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Docking holiday for being late

(9 Posts)
skittycat Sun 10-Feb-19 17:56:16

A main focus in my workplace at the moment is cracking down on lateness as certain colleagues massively take the piss and regularly turn up 30-45 mins late with no reason (most of the time they’ve been out drinking or gambling the night before)

One of the men that I work with was 12 minutes late for work the other day. He had childcare issues which he sorted and got to work as quickly as possible. He is never usually late (he is not one of the ones that gamble or go out on a weeknight) Because of this lateness, our hr department have told him that they will be putting it through as time off as a holiday... but a full hours worth of holiday time rather than the time he did take.

Is this actually something that they are allowed to do? No where in our contracts does it say that this will be a consequence of lateness, just the usual about disciplinary action.

We’ve been told (informally) that the upper management will be having a meeting to discuss changes to the lateness policy (the docking of holiday included) but can they implement a policy prior to making all staff members fully aware of this?

JonestheMail Sun 10-Feb-19 19:20:11

Not an employment lawyer but no I don't think they can unilaterally dock holiday, nor can they dock an hour. I think it would be reasonable to dock an equivalent amount of pay (12 minute's worth) assuming the time was not made up elsewhere with agreement. They must apply the same treatment to everyone.

flowery Sun 10-Feb-19 19:47:18

An employer can require an employee to take holiday on particular days, but notice must be given of twice the length of holiday to be taken. For example if they want someone to take two days off they have to give four days’ notice.

They can’t therefore ‘dock’ holiday, no. Although they don’t have to pay staff for time they should have been at work if they weren’t there.

daisychain01 Mon 11-Feb-19 04:12:49

I'm going to be controversial here and hoik up my judgypants....if lateness is a hot topic in your company, for example if customer phonelines have to be opened at 9am, I'm amazed employees think they can flout the terms and conditions of their employment.and not be at their desks at the allotted time. No comment re drinking /gambling...

If childcare is an issue then they could make arrangements for flexible working, to allow for obligations for school runs. Some companies are geared up for staff being on Flexi working, others have to be rigid esp SMEs if their business is based on reliable and ever present customer service in business hours.

Poppiesway1 Mon 11-Feb-19 04:30:27

Have a read of the above site.. may help.
My employer wouldn’t dock holiday for emergency child care issues.
We’re also not allowed to claim lieu time for less than 30 minutes therefore they can’t take it off of us either.

skittycat Mon 11-Feb-19 08:44:10

Thanks for your views 😊

@daisychain01 No I completely agree - certain colleagues have and do take the piss because they’ve been allowed to get away with it. It’s got to the point where several other colleagues see this one man in general getting away with it and therefore also don’t see the point in being on time.

I completely agree that the company need to crack down on this & would be okay with a policy that docks pay for the amount of time late - just wasn’t sure whether they’re allowed to a) deduct holiday and b) deduct more than the actual lateness c) implement a new policy without actual telling anyone until after the event.

Akire Mon 11-Feb-19 08:46:48

Seems strange way to go about. This way if you are 1min late you might as well take your time go for a coffee and stroll in at 9-59 and get docked the hour the same.

daisychain01 Mon 11-Feb-19 15:18:31

OP good practice would state that changes to employment Ts and Cs and processes that are a consequence should always be clearly communicated in a consultative manner. Sometimes this is enacted via the employee's chain of command eg line manager or a departmental team meeting.

It sound like they are making an example of that one man. In fairness, unless this policy directly affects you, there is little you can do because it is between him and the employer.

If it is formalised as a change to everyone's Ts and Cs yours included, for which they would have to go formal via HR, then you could decide whether to take issue. Likely they are doing it as a scare tactic (not a good approach) but not planning to make it official.

Ariela Mon 11-Feb-19 15:29:41

Personally I can't see why he couldn't have 12 minutes less at lunchtime, that's what we do here, we're all kind of flexible, if you're going to be late you do have to let everyone know but it balances out. Seems a bit odd to deduct the full hour - he may as well go back out and have a coffee as you say.

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