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With so much talk in the media about the threat of a new national lockdown and Rishi repeating that he can’t save every job, is it any wonder that employers are asking what next beyond Furlough.

If you still have staff furloughed from work under the Job Retention Scheme the first question we have to ask is why?

  • Is it because of their health status?
  • Is it because you have no work for them to do?

We assume that those furloughed for childcare reasons are now available again for work as the schools have gone back.

If you have been furloughing because of concerns about their health, we do need to consider what the options are beyond furlough and in most cases that will be SSP.

Many of employers in the sector have been using the flexible furlough scheme (FFS). In this case we can understand if you now feel you may wish to retain the short time working beyond 1st November.

If you have the Short Time Working & Lay Off clause this is relatively straightforward and is communicated by means of a letter. Always take advise from a HR Consultant if you are at all unsure of whether you have the contractual right to use short time working.

Employees who are on short time working may be eligible for benefits from the Job Centre plus.

When someone is on short time working they cannot work for someone else without your permission if your contracts of employment say Other Employment.  Working for someone else during a pandemic, if new employment, we would strongly advise against.

As a strategy to avoid redundancies, we find that employees will often accept Short Time Working. Sadly as many employees are on or near minimum wage a pay cut and remain working their contractual hours is not possible.

Remember Short Time Working doesnt change the contract, and they remain employed for the contractual hours, which would be relevant should a redundancy occur further down the road.

If you need any assistance with any aspect of managing short time working please do not hesitate to call us on 01527 909436.