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  • Writer's picture Lyndsay Salmon

TUPE - Transfer of undertakings protection of employees

For those that know me, or actually even just met me briefly, you'll know that I love horses, and I love TUPE ... yes the bane of many a manager's life and the word that strikes fear into many an HR professional's heart. (TUPE, not horses...).

I decided I wanted to work in HR at the tender age of 20.,,,and it was TUPE which triggered this revelation. I was working as a Reception Manager at the Essex Golf and Country club at the time when we were advised that the business had been sold to ClubHaus - an international owner of Golf Clubs. Of course Clubhaus (being a bit German) were keen to follow correct process and so I learnt about TUPE and what that meant.

I was hooked, and when Clubhaus offered me the opportunity to become the Club's HR Manager I bit their hand off... the rest, as they say is history.

So what is TUPE? In a nutshell it is legislation that protects employees' rights when the organisation or service they work for transfers to a new employer.

The legislation requires the old employer to consult with the employees about what is happening and what might change (these are called measures). It also means the new employer must provide information to the old employer and must keep the employees on the same terms and conditions (they can make some changes but they must be for specific reasons and not unreasonable).

There are some instances where TUPE doesn't apply, for example if its only shares that are sold and the employer stays the same, or if the employees aren't really assigned to the transferring works and just happen to be covering that area. There was a famous case, involving biscuits on this scenario, I'd be happy to discuss further if you buy the biscuits!

I have helped lots of businesses with TUPE. Sometimes from Public sector to private, or reverse (unusual in this day and age but it happens!), sometimes small transfers of one to two employees and a couple of years ago I supported the transfer of 6,000 cleaners, catering staff and security personnel. I think I have probably done over 30 separate TUPE Transfer processes for different businesses and I still love it!

I've even TUPE'd myself once.

If you do need any help with a TUPE please do call or email me. It'll make my day! I've added a photo of the other love of my life. For balance of course.

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