Agreed Severance procedure (AS)
Perhaps you have provided a valuable contribution during your employment, but over time your skills, knowledge and experience no longer match job or organisational requirements completely. “Agreed Severance” (AS) is a scheme in which you and establishment management can agree to end your employment on mutually acceptable terms in what is designed to be a painless and non-confrontational process.
A condition is that you agree to sign a settlement agreement: this is a legally-binding agreement on both you and management. If applicable, the settlement agreement will incorporate an agreed reference. A further condition is that AS is only open to you if you have completed probation.
(This is not an exhaustive list):
- your job is not redundant but parts of your role could be achieved using new technology, simpler processes or a style of working with which you are uncomfortable
- the technical requirements of your job have expanded beyond your abilities and retraining/re-skilling is not a practical option
- if you are experiencing difficulty in working effectively as part of a team
- if you are having difficulties in prioritising reasonable workloads and meeting deadlines but are not considered suitable for capability action
- if you have indicated a desire to leave BBSRC/JNCC employment and this would be to management’s advantage
Agreed Severance does not normally include early departure under Voluntary Exit (see appendix A14.1), although you may still be required to sign a settlement agreement.
Because AS is outside the scope of the pension and compensation schemes we operate, it is treated as a resignation. Whatever your role or pay band, if you leave us through AS, you will receive a payment in lieu of notice of up to six months’ salary. This payment will be subject to tax and NI contributions.
You can ask about a possible AS termination at any point, at a one-to-one meeting such as an APDR discussion. Alternatively, management may raise the possibility of an AS termination with you, again in a one-to-one discussion.
Managers introducing the idea must be careful that their approach is not construed as bullying, harassment, discrimination or victimisation, any of which would be inappropriate. You have the right to turn down an AS proposal by management without fear of unfair treatment from then on. Management can decide to make it known generally that applications for AS termination might be welcome from time to time. Even so, there is no guarantee that you would automatically be successful if you applied. Management considers all applications on their individual merits.
Management must not use AS where dismissal on grounds of capability, discipline or redundancy would be more appropriate. However, an AS case might be identified through the capability route.
Decisions about AS proposals up to and including band F level are made by the Director of Operations; above band F by the Director.
Management information on AS cases will be reviewed as part of the annual Equality and Diversity data collection by BBSRC People and Development Group.
If you apply for AS and are not successful, you can raise a grievance through the BBSRC grievance procedure (see Section A12c: If things go wrong - grievance issues).
If you leave under the AS scheme and are subsequently re-employed within 6 months, you will be required to re-pay the balance of the payment in lieu of notice referred to in paragraph 3. Re-employment may also have pension implications and you are advised to check with the Joint Superannuation Service (http://jsspensions.nerc.ac.uk).
The scheme is reviewed periodically for its effectiveness.
Last updated 29/01/16
Amendment 189 - January 2016