So... You've issued charges against an employee for misconduct, but he leaves before (or even during) the disciplinary hearing without giving notice of his resignation.
What can you do?
Because your employee hasn't complied with the BCEA by giving notice, it's up to you to decide if you want to accept the termination on his terms. Some employers would leave it at that, only too happy to be rid of him.
But you're well within your rights to finish what you started in the time that would've been his notice period. Here's how...
Your guide to substantively and procedurally fair dismissals
2 Good reasons to follow through with disciplinary action
You believe it's the right thing to do and want to set the example: you'll take action against an employee you suspect of misconduct.
You want any guilt you find in a disciplinary hearing to support any criminal charges you want to pursue against him, or to boost your chances of suing him in the civil courts for compensation for any loss or damage he causes you.
Remember, apply the normal rules for a hearing, even if the employee has already left without giving notice.
Don't end up on the losing side of the CCMA because you didn't know the difference between insubordination and gross insubordination!
Here's how to follow through with the process
You must still send him a written notice to attend a disciplinary enquiry in the same way you would even if he hadn't left so abruptly. It's up to him if he decides to attend or not. If he doesn't pitch up, you can continue in his absence. Just make sure you this before the notice period expires.
So, if he commits misconduct during this time you can still discipline him. If you dismiss
him after you take disciplinary action, the employment ends for dismissal for misconduct. And not because of his resignation.
Louis resigns from his job as a credit controller with the company. He's working out his notice period. During this time, you find out he's been involved in extensive petty cash fraud. You investigate the matter and take disciplinary action against him. You dismiss
Louis. The employment relationship ends because you dismiss
him for misconduct and not because he resigned.
Just remember that the dismissal must be procedurally and substantively fair! The Labour Law for Managers shows you every step on how to do this... Find out how here...
Fact: The CCMA doesn't care why you dismissed an employee... It only wants to know if you dismissed him fairly! We'll show you exactly how to prepare for a procedurally fair disciplinary hearing.