would need to demonstrate there was a genuine redundancy/economic situation which prompted redundancy and the situation changed. You can see more via the CAB link here . You may also wish to give ACAS a call.
RedundancyExpert - 11-Jan-18 @ 12:21 PM
I was made redundant in November just gone and my company Promised that if business picked up I would be the first to know but I have seen my job advertised today.What can I do about this?
TN - 11-Jan-18 @ 1:13 AM
I was made redundant in November the company that made me redundant are advertising again for the same job. I was told that they were reducing the fleet and that there was no work due to end of season I was also told that if they took on again in the new year they would let me know. They have not been in touch.
Bab1 - 10-Jan-18 @ 8:57 AM
@Nashville - it depends whether your employer can justify the reasons of making you redundant and whether others were made redundant at the same time. If there was a sudden upturn in business then your company might be able to justify employing someone new in your job, but I'd ring Acas who will tell you.
NHS - 14-Dec-17 @ 12:58 PM
Is this a case of unfair dismissal they asked for volunteers redundancy as they did not have the money to employ me and theaten that if they did not get the numbers we would lose 10weeks redundancy pay so I took the redundancy package then within 2months the employed another person in my job role would I have a case to take them to a tribunals
Nashville - 13-Dec-17 @ 5:25 PM
Smullj - Your Question:
Hi my brother is a supervisor at a waste yard and has been a jcb driver since the day he started working there 2 and a half years ago. His contract has him down as supervisor but we have been advised that as he has been jcb drived since the day he began working there it is classed as a implied term. He was recently told they were making him redundant as the new manager would be taking over as supervisor. However the yard has only 1 other qualified jcb driver who doesnt want that role. The yard can not function without a jcb driver. Which means they will replace him soon as he is gone. They have offered him no other position in the company. He is the only person being made redundant in the whole workforce. There has been tention between himself and the new manager since the new manager started a couple of months ago. So it feels like he was just pushed out as the manager didnt like him. Today hes been offered a months pay and £300 redundancy. He was told he will be taxed on it if he doesnt take the deal of signing all his rights over to stop him taking them to tribunal for unfair redundancy. If he does take the deal of signing over all his rights he wont be taxed at all. Is this whole redundancy legal?

Our Response:
Sounds more like bribery. In this case your brother needs to give his contract a read to see the terms and conditions of his employment and give ACAS a call to see whether this amounts to unfair redundancy. You can see more via the link here .
RedundancyExpert - 11-Dec-17 @ 2:35 PM
Hi my brother is a supervisor at a waste yard and has been a jcb driver since the day he started working there 2 and a half years ago. His contract has him down as supervisor but we have been advised that as he has been jcb drived since the day he began working there it is classed as a implied term. He was recently told they were making him redundant as the new manager would be taking over as supervisor. However the yard has only 1 other qualified jcb driver who doesnt want that role. The yard can not function without a jcb driver. Which means they will replace him soon as he is gone. They have offered him no other position in the company. He is the only person being made redundant in the whole workforce. There has been tention between himself and the new manager since the new manager started a couple of months ago. So it feels like he was just pushed out as the manager didnt like him. Today hes been offered a months pay and £300 redundancy. He was told he will be taxed on it if he doesnt take the deal of signing all his rights over to stop him taking them to tribunal for unfair redundancy. If he does take the deal of signing over all his rights he wont be taxed at all. Is this whole redundancy legal?
Smullj - 8-Dec-17 @ 6:47 PM
Donna72 - Your Question:
My husband has been told he is being made redundant from his job role that is done usually by him and one other so both being made redundant they have recently been told that the other staff in the office will be doing the role as part of there contract they have been asked to give some training to the guys so they can learn it before they finish in the new year can they do this

Our Response:
It is difficult to advise on your question directly as we would need more details of his situation. You can check further if the redundancy is deemd fair via the CAB link here. If you are still unsure, your husband would have to give ACAS a call.
RedundancyExpert - 4-Dec-17 @ 1:49 PM
My husband has been told he is being made redundant from his job role that is done usually by him and one other so both being made redundant they have recently been told that the other staff in the office will be doing the role as part of there contract they have been asked to give some training to the guys so they can learn it before they finish in the new year can they do this
Donna72 - 1-Dec-17 @ 9:36 PM
@Silverfox - Ifhas been an upturn in business during this time and a year has passed, your employer is allowed to employ someone else to do your job - if and where it is needed.
JohBN - 28-Nov-17 @ 2:01 PM
I was made redundant 31 December 2016 my employer had one other member of staff he changed her hours to cover some of my hours and has now employed someone to cover all my hours
Silverfox - 27-Nov-17 @ 7:39 PM
@mewsreviews - question is are you getting paid any more? They can change your job description and your contract only if you agree to it. You should negotiate this with your employer and negotiate the higher wage for doing the higher job.
PP - 21-Nov-17 @ 2:46 PM
Kitty - Your Question:
Hi I am being made redundant from my role, I work in a political office for the purpose of dealing with an MP's constituents and getting MPs and cllrs elected. I run the office as a secretary (wear a lot of different hats in my job) and I am the only employee, the reason I am being told is that the business is not financial viable. However to inject money into the organisation the property is being sold which obviously means the financial situation will change. I was told that while I am being made redundant they want me to work my 11 weeks notice, I was told in a meeting that they want me to do this as they need someone to run the office. Most important part of my job is to be the main contact for people when they ring in but I was told in my first meeting that they will employ a junior min wage person to just answer the phone but obviously that will not all they do! I feel this is unfair dismissal - is this allowed?

Our Response:
In this case, you may wish to give ACAS a call as there are few grey areas in your comment that would need further insight. Redundancy is when you dismiss an employee because you no longer need anyone to do their job. This might be because the business is changing what it does, or is doing things in a different way, for example using new machinery or is changing location or closing down, please see link here for further advice.
RedundancyExpert - 17-Nov-17 @ 12:09 PM
My immediate boss is a librarian and I am her direct report as a library assistant, she has handed her notice in but they are not replacing her or making her redundant. However, they have asked me to fill in her role in addition to my role, but they are not giving me her job title which I object to. They have given me a new job description which they have basically dragged and dropped her JD into mine. What can I do
mewsreviews - 17-Nov-17 @ 10:44 AM
@Jeb - if the college can justify that circumstances changed, perhaps a new course was implemented, then the college is within its right. Also, if the job title is different and the job description also differs, then the college can justify the need. It's like a delivery firm employing a van driver and then laying him or her off when business is slack, but if business changes later on and the employer needs another van driver, they're not going to be restricted from employing a one because the other was made redundant. Painful, I know..it's happened to me three times :(
Lou84 - 16-Nov-17 @ 9:47 AM
Hi I am being made redundant from my role,I work in a political office for the purpose of dealing with an MP's constituents and getting MPs and cllrs elected. I run the office as a secretary (wear a lot of different hats in my job) and I am the only employee, the reason I am being told is that the business is not financial viable.However to inject money into the organisation the property is being sold which obviously means the financial situation will change.I was told that while I am being made redundant they want me to work my 11 weeks notice, I was told in a meeting that they want me to do this as they need someone to run the office.Most important part of my job is to be the main contact for people when they ring in but I was told in my first meeting that they will employ a junior min wage person to just answer the phone but obviously that will not all they do! I feel this is unfair dismissal - is this allowed?
Kitty - 16-Nov-17 @ 8:22 AM
Hi, the company i work for recently made 3 of our drivers redundant but then have taken on 7 new drivers with in a 3 month period since the redundancies. 2 of which was taken on the week after. What would you suggest they do next?
Ronnie - 15-Nov-17 @ 7:04 PM
I was made redundant in 2013. There were two in-house graphic designers in a large college. They got rid of the role to outsource. Made a new role that was marketing (writing news stories and updating social media with some occasional design). The other designer got the job. Since then. One year later, her job is full time design and employed a digital media designer. Is this fair? I thought there was a 3 year rule?
Jeb - 15-Nov-17 @ 12:18 PM
Rich - Your Question:
Hi I've recently been laid off as a van driver but was originally taken on as a Bridle Manufacturer for the company, but because the work had slowed down they gave me the driving role until the work picked up, however they've decided to lay me off, they then employed a younger person to do the role the next day so they didn't have to pay them the wage I was earning, and although I wasn't employed originally as a van driver, and only working for the company for 18 months, my question is can they do this? It seems really unfair

Our Response:
Unfortunately, you must have worked for your employer for a minimum period before you qualify for the right to claim unfair dismissal at a tribunal. The time frame was changed from one year to two years in 2012. This makes it easier for an employer to 'let go' of employees long after the probationary period and without the employee having any recourse to complain, except in discriminatory circumstances, please see gov.uk link here .
RedundancyExpert - 14-Nov-17 @ 12:00 PM
Hi I've recently been laid off as a van driver but was originally taken on as a Bridle Manufacturer for the company, but because the work had slowed down they gave me the driving role until the work picked up, however they've decided to lay me off, they then employed a younger person to do the role the next day so they didn't have to pay them the wage I was earning, and although I wasn't employed originally as a van driver, and only working for the company for 18 months, my question is can they do this? It seems really unfair
Rich - 13-Nov-17 @ 7:41 PM
Janet - Your Question:
My husband had worked for the local council for 16 years and was very unfairly made redundant from a team of four managers under the guise of restructuring we have recently found out that they have employed a friend of the senior manager in exactly the same post even though he isn’t qualified just 10 months after my husband was made redundant could you please advise whether this is legal as he is already fighting a constructive dismissal claim which is going to tribunal against them thank you

Our Response:
An employer cannot make someone redundant and then immediately employ someone in the same position, due to the fact it is the job that is made redundant and not the person. Therefore, a case of constructive dismissal would be easier to prove. However, a lot can change in 10 months. If, for instance, your husband's employer was experiencing a downturn (for whatever reason) and then subsequently an upturn in business, it may stand to reason his employer would need to find someone to do a similar job. Sometimes, the position may differ slightly in its job title or job description. In this case, if you still feel your husband has been treated unfairly you would have to give ACAS a call in order to see whether your husband has any recourse to complain.
RedundancyExpert - 10-Nov-17 @ 9:37 AM
My husband had worked for the local council for 16 years and was very unfairly made redundant from a team of four managers under the guise of restructuring we have recently found out that they have employed a friend of the senior manager in exactly the same post even though he isn’t qualified just 10 months after my husband was made redundant could you please advise whether this is legal as he is already fighting a constructive dismissal claim which is going to tribunal against them thank you
Janet - 9-Nov-17 @ 12:24 PM
My position was made redundant and after 21 months they are hiring for same role as mine, but when I applied HR said we cannot take the staff back who we're paid the Exgratia so is that right as per the HR policies ? Wasim....
Wasu - 11-Oct-17 @ 1:23 AM
I worked for tesco for 14 years and thay made me redundant and les than 10 months later thay have employed someone to do the same job do I have any rights
Rosie - 24-Sep-17 @ 12:17 PM
I have worked for this company for over 8 years. I began at about £ 1.50 above the then minimum wage. I am now on the minimum wage. I recently discovered that employees taken on in the last two years are being paid £3500 more than me per year. They do an identical job and I am involved in their initial and on-going training. I challenged my employer on an informal and polite basis. He promised to look into this. after two weeks I asked for an update. He said it was still being investigatedbut that he was also looking into the costs of making me redundant. No discussion or suggestion of redundancy had ever taken place before. Is he acting legally?
daves - 18-Sep-17 @ 4:51 PM
I'm buying a business in hair and beauty. I taking on 1 member of staff but not the other. She's been off 11 week. She's incapable of working due to illness. She was being dismissed on incapable of work. We finally got the doctor note it's states she can't work but maybe able to return to work in 3 months time on phase return. The only thing stopping me from signing for this business is this. So now she has to be made redundant. She doesn't want to come back to work. After hearing the salon was for sale she didn't want to loose her redundancy so she went on sick. If made redundant I can't employ and hair or beauty therapist. Which I need to get the business up and running to make it affordable for me run the business. ??? Can I self employ?. How can I get round this dilemma.
Nicki - 10-Sep-17 @ 2:59 PM
4 months ago there was a redundancy threat where I worked, I had been there 7.5 years and after some thought for me and the people I worked with for many years I opted for voluntary redundancy, even though I took voluntary redundancy can the company promote somebody from the same depot into the role I used to do, promote somebody into his role and then take extra employees On? It has been made out he is in a different position to the one I did by changing the title slightly but with the same work load as I did, however when you Google this person name it's states his title as the same title as I had. I am actually really annoyed about this as I took redundancy to save it happening to one of my team and presumed that role was no longer needed or required. I feel the whole process was handled badly as it was done from announcing redundancy to me being out in 3 weeks and without consulting with all staff members involved as one was on holiday, I think it was all a ploy to get me out as they need I would be loyal to my team and try to protect them.
Treatedlikewhatgoest - 5-Sep-17 @ 10:51 PM
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