Termination of employment during Probation period
Termination of employment during Probation period – irrespective of duration of probation period: May I terminate an employee with 24 hours notice and with what reasons?
An employer does not have to wait for a probation period to have run its course before effecting the dismissal of a probationary employee. It would therefore, in appropriate cases be permissible to effect the dismissal of a probationary employee during the probation period itself. Ordinarily a probationary employee may be dismissed for incapacity / poor work performance. If that is indeed the case, then no less than one week’s notice of termination has to be given to the employee. If, however, the employee has misconducted him / herself, and is found guilty of serious misconduct, summary termination is permissible. Such dismissal will, however, have nothing to do with the probationary nature of the employment then.
Care should be taken not to be seen to have dismissed a probationary employee too soon. The purpose of probation is to give an employer the opportunity to evaluate the employee’s performance before confirming the appointment. The period allowed for such assessment should therefore be proper and fair in the circumstances.