When you are offered voluntary redundancy, do they have to tell you who else have been made offers to as well? Or can they do it on targeted basis?

Does this depend on the number of affected personnel, similar to forced redundancy?

In this case there should at least be 20+ staff affected. ie, our business unit MIGHT get restructured in a couple of of months, hence being made the offer. However, I have asked if anyone else have been made offers, not even names, just in general, but they would not answer that, other than quoting the restructuring line.

I know of one other person who probably got an offer.

They quoted some law (s111a of employments act 1996) which effectively prohibits me from discussing this with colleagues, or using anything said in that meeting against the company at a later stage, and have 1 week to make up my mind.

When I left the managers office, he suggested that I hid the letter with the offer as to not give anyone else the wrong idea. Surely if everyone else in the same business unit had been made an offer, they would know what the envelope was?

I'm just getting the feeling that they are starting a 'selective culling'. Don't get me wrong, the offer they made seems reasonable and might be a good opportunity to move on. They also cover solicitor fees, so do not want to rock the boat and have them withdraw the offer, but I would appreciate honesty on their side.

So, does any of this sound fishy at all?

1 Answer 1


An employer can be (and usually is) selective in who they offer redundancy to

Businesses in this situation act just like Santa Claus; they make a list, check it twice and find out whose been naughty or nice. Unlike Santa they tend to not give these sorts of presents to those on the nice list. They keep the most ‘valuable’ employees. These are not necessarily the ‘best’ - they might be looking for value for money, or skills that will align with the restructure or some other metric.

Open redundancy offers are generally a disaster because the people who snap them up are the most employable and therefore the biggest loss. No one with any sense does this.

It’s likely that you are part of a small minority. The fact that they don’t want you to talk to your colleagues suggests this might be the case. I’m sorry if that bruises your ego.

It’s possible if you turn it down they will offer it to someone else. Or they just might give you non-voluntary redundancy. I don’t know enough about UK employment law to know if gagging you is legal; it wouldn’t be in Australia.

All s111a does is restrict the admissibility of the voluntary redundancy offer and discussions around it should you be terminated and then bring a claim.

Don’t expect your employer to be “honest” with you. They are protecting their own legal interests - you should do the same and talk to an employment law solicitor.

  • Thanks, you do have a couple of points. To be honest my ego is fine with this, end of the day it's just business. I know for a fact my performance appraisal probably has something to do with this as well, but that's another story where I was in fact done in. I was looking at making a move later in the year, so i see this as an opportunity. I was just wondering about the legality of the move, and will most likely be taking the offer anyway.
    – JoMoer
    Commented Mar 2, 2020 at 14:04

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