It is not uncommon to find jobs being advertised by organisations who only weeks before may have announced redundancies. Why?
Whilst an organisation’s first priority is to redeploy employees impacted by redundancy into other suitable roles, this can sometimes be challenging. Let me explain….
- For a person to be redeployed, the role on offer must be deemed a ‘suitable alternative role’ – in other words, very similar to the one the employee already has. This would mean there should be no significant changes to the employee’s terms and conditions. Where a ‘suitable alternative role’ is found for an employee, redundancy is no longer an option.
- Due to the nature of our industry however, it can sometimes be quite difficult to find a ‘suitable alternative role’ for employees. For example, if you are working at a residential mine site (ie living in the local community) and the organisation does not have another mine site operating in the area, it may mean that the employee is offered the same position but at another location that requires him or her to physically relocate. Because this offer represents a significant change to the employee’s terms and conditions, this would not be considered a ‘suitable alternative role’. As such, the employee would have a choice about accepting the role (and the new terms and conditions) or taking redundancy. However, if the employee was currently doing a fly in, fly out role from Perth for example and they are offered the same role but at another location still requiring fly in, fly out from Perth, this would be deemed a ‘suitable alternative role’. If the employee elected not to take this option, it is unlikely they would receive redundancy.
Recently, a number of Australian resource companies have triggered redundancies. Head to their websites however, and you will still see jobs advertised. Whilst their first priority will be to source internal applicants and to redeploy where they can, the number of variables associated with an individual’s preferences (like job type, location, roster etc) and the needs of the organisation can mean that redeployment is not always possible. In these cases, positions are obviously open to external application.