A pair of Unix sysadmins have claimed a botched TUPE job switch left them caught between three organisations which all denied duty for employing them.
The two, named by the Scottish Employment Tribunal as Messrs Ok Fulke and Ok Reid, had been employed by Wipro in 2011 on a contract the Indian agency had with the Highland Council.
Yet Employment Judge Nick Hosie threw out their claims in opposition to each the council and Wipro, leaving them to pursue solely NEC-owned Northgate Public Services.
Northgate’s solicitor tried and did not efficiently argue that TUPE, the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006, should not be utilized to an outsourcing contract the place IT providers went from being hosted on-premises into the cloud. He urged the choose to just accept that for employment legislation functions, transferring from on-premises to cloud resulted in work being executed in a “essentially totally different means” – which means TUPE protections would not apply.
TUPE is the legislation that stops you from being robotically sacked if your organization transfers you to a different agency after shedding a contract. There are methods round it, as there all the time are with the legislation, however right here Northgate did not handle to make a clear getaway as some may say Wipro and the council did.
Both claimants had been engaged on the Highland Council’s CareFirst system and had been because the early 2010s. In 2019 the council determined to strip Wipro of its Unix contract and break up it between different outsourcers, together with Northgate. The Unix-based techniques the council owned lined three areas: social providers, housing, and income and advantages.
When the contract was transferred from Wipro, the corporate “took the place that the Claimants’ employment would switch” to Northgate underneath TUPE. The Highland Council agreed. Northgate, nonetheless, had different concepts, “sustaining that the providers they had been offering had moved from a devoted server surroundings to a shared server Cloud based mostly surroundings,” because the judgment stated.
This, the corporate claimed, meant TUPE should not apply and due to this fact Fulke and Reid’s sysadmin jobs could be another person’s duty. Unfortunately for the 2 sysadmins, this might have meant they had been jobless, stranded between three organisations that all stated they weren’t answerable for employing the duo.
Wipro efficiently argued that because it had misplaced the Highland Council contract, its workers’s contracts should have TUPE’d over to another person. The council steered that as Northgate was operating its personal information centres to service the contract, this meant the ex-Wipro sysadmins had been doing work “which immediately relates” to their previous jobs – which means they should have been TUPE’d to Northgate.
The choose dismissed Fulke and Reid’s claims in opposition to the council and Wipro at a listening to in August. Their case in opposition to Northgate will likely be heard in due course. ®