S3 E7: “PAYING FOR GOOD” PODCAST ON ‘Employee relations and pay’ with Henicka Uddin, Director of the London region, Acas

“Are your resources bleeding?”

7th MARCH 2021


When you get on well with colleagues and respect your boss, the workplace is like another family. So you will be missing them dearly right now after being separated for a year during the pandemic. But that’s not always the case…

This week on my ‘PAYING FOR GOOD’ podcast, where we talk about the integration of remuneration and sustainability, we’re looking at the sensitive topic of employee relations with our special guest Henicka Uddin, Area Director of the London region of Acas, the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service.

Acas is all about improving working lives and it focuses on four areas:
• interpreting employment law and providing practical advice
• resolving workplace disputes and conflict
• writing policies and guidance on what makes a productive workplace
• conducting research on the future of work in the UK.

It has seen its workload increase dramatically during this time of great uncertainty about employment, made plain by the following:
• a potential 140,000 employment tribunal claims
• 800,000 calls to its free helpline for impartial and independent advice
• 15 million hits on its website.

Pay, unfair dismissal, alleged discrimination and breaches of contract are the main reasons for work discontent. When employee relations are strained and the company culture is toxic, everyone suffers and resources bleed. Management time is wasted dealing with matters that could have been resolved more easily if they had been discussed earlier. What’s more, staff fail to turn up to work or, even worse, they leave the organisation altogether.

What’s the impact of poor employee relations?
Such problems lead to lower productivity, an inability to meet service level agreements and a dent to your reputation as an employer. Investors also have a keen eye on employee relations as a key risk indicator of an unsustainable investment opportunity.

When you listen to Henicka, you will learn about:
• the types of claims Acas deals with
• what happens when claims don’t go to court
• the tools available to you to facilitate interactions in the workplace.

Your action takeaway from Henicka:
As a manager:
Have conversations with your staff as soon as an issue comes up. Make yourself aware of your own policies and guidance and follow them. Learn rom your past mistakes!

As an employee:
Raise issues with your manager early because what seems obvious to you might not have crossed their mind. Also, don’t make assumptions without knowing all the facts. There may be good reasons for the way things are, so ask questions. Lastly, as Ghandi said, “be the change you want to see in the world”. Bring a solution to the table as you might be the person with the best idea for resolving the issue at hand.

As an HR professional:
Continue speaking with your employees and managers and ask them what support they need right now.

As always, if you have any questions on the topic of Responsible Reward, feel free to email me at client.care@peoplenet.ltd.uk or book an introductory call here.