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An official warning! What now?!

08 September 2023

At work you have to adhere to certain rules. If your employer thinks that you are not doing this, he can give you an official warning. For example, because you are often late, exhibit undesirable behavior in the workplace or wrongly report sick. Such a warning does not have to mean much, as long as you ensure improvement. Otherwise, an official warning in your file may play a role in further disciplinary measures. It is therefore very important to respond properly to a warning, especially if you disagree with it. We have listed the six most important tips.

1 Reply in writing
You will receive an official warning in writing. In any case, it is important to confirm in writing that you have received it, whatever you think of the warning. Do you agree with the warning? Send a written response to your employer, possibly with some nuances or your side of the story. Do you disagree? Then you can object: write a registered letter or e-mail in which you indicate that you do not agree with the warning. State clearly why you do not agree and request your employer to withdraw the warning.

2 Ensure a nuanced file structure
The warning will end up in your personnel file. Therefore, request your employer to also include your response to the warning; This way you prevent one-sided file building. Multiple official warnings can be the precursor to a suspension or even play a role in a dismissal procedure. If you never responded or your objections were not included in your file, only your employer's side will be discussed. This can work to your disadvantage.

3 Stay businesslike
A warning from your employer can stir up a lot of emotions - especially if you disagree - but try to remain businesslike. For example, by keeping your objection short and concise. Also have someone read along. We have to help you get started a sample letter prepared for you.

4 Pay attention to the objection period
An objection procedure may have been set up on the basis of your collective labor agreement or company regulations. Check this immediately after receiving the warning. Sometimes the objection period is very short, so pay attention to this!

5 Don't sign if you don't agree
Does your employer ask you to agree to an official warning? Do not sign documents if you do not agree with the content. A solution may be to sign the written warning 'seen, not agreed' - that gives you just a little more time to formulate an objection.

6 Don't give rise to new warnings
It goes without saying, but avoid doing the same behavior in the future. For example, do you get a warning for being late? Make sure you arrive on time – right after the warning, but also later. In addition, do not give your employer a reason to warn you on other points.

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Enlist the help of an expert

Don't know what to do? Please contact our legal specialists. They will give you useful advice, help with your response and support during an objection procedure. Our Service Center can be reached every working day from 8.00:18.00 am to XNUMX:XNUMX pm via and 0345 851 963.

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