AtollHR

Sample Case Studies

Company T

Company T are a large national Utilities Company with excess of over 500 employees.  Company T required the expertise and support of an impartial HR Consultant.  A recent incident had occurred at Company T within their HR Department resulting in all HR employees being compromised to deliver a fair and impartial disciplinary hearing.  

Company T contacted Atoll HR to request their support with a potential disciplinary case.

Atoll HR met with the HR Director and HR Business Partner to gather additional information on the case to consider if the evidence provided during the investigation would warrant a disciplinary hearing. The evidence demonstrated Employee B verbally assaulting a member of the HR department with several witnesses being present.

The investigation included several interviews with key stakeholders – HR Manager, colleagues affected and Employee B. During the interviews Employee B demonstrated aggressive behaviour.

After conducting a thorough research of the investigation evidence Atoll HR recommended there were grounds for a disciplinary hearing to be held.

Atoll HR agreed to support a Senior Manager from Company T to conduct a disciplinary hearing. During the hearing Employee B was interviewed with his companion and based on the evidence gathered the hearing was completed in a professional and impartial manner.

Recognising the successful outcome of this situation and the professional role an impartial HR Consultant can play, Company T have employed Atoll HR to conduct further disciplinary investigations at their Company

‘Atoll HR felt like an extended, independent member of my HR team. Each time, I have found them to be very professional, extremely knowledgeable and flexible in their approach (even supporting when on holiday). Their HR advice and judgement is unquestionable and they have been able to support inexperienced managers through difficult ER processes. They are very reliable and I would highly recommend them. I will certainly be contracting Atoll HR again as and when required’. HR Director

Company x

Company X are a South-West based established business providing a broad range of energy efficiency and sustainability services. They have approximately 15 employees including 2 Directors and an HR Manager who are predominately office-based working within close proximity of each other.

Company X contacted Atoll HR requesting support with a potential fraud case whereby the employee (A) concerned had been put on immediate suspension.

Atoll HR met with one of the Company Directors to gather additional information on the case and discovered not only potential fraud but also ongoing behaviour problems, with Employee A being prone to aggressive behaviour which was negatively impacting the wider team.

Atoll HR agreed to conduct an immediate investigation to determine whether there would be grounds for a disciplinary hearing. This objective assessment resulted in several interviews with key stakeholders – HR Manager, colleagues affected and Employee A. During the interviews Employee A demonstrated aggressive behaviour and based on the evidence gathered, it was concluded and recommended that there were grounds for a disciplinary hearing to be held.

When Company X tried to arrange the hearing, Employee A became absent with stress and refused to attend meetings. Legal action was taken by Employee A, requesting a compromise agreement to resign with immediate effect if she was paid a fixed amount of money. Atoll HR advised Company X to decline and continue with the disciplinary hearing as all processes had be adhered to. After numerous communication between Company X, Employee A and her solicitor, Employee A decided to resign without a compromise agreement.

Employee A lodged a tribunal claim against Company X with unfair dismissal claiming unlawful deductions were taken from her final salary payment. Atoll HR provided full support and advice to Company X in preparation for the hearing and two weeks prior to the hearing date, Employee A withdrew her claim after recognising she could not provide evidence to support.

Recognising the successful outcome of this situation and the professional and legal advice and support given, Company X now employ Atoll HR on a regular monthly basis delivering HR Consultancy Service. Atoll HR have since delivered multiple training programmes for Company X who have a positive and engaged employee culture.

‘I have learnt so much from Rachel and Victoria over the 6 months we have worked together. They are approachable, knowledgeable, quick to respond and I would highly recommend the services they provide’ – HR Manager

Company V

Company Y is a European company with 2300 employees selling packaging and plastics across the world. The HR Manager from the South West branch contacted Atoll HR with a focus to deliver team building across the management teams and employee representative groups.

Atoll HR met with the HR team to gather additional information about the objectives to be achieved and identified an underlying problem of poor communication across all groups. Whilst an event with reward and fun was important to Company Y, Atoll HR identified certain blockages with poor communication and discussed how a team building event could begin to address these.

Three events were designed – one for the Senior Management team and two for the employee representative groups. Both contained an element of fun but with consistent messages around the types of communication and how people receive and process communication in different ways, resulting in overall team effectiveness. A well being element was included at the end of each event to embed the learning at a higher level.

The events were extremely well received by all attendees and the facilitation required an in depth understanding of the different learning styles within a diverse group of people. An action plan was created to ensure communication was addressed back in the work place with quick wins and achievable deliverables. Company Y were keen that Atoll HR support their team building activities on an annual basis.

“The activities were well suited to the target group and provided the message of communication in a fun and entertaining way” – HR Manager

“It was a good exercise to build trust within this group of employees who will have to work closely together as part of the wider team” – Management Team

Company z

Company Z are a South-West based established business providing branding strategies nationwide.

They have a small workforce consisting of a Managing Director, Senior Manager, 2 office staff and an apprentice. Apart from the apprentice all the employees are employed on a self-employed basis and are predominately office-based working within close proximity of each other.

Company Z contacted Atoll HR requesting support with a problem of employee A’s absence levels and capability.

Atoll HR met with the Company Directors to gather additional information on the case and discovered that absence levels of Employee A were much higher than the national average and her performance and capability levels were not improving. Employee A has been with the Company for just over a year.

Atoll HR requested access to Employee A’s contract of employment and the Company Handbook and Policies. It became apparent that the Managing Director was keen to create a supportive and caring culture which included additional benefits within her self-employed contracts. These benefits included paid holiday and sick pay and set working days and hours. The Managing Director had no idea by offering additional benefits she had merged the employment status of her employees.

These benefits were readily accepted by the employees until Employee A was challenged on her high levels on absence and capability, she was informed that Company sick pay was exhausted and as she was self employed was not entitled to receive Statutory Sick Pay. Employee A was extremely unhappy and claimed worker status due to the conflicting overlap of worker versus self-employed benefits listed in her contract.

Atoll HR deemed the employees to have ‘permanent employee status’ and advised Company Z to reissue new contracts with all the benefits this employment status holds and ensure all policies and legislation were updated and aligned correctly.

All employees signed their new contracts except Employee A who refused to sign the new permanent contract as it stipulated a non-compete clause restricting the employee to working in direct competition and she wanted to remain as a non PAYE.

Employee A requested the benefits of an employee but the freedom and pay benefits of a self- employed contractor.

After numerous negotiations employee A realised it was not ethical or legal for Company Z to meet her demands and chose to resign from her position and continue as a self employed contractor with new clients.

Recognising the successful outcome of this situation and the professional and legal advice and support given, Company Z now employ Atoll HR on a regular monthly basis delivering HR Consultancy Service. Atoll HR have since designed bespoke legal documentation for all employees.

Employing staff is a complex area with the constant changes in employment law. I could not justify my own internal HR Team and instead decided to use the retained services of Atoll HR. Rachel and Victoria advised and supported me through some difficult employment conversations with sensitivity and respect to all parties involved. Their professionalism and expert service was both cost and time efficient, and allowed me to get on with what I do best – CEO

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