Getting ahead in HR matters: Why all businesses should have a trusted law firm in their corner from day one

Does your company have its own HR function that would benefit from legal support, either to assist with complex issues or workplace conflicts? Or are you spending your own time dealing with all HR and employment law matters without a HR function?

Swinburne Maddison’s recently expanded Employment Law Team are equipped with an in-depth knowledge of the very latest issues and updates affecting employment law. We are able to offer advice to employers and employees alike, helping to avert as well as resolve problems in the workplace.

Whilst it may not be your first thought to retain external legal support until such time as your company is faced with a tribunal claim, in today’s ever-changing business environment, it can be of the utmost importance to have such support in your corner from day one. As they say, prevention is better than cure!

Having a proactive employment lawyer in your corner from the outset can have a huge commercial advantage – it can allow you as a business to navigate the complex world of employment law with confidence. For example, if a senior manager who has been with your business for many years becomes disgruntled and suddenly starts to cause problems, this can have a seriously detrimental effect on the day-to-day running of a business, and there isn’t always a quick fix.  We can assist in these scenarios by looking at the broader issues at play in your business as well as facilitating negotiations and discussions to hopefully resolve problems before situations are able to escalate into full-blown disputes.

In doing so, we pride ourselves on providing prompt, jargon-free and customised support, covering a full range of employment law matters from swift day-to-day queries to complex restructuring advice, and everything in between.

In the case of employers, we work with both private and public sector organisations to assess their existing employment frameworks, make recommendations for improvements and assist in developing robust practices which can avoid potentially costly legal disputes. This can be in the form of providing comprehensive policies and procedures tailored to their businesses or providing pragmatic advice on best practices when enforcing such measures.

We often assist our clients with the drafting or variation of their staff contracts and handbooks, to ensure they are current and enforceable. We are also on hand to provide guidance and advice through essential but sometimes difficult procedures such as grievances, disciplinaries, capability hearings and respective appeal procedures. The provision of this support is an invaluable resource to ensure that your business is legally compliant, which can avoid costly issues in future, as well as protect your reputation and demonstrate to your employees that the business is organised and well-equipped to deal with all HR-related functions.

No query is too small; if you require advice on the calculation of a holiday, sickness, bonus or minimum wage pay issue, we can provide support quickly and seamlessly. These matters, when dealt with at the outset, can often avoid what may be a minor issue from snowballing into a formal dispute or the breakdown of a working relationship. Our reliable team are on hand to provide solutions whilst ensuring your business interests are being protected.

In addition to non-contentious work, we also provide tribunal representation where formal and sometimes complex disputes have already arisen, focusing on achieving tailored early resolutions where possible in order to minimise costs and disruption to business operations. Our expertise and tailored advice throughout the litigation process is likely to greatly increase the chances of a positive outcome for your business.

 If you would like to discuss any of the issues raised in this article, please contact Sharney Randhawa ( or Phoebe Gogarty (, or call 0191 384 2441.  Alternatively, please visit our website at

This article is for general information only.  It does not and is not intended to constitute legal or professional advice. The law may have changed since this article was published and we would always recommend that you seek specific advice on any particular legal issue.

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