Christmas Party Advice For Employers

How to avoid potential pitfalls of staff parties this Christmas season

The office Christmas party is a great way to boost morale by rewarding staff and giving everyone a chance to bond but when things go wrong the repercussions could cause problems for your business.

With food, drink and general merriment galore, things can easily go wrong. Unfortunately, employers are usually left to pick up the pieces, and perhaps face a legal claim, a workplace injury, or inappropriate staff behaviour warranting some form of disciplinary measure.

Employers should think about potential problems now and preparing to avoid or address them can help make it a happy Christmas for everyone in the business and minimise the risk of complaints or industrial tribunal claims.

While it may seem that Christmas parties are simply not worth the hassle, opting out may have its disadvantages as these events remain an important way of keeping up staff morale.

Christmas FAQs

The Labour Relations Agency (LRA) Helpline receives enquiries every Christmas from businesses with questions or problems.

To help you avoid potential issues, the LRA has compiled a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) which their helpline receives each Christmas season.

The questions cover a range of issues, such as:

  • choice of party venues and entertainment
  • inappropriate staff behaviour
  • harassment, bullying and discrimination
  • staff health and safety on and off work premises
  • best practice with office decorations
  • dealing with post-party absences and disciplinary issues
  • photographs posted on social networking sites

You can find the LRA’s Christmas party FAQs on the LRA website.