Should the skills matrix for redundancies be fair to all staff?

I work for a school who are making redundancies. I have been selected for redundancy and am appealing. One issue is the skills matrix. Only four staff are keeping their jobs, but some of those up for redundancy are teaching assistants while others are teachers or higher level teaching assistants. The evidence of impact and skills from teaching or HLTAs role is very different to a teaching assistant’s which gives them an unfair advantage on the matrix. As TAs we cannot carry out the same roles. Can they legally provide examples and proof that comes from their second higher position? It seems very unfair.

I note from your question that you have been selected for redundancy but are appealing the decision. Ultimately, if your employer has not followed a fair redundancy process then you may be able to make a claim to an employment tribunal for unfair dismissal.

A fair redundancy process will involve, amongst other things, using a fair and objective way of selecting you and other members of staff for redundancy. In order to be reasonable, the redundancy selection criteria should, as far as possible, be both objective and capable of independent verification. It is ok for an employer to attach weightings to the criteria, reflecting their relative importance, as long as these can be justified. The selection criteria must also be applied fairly to those employees at risk of redundancy.

If your appeal is unsuccessful, meaning that you are dismissed for redundancy and you feel that your employer has not followed a fair process then I would advise you to take specific legal advice immediately.

In addition please be mindful of time limits. If you are unfairly made redundant and have worked for your employer for more than two years then you may qualify for an unfair dismissal claim. Such claims must be brought to an employment tribunal within three months of the dismissal and you would also need to go through the Acas pre-conciliation procedures before a claim would be accepted by an employment tribunal.

Should you require any further clarification on the above points then please do not hesitate to contact Tracey Guest of Slater Heelis LLP  on 0161 672 1425.

*Helen Frankland has assisted in answering this question.





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