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Get ready for winter…

8th September, 2014

Have YOU got the appropriate policies?

As is often the way with the Great British summer, the weather has turned and the glorious sunshine has become daily rain showers. With September now here it will soon be time to make sure that you are set for the autumn and winter months.

No, this doesn’t just mean pulling out your woolly gloves and having de-icer at the ready, you should also consider the policies and procedures in your workplace.

In particular, we would recommend an Adverse Weather and Travel Disruption Policy, to clearly set out employer and employee responsibilities in circumstances where attending work is not feasible and in some cases, not safe.

We would recommend that the policy sets out:
1. Travelling to work: Employees should make every effort to attend work and employers should set out a procedure to report absences.
2. Alternative working arrangements: It may be appropriate for employers to set out homeworking arrangements, provided employees can complete a full day’s work.
3. Late starts and early finishes: Employers may wish to consider implementing flexible working hours to aide employees on their commute.
4. Absence and pay: Employers should be clear on their absence and pay policy and ensure employees are aware of their rights and responsibilities.
5. School closures and other childcare issues: One of the main things that comes with adverse weather is school closures. Employers may want to offer additional support to employees and the parameters for any such support offered.

It will also be important for employers to provide training to managers on the policy and to manage its effectiveness. Employers should monitor absenteeism to ensure that the policy doesn’t lead to ‘duvet days’ and clearly indicate the consequences of failing to attend work and/or non compliance with policies.

For further information and advice in relation to policies and procedures in the workplace, please contact Helen Watson on 01244 405565 or send an email to [email protected].

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