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Can I use contract to ditch staff?

I have a member of staff whose work I am unhappy with. Would it be valid to dismiss her as she does not have the skills required for the new contract?

Employees are protected by employment law. You should think carefully about the reasons why you want to get rid of a member of staff. The procedure for dealing with inadequate job performance should be quite separate from any decisions to make a member of staff redundant.

If you are unhappy with a member of staff's performance you should discuss ways of improving performance with the employee, and if there is no improvement, consider taking action against the employee for misconduct and/or lack of capability under the practice disciplinary policy. The end of this process may result in the problem being solved. Alternatively it may result in the fair dismissal of the member of staff.

If you need fewer employees, or employees with different skills, then you may need to consider redundancy. You would need to notify and consult potentially affected employees about redundancies.

You would have to successfully prove that the job roles had ceased, or significantly changed, and that the member of staff truly lacked the skills to do the remaining job or the new job. You would also need to consider whether there was suitable alternative employment available within the practice before you could make a member of staff redundant.

Would your decision stand up in an employment tribunal? It may be better to consider developing your staff where necessary and encouraging them to take up new opportunities. We recommend you seek advice from your local BMA office before making a member of staff redundant.

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