The Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE) create complexity, risk and uncertainty for social sector organisations when contracts transfer between service providers if the contract constitutes an “economic entity” and there is an “organised grouping” of employees who are working within it immediately before the date of transfer. This can apply to just one employee. TUPE is a permanent but ever-changing feature of the sector in which we work and a failure to appreciate its implications can bring legal challenges and disputes and unexpected costs that can be significant enough to make business continuity unviable. A reality of the situation is that these implications can sometimes be unrecognised or misunderstood by key stakeholders such as one or both of the incoming or outgoing employers or the service commissioners.
A further reality is that the “doing more with less” culture of public service delivery means that terms and conditions which are protected under TUPE legislation need to be changed immediately after the transfer and when the new service begins. This can be a difficult and contentious area which will benefit from good technical understanding and clear communication.
We have extensive knowledge and experience in this area, both in terms of employment law and practical application and can manage incoming or outgoing transfers on an end to end basis or simply provide advice throughout the process. Consultancy value your organisation may appreciate in this area includes:
- Due diligence
- Costing of TUPE implications, especially pensions
- Planning the transfer process and timeline
- Appointment of staff representatives where appropriate
- Planning of consultations, including establishing measures
- Preparation for, and attendance, advice and note taking at informal and formal consultation meetings with employees
- Template documents, letters and meeting scripts
- Induction and orientation of transferring employees
- Advice and support for managing conflicting organisational cultures
- Establishing an Economic, Technical or Organisational reason for post-transfer changes
- Post-transfer restructuring planning and performance management
- Harmonisation of terms and conditions
Please contact us in confidence for more information and to discuss this further.