Setting up a disciplinary procedure

Ensure your disciplinary procedure is fair, follow the ACAS code of practice and what not to do.

  • Contact Acas for their Code of Practice; your procedures must be at least as good as the statutory three-step minimum outlined.
  • Put your procedures in writing and communicate them to all employees (for example, through a handbook). Ensure they understand the rules and their rights.
  • Identify what issues your disciplinary procedure needs to cover: for example, work performance, theft, offensive behaviour and inappropriate behaviour.
  • Classify offences: minor offences, repeated minor offences, misconduct, and gross misconduct are the most commonly used categories.
  • Provide examples of misconduct; do not try to produce an exhaustive list or be too specific if the offence can be a matter of degree.
  • Describe offences constituting gross misconduct, meriting dismissal; consider whether an employment tribunal would agree with you.
  • Set up a series of warning steps for offenders: for example, oral warning for minor offences, written warning, final written warning (and ultimately dismissal).

Click to read more on setting up a disiplinary procedure.

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