The XpertHR Podcast (UK)

Bringing you must-have employment law guidance and HR best practice - from the team behind XpertHR, the UK's leading online HR resource.

All Episodes

How is HR responding to the opportunities and challenges presented by the move to hybrid working? Noelle Murphy, XpertHR's senior HR practice editor, discusses the findings of our recent survey and unpacks what these mean for HR practitioners. We explore: issues around consistency of approach; cultivating a culture of collaboration; avoiding the risk of a two-tier workforce; creating meaningful engagement; and how organisations are handling reluctant returners.

Nov 30

16 min 8 sec

How are employment tribunals approaching claims arising from the coronavirus pandemic? We explore the most important decisions handed down so far this year and discuss their practical implications for HR, including cases relating to: health and safety; the furlough scheme; varying terms and conditions; and flexible working requests.

Nov 15

23 min 35 sec

Tricia Halpin, chief people officer at Masthaven Bank, explains how her team has implemented the Women in Leadership initiative, a programme to improve gender diversity across senior roles. She shares her tips on how HR can tackle the issue of poor gender diversity to make a meaningful difference. We also hear from two participants on the programme who explain the impact that the initiative has had on their careers.

Nov 2

21 min 25 sec

Most people want to say and do the right thing when it comes to diversity and inclusion but often hold back from asking questions out of a fear of being judged. We put some of those often unasked, and sometimes provocative, questions to Joy Stephens, a US-based diversity, equality and inclusion consultant. Joy discusses, among other things, what being "woke" really means; what separates tokenism from meaningful action; whether white middle class men can really be effective proponents of the diversity agenda; and why the Black community can use the "N word" but other communities cannot.

Oct 19

30 min 18 sec

Jo Broadbent, counsel knowledge lawyer at Hogan Lovells, guides you through the fundamentals of handling flexible working requests and discusses the future of flexible working in the post-pandemic workplace. We discuss the law and best practice when responding to requests; practical steps to avoid indirect discrimination complaints; learning points from the recent case of Thompson v Scancrown Ltd (t/a as Manors); flexible working requests post-pandemic; and the Government's proposed reforms to the Flexible Working Regulations 2014.

Oct 4

25 min 14 sec

When was the last time you reviewed your employees' contracts of employment? Do they reflect changed circumstances and current business needs? Max Winthrop, partner and head of the employment law team at Short, Richardson and Forth LLP, examines why it is important to understand and review your employees' contracts of employment, including those terms that may evolve through custom and practice. We also discuss flexibility clauses, the role of reaching agreement and contractual terms that may seem less important but are nonetheless central to the contract.

Sep 2

25 min 54 sec

Professor Cary Cooper, CBE, Professor of organisational health and psychology at Alliance Manchester Business School at the University of Manchester, President of the CIPD, President of the Institute of Welfare and Chair of the National Forum for Health and Wellbeing talks to us about the future of the workplace, the role of line managers in its success, and the key skills required by line managers in a hybrid setting.

Jul 20

25 min 14 sec

Rochelle Murinas, HR professional and managing director at Innov8 Human Resources, talks to us about the skills required to manage a redundancy process effectively and empathetically, while minimising the emotional impact on all those involved.

Jul 8

13 min 49 sec

Joanne Lockwood, transgender awareness specialist and founder of SEE Change Happen, shares her experience as a transgender woman in the workplace and explores how organisations can cultivate transgender inclusive practices. We discuss how employers can "smile, engage and educate"; the importance of creating psychologically safe workplaces; the support employers can offer to a trans person's family, friends and colleagues; meaningful recruitment initiatives; and easy wins/fails.

Jun 17

18 min 41 sec

This summer sees employees who holiday abroad facing quarantine when they return, work-life balance issues for parents during school holidays, two major sporting events, and the furlough scheme winding down. Principal employment law editor Stephen Simpson explains the unique challenges the summer of 2021 provides for HR.

Jun 4

20 min 18 sec

Dee Caunt, chief executive at the Dyslexia Association, shares her thoughts on how organisations can support neurodiverse employees and benefit from their unique strengths. We discuss: the concept of neurodiversity; the benefits of employing neurodiverse people; the challenges that neurodiverse employees may face at work; making reasonable adjustments to the recruitment process; handling performance issues; and getting communication right. For confidential advice on supporting a dyslexic employee, HR practitioners can call the Dyslexia Association's helpline.

May 25

21 min 59 sec

Louise Roberts, people development director at housing provider Orbit, explains how her team has implemented hybrid working and shares her tips on how HR can capitalise on this opportunity to improve engagement, productivity and collaboration. We also discuss how to support staff who are unable to work from home and how to ensure employees' wellbeing.

May 12

14 min 39 sec

Kate Gamester, knowledge development lawyer at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP, discusses what employers need to know about carrying out right to work checks in the UK, including: the process for conducting checks; coronavirus-related concessions; and conducting checks on European nationals following Brexit.

Apr 29

34 min 39 sec

What process should employers follow when moving their workforce to hybrid working? Principal employment law editor Stephen Simpson joins us to discuss the legal aspects of implementing hybrid working and answer HR's questions about making the move. The coronavirus pandemic provides an unprecedented opportunity for employers to examine their approach to flexible working. Many employers are now planning to introduce permanent hybrid/blended working, particularly where their workforce has shown that it can perform to a high level with a more flexible approach in place.

Apr 12

19 min 13 sec

How has HR risen to the challenges of COVID-19? Senior HR practice editor, Noelle Murphy, takes us through the latest findings from XpertHR's annual survey of HR roles and responsibilities. We also discuss key metrics for the profession, including the ratio of HR practitioners to employees, budgets and key priorities for the year ahead.

Mar 30

18 min 21 sec

Max Winthrop, partner and head of the employment law team at Short, Richardson and Forth LLP, discusses the circumstances that may justify a some other substantial reason dismissal including: changing an employee's terms and conditions; third-party pressure to dismiss; a breakdown in working relations; and where an employee refuses to have the coronavirus vaccine.

Mar 16

23 min 15 sec

Vicki Robinson, deputy director at the Miscarriage Association and Jo Broadbent, counsel knowledge lawyer at Hogan Lovells, share their thoughts on how HR, line managers and colleagues can support employees affected by miscarriage or stillbirth. Topics discussed include: employees' rights to time off; emotional support and communicating sensitively; returning to work; the rights of partners and fathers; and what to do where an employee suffers a miscarriage at work. We are also joined by Stephen Simpson, principal employment law editor at XpertHR, to discuss the key documents that employers can use to outline the support available for employees and to confirm their associated rights to time off.

Mar 1

27 min 21 sec

Gemma Dale joins us to talk about the crucial role HR has played in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, the future of the workplace and the challenges around wellbeing and engagement.

Feb 10

23 min 49 sec

Luke Bowery, partner at Burges Salmon, guides you through some common tricky issues in redundancy selection exercises, including: devising fair selection criteria; adjusting criteria for disabled employees; conducting competitive interview processes; pooling and scoring where employees have been furloughed; and assessing those on secondment.

Feb 2

23 min 44 sec

Louise Haycock, partner at law firm Fragomen, takes us through what employers need to know, and what actions they may need to take, following the end of the transition period around the UK leaving the EU.

Jan 20

13 min 9 sec

What key employment cases should be on the HR radar in 2021? We highlight the most important upcoming cases and discuss their impact on HR, including those relating to: worker status, holiday pay, national minimum wage for sleep-in care workers, trade unions and collective bargaining, and equal pay. We also look at the impact of Brexit on EU case law and the state of play of employment tribunals. The 2021 cases that we discuss will decide the following questions: Are Uber drivers self-employed or are they workers, meaning that they are entitled to basic employment rights? Are sleep-in care workers entitled to the national minimum wage while they are asleep? Are employers permitted to make direct pay offers to employees "over the heads of the union" when collective bargaining breaks down? Should employers include voluntary overtime in the calculation of employees' holiday pay? How far should claims for the unlawful exclusion of overtime from holiday pay calculations be limited? How should employers calculate holiday pay for term-time workers? Are supermarket workers, who are mostly female, able to compare their pay with the pay of depot workers, who are predominantly male?

Jan 13

24 min

Max Winthrop, partner and head of the employment law team at Short, Richardson & Forth, discusses the legal and practical consequences for HR of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination programme including: whether or not employers can require workers to be vaccinated; potential discrimination issues; contractual considerations; and practical steps around communication, strategy and policy.

Jan 10

23 min

Immigration solicitor Louise Haycock details what employers need to know with the end of the Brexit transition on December 31 2020, including the new points-based immigration system that came into force on 1 December.

Dec 2020

19 min 2 sec

Rosie Evans, behavioural scientist, discusses how HR can approach coaching, onboarding and evaluating remote workers in an emotionally intelligent way.

Nov 2020

24 min 19 sec

The HR community has been at the heart of the response from organisations to the coronavirus pandemic, dealing with ongoing uncertainty, emerging and re-emerging schemes while also dealing with perennial HR issues. Sarah-Jane Georges and Allen Liedkie, both account directors at behaviour change company Steps, discuss the best ways to develop behaviours to build resilience during these times.

Nov 2020

22 min 41 sec

Employment lawyer David Whincup provides practical tips on managing the end of a redundancy process.

Oct 2020

30 min 58 sec

Jo Broadbent, counsel knowledge lawyer at Hogan Lovells, provides practical guidance on the key discrimination decisions of the past ten years since the introduction of the Equality Act 2010, including cases relating to: discrimination arising from disability; religious and philosophical beliefs; sexual orientation discrimination; and the "costs plus" approach to justification of indirect discrimination. Jo also discusses future developments in discrimination legislation.

Oct 2020

25 min 4 sec

Employment lawyer Darren Newman discusses the Job Support Scheme, which takes effect on 1 November 2020, including: the parameters of the scheme and to whom it applies; funding arrangements; and its potential impact for employers. We also look at the consequences of the self-isolation regulations for employers and workers.

Oct 2020

18 min 18 sec

We talk to Joy Stephens about how organisations can create a more racially diverse and inclusive workplace, from the different forms that racism can take to microaggressions - what they are and how to deal with them.

Oct 2020

30 min 25 sec

Richard Martin from the employment relations and HR training provider byrne-dean joins us to discuss managing mental health wellbeing. He takes us through some of the mental health challenges arising from working arrangements as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and offers sound practical advice on meeting these challenges.

Sep 2020

23 min 19 sec

David Whincup, partner and head of employment at the London office of law firm Squire Patton Boggs, discusses the key elements of a whistleblowing complaint, and shares his tips on how employers can deal effectively with protected disclosures in the context of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Aug 2020

30 min 3 sec

Roianne Nedd, a diversity and inclusion expert, explores the impact of the Black Lives Matter movement. We discuss the concepts of white privilege and white fragility; how to be an effective ally; how organisations translate powerful conversations into meaningful action; and practical steps that organisations can take in the context of both recruitment and capability.

Jul 2020

33 min 31 sec

Darren Newman, employment lawyer, discusses how flexible furlough will work under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme from 1 July 2020.

Jun 2020

31 min 9 sec

Mary Lawrence, partner at law firm Osborne Clarke, joins us to discuss the key health and safety issues for HR professionals during the lifting of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown.

Jun 2020

33 min 3 sec

Louise Haycock, immigration solicitor, discusses the steps that organisations need to take now to prepare their workforce for the effects of Brexit, including applying for sponsor licences, dealing with the implications of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on immigration, and other general workforce planning issues.

Jun 2020

13 min 39 sec

Victoria Lewis, chief executive at bryne-dean, joins us to talk about employee engagement and what it means during the coronavirus pandemic. She offers her unique insight into how HR can ensure employees continue to feel engaged, many of whom will be facing enduring challenges at this time.

Jun 2020

18 min 15 sec

Andy Langford, clinical director at Cruse Bereavement Care, joins us to discuss the impact of grief in the workplace, and the added challenges in the current climate of social distancing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. He offers sound, practical advice on supporting employees who have suffered a bereavement as a result of, or during, the coronavirus pandemic.

Jun 2020

19 min 53 sec

Nick Chronias, partner at DAC Beachcroft, guides you through the legal and practical considerations of running a collective consultation process with a remote workforce.

Jun 2020

30 min 29 sec

Darren Newman, employment lawyer, discusses the legal and practical considerations of managing annual leave during the coronavirus pandemic. Darren explores the law in this area, including the new right for certain employees to carry over their annual leave entitlement. He also discusses the extent to which employers are able to compel employees to take holiday at designated times, and an employer's right to postpone holiday requests.  

May 2020

21 min 34 sec

Jo Broadbent, counsel knowledge lawyer at Hogan Lovells, discusses what constitutes "work" under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, and explores some of the common, tricky scenarios that employers face during periods of furlough including: communicating with employees; undertaking different types of training; conducting different types of HR process; and dealing with employees who may wish to work.

May 2020

24 min 21 sec

Louise Haycock, immigration solicitor and partner at law firm Fragomen, outlines what employers need to think about in relation to UK immigration requirements during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and discusses the practical steps that organisations can take around compliance.

May 2020

17 min 32 sec

Darren Newman, employment lawyer, discusses how employers can manage disciplinary, grievance and performance management processes remotely during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. Darren provides practical advice on some of the common challenges faced by HR and line managers, including issues relating to the postponement of processes, and how to ensure fairness when conducting a hearing remotely.

Apr 2020

28 min 10 sec

Mark Crail, content director at XpertHR, takes us through the findings of our two most recent surveys exploring how HR is dealing with the challenges thrown up by the coronavirus pandemic.

Apr 2020

12 min 16 sec

Max Winthrop, partner and head of the employment law team at Short, Richardson and Forth LLP, answers your questions on the impact of the coronavirus on your workforce, including latest guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, annual leave, short-time working and emergency volunteer leave.

Apr 2020

18 min 38 sec

Jo Broadbent, counsel knowledge lawyer at Hogan Lovells, discusses the right to parental bereavement leave.

Apr 2020

15 min 11 sec

Darren Newman, employment lawyer, discusses the Government guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and furloughing workers. Darren takes you through the key features of the scheme and discusses tricky issues, including the process of selecting employees to be furloughed.

Mar 2020

29 min 32 sec

Catriona Aldridge, senior associate at law firm CMS, outlines latest developments introduced as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic - including school closures and the Government's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and what these mean for employers.

Mar 2020

17 min 22 sec

Senior HR practice editor, Noelle Murphy, takes us through the latest findings from XpertHR's annual survey of HR roles and responsibilities. We discuss key metrics for the profession, including the ratio of HR practitioners to employees, budgets and priorities over the coming 12 months. We also discuss the impact of the coronavirus on planned priorities for the HR function.

Mar 2020

12 min 20 sec

Darren Newman joins us to discuss how employers can deal with the special circumstances created by the coronavirus (COVID-19), including the implications for statutory sick pay when an employee chooses to self-isolate and when the employer has to instruct an employee to self-isolate. 

Mar 2020

21 min 26 sec

Nick Chronias discusses the right to suspend employees pending a disciplinary investigation, including the issues to consider before, during and after a suspension.

Mar 2020

17 min