Last week Ellis Jones Solicitors visited the College to launch the new Poole HR Forum, a quarterly session for HR professionals to discuss topics of interest within their field with other like-minded professionals.
This session saw specialist tribunal barristers, Matthew Curtis, Craig Ludlow and Colin McDevitt from 3PB, conduct a "Mock Employment Tribunal". In attendance were thirty College Human Resource Management students, whilst Amy Edwards, another College HR student who works for Ellis Jones, acted as the claimant bringing the case for unfair dismissal.
Level 5 students Charlie Chamberlain and Laura Dinham, explained that employment law is a key part of their course, and praised the success of the event.
Laura said: “It was a really interesting session. It’s good to know what to expect if we are ever involved in a real tribunal. It shows that the employer’s disciplinary process has to be absolutely correct; the reason for dismissal has to be sound and it has to be done in a fair and consistent way.”
Charlie added that it was particularly interesting how the witness was cross examined: “I found it fascinating as the tribunal showed that how your witness performs under cross-examination is very important to the outcome of the case.”
Amy, who had to be on the receiving end of one of the aforementioned cross examinations, was equally enthusiastic about the lessons of the day: “I really enjoyed it, it was really insightful to see the correct process of a tribunal, and to see how the barristers interpreted the case and tried to convince the judge of their argument with such in depth questions. The tribunal really highlighted how not to conduct a disciplinary procedure and what happens if an employer gets their process wrong.”
College Lecturer Marion Atherton, who oversaw the event and teaches Human Resource Management, was pleased the students were able to see the benefits of the tribunal: “We are delighted that Ellis Jones were able to visit the College and share their vast experience with our students. Employment law is a vital part of our HR courses, and this event represented an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about how unfair dismissal cases play out in the courtroom.”