Australian Employer Guide to Terminating an Employee for Poor Performance

We often provide advice and support to Australian business owners and operators who are dealing with employee poor performance. It is common that employee poor performance is observed for long periods without taking the necessary steps to remedy the concerns due to many factors including a lack of time, energy, or experience to deal with the concerns.

Here is a guide for Australian Employers on how to deal with poor performance and terminate an employee for poor performance in accordance with Fair Work Australia.

  1. Clearly document the employee’s poor performance: Keep detailed records of the employee’s performance issues, including specific examples and dates.
  2. Communicate the performance issues to the employee: Inform the employee of their performance issues and give them an opportunity to improve.
  3. Provide the employee with a performance improvement plan: Give the employee a clear plan outlining the steps they need to take to improve their performance.
  4. Monitor the employee’s progress: Regularly check in with the employee to see if they are making progress on their performance improvement plan.
  5. Give the employee a final warning: If the employee’s performance does not improve, give them a final warning that further poor performance will result in termination.
  6. Follow company policy: Make sure to follow your company’s policies and procedures for terminating an employee.
  7. Be consistent: Treat all employees fairly and consistently when dealing with performance issues.
  8. Seek advice: Consult with your company’s Human Resources expert department or outsourced HR team to ensure that your actions are in compliance with the law before terminating the employee.
  9. Give a valid reason for termination: Provide a clear, valid reason for the termination, such as poor performance, to avoid any potential legal issues.
  10. Provide support and assistance: Offer support and assistance to the employee during the transition period to help them find new employment.

If you are an employer and need further advice, contact our local team of Human Resources and Industrial Relations experts at (08) 9383 3293.

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