Your workforce is your greatest asset, but managing employees in line with the law is no easy task, especially when you're time-poor or without in-house HR support.

Even for organisations who do benefit from internal HR help, as you grow, so too does the burden of managing an increased number of staff, which can put your in-house teams under enormous pressure.

So where do you turn for HR support?

Equip your business with a dedicated, legally-qualified HR professional

Ellis Whittam: Your HR management taken care of

There’s no escaping the inevitability of employee relations issues when you run a business or organisation, and this requires employers and HR managers to find smart ways of managing people-related challenges quickly and effectively, without inviting legal risk or spending a small fortune.

At Ellis Whittam, we help thousands of UK employers to alleviate their people pressures and ensure compliance with the law and best practice through unlimited, fixed-fee HR support.

More than just an HR helpline, each of our clients benefits from a small team of dedicated, legally-qualified HR and Employment Law Advisers for personalised, high-quality HR support tailored to your business or organisation. Known for the quality of our service and advice that rivals that of a traditional law firm, your adviser will take the time to get to know you, how you operate and the specific challenges you face and then use their extensive HR knowledge and expertise to help you achieve your preferred outcome, quickly.

Your named HR specialist will:

Provide commercially-sound and pragmatic advice that suits your organisation’s best interests and minimises the risk of an Employment Tribunal claim.
Help you to simplify employment law, explaining in jargon-free language how it applies to you and what steps you should take.
Work with you to prevent problems before they arise, advising when your current practices may leave you exposed to legal risk.
Expertly-draft your contractual documentation, policies and procedures, plus any employment-related letters or agreements you require.
Review any documentation you currently have in place to ensure that it's robust, fit for purpose and legally compliant.
Handle all matters with the highest level of confidentiality and sensitivity.
Do all the hard work for you, rather than handing you template documents to fill out in your own time.
Keep you one step ahead of any important legal developments that may affect how you operate.

With access to simple, practical and personal support at any time, you can be confident that your HR matters are handled in full compliance with the law and best practice, and ensure the stability and productivity of your workforce.

"Although we already have a comprehensive in-house HR resource, the support from EW is invaluable. The varying levels of experience amongst the HR teams across the divisions determines how they make use of EW. Sometimes we need support with complex legal matters; other divisions need more hand holding with day to day issues. EW provide a flexible service and always rise to the challenge."

Group HR Director, Cranswick

Why you might need us

We provide close HR support to thousands of organisations throughout the UK across a diverse range of sectors. Our clients range from small employers with fewer than 50 employees at a single location, through to large employers employing thousands of people at multiple sites around the UK. Each relies on our support for different reasons

Our high-quality, fixed-fee service might be the perfect solution if:

  • You want practical help overcoming the complexities of employment law.
  • You’re looking to protect your organisation against the rising threat of Employment Tribunal claims.
  • You want to ensure you comply with the law, while still achieving your commercial objectives.
  • You’re facing specific HR challenges that are affecting productivity, efficiency and morale.
  • Your in-house resource is stretched or doesn’t have the necessary expertise to tackle particularly complex matters.
  • You spend too much time dealing with day-to-day HR issues and want to free up time to focus on core business and strategy.
  • You feel you’re not getting good value for money with your current HR company, and want faster, more commercial, more personalised support from a partner you can trust.

Whether you’re looking to fully outsource your HR function or just in need of expert HR help to take the pressure off your internal team, we can complement your current arrangements and contribute to the stability and growth of your organisation.

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Reducing Employment Tribunal risk: There were 35,429 single claim receipts lodged between April 2018 to March 2019, an increase of 26% on the year prior. At Ellis Whittam, we reduce the risk of a claim by c.77% compared to the national average, and improve your changes of successfully defending a claim by over eight times.

High-quality, fixed costs

Reluctant to spend a fortune in hourly legal fees, but frustrated by the generic HR advice and personalised service offered by some fixed-fee providers? 

Ellis Whittam was born out of a genuine need for fixed-fee services that don’t compromise on quality.

With our unique service, you benefit from:

The certainty of fixed costs. No matter how much you lean on us for support, you have the reassurance that our costs won't increase, not even if your organisation grows. There's also no annual adjustment for inflation.
The quality of advice of a leading law firm. We recruit the best people, with the best qualifications and most commercial acumen. 85% of our Legal Team is legally qualified as a solicitor, barrister or legal executive (or on the road to qualification).

Since the beginning, our aim has been to challenge low-quality non-regulated providers of HR and Employment Law support services, by taking the quality standards of a leading law firm into the fixed-fee market. We believe that the value of saved time, saved costs, improved productivity and reduced risk is greater than the cost of our services, and this is reflected in our client satisfaction score of 94%.

Find out what PureGym had to say about our HR support

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What's included

Our unique service has been developed to help you to prevent HR headaches before they arise, overcome issues quickly, and enable you to approach HR tasks with confidence on a daily basis.

The key elements of our service include:

  • Unlimited advice, guidance and clarification from a dedicated HR consultant, who will work with you to tackle all employee relations challenges, no matter how simple or complex.
  • Preparing and regularly reviewing master contracts of employment for each category of employee, accompanied by an Employee Handbook of best-practice HR policies and procedures.
  • Cloud-based HR Software to provide you with a hassle-free way of managing holiday requests, absenteeism, employee records, training and employee benefits.
  • An extensive library of expert-created guidance notes and downloadable document templates to help you tackle key employment challenges such as grievance, disciplinary, sickness absence, performance, flexible working and TUPE.
  • Independent Legal Expenses Insurance to cover the cost of defending Employment Tribunal claims and awards of compensation.

Genuinely fixed fees

High-quality, personalised service

Commercial, qualified, pragmatic advice

No auto-renewal clauses

Proven track record in preventing and defending claims

Start offloading your HR pressures

To talk through your specific requirements and find out how Ellis Whittam might be the right fit for your organisation, call 0345 226 8393 today.

Quick-fire HR Guides

Stress

Are employers liable for harassment committed by third parties?

The specific rules around third-party harassment were deleted from the Equality Act (EqA) 2010 in 2013; however, employees may still be able to bring a claim for third-party harassment under its general harassment provisions in Section 26(1).

In regular harassment cases, the question to be asked is “does the unwanted conduct relate to a protected characteristic?” In cases of third-party harassment, the focus is slightly different. Here, the question for a court to determine is whether the employer’s actions, or indeed failure to act, is related to a protected characteristic. For example, if an employer responds swiftly to complaints of third-party harassment made by female employees but takes no action when the complainant is male, a court is likely to hold the employer liable for failing to protect the latter on the grounds of sex. This highlights the need for employers to have proper procedures in place to ensure incidents of this nature are sufficiently reported and properly dealt with.

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What is whistleblowing and what laws do employers need to be aware of?

Whistleblowing or “blowing the whistle” refers to the act of making a protected disclosure – that is, lifting the lid on serious wrongdoing within a company or organisation. Laws exist to prevent whistleblowers from being subjected to any detriment on the basis of speaking out about malpractice; however, to quality for this protection, the allegations must relate to certain categories of wrongdoing, the whistleblower must be a worker, and they must reasonably believe that they are acting in the public interest.

To avoid falling foul of whistleblowing laws, it is vital that employers ensure workers are in no way penalised for blowing the whistle. This means making sure that any decision to discipline or dismiss a worker, or select them for redundancy, is in no way related to or influenced by them having made a protected disclosure. Otherwise, they would have grounds to bring a claim to an Employment Tribunal for unfair dismissal.

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