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SSE merger leads to a large number of job losses - redundancy advice for SSE employees

25 June 2020 Employment Law Macnabs Solicitors

SSE is one of Perth's largest employers, with approximately 2,000 members of staff. The recent merger with Ovo Energy has prompted concerns about the effects of the merger on unemployment in Perth, with the announcement of potential job losses and redundancies. Around 80% of the job losses will come from the SSE business, with the company expecting 1,000 jobs to be lost in Scotland. SSE has not yet confirmed the precise number of job losses affecting Perth.

Chief Operating Officer and Co-Head of Retail at SSE Energy Services, Tony Keeling, has stated that staff will be offered voluntary redundancy.

He said:

"We are committed to engaging and consulting openly and transparently with colleagues, our trade union partners and appropriate employee representatives and have today announced voluntary enhanced redundancy opportunities for some of our customer service and metering teams."

If you are an SSE employee in Perth and are concerned about a voluntary redundancy offer, the below information may answer some questions that you have. Our team are available to discuss your situation with you, and you can get in contact with us for advice on your specific circumstances.

What is voluntary redundancy?

Voluntary redundancy occurs where your employer asks you to agree to terminate your contract of employment in return for a financial sum. Generally, voluntary redundancy is offered to long-term and senior employees, but other employees can also put themselves forward for voluntary redundancy.

Do I have to accept an offer of voluntary redundancy?

No, as suggested by the name, you do not have to accept an offer of voluntary redundancy. You may negotiate the terms or refuse altogether. However, it is essential to keep in mind that voluntary redundancy packages are often more substantial than standard redundancy packages.

Are my employment law rights affected by voluntary redundancy?

No, if you choose to put yourself forward for voluntary redundancy, or accept an offer of voluntary redundancy, you have the same rights as those selected for compulsory redundancy.

Under the law, voluntary redundancy is still classed as dismissal. Employers must go through the same process as for any other redundancy. Your employer should:

  • Consult with employees individually and inform them of their rights
  • Include advice and information on how the redundancy will be implemented including any notice period, the financial compensation on offer and any other information which may be relevant
  • Answer any questions you may have

If your employer fails to provide an opportunity for consultation, your redundancy could amount to unfair dismissal.

If you are an SSE employee in Perth and you have been affected by voluntary redundancy, get in contact with our team today.

SSE employee? Contact our experienced redundancy lawyers today.

Even if you have not yet been offered voluntary redundancy, but you are concerned your job is at risk, we can help. You can contact the head of our Employment Law team, Garry Sutherland by email at garrysutherland@macnabs-law.co.uk or call our team today on 01738 623432 to arrange an appointment.

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