Corporate Exit Strategy
People & Performance Improvement
CORPORATE EXIT STRATEGY
This strategy provides guidance and options to managers and
employees to facilitate and inform decisions when leaving the
organisation. Managers are constantly faced with organisational
change, improving services, innovative ways of service delivery and
constantly managing more challenging budgets. For managers and
employees to be able to make informed decisions they need to know
what is available and what the best options are of being able to achieve
1.2.1 The procedure applies to all employees excluding teachers on
teachers’ terms and conditions employed by the Council in
establishments or services with non-delegated powers (“unattached
1.3.1 There are a number of ways in which employees depart from the
organisation as outlined in this document.
Resignation – leaving my means of choice, for example by securing
alternative employment elsewhere, for personal reasons or for
prospects of promotion.
Redundancy – Unexpected events may necessitate organisational
change through restructures, which may result in enforced workforce
reductions. Individual redundancies may occur when a job is no longer
needed or when services need to be redefined or reorganised to
ensure they are meeting the needs of the Council.
Retirement - The normal retirement age within the council is age 65
and an employee may choose to retire at the normal retirement age to
ensure they receive unreduced pension benefits. An employee can
request to continue to work beyond age 65 and the council has a duty
to consider these requests.
Early Retirement - Employees can retire with the employers’ consent
from the age of 55. Early retirement cannot be enforced however if an
employee’s post is made redundant and the employee in that post is
aged over 55 they would be given automatic access to unreduced
pension benefits along with a redundancy payment. Managers may
wish to consider volunteers for early retirement when dealing with
Ill Health Retirement – There may be circumstances where an
employee is no longer well enough to be able to continue in work. It is
usual that the council’s Health & Well being department is involved
with an employee who has ill health and would therefore be able to
advise the employee and their manager if there would be sufficient
incapacity that would support the employee to apply for ill health
retirement, in order to access pension benefits early.
Career Break – There may be circumstances where an employee
would like to take a break from their career, but not fully resign from
their post. The Career Break Scheme allows for the employee to have
a break, between 1 and 5 years and be able to return to the Council,
via the redeployment process.
Flexible Retirement – This is not an exit from the organisation but is
another approach to part-time working in preparation for retirement,
whereby employees over 55 can request to reduce their working hours,
or apply for a lower graded post so that they can have access to their
pension. For all employees under 60 there is a cost to the Council to
release the employee’s pension. Managers may also want to consider
as to whether this is a more cost effective approach to reducing staff
numbers in comparison to a redundancy payment. An advantage is
that the Council can retain experienced staff whilst facilitating for the
employees an easier transition into actual retirement
2.1 An employee may resign at any time giving proper notice under the
contract of employment. The Local Government Terms and Conditions
of Employment sets out the guidance for notice periods for employees
who are leaving the organisation.
2.1.1 If an employee resigns the manager should refer to recruitment and
selection guidance and explore the reason for leaving. Departing
employees should be encouraged by their managers to undertake exit
questionnaires and managers to conduct exit interviews. This offers
the Council the opportunity to examine organisational practices that
may be contributing to the loss of employees. The Leaver & Transfer
Process gives guidance to assist with this.
2.2 Exit Questionnaire/Interview
2.2.1 When an employee leaves the authority, it is important to identify why
employees are leaving the authority, or are choosing to leave their
current role. Having systems in place to examine exit data from
departing employees will allow the Council to monitor, analyse and act
upon the information obtained and help to improve recruitment,
induction and other management processes. The data gathered
should also assist in dealing more effectively with any key retention
issues, which may be highlighted.
2.2.2 Encouraging departing employees and their managers to undertake
exit questionnaires and to conduct exit interviews offers the Council the
opportunity to examine organisational practices that may be
contributing to the loss of employees, such as:
pay and grading
training and development
management and supervisory skills
2.2.3 Collecting exit data from departing employees is a simple and cost
effective way of gaining valuable feedback about the organisation and
all employees should be encouraged by their managers to follow the
Leaver Transfer process, in order to help the Council to examine the
reasons for turnover and to take actions to improve it.
2.3 Workforce Planning and Development
2.3.1 Managers should also consider the wider workforce issues across their
service area. To assist with this, the Council has developed a
corporate workforce strategy that sets out the priorities and actions for
workforce development across the Council. The majority of our service
delivery is provided through people, directly and indirectly, the success
of the Council, our customers’ satisfaction, our efficiency, performance
indicators and CAA rating all depend heavily on the skills, ability,
knowledge and motivation of our employees. To achieve this,
managers need to aim to recruit, retain and develop the right people,
with the right skills, at the right time, to deliver our priorities and to have
well skilled, well motivated, high performing employees delivering
excellent services, who are proud to work for Doncaster Council.
2.3.2 This can be achieved by undertaking effective workforce planning
which is about:
i) Identifying the current and future skills and numbers of employees
needed to deliver new and improved services;
ii) Analysing the present workforce’s characteristics in relation to these
iii) Comparing the present workforce and the desired future workforce
to highlight shortages, surpluses and competency gaps; and
iv) Looking at the authority’s diversity profile at all levels against that of
the future local population.
3.1 Managers are continually faced with challenges to provide and improve
on delivering good quality services with less resource. To be able to
achieve this managers are required to think of innovative and creative
ways of utilising the resources that they have. The resources include
the employees that they have, how jobs are designed and the costs
involved in running their service.
3.1.2 Managers may have to look at making changes to service delivery or
have to take into account costs and look to make efficiency savings.
Managers have to consider the best options to be able to afford any
changes and therefore there will be times when there will be a
requirement for the Council to make reductions to posts in the
organisation or to redesign services to facilitate the change to service
3.1.3 As a result of organisational change or simply when a fixed term or
temporary contract comes to an end employees may find themselves
as being in a redundancy situation.
3.1.4 If organisational change ultimately results in a redundancy situation
managers would be advised to ask for expressions of interest from
employees to volunteer for redundancy in the first instance, in order to
avoid any compulsory redundancy situations wherever possible.
Compulsory redundancies have more of a negative impact upon staff
morale and general employee relations.
3.1.5 In a redundancy situation employees will have the following
after 1 years’ continuous service employees’ whose post is to
be deleted will be entitled to be placed upon the redeployment
after 2 years continuous service employees will be entitled to a
redundancy payment, if no suitable alternative employment
has been identified.
(This is outlined in the Redeployment Policy)
3.1.5 Section 135 of the employment Rights Act 1996 requires an employer
to make a redundancy payment to an employee where that employee
is dismissed by reason of redundancy. The Council has used its
discretion under the Local Government (Early Termination of
Employment) (Discretionary Compensation) (England and Wales)
Regulations 2006 to provide an enhanced redundancy pay scheme.
(This is outlined in the Redundancy Pay Policy and Redundancy
3.1.6 In accordance with the Employment Rights Act 1996, an employee who
is dismissed shall be taken to be dismissed by reason of redundancy if
the dismissal is, amongst other reasons, wholly or mainly attributable
to, the fact that the requirements of that business for employees to
carry out work of a particular kind have ceased or diminished or are
expected to cease or diminish.
3.1.7 Redundancy is a dismissal in law and for redundancy to be a fair
reason for dismissal, a redundancy situation, as defined in the
Employment Rights Act 1996, must apply and a fair procedure must be
followed. This includes a fair selection procedure, individual and union
consultation and consideration of suitable alternative employment.
(This is outlined in the Managing Employee Reductions Policy)
4.1 Normal retirement age for employees within DMBC is 65 years and this
is the age that unreduced pension benefits can be drawn. To be
entitled to Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) retirement
benefits employees have to have at least three months membership or
have transferred other pension rights into the LGPS.
4.1.1 Employees will be informed in writing by Human Resources of their
date of retirement and given details of their right to request to continue
working beyond this date. Employees will be provided with this
information at least six months and no more than 12 months before
their default date of retirement. Employees will be asked to indicate
whether or not they wish to retire.
4.1.2 The indication of whether an employee wishes to retire or continue
working beyond age 65 assists managers to be able to plan their
resources and assist with succession planning.
(The process is outlined on ‘The Notification of Retirement form’ within
the Retirement policy)
5. EARLY RETIREMENT
5.1 An employee may not wish to work up until the normal retirement age
of 65. From age 60 an employee can elect to retire and receive their
pension benefits without the requirement of the consent from the
Council to leave and access their accrued pension benefits early.
5.1.2 An employee may be able to retire and receive LGPS benefits from
age 55, but only at the Council’s discretion for the following reasons:
On the grounds of Redundancy
On the grounds of Efficiency
Under Regulation 30 of the Local Government Pension
5.2 Early Retirement on the grounds of Redundancy
5.2.1 When managers are considering changes to services; and as a result
of these changes it is deemed necessary to reduce the number of
posts or change posts to meet the changes to service delivery, there
may be employees who volunteer to take early retirement on the
grounds of redundancy (VER).
5.2.2 Whether it is retirement on a voluntary or compulsory redundancy
basis, employees who are made redundant from age 55, they will be
entitled to the immediate unreduced payment of Local Government
Pension Scheme benefits.
5.3 Early Retirement under the Pension Efficiency Criteria
5.3.1 Some early retirements are not sustainable by reason of redundancy
and therefore the employee would not be eligible for a redundancy
payment, but nevertheless the retirement would be in the interests of
5.3.2 An employee could retire in the interests of efficiency of the service
from age 55. Efficiency retirements may be considered at the
Council’s discretion, in the following circumstances:
1. The employee is unable to cope with or implement changes
required by management in working methods and practices
without causing employee or industrial relations difficulties
2. Whilst instances of ill health should normally be dealt with using
the Council’s Managing Attendance Policy, ill health retirement
or early release of pension benefits under regulation 30 of the
Local Government pension regulations amendments 2007,
there are instances when the health of an individual may affect
their performance but may not result in sickness absence
invoking any of the above. Where the employee’s performance
is affected by their health, retirement in the efficiency of the
service could be considered.
5.3.3 Employees qualify for an immediate pension if they are retired early on
in the interest of the efficiency of the service and are aged 55 or over
with 3 months’ membership or have transferred pension rights of any
length into the LGPS from another scheme.
5.3.4 Before supporting early retirement under the efficiency criteria
mangers must consider the costs of releasing the employee’s pension
benefit early in comparison to other options or costs to improve the
efficiency of the service. For example, the cost and feasibility of
providing further training and support for an employee who is unable to
cope with the workplace changes; or whether an employee has skills
that could be utilised in other areas of work and then consideration
could be given as to whether it is feasible to re-deploy the staff
(The process is outlined in the Retirement policy)
5.4 Early Retirement under Pension Regulation 30
5.4.1 There may be times where an employee’s personal circumstances have
changed and they wish to leave employment altogether. As a result of
leaving paid work, an employee may find themselves in a financial
hardship situation. Therefore under Regulation 30 of the Pension
Regulations, the Council may consider requests for early release of
pension benefits from an employee on compassionate grounds.
5.4.2 The Council has previously agreed to the circumstances that now fall
within Regulation 30 (previously Regulation 31), that the early payment
of pension benefits under the provision, either with or without actuarial
reductions, would not be approved unless the employee’s personal
circumstances were such that hardship would otherwise be caused.
5.4.3 Examples of hardship outlined were:-
a) Where the employee is the primary carer of a dependant relative;
b) Where the employee requires care themselves;
c) Where the employee is unfit to carry out his/her duties, but,
because of the more stringent rules, is unable to retire on the
grounds of ill-health.
5.4.4 An employee who is aged 55 or more can make a request to leave, or
can have already left Local Government employment, to request
immediate payment of his/her pension benefits. The employer’s
consent is required for the release of pension benefits, if the employee
is under 60 years of age and an actuarial reduction will apply if the
employee’s age and pension scheme membership when added
together amount to less than 85. The costs must be considered in all
cases as to whether the request can be approved. It is at the Council’s
discretion that consideration can be given to waive any actuarial
reductions to the employee’s benefits.
(There is more information outlined in the Retirement policy)
6. FLEXIBLE RETIREMENT
6.1 Flexible retirement is another approach to part-time/flexible working
which helps to prepare employees for retirement. The Council
promotes flexible working for all employees, wherever possible, and
written within the Pension Regulations employees aged 55 and over,
can either request a reduction in working hours or can apply for a lower
graded post, and at the same time receive part or all of their accrued
pension benefits. The Council’s consent is required both in terms of
reducing hours, i.e. for consideration of issues related to flexible
working, and releasing pension benefits as there are costs associated
with releasing benefits early. For employees over 60 accrued pension
benefits are not subject to any enhancements from the Council.
6.1.1 Flexible working hours could help the customer service in many ways.
The Council may be able to offer longer opening times, more
experienced staff and a better overall service. The main gain for
employees, from flexible working arrangements, is the increased
opportunity to fit other commitments and activities in with work, and
make better use of their free time or to assist them with a wind down
towards future retirement. Utilising this flexibility may require detailed
planning in areas of work which do not normally lend itself to a flexible
6.1.2 If part time/flexible working is requested managers have to take into
account the extra costs of induction, training and administration of
appointing people to part time posts or the remaining hours vacated by
an employee. Managers have to consider on a case by case basis the
feasibility of reducing hours for flexible retirement if the post holder
manages staff, for example, whether it is possible for staff to work for
6.1.3 When considering applications for flexible retirement, both the
employee and their manager should take advice from South Yorkshire
Pensions. There may be implications for the employee’s pension
benefit when accessing their pension early and for the manager there
may be the potential financial implications for the Council, which have
to be considered.
(The Retirement Policy sets out guidance to assist with the flexible
6.2 Pay In lieu of notice
6.2.1 All employees who retire on the grounds of redundancy or in the
interests of efficiency of the service should be given and be required to
work their contractual period of notice. Pay in lieu of notice will not be
given unless there is a specific legal requirement or unless there is a
specific identified benefit to the Council.
7. ILL HEALTH RETIREMENT
7.1 If an employee is experiencing long-term problems with their health
managers have to consider the impact that this has not only on the
employee but also on the work place. Regular or long-term absences
can have an impact upon service delivery and upon the remaining
employees who are still in work. When an employee is too ill to do
their job consideration will be made in the first instance to making any
adjustments in the work place to accommodate the employee, however
consideration must always be given the practicability of any
adjustments to the employee’s post in line with safe working practices.
7.1.1 If an employee has to leave work at any age due to permanent ill
health, the Pension Scheme provides a tiered ill health retirement
package. This could give an employee increased benefits, paid straight
away, if they are unlikely to be capable of gainful employment within a
reasonable time after leaving the organisation.
7.1.2 To qualify for ill health benefits, the Council, based upon an opinion
from an independent specially qualified doctor, must be satisfied that
the employee is permanently unable to do their own job and that there
is a reduced likelihood of being capable of obtaining gainful
employment before age 65.
7.1.3 Once an application for Ill Health retirement has been supported, in
principle, by the Council (with advice from the Health & Well being
service), the employee’s contract of employment is terminated in line
with the recommendations of the pension scheme.
(The Ill health retirement policy sets out guidance to assist with this
8. WORKING BEYOND AGE 65
8.1 There may be instances where an employee does not wish to leave the
organisation and take retirement at the age of 65.
8.1.1 Under the Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006, employees
have the right to request to continue working beyond any compulsory
retirement age set by their employer. The Council will consider
applications to work beyond age 65 and will take reasonable steps to
accommodate an employee's request to continue working beyond
his/her contractual retirement age, wherever possible.
8.1.2 If an employee chooses to carry on working after age 65 there is an
option to continue to pay into the Local Government Pension Scheme
(LGPS), in order to build up further benefits. The LGPS will pay out the
pension upon retirement, or when an employee reaches the eve of
their 75th birthday, or if they take flexible retirement with the Council’s
consent, whichever occurs first. If an employee draws their pension
after age 65, it will be increased to reflect the fact that it will be paid for
a shorter time. The LGPS pension has to be paid to an employee
before reaching their 75th birthday. (It is recommended that
employees contact a pension’s adviser in all cases)
8.1.3 If an employee does work beyond the age of 65 and their post is made
at risk of redundancy within any reorganisation. The employee would
be entitled to the same rights as all Council employees under section 3
of this report.
9.1 For any of the options under consideration, which relate to the release
of an employee’s pension it is recommended that employees discuss
their circumstances with South Yorkshire Pensions to ensure they are
aware of the impact upon their own pension benefits. Managers must
contact South Yorkshire Pensions to ensure that they understand any
cost implications for the Council.
For further information regarding local government pensions contact:
South Yorkshire Pensions on (01302) 737181
10. CAREER BREAK
10.1 The Career Break scheme is intended to provide benefits for both
employees and the Council. Rather than leaving the Council an
employee may wish to take a break for various reasons such as:
To care for children
To care for elderly or sick relatives, or other dependants
To undertake temporary voluntary work
To undertake courses of study
(This list is illustrative rather than exhaustive).
10.1.2A career break can be permitted for up to 5 years and for the employee
is an unpaid break from work. There is no guarantee of employment at
the end of the break however every effort will be made to find the
individual employment at the same level as their present post.
(More detail can be found in Policies - Career Break Scheme)
11. FURTHER HELP AND SUPPORT
11.1 Pre Retirement Seminars
Pre-retirement seminars are held for employees who are planning to
retire in the next two years. The purpose of these seminars is to
prepare employees for retirement - for them to start thinking about what
work has meant to them both mentally and socially, and how to fill the
gap it may leave. Seminars are held on a regular basis throughout the
year and can be booked by contacting:
Learning and Development on (01302) 862219.
The booking form can be found on the Intranet under People &
Performance Improvement, Learning and Development.
11.2 Stress Counselling
Leaving the organisation can potentially be a stressful time for
employees. Employees can access the confidential stress counselling
service provided through the Health & Well being service by means of
Employees can contact Health and Well-Being confidentially by
telephone or e-mail.
(01302) 737045, HealthandWellBeing@doncaster.gov.uk
11.3 For advice and guidance on any aspect of this procedure please contact:
Human Resources Advice Line
Telephone: (01302) 862630 (General enquiries)
(01302) 862620 (School enquiries)
Original Approved: ERC 22 March 2010