Navigating Dismissal for Cause in Canada

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It’s well documented that a safe workplace is an efficient one. When customers, employees, and management interact with each other productively, respectfully, and legally, organizations are able to provide services at a higher level. According to experts, psychologically safe work environments can increase firm performance and critical outcomes by a significant margin.

Unfortunately, workplace conflict and conduct violations are not uncommon experiences in the Canadian Labor market.

From high profile enterprises like Saputo down to local businesses, there are many instances where employee dismissal for cause is challenged and brought to the higher levels of court. Even in less-charged cases, the legal structure behind employee termination can be difficult to navigate and many HR managers and employee relations staff don’t have the resources to effectively navigate this terrain. This can be a very costly mistake, with the premiums on wrongful termination typically running between $20,000-$50,000.

Leadership within Canadian companies is now left with another difficult task — balancing the difficulties of proving just cause dismissals with the potential to incur legal penalties should courts decide that unjust dismissal has occurred.

Employee Dismissal for Cause in Canada

The first step towards creating a positive and safe workspace is identifying which employee behaviors are in violation of disciplinary policy compliance. This requires a solid understanding of federal and provincial regulations and laws in the Canadian labour context, including:

  • Canadian Statutory Employment Law
  • Canadian Labor Code for Federally-Regulated Industries
  • The Canadian Human Rights Act
  • The Employee Standards Act of 2000
  • The Labor Relations Act of 1995

The legal expertise required to successfully navigate this terrain is extensive. In the context of rightful termination, employee relations professionals only need to produce enough evidence to support a Just Cause Defense. The difficulty is, Canadian Labor Law is structured so that dismissal for cause is one of the last options an employer has to rectify employee behavior.

A written warning, employee performance improvement plan, labor relations reporting, employee suspension, and other disciplinary measures often need to be applied for employee relations and HR managers to avoid Unjust Dismissal. Unsurprisingly, many companies forget to follow those progressive steps on their journey to achieve dismissal for cause in Canada.

Here are a few prominent employee relationship practices occurring across Canada that create difficulty with the employee dismissal process.

Employee Relations Difficulties with the Dismissal Process

As companies in Canada and across the rest of the world continue to adopt hybrid-remote structures, it’s important that companies have the knowledge, processes, and tools to adequately monitor performance.

Adhering to Regional Labor Laws: er

Manual ER and HR Practices: Paper just doesn’t cut it anymore, especially for HR managers and ER departments. Each employee within the company should have their own file that contains relevant performance reports, conduct violations, and improvement plans to support the status of their standing within the organization. These manual methods are inefficient and costly in their own right but can severely hinder a Canadian firm’s ability to achieve just cause dismissals.

Lack of Integrated Data: Effective monitoring of employee performance and behavior in the 21st century necessitates that companies ditch the spreadsheet approach for a more comprehensive view of performance. Cloud integration across the entire company allows ER and HR stakeholders to monitor worker development in real-time, highlighting when preliminary interventions are required and notifying when employees are breaching company policies.

Addressing these issues takes more than just personnel; it takes technology. As companies continue to move from legacy server systems into cloud-native service delivery, they are able to plug in specific software tools to help meet their needs. Employee relations software is a critical asset to organizations that want to more effectively navigate the process of dismissal for cause in Canada.

Software Solutions to Improve Dismissal for Cause in Canada

Continuous compliance monitoring is the new standard for employee relations management at all levels of business. Ensuring that staff are conducting themselves properly at all times not only improves customer experience and the psychological safety of the work environment, but also helps ER and HR professionals track violations that form the basis of just cause dismissals in Canada. For companies that conduct their operations across multiple countries, ER software is even more important.

However, industry-leading technology like digital case management, data centralization, and real-time reporting only get you so far. To ensure compliance at an international level, large Canadian enterprises need to implement Saas services that are equipped with location-specific knowledge of labor relations. While informative sources like the International Labor Organization can assist HR and ER leaders, there’s simply no replacing the speed and efficiency of an intelligent employee relations system.

Your employee and human relations professionals know how to handle issues of termination and dismissal, but they likely lack the resources to navigate this terrain more efficiently. ER software gives them the comprehensive support they need to be successful in our global business landscape.

To learn more about how ER software is transforming the landscape for just cause dismissals in Canada and abroad, reach out to the software experts at erNavigator today!

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