Employers here in UK are bounded legally to provide employment terms and conditions within 2 months. Important thing that needs description is why we need a professionally written employment contract pack when there is mutual contract between both the employers and employee at point of hiring. 

Often it seems loopholes are left on part of both employee and employers .Like for instance I would like to quote my own example over here. I got a job few months ago by virtue of a reference, because of which I didn’t bothered signing an employee contract. Reason I didn’t asked for one was that I felt it would be disrespect to my employer since he enjoys good relations with my reference, and also I was promised full contract after three months. 

Now this fact haunts me the most because my employer laid me off exactly in nick of three months period leaving me nowhere. Now that’s just one example that’s been put in front of you, there are numerous others. At least 5.1m Brits fail to read their employment contracts properly, putting them at risk of unfair treatment by their boss, according to new research. In a recent survey conducted by consumer champion (which was conducted over 4000 people) 6 % employees do not read their contracts while 26% of them just read through the lines. Overall, at least two million workers in Britain do not have an employment contract. 

Under any circumstance both employer and employee relationship is of great importance. Employer wants the best services for his business requirement and will hire more than perfect human resource available in the job market. Same goes with the employee who wants the right worth of his acquired knowledge and expertise.

For most people, their job is a significant part of their life – therefore before signing a new Employment Contract, you should ensure you are fully aware of what is and isn't included, So in case either party calls it quit, there must be a proper fall back mechanism which make sure they do so the inevitable on mutual grounds serving their interests.

 Good thing about Employment Packs is they cover all the monetary aspects along with employer’s requirements. A well drafted employee contract addresses both employee and employer concerns with clearly laid out terms and conditions. These documents must be flexible. Now these contracts are available on line but everyone wants his hairs done by a barber instead of a cobbler. So it is advised to acquire professional Legal experts or firms services as these Employment Contracts serve as bonds as well.

Laws of England and Wales states that employers must give new employee a written statement of ‘particulars of employment' no later than two months from the beginning of employment. It could be an offer letter or a series of letter which does not require formal employment contract. On point of joining a comprehensive employment contract is provided to employee for review.

According to section 1 of the Employment Rights Act 1996 the following should go in those written particulars:
• Names of the employer and employee
• Date of joining and previous employer and employment record.
• Compensation and remuneration mechanisms.
• Working hours
• Entitlement to holidays, including public holidays, and holiday pay.
• Entitlement to sick pay
• Entitlement to pension if applicable. (Remember all employers with five or more staff should be offering staff a stake holder pension scheme),
• Length of notice which the employee is obliged to give and entitled to receive to terminate his contract of employment.
• Title of the job and work description.
• Timeline whether it is contractual, fixed or probationer job
• Place of job. Employer address, address of employee in case he is a freelancer.
• Collective agreements which directly affect the terms and conditions of the employment
If a British national employee is required to work outside the United Kingdom for a period of more than one month then
• the period for which he is to work outside the United Kingdom
• The currency in which remuneration is to be paid while he is working outside the United Kingdom. 
• Any additional remuneration payable to him, and benefits to be provided to or in respect of him, by reason of his being required to work outside the United Kingdom.
• Any terms and conditions relating to his return to the United Kingdom.

Recent changes in employment law affecting this contract
Employment law changes often, necessitating regular updates to our documents. This one was last updated in April 2012.
Account has been taken in this agreement of:
• All employees have the same employment rights regardless of whether they are full-time, part-time,     casual or temporary
• Removal of a retirement age clause
• Government recommendations that companies follow disciplinary procedures recommended by ACAS

What should be the employers concern in an employee contract?
It is extremely important to have an effective employment contract in place both to be legally compliant and to protect your organization. Well drafted employment contracts should deal with issues including:
• Will the employee will work additional hours if required.
• Work flexibility and skill adequacy for the diverse job.
• Appropriateness of employee references.
• Employee reluctance to opt maximum 48 hour working week.
• Whether bonuses should be discretionary or contractual.
• Fines and cut back mechanism.
• Holiday and bank holidays (especially for part-timers), when holiday can be taken and whether it can be carried over or not.
• Whether or not any sick pay over and above SSP is contractual or discretionary.
• The right to require the employee to be seen by a doctor.
• When time off for dental and other appointments should be taken.
• Tardiness and upkeep issues.
• Protection of Confidentiality and Intellectual Property.
• Notice periods.
• Whether you reserve the right to give a payment in lieu of notice on termination, and/or put staff on 'garden leave'.
• Dealing with Misconduct and Grievances
• Effective restrictions preventing your staff from poaching clients or colleagues after they leave.

What kind of non contractual terms can be included in the Employment Pack?
Good thing about these Employment Packs is you can also involve different sets of non-contractual policies and procedures. These clauses normally address issues related to roles and responsibilities pertaining to routine work. Following are the common clauses included
• Disciplinary policies.
• Email and IT policies.
• Equal Opportunities 
• Fire drills
• Flexible Working hours. 
• Grievance.
• Health and Safety policies.
• Maternity.
• Parental Leave.
• Performance. 
• Personal Data.
• Sickness Absence.
• Smoking etc.
• Time Off For Dependents.
• Vehicle Use. 

Things to do as an employee
• Read and comprehend your contract thoroughly.
• If it refers to a guide hand book go grab and read it. It’s for your own good.
• Ask as much questions as you can from your employer to clarify terms and conditions. It won’t cost you.
• Upon satisfaction sign your contract and keep it in safest place but not safe enough that you forget about it. 

Reason I didn’t asked for one was that I felt it would be disrespect to my employer since he enjoys good relations with my reference, and also I was promised full contract after three months.


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    January 2013