Christmas parties - how to avoid any drama

You may have had your annual staff Christmas party this year. How was it? There are usually stories that staff like to share over the following days, and sometimes there’s work for the HR team to do as a result. Imagine having to deal with the fall out of a Christmas party where the Managing Director drunkenly punched an employee

Employment Essentials say it was decided that the company was not vicariously liable for the assault because the MD wasn’t acting in the course of employment. The High Court stated that if injuries are caused to an employee by another member of staff after a work party has ended, the employer will not be vicariously liable for those injuries because it is too far removed from the employment relationship.

Employment laws do apply at the staff party though. Your organisation may be liable for incidents of harassment or discrimination caused by over drinking.

You can of course take measures in advance to remind staff about appropriate behaviour, and this is likely to reduce the risk of issues escalating during and after the event. Reminding staff of what constitutes unacceptable behaviour at staff social events - as well as highlighting the likely consequences of such behaviour is recommended by ACAS. This could be a reminder email or letter to all staff, or even a mention in preceding team meetings. No one wants to dampen the spirit of a party before it starts though, so the knack is delivering the message in the right way. 

ACAS say, “While it's hard to stop employees over-indulging, limiting the amount of alcohol at the party, providing non-alcoholic options and supplying enough food can all help minimise the risk of employees getting drunk.”



We hope you find this information helpful but please keep in mind that it does not constitute legal advice and we can not be held responsible for any inaccuracies or damages that may result.

Discover more about All Jobs Pro's In-house recruiting toolkit here or contact us for a no obligation trial or to arrange a quick demo.
The 5 company policies you need to have in writing

From an Employee Code of Conduct Policy to your Equal Opportunity Policy the importance of putting your policies down in writing should not be underestimated.

Learn more
What to measure in employee performance reviews

“You can’t improve what you can’t measure” and “what gets measured, gets done.” Measuring your employees performances can often be challenging especially when it's tricky to obtain real tangible data to evaluate against. However, here we try to break down the main questions to ask, and the performance factors you need to know.

Learn more
Employment background checks

Here are 8 essential checks employers should do before employment.

Learn more
Red flags in employee background checks

So you have found the best candidate for the role you’ve advertised for and now ready to offer them a role. There is however just one more hoop for them to jump through - the background check

Learn more
Diversity in the workplace

Diversity in the workplace should be more than just ticking a compliance box; it should be embraced because it can boost performance and create unique workplace cultures.

Learn more
Why choose a career in HR?

HR is now at the heart of most businesses which makes it truly exciting for people entering into the profession, Lyndsay Moger discusses the various career paths that you can take and the skills you learn can be adapted and taken to any industry.

Learn more
Company Christmas parties - Do's and Don'ts

It’s that time of year again, the time of year that many an HR Manager dreads – the office Christmas party. For all of your seasoned HR professionals out there, you are probably already aware of the potential pitfalls – however for those of you who are perhaps unaware of the issues that could arise, we have put together this handy guide to ensure your Christmas party goes off with a bang… for all the right reasons!

Learn more