Can I Be Dismissed for Poor Performance Before the End of My Probation Period?

The simple answer is yes. However, whether an employee can be dismissed for poor performance prior to the end of their probation period will largely depend on what is contained in the contract of employment and any associated documents, for example: If an employer does not stipulate a probation period they would be expected to… Read More


Do Probation Periods Works?

“In almost all cases we find large jumps in the predicted probability of a work absence after probation periods are completed.” (Riphahn & Thalmaier, 1999, p.12). Research by Loh in 1994, using data on US hires, provides evidence that supports the hypothesis that a probation period induces self-selection by workers. Loh (1994) argued that individuals… Read More

Probation: Pregnant Employees and Poor Performance

An employee has no absolute right to be confirmed in post just because she is pregnant if her work performance is not of a satisfactory standard and the reason for this is wholly unconnected to her pregnancy. If the employer wished to dismiss the employee due to ongoing poor work performance, it would need to… Read More

Period of Notice during Probation

It is a fairly common practice for contracts of employment to have an increasing amount of notice based on length of service. However, for probation periods it is usually one week or month. The contract of employment should state what the notice periods are. In general, the period of notice should be equal between the… Read More

What is the Purpose of a Probation Period?

There are a variety of different viewpoints regarding the purpose of a probation period, but they ultimately seek the same outcome – an employee who is capable of doing the job/role. “Employers use trial periods to address risk when hiring” (Houghton, 2012, p.iv). “The probationary period can be valued as the most valid determinant of… Read More

What If There Is No Probation Period?

As previously discussed, a probation period enables an employer to terminate the contract of an employee who is not performing to the expected standard within their new job/role or is otherwise deemed not suitable for the particular job/role. Whether or not this empowers employers to abuse their employees by, without warning, terminating their contract before… Read More

Promotion and Probation Periods

For employees who are promoted, the general principles outlined in the main article (below) should be followed, with the major difference being the outcome for failing the probation period. The employer should make it clear, either verbally or in writing, what the consequence(s) of failing the probation period are prior to the employee accepting the… Read More