What if you do not need or cannot afford all of your existing workforce, how can you save costs?
Options for the employer to consider include the following:
- natural wastage
- recruitment freezes
- stopping or reducing overtime
- offering early retirement to volunteers
- voluntary redundancy
- retraining or redeployment
- sabbaticals and secondments
- pay freezes
It is likely that the main options to be considered by employers will be:
- agreeing reduced working hours with some or all staff (so for example you have an employee who had been working 35 hours a week pre lockdown but is now only needed for 20 hours) or…
- keeping the 35 hour working week but at a % salary reduction.
These changes would have to be by mutual agreement and if you get agreement this should be evidenced by a modification to the employment contract. Annual leave would reduce pro rata with a reduction in hours.
If an employer cannot reach agreement the alternative could be compulsory redundancy.