Editor's message: Having policies in place on employee behaviour and appearance helps your employees know what standards are expected of them, in relation to their dress, use of social media or behaviour at work-related social events, for example.
Properly implemented policies can help to avoid tribunal claims against your organisation, and potential liability for the actions of an employee, such as for harassment. But legal action is clearly not your only concern; employee behaviour that comes to the attention of social media and brings your organisation into disrepute can be even more damaging.
You need to make sure your policies on employees’ appearance and behaviour do not themselves put your organisation’s reputation at risk, through being discriminatory or otherwise out of step with current attitudes. For example, could your dress code result in a petition with more than 150,000 signatures and an investigation by a Parliamentary committee, as happened when receptionist Nicola Thorp was sent home from an agency assignment with PwC for wearing flat shoes?
With the introduction of the GDPR, you are likely to have been particularly focused on data protection issues, which should include keeping on top of how employees are using your communications technology. Having policies on this can help to prevent data breaches and other unlawful processing of personal data.
Susie Munro, senior employment law editor
Employers are four times more likely to worry about how their apprentices dress for work than they would about graduates, a survey by the Institute of Student Employers has revealed.
Technology has revolutionised the way many people organise their work and created a debate around employee status. But it is also increasingly used to campaign for better treatment and conditions in the workplace, argues Susie Al-Qassab - employment law partner at Hodge, Jones & Allen.
Female cabin crew working for Virgin Atlantic will no longer be required to wear make-up while on their shift.
Updated to include information on the FCA's ongoing multi-firm supervisory review on how firms are implementing MiFID II rules on research unbundling.
One in four workers between the ages of 18 and 34 has gone to work still feeling drunk after the night before - and half of these employees have driven.
Six Ryanair cabin crew were dismissed by the airline this week for "breach of trust" after a photograph was circulated on social media showing the employees apparently asleep on the floor at an airport crew room.
This week's Court of Appeal decision that Morrisons was vicariously liable for a serious data breach by a disgruntled employee has got employers worried.
XpertHR research looks at employers' arrangements for work, rest and celebrations over the Christmas period.
Updated to include information on the Court of Appeal decision in Bellman v Northampton Recruitment Ltd on vicarious liability for a managing director's "brutal assault" of an employee.
Updated to refer to Richard v British Broadcasting Corporation, which dealt with damages for reputational harm in privacy cases.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to personal appearance and behaviour.