Recruiting a redeployee

At the University of Exeter we are committed to attracting and retaining quality staff who will help us achieve our future goals and ambitions. Our commitment to redeployment enables us to retain essential knowledge and skills and build a resilient workforce.

Redeployment can also help a Recruiting Manager to fill their vacancy quickly.

These webpages explain everything you, as a Recruiting Manager, need to know about managing redeployees through recruitment process and beyond.

All of the information provided must be read in conjunction with the University's Redeployment Procedure and the University of Exeter Recruitment and Selection web pages

What is a redeployee?

An employee will become a redeployee when they are issued formal notice of redundancy or because they are unable to continue working in their substantive position as a result of a disability. In both circumstances, redeployees are keen to secure alternative employment with the University before their cessation date, and managers will need to be sensitive to the circumstances and timescales. A redeployee is afforded priority consideration during the selection process if they meet the essential requirements set out in the job description and person specification.

This means that if a redeployee demonstrates that they meet the essential criteria within their application then they will be offered an interview. If, at interview, they meet the essential criteria for the role (or would do so with reasonable training) then they will be offered the position in priority over other candidates that are not redeployees.

A redeployee has applied for my vacancy - what do I need to do?

The guidance below and following flowchart explains everything you need to know about managing redeployees through your recruitment process. 

Shortlisting

When the advertisement period is closed the recruitment team will provide a full list of candidates to the Recruiting Manager and highlight any candidates that are redeployees. Before shortlisting other candidates the Recruiting Manager must shortlist all of the redeployee applicants. A redeployee needs to demonstrate that they meet all of the essential criteria, or could do so with reasonable training, for them to be shortlisted.

Redeployee meets the essential criteria

If the redeployee meets the essential criteria, or could do so with reasonable training, you will need to shortlist them for an interview. Preferably the interview is organised and takes place before all other shortlisted candidates are contacted. However if you are interviewing a redeployee with other candidates then the redeployee should get first choice of the interview time.  

Please contact the recruitment team on 01392 723094 (ext 3094) to clarify how to manage the candidates.

Redeployees on maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave

Redeployees on maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave have additional rights. They have an express statutory right to be offered any possible redeployment post where they meet all the essential criteria for that post (following reasonable training if necessary).

The Recruitment Team will provide the Recruiting Manager with details of redeployees on maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave ahead of any other employee including other redeployment candidates (except other redeployees with the same circumstances).

Supporting Disabled Redeployees

The University of Exeter is an equal opportunity employer which is 'Positive About Disabled People'; as such the University has made a number of commitments regarding recruitment, training, retention, consultation and disability awareness.

Panel members should also be aware of the duty to make reasonable adjustments for any candidate (including redeployees) with a disability. Examples of reasonable adjustments could include:

  • changing the interview location for an applicant who has mobility difficulties
  • ensuring there is no background noise for a candidate with a hearing impairment
  • allowing an applicant with a learning disability to be accompanied by a helper at the interview.
  • confirming any tests that will be applied in advance and clarifying what adjustments are required.

Disabled redeployees may be prioritised during the selection process over other redeployee candidates in some circumstances. Please contact your HR Advisor or Business Partner to discuss this further or if you have any questions about supporting disabled redeployees.

Redeployee does not meet the essential criteria

If the redeployee does not meet the essential criteria you will need to document the selection process as normal and reject the candidate. Please be aware that redeployees are likely to seek feedback throughout selection processes and may contact you directly to do this. The Recruiting Manager should be prepared to offer constructive feedback that explains how the candidate did not meet the essential criteria required for the position, if you would like to discuss this further please contact the Recruitment Team by emailing recruitmentadmin@exeter.ac.uk in the first instance.

Interviewing

Before interviewing the other candidates that have been shortlisted for the position Recruiting Managers need to interview all of the redeployees that have met the essential criteria, or could do so with reasonable training. Redeployees that demonstrate the essential criteria for the position at interview, or could do so with reasonable training, must be offered the position subject to a trial period. Where there is more than one redeployee applying for a vacancy the candidates are competitively assessed against each other, unless there is a legal requirement for the University to prioritise one of the redeployees for the role.

Redeployee meets the essential criteria

The redeployee will be offered the position subject to a trial period (see next tab about trial periods)

Redeployee does not meet the essential criteria

If the redeployee does not meet the essential criteria you will need to document the selection process as normal and reject the candidate. Please be aware that redeployees are likely to seek feedback throughout the selection processes and may contact you directly to do this. The Recruiting Manager should be prepared to offer constructive feedback that explains how they did not meet the essential criteria required for the position, if you would like to discuss this further please contact the recruitment team by emailing recruitmentadmin@exeter.ac.uk in the first instance.

If no redeployees are appointed to the position you can continue with the selection process for other candidates.

Trial period

Redeployees will be offered a trial period for any vacancy that is offered under the terms of the procedure. If the employee is a redeployee as a result of being issued formal notice of redundancy then the trial period must include a statutory 4 week trial period (described as a formal trial period below) which commences immediately after their former role has ceased. In some cases you may also be able to organise an informal trial before the end of their notice period if their current line manager is able to release the employee.

Informal Trial Period (if applicable)

During an informal trial period, the Recruiting Manager and the redeployee will have the opportunity to assess the suitability of the offered position. If, during the informal trial period, either the Recruiting Manager or the redeployee decides that the position is not suitable then the trial will be stopped and the redeployee will return to their substantive position.

If at the end of the informal trial period the role is agreed to be a suitable offer of redeployment then a formal trial period may commence.

Formal Trial Period (also known as a Statutory Trial Period for employees who have been issued notice of redundancy)

A formal trial period will be for 4 weeks. An extended trial period can be agreed with the Recruiting Manager in advance of the trial commencing if reasonable training needs are required for the position or identified during the recruitment process.

During a formal trial period, both the Recruiting Manager and the redeployee will have the opportunity to assess the redeployees suitability for the position through regular reviews. If, during the trial period, either the Recruiting Manager or the redeployee decides that this post is not suitable then the trial will stop and the redeployees employment may be terminated.

Subject to performance, and with the agreement of both parties, the appointment will be confirmed at the end of the formal trial period.

For support and guidance on organising the detail(s) of a trial period contact your HR Advisor or HR Business Partner in the first instance.

Managing a trial period

During an informal or formal trial period the Recruiting Manager (or assigned line manager for the position) needs to set out clear objectives for the trial period with the employee and hold regular reviews to monitor progress and support the employee.

It is advised that all meetings during the trial period are documented by the Recruiting Manager and that the expectations for the role are clearly explained to the redeployee.

If a trial period is 4 weeks long it is recommended that weekly reviews are organised.

If the trial period is longer than 4 weeks it is recommended that at least bi-weekly reviews are organised.

What does a successful trial look like?

A trial is succeeding if the redeployee is able to perform as you’d expect a new employee to perform against the requirements of the role. Please remember that they may not be able to hit the ground running but they should show the necessary potential to fulfil all aspects of the job with a reasonable amount of training and within a reasonable period of time.

Recruiting Managers are advised to contact their HR Advisor or HR Business Partner if they need support assessing a redeployee during a trial period.

What happens when the Trial Period ends?

Before the trial period ends the line manager for the position will receive an email to remind them that the trial period is coming to a close. If at any stage the trial is deemed to be failing or have failed then the line manager is advised to discuss this with their HR Business Partner to ensure that the redeployee is appropriately supported, communicated with and contractual arrangements are followed.

At the end of the trial the line manager must return the Trial Outcome Form to the HR Administration to confirm the outcome.

If a trial is successful then the employee will be confirmed in post.