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proposals to avoid redundancy

(11 Posts)
movingthegoalposts Fri 19-Apr-13 10:43:46

At my redundancy consultation meeting, I was asked if I had any proposals to make. The only "money saving" thing I could think of was reducing my hours but actually realised that for me, it would be best to cut my losses and look for something new now, rather than prolong the agony and take less home for (no doubt) the same expectations by going part time. Plus I realised that actually this could be a positive change for me - things have become a bit stale. So I didn't propose anything. (I felt from our previous conversation that this was not really an option anyway, but obviously that was not said specifically).
This has gone down really badly and I was criticised for not coming up with anything, patronised for perhaps "not having understood the situation" and otherwise rudely dealt with for not making suggestions. Equally, they didn't suggest anything - not sure if that's because they have to be careful about proposing a change like that?
I've been sent away to think about it (what am I, 8?) but am I obliged to come up with something? I don't understand the process and can't find much online, or at least, I find the same info regarding individual consultation everywhere but nowhere that says more than "the consultation should be 2 way". If I am doing something wrong, please tell me!

flowery Fri 19-Apr-13 11:02:07

How strange! Yes they definitely should be asking for your alternative suggestions to avoid having to make you redundant, but if there's nothing that you can think of (or want) to suggest, that's absolutely fine.

If they actively wanted to suggest part time hours or anything else, they could do so, so it's strange to criticise you for not suggesting anything.

Don't worry, just say you appreciate them consulting you fully and giving you plenty of time to consider the situation carefully, but you have been unable to think of any alternative proposals that would meet their business needs at this time.

movingthegoalposts Fri 19-Apr-13 11:13:27

Thanks for your response flowery! I think I was concerned that it would reflect badly on me if I wasn't more proactive. Maybe it's the guilty part of me thinking that this could be the change I needed so am happy to go!

flowery Fri 19-Apr-13 11:16:14

Well it shouldn't reflect badly on you at all, but basically it doesn't matter if it does anyway. Either your selection for redundancy is fair or it isn't, and they can't make someone redundant because the person didn't come up with a way to avoid it.

Glad you'll be happy to go. It can be a really positive thing, although it often doesn't seem it at the time.

AuntieStella Fri 19-Apr-13 11:20:07

Cynically, I think they don't necessarily want you to leave but do want to move you to a lesser role, which would be very dodgy on their part, but think they can get away with if it's your initiative. So you may have inadvertently called their bluff.

So stick to your guns. Say you understand perfectly well that the post is redundant, and ask if they have a suitable alternative post to offer you (which should be at same pay and similar responsibility/seniority/status); if they haven't, you'd like to start discussing the redundancy package.

movingthegoalposts Fri 19-Apr-13 11:56:05

That's a good point AuntieStella - I'm not sure if that's the reason, but the cynic in me thinks there IS a reason for pushing me. So I just wanted to be sure of my ground!
flowery I am not convinced the redundancy is completely fair as they notoriously ride roughshod, and this is another reason I want to make sure that I am doing everything correctly.

flowery Fri 19-Apr-13 12:09:25

It's possible they were hoping you'd want to go part time or something, and remove a problem for them. But if you don't want to you don't want to and it makes no difference whether it's them suggesting it or you. I think they might have wanted that but are annoyed that you don't.

As long as you engage with the process, which you are, the onus on them is to make sure it's fair.

Do you want to talk about why you think it might not be fair? If there are flaws in their decision or procedure used, pointing that out might get you a settlement if you want to leave anyway, but the risk is they back down and don't make you redundant at all, which by the sounds of things wouldn't be what you want.

movingthegoalposts Fri 19-Apr-13 12:20:39

The reason I suspect it might not be fair is because I have been identified for redundancy and there has been no consideration (as far as I am aware) of anyone else. No 2 people have the same job titles or roles, so it's easy to say it is individual, but from what I have read (and I suspect googling HR advice may come under the same category as googling illness and fraught with the same dangers, so forgive me) there should have been a wider consideration of people at the same sort of level doing the same sort of job. But as I say, I am cynical about them so may perhaps be looking for reasons!

The other reason I suspect it is unfair is because I have had a pretty rough time recently and been the scapegoat for a number of things - so I am clearly someone they want to get rid of. Hence me feeling so positive about going and not convinced about them wanting to keep me - but being a bit confused as to why they are so keen for me to find an alternative! But none of this is documented so I appreciate that this can't count.

MistyB Fri 19-Apr-13 13:06:29

Don't feel guilty!! And if it is the best thing for you, then all the better.

It can't look any worse for you than them deciding to make you redundant so don't sweat about that!

If however you do want some ideas to throw out there; (these may be completely irrevelant or sound flippant knowing nothing about the company, the situation or what they have already tried)
Restrict office opening to 9-5 to save on electricity / heating
Reduce travel, events, discretionary spending
Exploit existing products / services in new ways
Review tasks and remove unnecessary elements, redistribute workload so temps / contractors can be released
Allow home working so office space can be rented out / sold / no longer rented
Reduce higher paid employees salaries, smaller hurt to more people

But presumably all the obvious avenues have been covered!!

MistyB Fri 19-Apr-13 13:12:54

I see the thread has moved on! I was going to suggest that you could suggest making someone else redundant in a nice way, is there an area where you think real savings could be made? eg, There are 40 people in department X and they are working on a project that does not increase productivity, costs too much and does not increase revenue?

IJustWoreMyTrenchcoat Sun 21-Apr-13 10:45:44

Don't suggest going part-time as a cost saver if what you really want is redundancy. They might just take you up on it and make you redundant as a part rather than full-time employee. I hope you get what you want out of the situation.

I hate the patronising attitude management can display in these situations. I am going to be placed at risk/made redundant but it has been delayed due to my pregnancy, I had HR asking if I had been applying for other roles! I will do that when I am officially at risk and have to do so, not before. I would like redundancy too.

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