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You may have booked the venue and be looking forward to your staff Christmas party, but have you considered all the potential pitfalls? Jacqui Mann provides a guide to ensuring that the festivities are problem-free

If you are thinking about expanding your nursery business and purchasing one or several more, then you may have heard of TUPE.

Over the past ten years, there have been many changes in employment law relating to working parents, and in April 2011 additional paternity leave and pay was introduced. Jacqui Mann reports that HR4 Nurseries has not seen a huge increase in requests for additional paternity leave, but says it is important that employers understand the key areas

When one of your employees asks for parental leave, do you know what they are entitled to? Here Jacqui Mann outlines the legal position

Often when staff are returning to work after maternity leave they want to return part-time or alter their hours of work to enable them to look after their children. Jacqui Mann gives advice

Conducting an interview successfully is key to ensuring that you employ the right person for the job. To make it less of a daunting task there are a few simple steps you can take, says Jacqui Mann, managing director of HR4Nurseries (

Dealing with a case of long-term sickness can be a difficult issue. Last month's column looked at how to obtain a doctor's report. Once the report has been received, there are a number of further steps to be taken, says Jacqui Mann

We have been asked recently by several nursery owners how they can deal with a long-term sickness case. Unfortunately this can be a difficult area and sometimes a very lengthy and stressful process. It is important to manage the situation with sensitivity and concern and to consult fully to achieve an appropriate and fair outcome, says Jacqui Mann

Times are tough and while nobody wants to make employees redundant, this can sometimes be unavoidable.

The Equality Act became law in October 2010, replacing previous legislation (such as the Race Relations Act 1976 and the Disability Discrimination Act 1995). To comply and ensure fairness and consistency, nurseries need to have in place an equal opportunities policy, says Jacqui Mann, managing director of HR4Nurseries (

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