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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    1

    Question Underperformance

    What is your opinion?

    Does underperformance warrant instant dismissal?
    Should an underperformer be given warngins and threatened with dismissal?
    As an employer, should you support an underperformer to assist them reach the level of expected performance?

    I'm interested to hear thoughts and opinoins on these matters. Obviously it relates to the underperformance issue.

    To me, instant dismissal would only be warranted if an issues caused dramatic loss or damage to the business. If it was something minor then I would implore the warning system and I guess if I thought the employee was worth it, I would support them to help them grow!

  2. Default

    You can't just summarily dismiss someone for under performance. Due process is required and even then you need to be careful that it is not "constructive dismissal".

    "As an employer, should you support an underperformer to assist them reach the level of expected performance? "


    Ideally, yes.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    13

    Default

    Hi Fiona

    First of all I agree with JobMedia with what was said.

    You second question: Should an underperformer be given warngins and threatened with dismissal? Yes they should - if an employee is not meeting the set out expectations (provided that they have been discussed, understood and set with the employee) they should be informed and then given the opportunity/support to rectifiy their performance and at the same time be advised that if their performance does not meet expections you may have to let them go.
    Questions 2 - As an employer, should you support an underperformer to assist them reach the level of expected performance? I believe that it is morally right to give an employee the opportunity to lift his/ her performance - have you always performed to your best? I know that I have not due to personal health reasons unknown to my employer. An employer should first understand why employee's performance is failing and if the employee has issues understand if they're internal or external to the organisation. If they're external an employee assistance program may be of great help - however if internal the employee should be supported and managed to improve their performance. (Most managers are not very comfortable carrying out this particular task.)

    Should he/she fail to reach the expected performance and only then should discussion take place about letting that person go. In my experience most people know if they're doing a good job - and if you need to let them go it's how you go about managing the process and more importantly the person involved. There could so many reasons for underperforming - again from my experience two key factors come to mind: the wrong person in the job and lack of communication around expections - sometime what is a good performance for one manager it is only mediocre for someone else.

    Hope this helps.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Eltham, Victoria
    Posts
    1

    Default Fair Work Australia

    Hi Fiona

    Under the new Fair Work Legislation, there is now a Code of Conduct relating to termination of employees. The onus is now clearly on the employer to provide support and counselling to the 'under-performer" to help them improve their performance. It is also essential to have documented evidence, or a paper trail detailing performance conversations to back dismissal if it subsequently ensues. So you need up to date PD's, regular one on ones and completion of performance reviews for example.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Brisbane
    Posts
    24

    Default

    I agree with tHReshold.

    I am very concerned if people threaten staff with termination. Yes we need to inform them that should there performance not improve to and acceptable level/standard it could ultimately lead to the termination of their employment.....but don't threaten!

    Coaching, training, one on one's and general support is of utmost importance during this whole process! And remember to put all discussions in writing

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Brisbane
    Posts
    6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FionaH View Post
    What is your opinion?

    Does underperformance warrant instant dismissal?

    NO i would not

    Should an underperformer be given warngins and threatened with dismissal?

    A process I would use:
    1. Outline why they are there in no uncertain terms(closed statement)
    2. Ask if they have any reasons for this behaviour or is they any underlying issues (open statement ( often forgotten and may see another tack of approach needed if serious personal issues etc)
    3. If there is address the underlying issues first
    4. Address the persons underperformance in no uncertain terms, tell them of what the worst case scenario is(closed statement)
    5. Ask if they understand where they have underperformed and what they think they can do to improve (open statement)
    6. Allocate any reprimand(closed statement)
    7. Reconfirm their goals and ask if they have any questions (open statement)
    8. Tell them that this has been documented in the personnel file (closed statement)
    9. Leave them on a positive note and remind them that if they have any questions or concerns to come and see you. (closed statement)


    As an employer, should you support an underperformer to assist them reach the level of expected performance?

    Treat as above, and yes.... assist everyone, show some loyalty( good for turnover) as it will pay you back plus your workforce will watch/judge you. This said, I would not let them get away free and keep records, if it goes against company policy and is serious enough initiate termination, if not three strikes using escalation of reprimand.
    I'm interested to hear thoughts and opinoins on these matters. Obviously it relates to the underperformance issue.

    Hope this helps

    To me, instant dismissal would only be warranted if an issues caused dramatic loss or damage to the business. If it was something minor then I would implore the warning system and I guess if I thought the employee was worth it, I would support them to help them grow!
    Hope this helps ,

    Regards,

    Steve

  7. #7
    HRG78 Guest

    Default underperformance

    An employee’s performance has been unsatisfactory for a long time. The employee and their manager created an employee development plan which has been carried out. The employee has been given ample training and coaching the employee has been given verbal and written reprimands but there has been no improvement in the employees performance. Advice on how to handle the employee performance?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    3

    Default May be warned

    I think instant dismissal will never be a good idea. There must be a reason behind underperformance and we should try to understand that. When we hired the employee, we must have analyzed the skills or potential thats why we hired him/her. So we should understand the exact reason of underperformance before dismissal.

    Regards,
    Human Resource Info4all

    Quote Originally Posted by FionaH View Post
    What is your opinion?

    Does underperformance warrant instant dismissal?
    Should an underperformer be given warngins and threatened with dismissal?
    As an employer, should you support an underperformer to assist them reach the level of expected performance?

    I'm interested to hear thoughts and opinoins on these matters. Obviously it relates to the underperformance issue.

    To me, instant dismissal would only be warranted if an issues caused dramatic loss or damage to the business. If it was something minor then I would implore the warning system and I guess if I thought the employee was worth it, I would support them to help them grow!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Most managers come across underproductive or unhappy employees.....it is best not to ignor it, but to start with open communication first.

    If you and the employee do decide to part ways there should be some planning.....Is there a person that could fill the position and provide easier management and highter performance. Can other employees cover the shortfall if an employee was to leave suddenly?

    I have met managers who line up a replacement before suggesting that an employee might be better off working elsewhere, or going through a warning process. Ont he other hand, I have also met rather impulsive managers who act too quickly and as a result the company must pay compensation to the dismissed employee.

    Unfortunately, there is no easy solution.....this is the business of managing people.

  10. #10

    Default

    I agree with most of what everyone has said, but be prepared. If you do sack them they will still have a crack at an unfair dismissal claim....they all do.

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