The fight goes on: LSL staff take advice over redundancies

Staff at a number of LSL branches have formed a ‘collective’ to raise an official written grievance at the way closures and redundancies are being handled.

The branches are in the south of the country.

Among their claims is that LSL is apparently treating each separate branch as an employer with branch closures on February 19.

Their formal grievance says that as a collective employed by Your Move, the notice period cannot take effect until later.

The letter says the news of the redundancies and branch closures – which was broken via a recorded message on conference call a week ago today – came as a massive disappointment.

It says: “In the aftermath . . . staff have been left very much in the dark  . . . with Property Industry Eye seeming better informed than many staff with regard to the impending changes.”

The letter says that it was also unacceptable that staff were told that the conference call was about training.

The letter goes on to express concerns about the consultation process, which appears to hinge on the basis that each office is the employer.

The branches say that they feel this is an entirely unfair process.

An LSL spokesperson said: “As announced last week, some Your Move and Reeds Rains branches are merging and closing; staff are currently in consultation.”

x

Email the story to a friend

20 Comments

  1. Jonathan.Welford

    An LSL redundancy-bot said: “As announced last week, some Your Move and Reeds Rains branches are merging and closing; staff are currently in consultation.”

    Report
    1. Bless You

      So a company who backs yopa has to shut offices because of companies like yopa destroying honest businesses… couldn’t make it up.

      Report
  2. SLF

    It would be very interesting to get the views of  LSL employees. Anyone out there?

    Report
    1. TF1968

      Make no mistake this was planned on paper with absolutely no thought for the personal and PR fallout. Middle management who were close to their offices thrown to the side with the staff.  No proper discussions as to how this would be rolled out. Regional Managing Directors making desktop selections in one case when they have not been to an office for months and could not put a face to the negotiators name.

      One early casualty had a main board director come and make the announcement in person but he could not be heard so staff were relaying what was going on at back as it was happening. No personal empathy or proper explanation and ‘consultation’ well that was joke and it was a done decision and recruitment at the planned relocation well under way.

      HR representatives sent down who had no answers to perfectly sensible questions and had to continually seek clarification. Our Director (also being ditched) who stood up for us was publicly told off when they were honest with us as to what the final out come would be – needed when you are about to sign for a big mortgage on your first home.

      The required legal paper trails will be perfect to comply with redundancy legislation. They will make sure of that. Our word as staff against a PLC. There will be only one winner. Given lots of clients read Eye these days one can only hope they vote with their feet and take business elsewhere.

      Glad for colleagues still in place but l wouldn’t feel too secure personally.

       

      Report
      1. WiltsAgent

        An exact replica of my experience 18 years ago, absolute chaos with senior management doing everything possible to protect themselves at the expense of the staff on the ground.

        Report
      2. stillhaveapulse81

        Do these corporates never learn….history repeating itself yet again….top heavy with ridiculously highly paid non fee earning staff taking the cream from the efforts of low paid workers at the coalface. These “managers” spend their  time going from one meeting to another with absolutely no idea how to manage or motivate staff. Phone calls listened in on (unbeknown to individual office staff), invisible managing directors, training sessions being delivered by former failed estate agents and best of all conveyancing and mortgages given priority over house sales as income streams……..er… surely if you haven’t got the sales you might just struggle to get mortgages and conveyancing!!!!! no problem for the likes of LSL and LSLI in a buoyant market but in this market, which will continue to soften, they have well and truly been found out. it’s not just LSL but also LSLI that are making redundancies…but they’re trying to keep that quiet.

        Report
  3. voreason

    One has to take a balanced view when reading  allegations from employees who clearly feel betrayed and wounded.

    That said there is clearly more than a modicum of truth in the way this debacle has been handled, so it is no wonder that the business is failing if this is indicative of its approach to strategic planning/managing its workforce.

    Any talented individuals looking to develop their career should avoid this business and take heed of just what they are capable of when the number crunchers give the orders to satisfy the city and its shareholders.

    Steer clear

    Report
  4. MrsC

    Does anyone have any Your Move or Reeds Rains branches local to them? Are the windows white washed like it was reported yesterday?

    I do feel for the staff, not a nice process to go through for anyone but this does seem a rather poorly planned way of doing things so I am not surprised they want to raise a grievance.

    Report
    1. Miss Independent

      Yes we have one a few doors along. The signage was all taken off and the windows whitewashed yesterday and now it’s closed. Very sad to see how quickly it was done.

      Report
    2. smile please

      I believe Atlas have the contract and I know 2 offices close to me will be whitewashed this week.

      Report
    3. CountryLass

      Has it been decided yet which offices are closing?

      Report
      1. MrsC

        No press release to state which offices are remaining and closing. There are 2 Your Move branches within my area which I have no doubt will be white washed soon but no Reeds Rains at this end of the country.

        Report
      2. CD

        Yes, it had been decided prior to February 05.

        Report
  5. Woodentop

    Your employer should use a fair and objective way of selecting people to make redundant. This means that it should be based on some evidence rather than your employer just deciding who they want to let go.

     

    If you feel that your employer has selected you unfairly you should appeal against the decision. Put your appeal in writing and explain what you want your employer to do to put the situation right. The way in which you were selected will affect whether your redundancy is considered fair by an Industrial Tribunal.

     

    statutory redundancy notice periods are:

    at least one week’s notice if you have been employed between one month and two years
    one week’s notice for each year if employed between two and 12 years
    12 weeks’ notice if employed for 12 years or more

    Report
  6. AgencyInsider

    Given the speed of the closures, what have they done with all their instructions and ongoing branch business? Anyone know what they told vendors, landlords etc?

    Report
  7. J1

    Employers are allowed to make vertical and horizontal selections.  Ie branch closures or line of employees such as area managers

    However there are strict rules around collective bargaining and timescales for redundancy consultations that must be observed; otherwise the employer can be done for not following procedure.

    Employees don’t have to like it, but if correct procedures are followed then there is not a lot they can do I am afraid.

    Report
  8. NotAdoctor32

    As uncomfortable and distressing as it is for the people losing their jobs, I’m sure LSL will have done everything by the book in terms of legal processes, even if they have handled it in poor taste.  This is a company that has an admin team tearing property details apart in fear of falling foul of the Property Misdescriptions Act, I’m sure they aren’t going to leave themselves open to 100’s of employee tribunals.
     
    A sorry state of affairs, some great people have lost their jobs but the model (certainly in my area) didn’t make sense, and I did 10 years there.  2 competing offices in towns where, in some cases, both were losing money. Your Move died when they introduced the £150 upfront fee and insisted on professional photos to be taken by people who don’t know how to photograph properties. The fee had a direct correlation with the nose-dive in instructions.  The managers blamed the staff, the staff left.
     
    One of the best valuers I’ve ever met (60%+ conversion in a tough area) was forced out for not getting enough £150’s upfront.  One of the most ridiculous decisions I’ve ever seen in business.
     
    I had a wonderful time there, learned a lot and had some great people around me, but the decision making towards the end of my time there was astounding.

    Report
  9. HIT MAN

    Well Connells will have to save money somewhere to pay all the court fees and compensation to OTM for their failed court case and appeal.

    Report
  10. Industry insider

    Some of the LSL branch closures seem very weird and likely to cause long term harm.
     
    A local LSL branch has just suddenly closed which covers a successful medium sized town with a wide selection of surrounding commuter villages. The branch has a great position on the main street and has traded for many years.
     
    Yet the LSL management has decided to keep open a branch 30 minutes away in a less prosperous town where the LSL branch is in a secondary location. LSL are giving up on a decent market to compete where things are much tougher and average fees an awful lot lower. The LSL contacts I have just can’t understand the decision!!
     
    The branch that is shut has no staff but the office lights, signs and displays all turned on. It looks really odd – like an abandoned ghost office!

    Report
  11. JasonB29

    I know of an office that staff have been put at risk & will be advised of outcome on 19th. Signage of said branch removed & windows whitewashed on Monday with staff told to attend office & sit behind opaque windows until further notice.

    Whilst redundancies & closures are an unfortunate part of business, the lack of dignity in the way staff are treated tells a lot about the culture of an organisation.

    Report
X

You must be logged in to report this comment!

Leave a reply

Thank you for signing up to our newsletter, we have sent you an email asking you to confirm your subscription. Additionally if you would like to create a free EYE account which allows you to comment on news stories and manage your email subscriptions please enter a password below.