Notice periods

Michael CartyEditor's message: Getting the balance right on notice period arrangements can help ensure that the end to an employment relationship works best for all parties. Employers in some situations can benefit from agreeing a shorter notice period with the employee. For example, organisations currently experiencing a downturn in business due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic might require employees to leave at short notice.

Any agreed changes to notice periods should be recorded in writing so that it is clear to the employee that wages and benefits will be paid up to the revised date only.

For employers looking to establish or review notice period arrangements, a key decision is whether or not to go beyond the statutory minimum. An employee is entitled to a minimum of one week's notice once they have been employed for one month, with the statutory entitlement rising in line with service thereafter (up to a maximum of 12 weeks).

Michael Carty, benchmarking editor

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