Can my employer let other colleagues know about my redundancy before I know?


17 September 2020

By Alexandra Dean

Let's put this one really simply – you are allowed to feel aggrieved if your employer has told some of your colleagues that you are being made redundant before you have officially found out about it. No one can tell you otherwise on that.

However… Is it against the law?

Well, not really. This is not a breach of your confidential information and so does not breach GDPR or anything else that you might think could protect you. This is simply a fact that unfortunately you are no longer needed in the business and your employer is acting on that.

Does it invalidate the process?

Also no. Just because others have found out before you, does not automatically mean that the process was not followed properly or that it was not well thought out and considered. It could be that the actual slip of information was exactly that, a human error.

That is not to say that it cannot be a red flag in the process, though. If you are still undergoing a consultation for redundancy, then having your colleagues finding out that you will definitely be made redundant raises eyebrows for a legitimate reason. You can then question whether the process is pre-determined which could bring the whole process into question in that case.

What can I do about it?

You can raise it. Although, do not hold your breath for any real changes in the process. You may get an apology, or you might hear nothing more than an "okay, can we move on now?". But, you might at least feel like you got it off your chest.

At the same time, if the company does seem to suggest that your redundancy has not yet been determined, whilst your colleagues were advised otherwise, you could push it more and even appeal on that ground, if you so wish.

So, you are telling me that it doesn’t really matter?

Almost. I am telling you that in a redundancy process you have bigger fish to fry than to worry about the employer's grey-area-conduct of telling other people before you. It is bad practice, sure, but it does not change that you are going through the process and you would benefit more from focusing on the substantive process instead of the side-line issues.

Okay, I get it… but what are my options when facing redundancy?

I collated a lot of information and the most common questions into this page so please do read it and hopefully it may alleviate some of your concerns with giving you more information. Ultimately – Knowledge REALLY IS Power.

However, if you are still not sure of your rights and whether things have been done properly, then please do get in touch with my colleagues and I. We will be happy to have an initial conversation to explore some options with you and how we might be able to help, if we can. Please do call us on 01245 228141 or e-mail us.