Staff Christmas Parties: our remedy to avoid a costly disaster!

December 9, 2016

HR180 has seen it all! So here’s superhero HR manager, Ellie Garnett, with a run down of the things you really need to do so that you avoid unexpected bills after your Staff Christmas Do.

Yay, or boo it’s that time of year again, Christmas! Love it or hate it at some point you’re bound to be a part of it, even if it is just for the Christmas work do!

We have all been to the office party, where one of our colleagues is …..well…..just enjoying themselves too much.

Despite how embarrassing it can all be, and the fact that no work gets done the next day as everyone is running to the loo for the gossip “Did you see?” or “It was hilarious when they…” it is important to remember that employment law applies even at the Christmas party. Before you all start screaming party-pooper, it’s true, employers can be fending off harassment claims the following day while reaching for the Alka Seltzer (there are other brands on the market).


These harassment claims can and do go all the way to tribunal, never mind all the hurt feelings that can take weeks, and weeks to start and resolve.  So when you’re thinking that the office party was an expensive outlay, you might not have had all the bill yet!

So let’s think about how we can help prevent a costly disaster, and concentrate on having a wonderful Christmas party.

  • Everyone needs to know that they can go to the party and enjoy themselves.
  • Let’s make sure we accommodate everyone, by being as inclusive as possible.
  • Does anyone in the office have any special dietary requirements? If so cater for them!
  • If the party isn’t at the office, make sure everyone knows where to go. Have directions ready for them so no one has to arrive late.
  • Have a seating plan, let’s get people talking.
  • Make sure everyone knows the dress code, we don’t want anyone turning up feeling totally out of place.
  • Make sure that employees realise that this kind of gathering will be viewed as an ‘extension of the work place’.
  • Make sure that your policies on harassment are up to date and that everyone is aware of them.

Most importantly remember that Christmas is no different to any other time of the year. Employees will get into mischief from time to time, understand how to manage your employees and situations effectively.

We hope your Christmas Party goes with a swing – but if you need more than Alka Seltzer as a remedy for your post-party blues, then we are the HR experts for you! Give us a call to chat through what we can do to help – call 0808 1221 180.

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