Howes Percival will be holding their popular National Employment Conference on Thursday, 29 June 2023.
This year the National Employment Conference will be held at Whittlebury Hall, near Towcester, Northamptonshire starting at 9.00am and ending at 4.00pm.
This annual event is aimed at HR professionals and directors, and gives delegates an opportunity not only to receive an update on recent developments in employment law but also to attend workshops to explore key employment topics in more detail.
We are delighted to announce that this year's update on developments in employment law will be presented by a barrister, Sam Nicholls of Devereux Chambers. As always our team of employment specialists will lead a choice of workshops which give delegates the opportunity to share experiences and interact within small groups.
We are really looking forward to having an “in person” event again this year and this will give delegates the opportunity to share experiences, network and get some time away from the office… or home!
Book a place
Please reserve your place by clicking this link here.
Please can each delegate confirm in their reservation:
- A choice of one morning workshop and one afternoon workshop; and
- Any dietary requirements
Cost: £350 plus VAT per delegate. The price includes breakfast on arrival, lunch, tea/coffee and refreshments.
Offer: Book before 26 May 2023 and receive one place free for every paid place booked (i.e. book 2 delegates for £350 plus VAT, book 4 delegates for £700 plus VAT).
Date: Thursday 29 June 2023
Time: 9:00am - 4:00pm
Venue: Whittlebury Hall
Address: Whittlebury, Towcester NN12 8QH
||Registration and Breakfasts
||Welcome Introduction & Employment Law Update presented by Sam Nicholls
Sam is a specialist in Employment Law Litigation, including high value discrimination, whistleblowing, employee competition and business protection claims. His skills in cross examination are particularly well regarded, which were recently described by a judge as having left witnesses “dazzled in the headlights”.
‘Sam is a master of detail and has a great memory, which combined with his tenacity make him a misleadingly amiable, but effective, advocate. Sam has an unshowy style, but one that reassures clients and inspires confidence.' Employment, Legal 500 2023
|| Workshops (see full details below)
- Please Release Me (Let Me Go)" - Protecting your Business from your Employees! - Employment Restrictive Covenants
- "This is Me" – Thinking Differently About Neurodiversity in the Workplace
|| Workshops (see full details below)
- "I Fought the Law" - What to Expect from Employment Tribunal Proceedings
- "You can go your own way" - Redundancy
MORNING SESSIONS (please choose 1)
Session 1: "Please Release Me (Let Me Go)" - Protecting your Business from your Employees! - Employment Restrictive Covenants
Ordinarily, the interests of an employer and those of their employees are aligned. Both want the business to succeed and to thrive. However, employees can also occasionally provide a significant threat to an employer, particularly when being poached by, or moving to, a competing business. This session will explore ways in which you can protect the employer’s legitimate business interests, including:
- The use of restrictive covenants in the employment contract;
- Dispelling the myths about the enforceability of restrictive covenants in the employment relationship;
- Exploring alternative contractual terms and practical steps you can take that can sometimes be just as powerful;
- How to ensure your restrictive covenants are reasonable and therefore enforceable;
- Understanding your rights and remedies in the event of breach in both the short term and long term; and
- The legal process of enforcement – what is involved, and how you can make it work to your advantage.
Session 2: "This is Me" - Thinking Differently About Neurodiversity in the Workplace
Neurodiversity refers to the natural range of differences in individual behaviours and brain functions. It is estimated that between 15-20% of the population are neurodiverse with conditions such as ADHD, autism, dyslexia and dyspraxia.
In the current climate of significant competition to recruit and retain employees, if organisations are not neurodiversity-aware, they not only risk missing out on talent, but they also risk losing a diversity of thought that is facilitated by neurodivergent thinking styles.
This interactive workshop explores the practical and legal issues surrounding neurodiversity in the workplace and examines the steps that HR professionals can take to address the barriers faced by those with neurodiverse conditions and foster an inclusive environment. Specifically, this workshop will cover the following:
- Neurodiverse conditions and how they affect people in the workplace;
- Why neurodiversity matters;
- What employers can do to build an inclusive environment for their neurodiverse staff;
- How awareness of neurodiversity can aid recruitment and retention;
- Neurodiversity and disability discrimination; and
- Considering what reasonable adjustments can be made for neurodiverse employees and job candidates.
AFTERNOON SESSIONS (please choose 1)
Session 1: "I Fought the Law" - What to Expect from Employment Tribunal Proceedings
The prospect of the Employment Tribunal (ET) can be a daunting and unfamiliar prospect for many employers especially where they are facing potentially damaging allegations. The fear of this unknown can lead to employers agreeing to settlement in scenarios where they have strong prospects of defending the claim. Whilst this may be beneficial in reducing disruption to the business (as well as minimising the associated legal costs of defending a claim), it can set a precedent for future claims from employees wishing to obtain an easy settlement. In this interactive session, we will provide a step-by-step guide to ET process including:
- An understanding of your role in defending claims;
- Advice on proactively managing claims;
- Strategies and tactics;
- The importance of witness statements;
- What to expect from cross-examination;
- What happens at the final hearing; and
- Understanding the possible outcomes and remedies.
Session 2: "You Can Go Your Own Way" - Redundancy
Dealing with redundancy can be difficult for employers and employees alike. Employers can often feel uncertain about the process (and how to adapt it for the situation at hand) and struggle with its complexities. It is key for employers to “get it right” and follow the correct procedures – not only to avoid or defend Employment Tribunal claims from disgruntled employees, but also to achieve an outcome which is fair and right for the business in difficult circumstances.
This session will guide delegates through the key aspects of implementing a fair redundancy process and dismissal. We will also tackle some of the more “tricky” redundancy issues that employers often face, including:
- When and how to collectively consult;
- Pools for selection;
- Determining and applying fair selection criteria;
- Bumping – what is it and should you consider it?;
- Employees on maternity leave or long term sick leave; and
- Suitable alternative employment and its significance.
Delegates will be given case studies to work through, which will enable them to understand best practice and provide practical tips to ensure a smooth redundancy process.