Medical products supplier specialising in breathing and respiratory solutions

Enabling the smooth transition of a mid-level TUPE project.

End-to-end management and implementation of a sensitive, high impact and confidential people transfer project.

The challenge

Our client was looking to outsource a number of customer service functions, including their finance and other IT systems, help desk and office-based customer service functions to offshore. This was a highly sensitive project, with circa 160 employees affected across 10 countries.

This was a global project with timescales driven by a number of European countries, owing to the increased complexity of coordinating local Works Councils, in different destinations, with different time frames.

One key challenge impacting this project and its sensitivity was the discrepancy between local salary due to employees working remotely within the Covid-19 pandemic. Consequently, mid planning, the client’s business rationale changed almost overnight, as relocation became a less likely outcome. 

Connor and the internal HR team therefore needed to be agile and adaptable in managing this situation, and carefully steer the negotiations whilst managing the end-to-end process.

Why Connor?

Connor has been delivering TUPE projects of this nature for over 29 years. Our team of highly experienced HR professionals were selected as they had the capability to work seamlessly alongside the client’s internal team to deliver the project in a timely and professional manner, ensuring that the process was compliant, met all statutory requirements and treated each of the impacted employees with dignity and respect.

Additionally, we had in-depth knowledge of our client in terms of their personality, culture and processes, from working together on a previous TUPE project. With such a complex and sensitive TUPE project this time around, it was recognised that the team in-house required additional support and wider expertise.

Our approach

We partnered shoulder to shoulder with our client’s project team, providing professionals who were a great cultural fit and who could ‘feel like part of the team,’ whilst retaining an objective third-party perspective.

We worked to make the complex simple, delivering every step of this project using a clear plan that broke the process down into manageable workstreams and tasks, and provided a plan with a clear timelines, templates and tools.

We worked with a project sponsor and associate through the whole piece. We were able to deliver as the HR expert and strategic partner with experience in this sector, understanding our client’s outcomes and working back from them. We outlined both the ‘statutory/textbook approach’ and more commercial options, making the client risk aware so that they approached the project with an ‘eyes wide open’ philosophy and supplied a range of solutions for any issue.

What we did for the client

This was a highly sensitive, political and confidential project. Consequently, our client’s main objective was to deliver a smooth transition for all in scope, ensuring that all staff affected were treated fairly and that where possible, grievances were avoided. They wanted to do the right thing by their employees and have their brand remain as the employer of choice.

The project was delivered in 2 key stages:

1) Pre-announcement Planning

This phase included:

  • Project mobilisation.
  • The set up of workstreams.
  • The set up of the Data Room.
  • Conducting due diligence on employee data.
  • Creation of the project plan.
  • Creation of consultation documentation for Individual Consultation, including all formal invitations, follow up letters, severance summaries and settlement agreement alignment.
  • Review of communication scripts and schedule (employee and manager as appropriate).
  • Set up of weekly project calls.
  • Set up FAQ system (e.g. email/ tracker or SharePoint).

2) Individual consultation

We delivered the following:

  • Attendance, minutes and follow up of consultation townhall meetings and subgroup meetings and all related documentation, scheduling and messaging.
  • Instigating an FAQ system (e.g. email/ tracker or SharePoint).
  • Coordinating, scheduling all (3 per employee and based on maximum of 6 (six) x 30-minute meetings per day) Individual Consultations, taking minutes, scanning paperwork and recording on files.
  • Ongoing management of Q&A.
  • Managing all other Individual Consultation duties.
  • Weekly project management calls and project reporting.
  • Follow up communication and letter collateral.
  • Project close down.

The business outcomes

  • Communication of the business change up front, ensuring a retention plan was in place for the transition.
  • Maintaining motivated employees throughout the process and minimising disruption to business as usual.
  • Acknowledging that previous voluntary redundancy schemes had been granted and expectations could be skewed, supporting the management team with key messaging and decision making.
  • Aligning key deliverables and timings to a global role plan.

What the client said

“These things are always difficult, but putting people first in the process and being respectful is the key to success. Connor really understood the importance of getting this right.” European HR Manager, Medical Supplies Sector

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