In the Summer Time…When the weather is fine
In recent weeks, we have been experiencing some good weather which is a welcome break from the traditional wet British summer time. However, this can still create issues for an employer.
Possible issues could include;
- Workplace temperature – Legislation states that there is no maximum temperature within the workplace, and temperature need to be ‘reasonable’. The definition of ‘reasonable’ depends on the nature of the work being undertaken. Therefore, factors such as whether the work is strenuous or physical will have to be taken into account.
- Unauthorised absence – All employees usually cannot be absent at the same time, and this sometimes cases an issue when an employee take a period of absence which unauthorised. However, it is important not to jump to conclusions, and a proper investigation should be undertaken before jumping to any conclusions and/or considering disciplinary action.
- Holiday Requests – Under the Working Time Regulations 1998 there is no obligation for an employer to agree to time off at a particular time unless this is specifically stated within their terms and conditions of employment. An employer should take a fair and consistent approach when allocating holiday, and it make sense to have a clear annual leave policy.
- Dress Code – An employer can consider a dress code which contains provision for different types of weather. However, it is important that health and safety law is observed, and also that any dress based rules are not discriminatory.
- Late Return from Summer Holiday – An employee may return from summer holiday later than expected. Such matters would need to be investigated, and evidence considered which may include medical certification if an employee has been ill whilst on holiday. Disciplinary action could be a possibility if satisfactory reasons are not provided for an unauthorised late return from holiday.
- Work Experience – Some employers offer school age children an opportunity to undertake work experience. An employer should make sure that that they have a taken a ‘belt and braces’ approach when engaging in such arrangements. There are clear rules and restrictions on employing young people, and employer should be aware of such provisions.
If you need any help on such matters please contact Atom HR for support and advice.