Consultation Launched on “Frank Conversations” with Staff

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The Government has announced the launch of a consultation on the introduction of protected conversations so “a boss and an employee feel able to sit down together and have a frank conversation – at either’s request.” The Government confirmed its desire to “deregulate and cut back on bureaucracy” and to “create fair, simple processes that are good for business and good for employees too.” This could be very useful to employers, particularly following the abolition of the Default Retirement Age as they would be able to have a conversation with an employee approaching retirement age about their future plans without fear of an age discrimination claim and to help with succession planning. It may also be that employees want to be able to talk freely about the options open to them such as reducing working hours or redesigning their job description. This would also considerably help employers dealing with performance issues as it would allow them to deal with issues head on and avoid having to follow long drawn-out procedures.

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