Some of the recent work we’ve been involved in includes:
• The Royal Mint – pension project
The Royal Mint is not only responsible for making and distributing coins throughout the UK, but is also the world’s leading export mint, responsible for making coins for around 60 other countries each year. We provided advice to the Royal Mint when it proposed closing its existing defined benefit pension scheme and moving back to the Civil Service pension scheme, including advising on the collective consultation process, and working with pensions consultants Hymans Robertson to provide education sessions to employees and Union representatives.
• International Rectifier – collective redundancy consultation and take over by Infineon
International Rectifier is a world leader in power management technology, and has a manufacturing site in Newport and a sales office in Reigate. We have supported the company through a period of significant change, including the closure of its Fab10 operation in Newport and the purchase of the company by Infineon Technologies. In terms of the closure of Fab10, we advised the company on the strategic time line, including both collective and individual consultation, and worked with their HR team to prepare a comprehensive suite of documents for use throughout the process, including letters to employees and representatives, agendas for collective consultation meetings and FAQs. We also advised on issues raised by employee representatives and individuals throughout the consultation process.
WestBridge Fund Managers is an independent private equity company and a wholly owned subsidiary of WestBridge Capital LLP. Our employment team managed the employment aspects of WestBridge Fund Managers’ £12.3m management buy-out of a Cardiff based retail business. The deal won the ‘deal of the year’ in the Insider Dealmaker 2014 awards and our work involved undertaking a comprehensive review of the company’s employment structure, identifying employment law / HR issues and advising the client on strategy and risk. We continue to advise WestBridge on employment matters.
• Pensord Press
Pensord Press is a local printing business who sought our advice on making costs savings of circa £500k per year in a number of different areas. We advised and assisted them throughout a process of collective consultation with union and employee representatives, attending consultation meetings and advising on ad-hoc issues as and when they arose. The matter was successfully concluded and the process was robustly managed from start to finish and within a relatively short timeframe; employees were made fully aware of and understood the rationale behind the changes which were brought into effect with no claims or grievances being raised.
• Remploy Limited
Remploy is a quasi-public company sponsored by the Department for Work and Pensions which supports disabled people into work. We successfully represented Remploy at a 5 day tribunal hearing to consider a whistleblowing and constructive unfair dismissal claim brought by a senior Sales Manager. The issues under consideration were complex and Remploy’s potential exposure, both financially and from a PR perspective, was significant. We assisted Remploy by recommending a robust strategy in defending the claim and implementing that strategy in our response, witness statements and submissions at the hearing.
UKIPO is an official government body responsible for intellectual property (IP) rights including patents, designs, trade-marks and copyright. We successfully represented the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) at a 3 day tribunal hearing to consider a race discrimination claim brought by a job applicant. The claimant alleged that the UKIPO failed to progress her application because of her race which was evidenced by her education qualifications. We assisted the UKIPO by drafting a defence, witness statements and various cost warning letters recommending that the Claimant should withdraw her claim based on her prospects of success. We also prepared cross examination questions for the Claimant, the purpose of which were to get the Claimant to acknowledge that her application was poor in comparison with others and that this was the real reason why her application was not progressed to interview. The Claimant unsuccessfully appealed to the Employment Appeal Tribunal.
- Since 2013 we have worked closely with in-house counsel and the HR team of a global energy company, supporting them in addressing a myriad of employment law issues including the re-organisation of its main plant in the UK and the resolution of senior staff grievances. We are rated by the client, which has traditionally used London law firms, as a superior provider
- We represent a top provider of character and branded confectionery guiding them through some tricky disciplinary and grievance processes with successful cost effective outcomes for the client circumventing litigation
- We advised a global supplier of raw materials on the removal of a senior executive from the UK subsidiary, from their suspension through to disciplinary meeting stage. The extensive and complex disciplinary investigation involved human rights and data protection issues and the application of the client’s UK and worldwide policies in order to secure and use relevant evidence. Under the weight of evidence against him, the executive resigned prior to his disciplinary meeting and entered into a settlement agreement for a nominal sum, against colossal original demands. Our support included liaison with the client’s European HR and legal teams.
- We advise a distinctive “lifestyle” retail brand with stores and concessions nationally and internationally. We have instructed the employment team on a variety of issues including advising on reasonable adjustments, flexible working and brining back in-house franchise stores. Our work has also involved delivering training to retail managers on conducting and managing disciplinary and grievance investigations
- We have advised on policies and procedures for a large Further Education College.
- We have provided strategic advice to FE College in relation to the implementation of an Apprentice Scheme via an Apprenticeship Agency (wholly owned subsidiary of the College). We also advised on and drafted associated documentation including an Apprentice Services Agreement and contracts of employment between the Apprenticeship Agency and the individual apprentices.