Christmas Party Guidance for Employers

In this episode of the podcast I bring you the normal seasonal warning that comes from employment lawyers and HR professionals, about the party season with the pitfalls and perils of office party shenanigans!

In this episode I will cover:

  • Why employers need to be concerned about what happens at work social events and parties.
  • What the risks are to your business if things go wrong.
  • Practical steps you can take to reduce the risk.
  • Why you may also have liability for ‘post-party’ parties or ‘after parties’, as illustrated by a particularly serious case in the Court of Appeal.

Action Points

  1. Issue a statement to all staff reminding them of acceptable conduct at the party (you will find an example here – feel free to copy and use this for your business/organisation).
  2. Remind staff about the usage of social media and what is and is not acceptable – remind them that not all colleagues would like their picture on social media, and that they should ensure all persons pictured consent before posting online.
  3. Designate a sober manager or senior person to attend the party.
  4. Make sure arrangements have been made for safe travel home from the venue, office or event.
  5. Deal with any incidents or complaints in a timely manner, ensuring you follow your internal procedures.
  6. Ensure that you consider anyone who does not want to join in with the party, for whatever reason. Make sure they feel included and are not isolated. Perhaps consider offering two alternative festive activities for staff.

Please do leave your thoughts on this issue in the comments section below. Please ensure that any comments are respectful to all views and opinions.

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and training for employers, supervisors and managers. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £198 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion – [email protected] or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don’t forget you can contact us by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001 or 023 8098 2006


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The information contained in this Podcast and post is provided for guidance and is a snapshot of the law at the time. It is provided for your information only and should not be used as a substitute for obtaining legal advice that it specific to your particular circumstances.

The guidance should not be relied upon in any decision making process. It is strongly recommended that you seek advice before taking action.

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