Expert Advice from the Croner Helpline #earlyyears

Croner have been a strategic partner of the dot2dot scheme since it was launched 10 years ago and following our annual review with them, a few interesting statistics have been provided which I would like to share with you:

1. In the last year, Croner handled over 3,000 queries for dot2dot clients; helping them resolve employment relations issues, payroll and commercial legal queries.

2. The Employment Advice line is available on a 24/7 basis to deal with day to day employee relations issues as they arise but also to help with advice on proposed changes to the organisation; restructures, changes to terms and conditions of employment, acquisitions, redundancies and TUPE transfers to name but a few.

3. In the last 12 months, the top call categories were:

• Conduct – 14% of calls
• Absence – 11% of calls
• Disciplinary – 8% of calls
• Grievance – 7% of calls
• Gross misconduct – 4% of calls

4. Croner are experts in the care sector and are able to compare the call trends from dot2dot clients with other care sector companies. These trends show some positive indications which are shared below:

a) There was a higher level of disciplinary issues, which is indicative of clients handling employee relations as they occur however there were also a lower number of grievances matters, which is indicative of staff being well managed.
b) The number of gross misconduct cases was also lower then the sector average, again indicative of fewer issues being dealt with resulting in the severest sanction (dismissal). Instead these are being dealt with under conduct resulting in fewer dismissals when a warning is sufficient to change an employee’s future conduct.

We selected Croner as our partner to provide clients with readily available expert advice on employment matters. Their experience in the care sector makes them truly able to give pragmatic advice on resolving employee relations issues; in the process identifying and overcoming risks that clients may face in getting the outcome that they desire. To this end they are supporting us with the production of a HR newsletter called Case Confidential which shares details of relevant real life situations where Croner have provided advice. Our first case which you have now received examined an incident in a toddler room where a sharp kitchen knife was discovered within reachable distance of the children during the manager’s check. Luckily none of the children were harmed.

In addition to the above, we were delighted to hold our first dot2dot Mock Tribunal which took place on the 19 November at Croner’s Hinckley office. It was very well received by the clients that attended with a comment from Zoe Raven at Acorn Childcare stating “Very informative and interesting day, and the format kept it entertaining too.” We hope to complete a few more of these events next year, so watch out for your invite.

I hope you find this to be a useful reminder of the extent of the facilities provided by Croner. The Legal Helpline is vital for all nurseries that sustain HR matters and of course, you mustn’t forget the Croner-i Early Years Management Toolkit for dot2dot. If you need any help or guidance then please ring us on 01204 570390 so we can talk through what is available from the dot2dot package.