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Help for small firms

Managing discipline - Investigation to possible dismissal: A guide

Managing discipline - Meet the employee and talk it through

  • Write to the employee.
    • They need to know what the alleged problem is and the possible consequences
    • Arrange a suitable time and place for the formal disciplinary meeting, and let them know that they have rights to be accompanied and to appeal against the decision after the meeting
    • With the letter, give them the facts from the investigation, including written evidence and witness statements, so they can respond. An example of a letter is available from our Disciplining staff useful forms section.
  • Prepare for the meeting, giving the employee reasonable time to also prepare their own evidence, witnesses and witness statements.
  • Hold the meeting without unreasonable delay. Give the employee and their companion the opportunity to have their say. Listen carefully. If any unexpected issues come up, you can always pause to find out more and rearrange the meeting.

After the investigation and meeting, decide what to do next.

Write to the employee telling them of your decision. An example of a letter is available from our Disciplining staff useful forms section.

But what you do will depend on whether the problem is about conduct or performance.

See Managing discipline - Taking action about conduct issues on handling conduct issues and Managing discipline - Taking action about performance issues for dealing with performance issues.

If absence is a factor also see Managing staff absence: A step-by-step guide, another online tool in this series of guides.

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