Preparing for Winter: Adverse Weather Conditions

This winter is expected to be one of the harshest the UK has seen in years, so if we are in for a white winter – what policies can be implemented to minimise surprises?

Employee Absence

If an employee is unable to get to work, they must inform their employer – usually their manager, as soon as possible. Each company should have their own policy in place and in their Employee Handbook it should state what an employee should expect if they are unable to get to work due to bad weather and delayed trains.

Losing the Business

In conditions such as heavy snow, a company may decide it is best to close business for the day altogether. It is advisable to spread this message across the business’ website and social media platforms, ensuring clients are kept up to date.

In these situations, an employee who would have been willing to get to work is entitled to their normal pay for the day(s) the office is closed. Therefore, in most cases, businesses tend to try and stay open as often as possible.

Planning Ahead

If adverse weather conditions are expected, for example, if a serious weather warning has been issued, it is sensible for an employer to expect the worst. Where possible, making arrangements in advance will allow for minimum disruption.

Whilst employees should allow extra time to get to work, employers are also expected to be understanding. Working from home is a great way to deal with these issues, if an employee works for a firm and needs remote access to IT networks and emails, this should be set up in advance. This preplanning also allows an employee to continue working if they are snowed in.

Unpaid Time Off

In all such situations, employees are entitled to take unpaid time off. This is encouraged in circumstances where an employee is a parent and schools are closed. If the parent is unable to arrange childcare, they are legally able to take unpaid time away from the business.

For further help with dealing with this in your business, or help with your Employee Handbook, contact the team at Clover HR today.


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