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  1. #1
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    Default does this sound right? extension of probation...

    dh started his job in November of last year (permanent fulltime salaried employee). job had 6 month probation which I think is pretty standard nowadays.

    in his review in May, after the 6m probationary period had expired, they told him they were extending by 8 weeks.

    I've checked the fair work website and it says for employers with 15 or more staff, 6 months is the max probation period and it cannot be extended.

    we've done a staff count and it's something like 13 fulltime and 2 part time employees. so just on 15. there was another lady but they got rid of her under rather unpleasant terms. the employer also hasn't paid super since February this year. dh is understandably not happy in the company and has started looking around elsewhere.

    just wondering if anyone knows whether extension of probation like this is allowed? my understanding is it's not but I just wanted to check. also, with the 15 employees threshold, at what point do they count it? like for employers who are borderline, at what point in time is the headcount taken into consideration? finally, is it 15 fulltime employees or 15 employees (irrespective of full/part time status)?

    this is causing us a fair bit of tension as I'm on mat leave til sept, my ppl just finished and we feel like we are waiting for the axe to fall!

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    My husbands job (public sector) had a probation period of 12 months once changing to permanent. And there are plenty of people who get theirs extended. I think by 3 months at a time but I can't be sure.

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    A guy I work with got his probation extended, not sure if it was above board but it did happen.

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    I don't think so.
    Especially if this decision came AFTER the original period had ended.
    Surely it should have been done before the end of the probation period, not after. I thought 6 months was the max too.
    What reason was given?

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    Ok so it's a bit complicated. Probationary periods don't actually exist under the Fair Work Act. For small businesses, an employee who is dismissed can't claim for unfair dismissal if they are terminated within their first 12 months (large businesses is 6 months). So that's why probationary period are usually 6 months; for terminations that happen before that time the employee can't claim unfair dismissal.

    However, if they want the right to extend his probationary period, they should state in their contract that they reserve the right to extend it. I'm not saying they can't extend it without stating it, but if he were terminated and it went before the Fair Work Commission, they would have a fight on their hands.

    I would suggest your hubby asks what grounds it was extended, and what specific areas they're looking for improvement in. Work with his manager to come up with clearly defined, measurable goals to achieve during the review period. So nothing like "an improvement in sales" but "converting 80% of all enquiries to sales between (date) and (date)" (just an example, I'm not sure what he actually does). Get him to confirm what was discussed via email to his manager and anyone else who was involved, if the company doesn't confirm it in writing. Also make sure he sends copies of any correspondence related to this to his personal email address, just in case things turn nasty so he has a copy at home.

    Good luck!

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    thanks for the responses. up until last night, there was nothing even provided in writing as to the extension etc. he received an email last night confirming its been extended and just his JD was attached? his JD is incredibly airy fairy. his job is not one with clearly quantifiable deliverables. he works in the creative field and so it's not stuff that can be measured. I struggle with this, because it makes it really easy for the boss up just make up whatever he wants as a reason to extend probation/terminate etc.

    I'm actually not sure what the reason was...they gave him good feedback but just said an area for improvement was they'd like to see him be more authoritative with his staff (he's in a director role). it just seems like really unfair tactics to extend probation for no really good reason. like everyone has areas for improvement in their job. they're also not paying staff super and he found out this evening after talking to another staff member who's just been cut that they tried to jip her out of her termination entitlements and not pay her super.

    our impression is is that this is not a great place to work. dh is understandably over it and has started looking for something else. we just want to know where we stand should they try to do anything to him.

    I've also started keeping a diary of incidents as a record of things going on etc.

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    The employer could have just sacked him at the end of the probation period however they are giving him another chance. Not sure why this is such an issue. Try and think about it from the employers point of view.

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    I'd still be pushing for them to set measurable goals. If they can't give him the exact outcome that they want him to work towards, how can he make sure he's working towards that?

    It does sound like a dodgy company so I think it's a good idea that he looks for something else!

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    Sounds like he is doing the right thing looking elsewhere turquoisecoast. Having worked in the industry I know there are a lot of dodgy Cowboys in the mix and what he needs right now is job security not airy fairy creative bullsh1t. Do you think he would work in a corporate environment ie in house in a large corporate organisation? I have found they have much better, clearer HR policies (and often pay better). That's one of the reasons I stopped working in agencies and started in corporate. Not as much freedom design wise but much better work conditions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nattie84 View Post
    The employer could have just sacked him at the end of the probation period however they are giving him another chance. Not sure why this is such an issue. Try and think about it from the employers point of view.
    it's an issue because the employer treats staff like sh!t. did you miss the part where I said the super hasn't been paid? another staff member was bullied and had to go on stress leave then was forced to "resign" (aka fired) whilst on stress leave. they then tried to backdate her "resignation" to avoid paying the week of stress leave and tried to only give 1 weeks pay in lieu of notice (contract said 6 and she had to fight for it).

    try and see it from the employers perspective? what's that, that IR laws don't apply?

    idiot.


 

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