Redeployment process guidance

Redeployment policy

The University is committed to the delivery of research and education of the highest quality. Continuity of employment is an important element in achieving this. It is also the case that change is a regular and important part of the University maintaining a competitive and sustainable position and, over time, some activities will need to cease and new activities develop. The redeployment of staff from one activity to another has a key part to play in helping to ensure a balance between the need for continuity and the need for change.

Effective reallocation of work and/or redeployment retains valuable skills and knowledge within the University, contributes to the creation of a positive work environment and meets the University's moral and legal obligations. It should also provide the University with means to achieve a broader skills base and more flexible workforce in the longer term, whilst accepting the need to create/recruit new skills and talent where appropriate.

The University's aim is to minimise the number of involuntary redundancies. Accordingly, where an individual has been given notice of redundancy the University will support that individual to identify possible redeployment opportunities. It also aims to minimise the number of redundancy cases, coming forward, by seeking, where possible, to identify opportunities to redeploy individuals prior to any formal redundancy situation being instigated, whilst operating at all times within a framework that assures quality, and addresses equality of opportunity and diversity issues.

Identifying staff as at risk of redundancy

Members of staff will be deemed to be at risk of redundancy in the following circumstances:

Staff needing to be redeployed for non-redundancy reasons (including health issues) are also covered by this process.

NOTE - Where a fixed term contract is ending for some other substantial reason (rather than redundancy) staff will NOT be eligible for redeployment.  For example, staff on a fixed term contract for reasons of cover and training are NOT at risk of redundancy as their role is ongoing and therefore not eligible for redeployment.  URP candidates should be reminded of this when considering taking cover posts if their substantive post is at risk of redundancy.  If a candidate at risk of redundancy accepts a fixed term contract position to provide cover then no subsequent redundancy payment will be made once that fixed term contract has come to an end. 


The individual at risk of redundancy will be required to make pro-active efforts to secure suitable alternative employment, including:

Managers have a role in supporting redeployees and ensuring consideration of suitability where a potential match is identified, as well as strategic decisions on moving staff around the organisation.

Redeployees and Managers may also be supported by advice and guidance from their respective HR team throughout the process.

Local redeployment and workforce planning

Where a member of staff is potentially at risk of redundancy, local management will initially ensure that potential local redeployment opportunities within their Faculty or Division are explored, including the following:

Naming on grants - Authors of research grants should take any staff at risk of redundancy into consideration when deciding who to name on any grant before the application is submitted.

Temporary cover - Where short-term roles or tasks need to be covered any staff at risk of redundancy should be considered prior to or instead of engaging temporary staff.

Other staffing changes in the Faculty/Division - Any staff at risk of redundancy should be taken into consideration when other staffing changes occur, for instance adjustments to work patterns, voluntary redundancy for other members of staff.

University Redeployment Pool (URP)

Key elements

Registering staff for the URP

Details on how staff can register for the URP.

Staff designated as at risk through organisational or funding change

Staff coming to the end of a fixed-term contract

Staff needing to be redeployed for non-redundancy reasons (e.g. health issues)

Vacancy matching process

Selection process

The selection process should follow the basic principles of recruitment and selection best practice as outlined in the University's Resourcing Guidance.  This should include the following steps:

HR Managers will be able to advise on individual cases where required.

At risk staff applying for vacancies advertised more widely

If an at risk member of staff identifies a vacancy of interest, at either the same grade or a lower grade, on the University's careers site, that they have not already expressed an interest in at the URP stage, they should assess whether they believe they meet the minimum selection criteria. If so, an application should be submitted demonstrating how the selection criteria are met. If the applicant confirms they are formally at risk of redundancy, the individual will be given an interview if they have demonstrated that they meet the essential selection criteria.

Where the recruiting manager decides that an at risk applicant should either not be short-listed because they do not meet the essential criteria or is interviewed and then not selected for appointment, the reasons for the decision will be recorded (through full and proper use of the standard short-listing and interview forms). The recruiting manager should also notify the at risk applicant of the decision and reasons in writing, outlining those areas where the individual's application does not provide evidence of meeting the selection criteria.  If the applicant has been interviewed then the opportunity for feedback should also be offered.

If an at risk member of staff identifies a vacancy of interest at a higher grade than their current role, they can apply and be considered in the normal way and outside of any redeployment process.

Defining suitability

Suitable alternative employment

In deciding what constitutes suitable alternative employment it is necessary to take various factors into account including not only matters such as job content, hours of work, workplace, grade, pay level and career development prospects but also the requirements of the job in terms of skills, knowledge and experience.

Determining suitability for the role

It is for the recruiting manager and selection panel to define and judge suitability. The legal right regarding alternative employment applies in circumstances where the vacancy is suitable for that individual and vice-versa, given reasonable retraining where that is appropriate.  What is essential is that:

Trial periods

Where there are anything other than minor differences from the at risk applicant's current role and/or they may be suitable for the vacancy provided they receive reasonable retraining, the recruiting manager, following consultation with their HR Manager, may offer the post on a trial basis of between four and twelve weeks (depending on the nature and duration of the training required). The individual may also request a trial period of not less than four weeks in these circumstances. The details of the trial period will be clearly confirmed in the formal offer letter from HR.

The recruiting manager will set out for the individual a clear and reasonable statement of performance standards and objectives to be met and support to be provided during the trial period. Progress will be reviewed during the period through regular and recorded meetings between the individual (and trade union representative, where requested), the Line Manager (and the HR Manager where appropriate). The trial period is a two-way process and the views of the individual will be considered throughout.

If there is sufficient evidence that the performance standards and objectives have not been met satisfactorily by the end of or during the trial period and further suitable alternatives have not been identified (including a return to their previous role where this still exists and is vacant), the University may terminate the individual's employment.

If the University terminates employment on that basis, the individual is considered to be dismissed due to redundancy at the point at which their employment ends. They may receive a statutory redundancy payment calculated to that date.

However, if the University terminates employment for any other reason, for instance gross misconduct during the trial period, the individual is not dismissed due to redundancy and will receive no redundancy payment.

If the individual decides not to accept the new position during, or at the end of the trial period, and further suitable alternatives have not been identified, their current employment terminates at this point.


Where an individual is already paid at the grade for the vacancy for which they have applied, the normal expectation will be that their current salary level will be matched. Where the grade for the vacancy is lower than their current grade, they will be paid at an appropriate point on the new grade; where it is higher they will be paid at an appropriate point on the higher grade.

Non-acceptance of offers of suitable alternative employment

Where an individual has been selected for and offered a redeployment opportunity of the same grade they would normally be expected to accept this alternative employment. In most cases, by this stage the individual would have already identified the position as being suitable alternative employment, supported by their Line Manager and/or HR Manager.

However, there may still be some personal circumstances which mean that it is reasonable for an individual to refuse it.  For instance, changes in location or hours of work that may impact on the individual's care responsibilities. Every reasonable effort will therefore be made to address these issues, for instance through flexible working arrangements or trial period.

Redeployment of staff for reasons other than redundancy

The following link outlines further information on redeployment of staff for reasons other than redundancy.


If you have any enquiries regarding redeployment please contact your HR Manager.