At the moment, as you'll be aware, unless it's disrimination related an employee can't bring a claim of unfair dismissal unless they have a year of continuous employment.
Which means you don't have to worry too much about following a fair procedure for Malcolm in production who's been there 9 months and keeps annoying the MD by parking in his parking space.
On the face of it then, David Cameron's plans to reform the Tribunal system to increase this period would seem like a good idea. But is it?
All the press attention this is getting bangs on about this being a backward step because we reduced the period from 2 years to one some years ago, sexual discrimination because women move jobs more frequently and are therefore more likely to be affected, discrimination claims increasing in which awards are uncapped so will be more costly, yada yada yada.
I have a more fundamental issue with this. Is it right? Should we be allowed to treat someone unfairly just because they have less than 2 years service? Should we even have the one year period? Aren't we just copping out of managing Malcolm properly? Why wouldn't we follow a fair procedure?
As far as I'm concerned, while getting it wrong is less risky for the business with someone who has less than a year's service, we should at least be making an effort to get it right from day one.