Fixed Term Contract Length: What You Need to Know
Fixed term contracts are a common employment arrangement where an employee is hired for a specific period of time, often to complete a project or fill in for staff on leave. While these contracts can offer benefits for both employers and employees, it’s important to understand the implications of fixed term contract length.
Here’s what you need to know about fixed term contract length:
1. They have a set end date
Unlike permanent contracts, fixed term contracts have a specific end date. This can be beneficial for employers who have a short-term need for additional staff and don’t want to commit to long-term employment. However, it’s important to note that fixed term contracts cannot be renewed indefinitely – after a certain number of renewals, the employee may become entitled to the same rights as a permanent employee, such as benefits and job security.
2. They may limit job security
While fixed term contracts can offer job security for the duration of the contract, they can also leave employees uncertain about their future employment prospects. In addition, if an employer terminates a fixed term contract early, the employee may not have recourse to unfair dismissal claims.
3. Length can impact employee benefits
The length of a fixed term contract can impact an employee’s entitlement to benefits. For example, some benefits may only be available to permanent employees or those who have worked for a certain length of time. This can leave employees on fixed term contracts without the same level of benefits as their permanent colleagues.
4. It’s important to communicate expectations clearly
Clear communication between the employer and employee is vital in a fixed term contract arrangement. Employers should be clear about the length of the contract, the tasks the employee will be expected to perform, and their expectations for the employee’s performance. In turn, employees should be clear about their availability for work and any limitations they may have.
In summary, fixed term contract length can be a useful tool for employers, but it’s important to consider the impact on employee rights and benefits. Clear communication between both parties is essential to ensure a successful employment arrangement.