Changing cleaning contractor – What is TUPE?

TUPE – Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations’ is a legal framework, within UK law, which is designed to protect the rights of workers when their employment is transferred to another contractor.

Within the cleaning industry, transferring staff under TUPE occurs commonly when a cleaning contract is outsourced or transferred to a new contractor. If an employee’s job is transferred under the TUPE regulations to another employer, that employee has the legal right to transfer to the new employer whilst keeping the same terms and conditions of their original contract of employment.

The 3 main aims of the TUPE regulations are:

  • To ensure employees are not dismissed from their job either before or after the transfer.
  • To ensure the most important terms and conditions (such as working hours, hourly rate, sick pay etc.) of an employee’s contract are retained.
  • To ensure that employees affected are informed and consulted by representatives of the new business.

Although TUPE was created primarily as a mechanism to preserve the rights of workers, transferring staff under TUPE also offers benefits for the contractor and the customer.

Employee benefits
For an employee, there are usually several advantages to transferring under TUPE. Primarily, it offers stability and job security.

Contractor benefits
Transfer of Undertakings allows for the retention of core skills when assuming responsibility for a cleaning contract, as well as providing a framework for how to secure the services of the incumbent staff.

Customer benefits
For the customer, they benefit from a continuity of service, retention of core skills and site specific knowledge, even if a new contractor is appointed.

Changes are permitted within the TUPE regulations under justifiable economic, technical or operational reasons. In circumstances where the client wished to make significant changes within the TUPE framework, CCS have extensive experienced at managing TUPE to meet the client’s requirements.