Working with Relatives Policy
Last Updated 19 Aug 2019 in Ways of Working
This policy provides guidance for colleagues when employing or working alongside a relative, to ensure that working arrangements remain fair and professional.
Key points covered:
- Managing Relatives
- Relationships between colleagues
About this policy
The Society recognises that occasionally we have colleagues working together who are relatives. This policy provides guidance for colleagues when employing or working alongside a relative, to ensure that working arrangements remain fair and professional.
A relative is someone who is directly related to a colleague, this could be a partner, parent, child, cousin as well as people you might be related to by marriage.
The guidance in this policy also applies to any relationships with agency workers, contractors, consultants or suppliers who work for the Society and who you work closely with.
This Policy does not form part of any contract of employment and the Society may amend it at any time.
The Society is committed to making sure that everyone has the same opportunities for recruitment or promotion. To ensure recruitment is done fairly and consistently, colleagues should not be involved in the recruitment process where the applicant is a relative.
If a colleague is aware that a relative has made an application for a position they are recruiting for, the colleague should withdraw from the selection process and be replaced by a suitable colleague. If this is not possible, the colleague should let their manager know as soon as possible to ensure arrangements are made for the recruitment process to be conducted fairly.
Ideally colleagues should not directly or indirectly manage a relative. However, we do recognise there may be occasions when a colleague is managing a relative. Where that happens you are required to make your line manager aware so that they can approve it.
Where managing a relative occurs, it may create a conflict of interest in situations like giving performance ratings, awarding pay rises or supervising financial transactions. In those circumstances, you should speak to a more senior manager to agree appropriate ways of minimising any potential problems.
There may also be occasions where in the course of their duties a colleague has access to confidential information regarding a relative. As with any data, this information must be treated as strictly confidential in line with the Data Protection Act and our Data Protection Policy.
Relationships between colleagues
To help avoid any problems such as conflicts of interest, we would encourage you to be open with your manager if:
You start a significant relationship with a colleague you work closely with, or you manage; or
Your relationship with a colleague changes in any way that might mean you have a conflict of interest.
If you are unsure whether a new relationship or a change in an existing relationship is significant enough to tell your manager about, it is best to make them aware. Your manager will treat what you tell them confidentially. If for any reason you feel unable to talk to your manager about this, please speak to a more senior manager or a HR advisor.
If problems arise as a result of colleagues working alongside their relatives or having relationships at work, the Society will look at possible steps that could be taken to resolve the issue. This may include changing shift patterns or the structure of the team, altering the reporting line or arranging for someone to supervise the working relationship. In exceptional circumstances, where it has not been possible to resolve the problem, we may need to speak to you and/or the other colleague about the possibility of transferring to a different team, department or location.
If you have any questions regarding this policy or require additional support, you should speak to your line manager. Alternatively, you can contact the HR advisor for your business group, or contact the HR advice line on 0845 099 6000.