Posted 27th Oct 2017

Put staff interviews on the record and avoid legal backlash

By KBBDaily on 27th October 2017 - 11:37am

With ministers vowing to overturn employment tribunal fees, the number of claims against employers is expected to rise, with there being nothing to deter individuals financially.

Maxine Park, solicitor and co-founder of transcription services provider DictateNow, suggests organisations should press record more often to help combat the potential risks:

Get it right every time
One way employers can avoid issues is by adhering to company policies, and introducing recordings as standard practice when it comes to meetings and interviews is a very effective approach.

Recordings can protect both parties, so it is important that people keep their feelings in check and do not react badly in the face of provocation.

Helps to keep an open mind
Another common accusation during meetings and interviews is that an employer failed to keep an open mind during proceedings.

Recordings capture every word while showing tone of voice, and can help people to understand the complete essence of the conversation, which is extremely important when reviewing a meeting or interview.

A recording captures every last syllable, it does not get caught up in the emotion of the discussion, and no words are missed due to speed of conversations.

Get up to speed with a recording
Recordings replace the need for a dedicated manual note-taker, which undoubtedly improves the accuracy of transcription.

Handwritten notes require rounds of amends and checks from either party before an agreement can be made on the correct version of events.

These recordings will also help to also debunk claims that an employer dominated proceedings to prevent the other party from having the opportunity to speak.

Use the best and get a certificate
The best external service providers, well-versed in the process of transcribing hearings and interviews, will provide a certificate of accurate representation with the transcription.

This certifies the transcription is a faithful reproduction of the sound file, using verbatim transcription that includes all the ‘umms’ and ‘errs’ that have a direct effect on the flow and meaning of the conversations being recorded.

Unlike more traditional transcriptions of dictation where the skilled typist excludes mistakes and hesitations, in interview transcriptions, any omissions may inadvertently affect the intended meaning of any spoken response.

Failing to keep accurate records of an interview can cause problems at an appeal stage or if a case proceeds to an employment tribunal.

Take it seriously
Recording and transcribing personnel interviews, reviews and hearings shows the importance accorded to personnel issues and demonstrates an organisation’s determination to get things right.

It is important that companies do not look at disciplinary meetings negatively – instead, they are an opportunity for businesses to resolve situations effectively, and by recording these meetings you can reassure employees that your organisation has their best interests at heart.

External transcription service providers might be regarded as an unwarranted expense when most organisations are looking to cut costs, but the accusation an organisation acted inappropriately could end up costing much more in the long run.

DictateNow provides fast, reliable and confidential digital dictation and transcription services. With over 300 experienced typists all based in the UK, they serve a wide variety of sectors, including legal services, accountancy, medical, property and the public sector.

For more information about DictateNow please visit www.dictatenow.com


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