Employee returning to work after suspension

How to manage your employee's return

When you suspend a member of staff, they’re still employed for you but don’t attend work. In fact, they should do no work for you at all.

You’ll need to do this in the event of employee misconduct (separate instances can be due to medical demands or workplace risks).

It’s not a disciplinary action, but a chance to investigate, for example, an incident of alleged gross misconduct.

But what happens when the staff member is ready to return to work? 

Communication during a suspension

Remember that you should keep your employee up to date on circumstances. Regularly provide details such as the ongoing reasons, such as an investigation process.

But you should also let them know when their return should be (once you know).

Once the suspension is over, they’ll be able to return to work as soon as possible. In most cases, that’ll be an immediate restart.

Coming back to work after suspension

The chances are your employee is upset following their time away from your business.

A return to work following suspension is tricky for you and your staff member. On the first day they come back, you should hold a meeting to smooth over the process.

That’s your chance to discuss any lingering issues that you, or they, have about going back to work after suspension.

If they feel the situation hasn’t been handled correctly, then they may make a complaint—that could lead to an employment tribunal.

To help with this matter, you should discuss with them ways in which to discuss the matter with their colleagues.

Choosing how to relay the news to other staff members is important—you don’t want to spread gossip in the workplace.  

Post-suspension employee conduct

A returning member of your staff will likely want to make a good impression on their return, despite any potential resentment over the issue.  

If they value their position in your business, they’ll put the effort in/ But if you want to give them a helping hand you may want to discuss with them how they can achieve this—set markers to meet and KPIs, for example.

This option is, of course, entirely at your discretion. But if you, for instance, held a meeting with them it’s a nice way to offer them a vote of confidence.

You could raise points such as:

  • How to communicate professionally and responsibly with managers and other colleagues.
  • The staff member’s rights, such as an acceptable reason for terminating their contract if necessary.
  • Any restrictions you’ve placed on the returning staff member and your expectations surrounding them.
  • Whether they’re returning to work after suspension with pay.

Remember, too, that coming back to work after being suspended will be a nervous time for your employee.

They will likely feel awkward and nervous. They may well want to get back into the swing of things as soon as possible, so your support can help in that respect.

Need our help?

For assistance with any employee difficulties, call us for immediate help: 0800 783 2806.

Have a question?

Ask away, we’ve got lightning fast answers for UK business owners and employers powered by qualified experts.


    Share this article

    More on leave and absence

    Do you have an absence management policy?

    Bad news: sometimes your staff are going to be off sick . But fear not! At the end of this guide, you'll know all you need to know about…

    Absenteeism

    Sometimes your staff will get sick and need time-off, but occasionally they might try to “pull a sickie”. And once they know they can get…

    Employee annual leave

    It’s generally agreed that a healthy balance between work and time off is essential for a healthy and happy workforce. Your organisation…

    Compassionate leave and bereavement leave

    It's a grim reality that some of your staff will lose their loved ones while working for you. In these instances, people need time off to…

    Garden Leave

    This peculiar term causes quite a lot of confusion in the business world. It throws up images of employees taking time off to tend to their…

    Holiday request forms

    The unpredictability of staff absences can make it a challenging HR task—and a costly one. The average UK worker is absent almost seven days…

    Are your employees skiving?

    Whether they're skiving at work or they're pulling a sickie away from the office, an employee not doing their job properly will count as…

    Long-Term Sickness

    For many businesses, managing long-term sickness can prove to be difficult. Long-term leave can add strain and create a financial burden on…

    What is maternity leave and pay?

    It was only in 1993 that all working women were permitted to take paid maternity leave in the UK. Thankfully, most companies are now much…

    Parental Leave

    From time to time, your employees may have to take time off to look after their children. Parental leave can benefit your workforce, as it…

    Presenteeism in the workplace

    There’s a new-fangled practice in the business world. It’s “presenteeism” and some employees, and potentially even business owners, think it…

    Returning to work

    Whether your employee has been away on sabbatical, has been taken ill, or has been raising a newborn, it will take time for them to readjust…

    Sick Leave

    If you're looking for up-to-date information on COVID-19 and sick pay, please visit our coronavirus factsheet. It’s a fact of life that…

    What is the Bradford Factor?

    The Bradford Factor is a simple formula that lets you monitor employee absenteeism over a set period, such as the current business year…

    What you need to know about time off in lieu of overtime

    What is time off in lieu (TOIL) of overtime? Time off in lieu (TOIL) of overtime is where you agree with your employee that you'll reward…

    Time off for stress

    Most of us deal with stress on a daily basis, often in the workplace. But for some—over a long period of time—it can become overwhelming…

    Types of Clocking in Systems

    If your business has hourly employees then you’ll need a system to help with clocking in and out. One that monitors start and finish times…

    How should you manage unauthorised absence?

    What is unauthorised absence? Unauthorised absence is when one of your staff fails to come to work without a good reason. It goes without…

    Furlough guide for employers

    Furlough is now a business buzzword. Most professionals hadn’t heard of it before—now it’s everywhere and you can’t avoid it. For businesses…

    Flexible furlough scheme

    The coronavirus lockdown situation is changing rapidly. And with it, the UK government is making adjustments to the Job Retention Scheme…

    Clocking in and out systems for small businesses

    Although it may seem like a minor part of your business’ daily routine, how your employees arrive and leave is essential. When they clock in…

    The Benefits of Using a Clocking In App

    The working hours of your staff are fundamental to a profitable business. If staff are consistently early or late, it can have a negative…

    Absenteeism Rate

    From time to time, employees may miss work due to hundreds of reasons. You should expect your staff to be off for sickness or other causes…

    Absence Review Meeting

    From time to time, your employees will take time off. But, when an employee is off far too often, it may raise concerns for your business…

    Carers Leave

    Being a carer can often be unpredictable and arrangements can be tricky to balance in the workplace. To make your employees (who may be…

    Emergency Leave

    Leave can be a tricky subject to define for both staff and employers, especially when dealing with an absence without notice. Emergency…

    Sick Building Syndrome

    In the workplace, various types of illnesses can develop. Some may be more uncommon than others, so it’s important to keep an eye on each of…

    Late for Work

    From time to time, some of your employees will be late to work. Whether they are delayed in traffic, their car has broken down, or have…

    Adoption Leave

    At work, you may wonder what to do when an employee is adopting a child. Employees are legally entitled to take time off work to have a…

    Overtime

    As an employer, you must include several terms of employment in an employee’s contract. There may be occasions when an employee is asked to…