Employer discovered a sick employee working full time for a second employer

Managing absence is always a delicate balance, and many employers will have sympathy with a business whose employee was found to have a second full-time job whilst on sick leave.

The employee worked for Kensington and Chelsea council, but also worked for a housing association whilst absent on sick leave from her full-time post in the Council.  Colleagues noticed an email from the second employer in which the employee’s slightly altered name featured, alongside a photographic profile.  As this occurred during COVID lockdown it is not difficult to see how the employee pulled off the double life – earning two full-time incomes without informing either employer.

In a frustrating move, the employee resigned before formal disciplinary proceedings could be launched, blaming ‘sickness and discipline’ stress as her reason for leaving.

It is often acceptable for employees to have a secondary employment interest – such as a small crafting “side hustle” or working part time at the weekend. In such cases, it is vital to ensure that the employee declares this additional employment.  Whole time working clauses in the contract of employment will assist employers identifying any risk that their employee will be competing for business with another employer.

121 HR Solutions regularly prepares contractual clauses for clients and can assist in preparing “whole time” clauses. Contact us at enquiries@121hrsolutions.co.uk.

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