(Pre-May 2013) Redeployment Policy
1. Purpose of the Policy
The University is dedicated to attracting and retaining excellent, committed staff and values the depth and breadth of experience, knowledge and skills that they hold.
The exchange of ideas, skills and knowledge, and the promotion of this through staffing policies and procedures, is integral to the work of the University. Such fluidity includes the movement of staff between different parts of the University and benefits the individual and the University as a whole.
The changing needs of the University and the pro-active management of change mean that staff may need to be considered for redeployment from time to time, either on an individual or a group basis. In these circumstances, it is recognised that the staff concerned have a body of experience and expertise which shall enable them to continue to contribute to the success of the University, given suitable opportunities to do so.
The circumstances in which the redeployment policy shall be used are set out below. It should be noted that the policy or restructuring shall not be used as an alternative to effective performance management.
The University shall therefore make all reasonable efforts to enable staff in a redeployment situation to continue their career with the University.
The effective operation of this policy shall be dependent on the full cooperation of staff and managers in the process and the provision of all necessary and relevant information to support assessment and decision making. For redeployment to be successfully achieved staff are expected to undertake appropriate training and to exercise flexibility in considering available opportunities.
This policy meets the requirements of all relevant employment legislation; notably, the Employment Rights Act 1996; the Fixed Term Employees (Prevention of Less Favourable Treatment) Regulations 2002; and the Employment Act 2002 (Dispute Resolution) Regulations 2004.
This policy applies to all staff with more than 9 months´ service, in all staff categories, on both open-ended and fixed-term contracts.
This policy was developed in consultation with Campus Unions and was implemented with effect from 1 February 2005. The policy was revised on 23 March 2009. This policy supersedes all previous arrangements, but does not affect the individual protection arrangements already in place for those members of staff who have been redeployed prior to this date. This policy is supported by the University Management Guidance Notes on Redeployment.
The purpose of this policy is as follows:
- To ensure that a fair and consistent approach is adopted in the management of redeployment.
- To maintain efficiency in the working environment.
- To ensure that all staff remain valued and recognise their contribution to the University.
- To provide effective support to staff in a redeployment situation and provide for their effective development.
- To ensure that the University meets all relevant legal obligations (for example, the Equality Act 2010 and, as regards finding suitable alternative employment for staff at risk of redundancy, the Employment Rights Act 1996).
2. Eligibility for Redeployment
Staff may be eligible for redeployment in the following circumstances:
2.1 For the purpose of avoiding redundancy
Where one or a group of eligible staff are identified to be at risk of redundancy the provisions of this policy shall be applied to all members of staff affected.
Where a fixed term contract is due to expire, the provisions of this policy shall be applied to that or those members of eligible staff 3 months before the expiry of the contract.
2.2 Making reasonable adjustments as defined under the Equality Act 2010
Redeployment shall be considered as one route for making reasonable adjustments for staff with a disability Equality Act 2010.
2.3 Any Other Reasons
In addition to the above, there may be rare circumstances, for example where the University is under a legal obligation relating to grievance or harassment, where redeployment may be sought. Any such use of redeployment shall be on an exceptional basis only and shall be considered by the Department of Human Resources, according to the prevailing circumstances at the time.
Eligible staff shall be placed on the Redeployment Database for a period of 3 months, defined as the Redeployment Period.
Any extensions to the redeployment period shall be on an exceptional basis and be dependent upon individual circumstances. Extension of the redeployment period beyond the notice period shall require the approval of an Assistant Director of Human Resource Management, or delegate.
Where it is not possible to secure alternative employment for staff through this policy the provisions of the redundancy policy shall apply and those provisions and contractual and redundancy notice periods shall run concurrently with the redeployment period.
This policy has been designed to assist staff in securing alternative employment within the wider University once it has been established that redeployment within the department in which the member of staff normally works is inappropriate or unavailable.
Staff eligible for redeployment shall have access to the normal services provided by the University in the areas of counselling, training and support. To be successful the redeployment process relies upon the commitment and active involvement of all parties.
4.1 Enhanced Statutory Redundancy Payment Option
At the point where a member of staff who is at risk of redundancy becomes eligible for redeployment they shall normally be invited to consider the option of an enhanced statutory redundancy payment according to an agreed payment scheme, as an alternative to redeployment:
Where a member of staff confirms they shall opt for the enhanced statutory redundancy payment, entitlement to the provisions of the redeployment policy shall be forfeited.
Where a member of staff confirms they shall opt to explore redeployment opportunities instead of the enhanced statutory redundancy payment, entitlement to the enhanced payment scheme shall be forfeited.
The University shall determine whether any applications for the enhanced statutory redundancy payment option can be made and accepted and reserve the right either not to offer or to refuse applications made where they are not in the interests of the department or the wider University.
The options shall be confirmed in writing to the member of staff, who shall have 10 working days to consider and confirm their preferred option, by which time they shall be expected to have completed the relevant documentation and returned this to the Department of Human Resources.
Members of staff at risk of redundancy who choose to access provisions for redeployment and remain unplaced at the end of the redeployment period shall be subject to the terms of compulsory redundancy, as set out in the Redundancy Policy, which shall include the terms of the compulsory redundancy payment scheme. It should be noted that contractual notice periods shall run concurrently.
4.2 Redeployment within the Department
Responsibility for redeployment lies, initially, with the Head of Department in the department in which the member of staff is located and every effort should be made within the department to find a suitable alternative position for the member of staff.
4.3 Redeployment within the wider University
If no suitable employment can be found within their own department then the member of staff shall be placed on the University´s central Redeployment Database, administered by the Department of Human Resources.
The process which shall normally be followed is set out in the supporting management guidance notes.
The manager shall be responsible for meeting with the member of staff to initiate the Redeployment Policy, through completion of the documentation necessary to inform the redeployment process. The member of staff shall be entitled to be accompanied by a work colleague or trade union representative if they so wish. Eligibility to access the provisions for redeployment shall be dependent on the correct completion of the documentation, within the prescribed timescales. Assistance in this shall be provided by the Department of Human Resources, as appropriate.
The Department of Human Resources shall be responsible for assessing whether a post constitutes suitable alternative employment. Eligible staff shall be entitled to be granted priority of consideration for all vacancies considered to be a suitable match by the Department of Human Resources (see 4.4 below).
During the redeployment period staff shall remain in their original post, and continue to be the responsibility of their originating department.
Departments shall allow reasonable time off to staff to find alternative employment, both within and outside of the University, including attendance at interviews and training during the redeployment period, in accordance with statutory requirements.
4.4 Priority of Consideration and Guaranteed Interviews
Priority of consideration for the purpose of this policy is defined as follows:
For each arising post identified by the Department of Human Resources as a prime facie suitable match for staff placed on the Redeployment Database, based on the information available, the suitability of members of staff shall be considered by the recruitment panel in advance of advertising the post.
Where a recruitment panel considers that a member of staff meets the minimum criteria for the post a guaranteed interview should be held, in advance of advertisement of the post.
A guaranteed interview for the purpose of this policy is defined as follows:
For each arising post identified by the Department of Human Resources as a prime facie suitable match and put forward for priority of consideration, members of staff who, in the view of the recruitment panel meet the minimum criteria for the post, shall be granted an interview in advance of advertising the post.
Where staff are able to demonstrate at interview that they meet fully the requirements of the post, it is expected that they shall normally be appointed to the post.
The process by which staff shall be put forward for arising vacancies is set out in the supporting management guidance notes. In summary:
Where, on the basis of the information provided, a member of staff is identified to be a potentially suitable match for an arising post by the Department of Human Resources, they shall be considered by the recruitment panel in advance of the post being advertised.
Where, after consideration and interview, the department proposes to appoint the member of staff the normal administrative procedures relating to appointments shall apply.
Where a member of staff, put forward for priority of consideration through this Policy, is not selected for a priority interview, written reasons, based on the requirements of the post, shall be provided by the recruitment panel, with the support of the Head of Department, to the Department of Human Resources before the post may be advertised.
Where a member of staff, granted a guaranteed interview through this policy, is not recommended for appointment, written reasons, based on the requirements of the post, shall be provided by the recruitment panel, with the support of the Head of Department, to the Department of Human Resources. In such circumstances feedback will be provided to the member of staff by the recruitment panel.
All posts identified as a suitable match for priority of consideration and guaranteed interviews which do not result in the appointment of the member of staff seeking to be redeployed shall be subject to review by an Assistant Director of Human Resource Management, or delegate, prior to the advertisement of the post.
In these circumstances the department shall be advised of the outcome of this review as soon as possible, and whether and when they are able to proceed with advertisement of the post.
4.5 Declined Offers
Where a member of staff seeking to be redeployed is put forward for priority of consideration and / or a guaranteed interview but turns this down as unsuitable, they shall be entitled to refuse two offers, as deemed suitable by the University, providing they can provide valid reasons. Where three suitable offers for priority of consideration and / or a guaranteed interview have been made and refused the University reserves the right to proceed to dismissal.
Where a member of staff seeking to be redeployed is offered a post through the redeployment process but declines the offer without valid reasons, the University reserves the right to proceed to dismissal. In both instances, any entitlement to the provisions of redundancy may be forfeited.
Where it is agreed by all parties that suitability for a post is not certain, consideration of a trial period may be considered, in accordance with statutory requirements (see 6. below).
If the member of staff does not meet the specified criteria and the vacancy is not considered suitable by the University they may apply for the job in the normal manner and shall be considered in competition with other applicants.
5. Suitable Alternative Employment
In normal circumstances suitable alternative employment shall be defined as posts arising of the same grade or the grade below and shall include posts in alternative staff categories, of a commensurate salary, and posts occurring in alternative University locations.
Since the objectives of the Redeployment Policy are primarily to avoid redundancy, priority of consideration and guaranteed interviews shall not be granted for posts which represent a promotion for the member of staff. For such posts, application must be made in the normal way.
All parties involved in the redeployment process are expected to exercise flexibility when considering opportunities of a different grade, staff category or University location.
6. Trial Periods
A trial period according to the nature of the post may be applied in accordance with statutory requirements. In particular, a trial period may be used where the suitability for the post is disputed or unclear. A trial period may extend up to a maximum of 4 weeks, in accordance with the legal framework, and shall take effect from the date of appointment to the new post.
At the end of the trial period the manager and the member of staff shall advise the Department of Human Resources, in writing, whether or not the appointment is regarded as successful.
Where the appointment cannot be confirmed this must be supported by written reasons which shall be reviewed by the Assistant Director of Human Resource Management, or delegate. Where these are accepted, alternative courses of action shall be discussed with the member of staff. The notice period shall be extended to accommodate for trial periods.
7. Protection of Earnings and Conditions of Service
For the duration of the redeployment period, as defined in 3) above, the contractual position of staff and their associated grade, salary and all other contractual benefits shall remain unchanged.
Redeployment offers shall be made at the grade and conditions of service, including eligibility for membership of pension schemes, attaching to the post. However, where a member of staff´s current contractual pay level exceeds that for the post, their level of pay shall be maintained and frozen at their current cash pay level, excluding any additional allowances, additional contractual earnings or contractual overtime, for 4 years or until the pay level for the new grade overtakes their cash pay level, whichever occurs sooner.
Pay protection will apply to a member of staff´s level of pay for their existing working commitment; where the contractual working hours of the redeployed post exceed the member of staff´s contractual working hours of the existing post, pay protection will only apply to their existing contractual working hours. Any additional contractual working hours will be paid at the level attaching to the post.
8. Staff Relocated to Temporary Posts
Where it is not immediately possible to redeploy staff on a long-term basis, they may be relocated to short-term temporary posts (not exceeding 6 months). In such cases, staff shall be expected, through discussion and agreement, to be flexible regarding their working arrangements, to meet the operational needs of the job (e.g. hours of work), taking into account their personal circumstances and commitments outside the University.
9. Equal Opportunities
All parties involved in the operation of the Redeployment Policy shall have responsibility for ensuring that the application of this policy is in line with the University´s Equal Opportunities Policy and Code of Practice for Staff.
The impact of the Redeployment Policy on all staff groups shall be assessed on a regular basis and any adverse or disproportionate impact on any particular groups addressed.
10. Implementation and Review
Policies and procedures which are linked to the Redeployment Policy, and which should be read in conjunction with it, are:
- University Guidelines and Criteria to Govern the use of Fixed Term Contracts
- Redundancy Policy
This policy was implemented with effect from 1 February 2005 and shall be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis, to ensure that it meets the needs of the University and to ensure compliance with relevant legislation.
Content last updated by Department of Human Resources: 23 March 2009.